Religions are amazing. I do not say that with any negative connotation. Our ability to see ourselves as marvelous children of God, however we perceive God to be, is nothing short of wonderful. Our religions are an evolving story of our faith in creation and the relationship we have with the creator. Within the safe bubble of religions we find the great unknown, and for some, unknowable dimensions of our life here on Earth to be less fearful. With all many of us are faced with, our religious faith carries us through the dark valleys of life and death, illness and disaster, and our own evil.
Normally it is unwise to have a conversation with anyone about religion unless you are of the same faith and have roughly the same vision of your relationship with the creator. I am stepping into uncharted and potentially dangerous territory because of certain recent events which are disturbing in their implications for the present and far into the future.
Great harm has been done throughout the ages in the name of religion. It is not the fault of our idealized role of religious faith in our lives, it is the fault of the human beings who are leading the parade. Today, in front of us all, all of the good that religions offer is being tainted by a separatist and unbendable view of our relationship to our creator. Masses of people, numbering in the millions, have tossed tolerance and religious freedom out the window. This intolerance is being expressed violently in some cases, and in other cases with threats, rejection, and persecution. Our relationships with each other are deteriorating so far that in many cases insects have a better chance of not being exterminated than a fellow human being.
If you have any doubts that this protectionist view is spreading, recent events throughout the world bring the danger home to our doorsteps. This extremism cannot be fought by declaring the enemy and then exterminating the enemy. It can only be countered with acknowledgement, acceptance, dialogue and understanding. This does not mean that we fail to deal with those who would kill in the name of their God. What it does mean is that in our day to day lives we learn to judge less, label less, let go more, and become an acute observer of ourselves and our environment. We tolerate other views different than our own only when we accept the right and authority of every individual to honor their own life energy and wisdom. We interfere less in other peoples lives when we accept and honor other peoples right to face life in their own way. All of this is predicated on the three laws of Robotics (courtesy of I. Asminov).
A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
A robot must obey any orders given to it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.
Revised, these three simple laws could read:
A Human must not injure another human being or, through inaction, allow another human being to come to harm.
A human may obey orders given to it by other human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
A human may protect its existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.
Although somewhat tongue in cheek, we do have the ten Commandments, these three laws could provide a framework for following the tenets of living, based on a fundamental respect for Life. For when you honor all life, you honor our Creator.
In many peoples minds it more important to directly honor and pay homage to their creator than to honor the results of the Creator's work, Life itself. To do both brings forth tolerance and behavior that brings credit to each of us as human beings.
To do only one misses the point entirely.
A Cosmic View
The segment on "Star Stuff" brings the awareness of how so many things had to come together, each at a precise Cosmological Point in Time, to allow us to emerge and flourish. While we do not yet have the exact linkage bridging each evolutionary step of life here on Earth, we do know that the DNA of life has many, many genes that potentially record our genetic past. It is even conceivable that major genetic shifts occurred in short bursts with natural selection and environmental pressures determining what changes would be successful over great spans of time.
All of our arguments over evolution and natural selection are just that, arguments. It is one of our inherent traits and driving forces of being human that sends us off to discover where we came from, how we got here, what are we here for. Life is truth in motion, it is not static. So each new piece of knowledge helps us put the big picture together, and each new piece of knowledge after that helps us bridge the unknowable into an even better picture of who we are, how we got here and what our purpose is. We will continue to revise and rewrite our story, with many conflicting versions, for a very, very long time.
In the meantime, until all of the questions that concern us are answered to everyone's satisfaction (don't hold your breath on that one), we can enjoy our continuing search for knowledge.
When our mental picture of where and how we fit into this Universe expands to encompass all of the wonders out there in the vastness of space, we develop a Cosmic Identity. Surprisingly enough this Cosmic Identity does not make us insignificant. It even brings home the very special nature of our existence. We are special, but we are also immature and childish. I and many others believe we are at a turning point in our awareness, in our consciousness. We are about to enter the adult phase of our life experience. The words that best describe this adult phase are, Guardianship, accountability, responsibility, creativity, Love and Respect for the Mystery unfolding before us.
This Earth is our home. No one who cares about anything at all trashes their home. We are problem solvers and there are many problems to solve. Arguments over Global Warming are nonsense. The most critical issues to resolve are what do we do when the Earth does enter into the next warming phase: Drought, rising water, famine, disaster relief, food sources and distribution, power, pollution, etc. etc. etc.
So many are devoting themselves to the real issues that we are going to face. We can only hope, from pressure applied by each one of us, that the ridiculous fighting over finite resources or religious differences will diminish. We can only hope that our leaders will stop the nightmare of changing the subject (if you are afraid of it, or don't know what to do about it, you point the finger anywhere but at the real problem) and focus on our long term survival.
If each of us becomes a Guardian, we all have a chance. If good men and women and children do nothing, we do not have a chance. There seems to be an amazing world wide transformation occurring. Our Cosmic Identity seems to be spreading. I only hope the extremists throughout the world get the big picture in time, before stupidity again places us all in harms way.
An Earth View
There are certain numbers that are important when we take an Earth View. Our population is rising at an exponential rate. This means that instead of having 6.5 billion people on this earth we will soon have 12.5 billion people calling Earth home. The word exponential, for non math folks, simply means the rise in population year by year is very very steep. It does not take a scientist to imagine the impact to this world and each other that 12.5 billion people will make. Already 11 plus million children are dying each year. Already scientist are projecting no more than another 50 to 100 years of fossil fuel reserves (specifically oil). We are already losing topsoil at an alarming rate, and, the integrity/fertility of the soil we do have is being compromised by farming practices that do not replenish soils' organic content and native organisms (bacteria and insects). The pressure to convert complex forests to farm land is immense. This is already resulting in massive deforestation, which will over the next hundred years have serious watershed consequences.
Food, which is already a serious issue in many parts of the world, will go from "this is a problem we can deal with" to millions dying of starvation. Because world planning is seriously impacted by conflicts over oil, energy, dictatorships, religion, and cultural/political differences, I do not see our leadership focusing on the real problems of this world any time soon.
This is not to preach doomsday. But, the reality is only a few intelligent souls are focusing on those issues we need to be most concerned about. Summed up, we need, we really need, a Guardian vision that permits a world wide management concept. Not Central planning, but cooperative integration of all assets on this Earth. If we do not get to this common state of mind, or frame of reference, war will be normal, not an exception.
Many have banded together to have their voices heard. They raise the alarm on species extinction, from polar bears to whale and Dolphins, and even to frogs. Predatory Companies are being watched, human rights violations are being documented. From pollution to deforestation, to Genetically Modified Organisms, from the voting patterns of Congressmen and Senators, many, many groups are doing everything they can to expose those who would take the easyroad.
But no matter how many successes these groups have, the onslaught of those who look out only for themselves, who are self serving or corrupt, who choose again and again to sacrifice the future to mask over the issue of the moment is never ending. This is crisis management and the squeaky wheel syndrome where long term planning, design and problem solving are replaced by who or what has my attention today.
A vision for this Earth and all of the people and life on it is slowly coming into focus. There are still too many Egos in conflict with each other. there are still too many arguments over who is right rather than what is right. Guardianship and Stewardship of the Earth Eco System must replace nationalism.
A revolution does not always require a war. Change can come about without violence. The tools of Awareness, the Observer, Stillness and the Power of being in the Now applied to every individual can turn all of the negative forces on this world into a world filled with Guardians. We may or may not need a true world government, but we are an Earth Community. As an Earth Community our view cannot be a separatist one but must be an integral one. We may never have Unity but we can have common ground.
The System is Broken
The financial meltdown and its rapidly expanding impacts to the economies of the world began in a Capitalist System, in a Democracy, that allowed greed, corruption, and stupidity to go unchecked.
Dictatorships throughout the world are violating people, starving people, abusing people, and killing people.
Extremism dominates the landscape. The London march by Islamic Extremist calling for our extermination is a case in point. It is well know that those in the Mideast and West are at each others throats. How this gets resolved in the short term I have no clue. I believe a reduction in rhetoric would be helpful, and a withdrawal from the battlefield would be helpful also. At least for now, Obama has the sense to rattle only those swords necessary and is promoting dialogue where ever possible.
Global warming is still in the throes of an argument. Climate change is occurring, the Magnetic poles are reversing, change is coming. Planning for that change should not be an argument but a necessity.
Communism, Socialism, Capitalism, even Democracy cannot work without checks and balances in place. Our founding fathers knew that only too well. Our leaders over the past few decades, more so in the last, have systematically attempted to rewrite the checks and balances of our system so that more and more power was in the hands of a small group. The election of Obama sent a message that we are not happy about the shredding of our Constitution. Only time will tell if he wants to or is able to turn the tide.
Religious groups are becoming more involved in the social and political issues facing us. Different groups are demanding and in many case getting the equal rights before the law they think they deserve. We are in the middle of a Social and Cultural revolution.
How does all of this fit under the umbrella of "Spiritual Unity"?
Spiritual Unity allows each and everyone of us to acknowledge and tolerate our differences. It prevents violent disagreements. It allows others to believe and behave as they choose as long as death and destruction are not part of the program. It prevents one Group's Self Image (Ego) from rising in conflict with another group's Self Image (Ego).
What this Web Site is promoting is not who is right or wrong, but a more healthy approach to our day to day existance. Our Systems are broken because the people within them are broken. We can adjust the Systems, we can patch and mend to our hearts content but until each and every one of us has the insight and understanding being promoted here (and in many other sites/books) we will continue to repeat the past.
Spiritual Unity does not mean we all share the same faith, religious vision, or relationship with our Creator. It does mean that we do share an awareness of the mystery and awe behind all of the creative forces at work here on Earth and in the Universe we now know a little more of. I sincerely hope that our journey continues in peace as each of us accepts our ability to choose our path in life. And that it allows all others their own journey, their own authority, their own wisdom.
Spiritual Unity is the pursuit of common ground among all people. Spiritual Unity allows for political, social, cultural and religious differences. Violence in support of a belief system is unacceptable. The rule of Law must be upheld. In its simplest interpretation the Rule of Law says that no one person or group can ursurp the rights of any other through violence, or threats of violence, thru political or military coersion, through arbitrary application of unconstitutional laws.
Spiritual Unity frees all of us to pursue our dreams and the opportunity that life offers without looking over our shoulders for the bad guys.
The Promise of our Creativity
The Guardian's Promise
"Fulfill the promise that life has to offer all who are brought into this world and honor all who are yet to be born by caring for the present and protecting the future".