This is a response to last week’s blog which I emailed to my subscribers. I received several comments back and this one, from Dennis Thomas I find important to share. I agree with him completely and he said it much better than I could have!
I have always enjoyed listening to you or reading some of your work and I am ever grateful that you offer this to me on a regular basis. This message you sent made me pause and consider as I too was raised in a family with a “racist” father as well as two grandfathers that were active members of the KKK and very proud of it. I too went through a time when I needed to make a choice; whether to continue with their stories or to create my own in regards to race and separation. I chose to create my own path, although it alienated some of my family, and moved me towards a better understanding of acceptance. At least that is what I believed.
Now over the many years of observing and watching the goings on of the world, I have moved into a belief that for us to find the Oneness that you mentioned we must not only understand it (clarity) but also experience it (liberation). When we changed our story, which we both chose to do, we decided that racism was bad and non-racism was good. Just a story change, nothing more. When we examined that part of our fathers that we believed was incorrect (racist) and needed healing, we did nothing more than judge one belief over another; my story is more aligned with Truth than my father’s. I am more evolved, more enlightened. In time even that seemed insufficient. I then believed that neither one was wrong. I believed that if I backed away from the “out there” experiences as a silent witness then my state of “awareness” was my actual self and I could see that all of those experiences that were creating happiness or suffering were nothing more than an illusion. I had moved from an actor in the illusion to a being in awareness of the illusion.
A lot of spiritual seekers stop at this point and become observers, believing that all is an illusion (no-thing) and tell themselves that their pain and suffering is not real, yet at the time, it seems real. But the one who has experienced Oneness moves deeper into the Truth and realizes that everything is real and not real at the same time. No-thing, appearing as everything, returning to no-thing. He knows that he is part of everything and everything is part of him; racism, no-racism, terror, pain, suffering, joy, kindness, compassion and so on. All the same stuff, all Truth. No bad, no good, just Being expressing Itself as Being.
We might use the ocean as a metaphor. We are all of the ocean and the individual waves as part of that ocean seem to express a differentiation that leads us towards an idea of separation. Some of the waves might appear as angry and crash into the surf with harsh expression and some of the waves move with the rhythms of the cosmos; in harmony and peace. We want to judge the angry waves as conflicting and disruptive while we accept the others that are more in alignment with our beliefs. But, to find Oneness we must find that part of our Being that knows that all of the waves are nothing more than the ocean itself in its perfection, expressing itself as itself. We must find ourselves in the racist and non-racist, the act of racism, the emotions that evolve from racism and all of the space in between. And, when we find ourselves in all things then we will truly experience Oneness.
I will end this note with a piece from Jeff Foster’s book, The Deepest Acceptance. “The true end of suffering come from the recognition of this total intimacy with life itself- in other words, the deep acceptance of “everything” appearing in experience. In this deep acceptance, mind and heart are one. Nothing is everything; they are never two separate things. Mental clarity and certainty give way to deep acceptance of this moment. And there, the war ends.”
Have a great day, Dennis Thomas, DVM
Wasn’t that great! My deepest gratitude to Dennis!