Why I won’t sign your petition
Beyond our ideas of right-doing and wrong-doing,
there is a field. I’ll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase ‘each other’
doesn’t make sense any more.”
I hesitate to share any news on the many disasters happening all around the world on my facebook page. I hesitate to sign online petitions or go on demonstrations against a system that is not working anymore in so many ways. Not because I think it is categorically wrong – it just is not my way of engaging with the world and its unfoldment these days. Let me explain…
The humility of not knowing
If I take a step back and go into humility, I have to admit, that I have no clue what is actually going on on a larger scale.
My sense is that everything that is taking place is an emergent, evolutionary process, where contradicting forces are at play that need each other much more than they would acknowledge on the surface. Terrorists need governments that fight them as much as activists need companies that exploit the planet. Without the opponent the other would not rise to it’s role and identity. And out of a series of global disasters and crises that are becoming more frequent and dramatic a new consciousness, value system and movement against the system that causes these threats arises and will become stronger. If we didn’t have problems that couldn’t be solved with the current level of consciousness and thinking there would be no need for a new level of consciousness to arise.
A dialectic journey in the world of polarities
It is a dialectic development of thesis, antithesis and synthesis. And even if maybe painful to accept from my limited point of view, even if the price of this evolution is extraordinarily high and every life that is lost in this battle is a world ending, this is also the course of nature. Accepting this opens a third position, that is neither this or that, neither right or wrong, neither good or bad.
And what this position of acceptance and humility opens up is a new way of engaging in this unfolding field. Every uprising against a broken system simultaneously strengthens it. Because it enforces the believe in it’s power. At this third position, the system will at some point simply be forgotten. Believe is what fuels and feeds the system. If we simply stop believing in it, it will disappear from this to the next moment. And be replaced by something we believe to be more true.
Our responsibility – to respond and not just to react
Being at peace on a deep level with what happens opens the opportunity for new action. An action, that is coming from a deeper source. We can take more responsibility, in the sense that our ability to respond is increased by the freedom to choose more consciously. And contrary to the first impression it does not reduce my compassion and empathy. It does not make me cold and indifferent about the suffering in the world. It seems to me that with this deep acceptance there actually comes deeper capacity for compassion and feeling.
Getting stuck by forming an identity
It is a paradox that cannot be comprehended by the limitations of cognition. The mind longs for simple categories. Like right and wrong. And it does not accept this flexible position of saying one thing today and doing another thing tomorrow. At times I may do feel an impulse to put a stake in the ground against an injustice I witness. But I don’t get stuck in the position by adopting it as my identity.
And it’s a tricky line to walk. But I cannot go back to the comfort of simple categories.
Evolution is taking is course. Cocreated by our actions. And I notice that what seems painful, cruel or wrong from my limited point of view is part of a much larger game at play. An overwhelming paradox in which the world of form unfolds endlessly. And beyond that there is a silence, where everything is just the way it is. And everything is in harmony, emerging according to a larger pattern.
My responsibility is to become translucent and to surrender. To follow the path that is determined for me. This is my freedom of choice. To surrender to the paradox. To let go. To forget. And remember more deeply. The world does not need more people who fight the system. The world needs more people who forget everything that is against life. And remember more deeply who we really are.
Creating a new reality
What does this have to do with how we live our lives? What are the practical implications of this, admittedly, abstract and philosophical musing?
To me, it all leads to radical personal responsibility. And the starting point is to take responsibility for myself. I see it as my responsibility not to retreat to the comfort of knowing what to do by calling myself an activist or holding on to any separating, duality creating identity for that matter. To let go of an identity that gives me a clear norm and moral standard according which to behave in all circumstances. I feel the responsibility to adapt my response flexibly in every situation. To surprise myself by the impulses that arise. To let go of judgement and foremost: To follow my highest personal excitement moment by moment – and letting go of all expectations. This momentary impulse, this flexible ethic is growing to replace more and more the safety of static rules.
Photo Credit: Kevin J Beaty via Compfight cc