Divided we Fall - United we Stand

Negotiating life and discovering Dharma

"Spirit is one, although variety exists, its oneness is found within the light of pure consciousness. Due to misuse of independence the soul separates from this light and descends to this realm, the world where spirit mixes with matter, a world of duality. Sanskrit language encapsulates this “separation from the light” in the words “dvi” and “dva” meaning “two”. “Vi” expresses “separation” and “D” expresses “light” combined they produce “dvi” whose primordial meaning is to be “separated ( vi ) from the light ( d )”." ~ James Robinson Cooper

This adage 'United we stand, divided we fall' is generally thought of as referring to patriotic nationalism and teamwork yet it also refers to the state of an individual self. It is because we are divided within ourselves that our social systems are so dysfunctional and our lives are so often miserable. Collective joy and happiness comes from a United external state of being whereas individual joy and happiness comes from an internal unity of self.

At one level finding happiness depends on which aspects of self we nourish. You may have heard the story of the two wolves and in some literature that may be two aspects of conscience. One aspect (the bad wolf or little devil) is driving you towards selfishness and base behaviour and the other aspect (the good wolf or angel) encourages selflessness and kindness towards self and others.

In the above image we see the character holding the mask divided representing the personality divided. It could also represent the community yet behind the community are the many individuals. Successful communities evolve from successful individuals and truly successful individuals are successful because they have overcome the illusion of existence.

One must remember that we exist as a soul with a body and mind, it's not the other way round as some people think. But it is our mind that projects a personality and because we lack truth in our lives and personalities of individuals are shaped to survive in a capitalist world. In other words our personality is an invention that can be changed to suit changing circumstances in our outer lives.

Modern living forces us to live externally and aspects of personality are pitted against each other as in the good wolf, bad wolf narrative. This creates uncertainty and unhappiness. To find a semblance of happiness the individual conforms to external ideologies and never truly knows oneself or one's soul nature.

If you click on the image above, you will see its fullness. In the centre we have the soul with two aspects of personality divided and around that there are distractions and forces that create confusion. But on the other image we have the violence and unpredictability of nature and the Balinese temple with its two towers. The left landscape is dangerous and unpredictable, it's a little like the bad wolf although it's not really bad, it simply needs acceptance. This is simply an aspect of life on earth that we have to accept and on the other side of the image we have much more peaceful scene.

The volcano erupting engenders a sense of fearfulness just as some of those restful deities in the outer circle of the image. Yet we can understand and accept the volcano just as we can accept the other upheavals and the impulses of bad wolves in a calm and peaceful manner.

The divisiveness in our civilisation shows up in competition and conflict, the divisiveness in our personal lives shows up in our level of naturally arising happiness and joy. These two states of being, happiness and joy are not commodities, they cannot be acquired. They may come temporarily as a result of external activities and forces but they don't last. It is only when a unity of self is achieved that happiness and joy arise naturally from an internal experience.

How to arrive at internal unity?

One solution is to sit quietly and contemplate the nature of one's self. For some this may be productive it the best method is to transcend the mind altogether. The mind may be infected with many malicious programs (bad wolf aspects) and attachments. Deep meditations to take you into the source of your soul work wonderfully when you have the self-discipline. The science of yoga and in particular asana and pranayama help to discipline body and mind, and free up energy flow.

Returning to the image above and knowing that we live in an imperfect world, bring your focus onto the divine feminine. The divine feminine represents the earth from which we get our bodies and nourishment for life. Celebrate her, celebrate and give thanks. You know yourself that even with the most crippled of personalities, being appreciated makes you feel good and inspires you to reciprocate to others.

Gratitude towards the earth, your mother who facilitated your journey into life and those who serve you creates happiness. It is through being grateful that an aspect of your soul is stimulated in turn awakens an aspect of mind giving you more self-control and self-determination.

We consider that we live in an isolated corner of the universe and admit that our scientists still have no idea how big it is or anything of its nature, we should realise the futility of our own self-importance and practice getting along with others. We really have no actual knowledge of how we evolved or our reason for being yet our lives in context with the vastness of space and time are so unique and precious, we should place a high value on back that we are alive. To stimulate this value, we should offer our praise for this wonderful creation. Here one can refer to the idea of God by any name you because we operate in the world as divided and damaged characters, we should be like children who turn to their mothers for comfort.

Therefore take the female image as the goddess who stirs and nurtures creation and find your peace with her. This will bring peace to your heart and mind.

The practices of yoga and meditation are first steps supported by the appreciation of life and generating praise for the magnificence of being who you are. People so often wonder what is the reason for being and there can be no greater reason than knowing yourself in your completeness and it is by knowing yourself in your own completeness that you become one with creation.

By NZYogi


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