Here's another simple yet powerful transformation tool from my Urban Enlightenment programme. You'll see the obvious connection with my last post on 22C+.
Today I allow myself to relax, and look for ways to connect with people in spirit. I now see myself to see myself as part of the greater groundswell of humanity.
The modern world is extremely competitive. Hong Kong (where I live) and China are particularly competitive. The education system is a dog-eat dog world of survival of the hardest working, most diligent and most intelligent young people. During their science classes, students are then taught the story of Darwin, and how he revolutionised our thinking, taking the God-centered worldview of medieval religion and supplanting it with the harsh reality of natural selection and survival of the fittest. It seems only natural then, that our educational and social structures perpetuate this ‘natural’ system and encourage the best and brightest to fight it out in the rat race. And there is little doubt that such structures do activate many people’s brilliance, and they enhance our society’s competitive edge. Like Olympic records, the quality of almost all human endeavors in the economic sphere have improved manifold in the last century.
Despite all this, we do not need to buy into the idea of the rat race, nor buy the survival of the neo-Darwinnian worldview. At the very least, we should take "time out” from the game to restore our souls, and in particular to reactivate ways of knowing and being which are not valued within the modern system. We need to give time to connection, empathy and cooperation.
Human beings are more than mere biological machines fighting it out for reproductive rights. As former Princeton professor David Loye has shown, even Darwin himself believed that there are higher moral drives within the human species. The rat race locks us into a world of me versus them, where others are seen as competitors in the great biological crunching machine.
The world is not a giant machine. It is just that we have created our society in the image of the ego, the part of our minds which emerges from evolutionary survival needs. There is much more to us than this! The world is organic, pulsating, alive, passionate, intimate, playful, even loving. And so are you. Harmony, cooperation and empathy are all part of nature. Indeed they are the essence of the higher human spiritual drives that modern science rarely addresses, and has largely ignored.
Today, walk gently, and feel your connection to the people around you. Sit in a busy public space, and bring your mind fully into presence. Invite God, Spirit, Love (whatever you call it) to be there with you. Next, imagine a stream of light emerging from your heart and connecting with those around you. Project a sense of love and compassion for them. Imagine also an energy field of love embracing all the people you see. As judgments and thoughts emerge from your mind, just notice them, and return your attention gently to your sense of connection with others. Do this for ten minutes or so.
Repeat this exercise for short periods of time whenever you have a spare moment in your day. You can even do it during meetings, classes, or community activities. Nobody will know, at least not consciously!
Go ahead, make your day! Connection – or love – is the prime drive of the human collective oversoul. It is part of our evolution.