July 14th 2006
copyright© don oddy
~ Why We are Special and Different ~ With every Similarity
It was an extraordinary meeting of my fellowship last night, its power was not lost on me. Before the meeting, I and a friend had spent time discussing philosophy and love, and loving and spirituality. You know the type of heavy subjects of life we make our business now and then, for me though more often now than then. Our inclination to discuss the bigness of living and its importance is not lost on me or the significance of every element that brings me to discuss these issues of living.
Me and my friend, we have known each other a while, we are very close in our feelings and thoughts on life, how to live and be ourselves. Simple things most take for granted and donít really consider because it seems obvious what we are about and how to go about living. After all when we are busy with life, why indeed analyse what we do, especially if what we do apparently keeps us happy and content. Content? Not most folks I know when I look into their eyes, they are living what they know because they know nothing else, and looking to their future and something else. The journey that most of us feel we take is about tomorrow and safety and future happiness, we seem to give up a lot of the now merely for the promise of what comes next. Seems like a lot of religion is focussed this way. And maybe I am offering a critique from me when I mention this future perfect.
Future perfect I estimate has some value, simply because we are moving forwards to something different all the time. The moving forward though time, that motion to something new makes us forgetful most of the time about the now of life. Right now, always the ever present, present moment of connection, our spiritual moment of now!
My friend and close confidant in many aspects of living is changing their life and with dramatic effect, moving from one form of living to another. Full of new elements life is becoming interesting in a different way. A move to study, a move to another way of living, a move from a good life to another good life. Actually a move that many would never initiate, except when there is an urge for another outlook. The outlook will change inevitably, the person and character will become more connected to living the day and the present, and the person will adapt, yet in all this the core of the person will not change, that person is remaining the same, merely developing and connecting more fully to their living. What an amazing transforming and growing experience! And I support this with my biased outlook, its an urge to acquire more connection to the present differently while the individual will be as similar and authentic as ever. A risk on the surface of life as the inner being is enabled to emerge and be more of themselves in this odd world of opportunity.
Radical changes we all have at our fingertips. Some radical changes happen as a matter of course, some are initiated with choice, in what seems a more and more choiceless world where many are just driven along and consume all we encounter, like vacuums sucking it up and expanding without real application to the finest of living in this ever present, present.
All this discussion before the meeting and walking into a discourse on two lives, their journey to hell and a form of redemption many never get opportunity to encounter. We are indeed lucky when we find this opportunity to redeem our core living, as for most the notion is a million light years away from their perceptions and reality.
Or is it we who indeed visit hell on earth in one way or another are just playing catch up with humanity who never discuss this journey of life, the actual importance of the present perfect? It may be what we who have experienced hellish self obliteration, its in our make up, we are just getting a grip on what intrinsically everyone knows and never talks through? We well it matters not because writing about what life is means more now than ever, when hell has been lived as close and often as we in our fellowship live and breath these days.
The enlightenment and redemption from self obsession, where nothing works anymore. A move to calmer lives. All these things are quite possible, where we value our rarest commodity, love of ourselves and our fellows in all the world. Where love is the meaning of life in all its glory, forms and manifestations, from simply friendship to profound connection to life and our fellows. All this is the stuff of our fellowship and what we are about. Community, similarity, uniqueness of perception and our authentic good selves emerge with clear heads as we learn life again, or maybe we learn, simply, just to live well.
Speakers spoke and delivered there account of life then, life now and more important for many who have yet to be enlightened, the connection to this present moment. The moment we can experience best, right now. Not that life is always a box of chocolates as Forrest Gump observed, or rather he qualified that some nuggets in the chocolate box, we will never enjoy quite as others.
The message boils down simply that if we can be in touch with now, whether its good or bad, if we experience it as real and not denied or modified by some alteration like drink or drugs, just to encounter it with our full emotional beings, we make it work most effectively.
Even when we get a kick in the face, we can make most use of the moment, when its as hard and unpleasant as it can be joyful, its how we deal with the present that helps us connect to ourselves and environment as nature intended. And that we as mankind ameliorate so easily the effects good or bad through every process to cope with reality, we can become lost to it, if we let it be so. If we grab hold our present and see it for real, we deal with it connect to it and live it to the full. It then matters not and we need not be lost to the present, or hostage to a future which is most likely a dream and never a reality. We are best shaping our futures by living now and well.
Both speakers had encountered life threatening changes in health above and beyond the immediate of addiction and both had found living the present full on best without resort to fix their outlook, indeed to fix the reality would have led back to insanity as quickly as anything and a loss of living life would have been the outcome.
It struck home to me, of course it would for my other chronic condition means I will surely lose my living if I do not attend to the present moment each and every day.
So their words and the power of now are quite easy to understand, in the context that each day, a day at a time is full of joy and sadness a day long. We need not bother dramatically about tomorrow or put off our gratification till another day which we may not live. And at the same time we need not lose our decorum or balance when we are faced with life threatening changes. We might become more aware of our connection with a sharp shock to our system, whatever form that may take.
And in common living when we are just moving along more connected to the present moment, we can in balance and decorum enjoy or feel our connection as it really is, up or down in mood without attempting to change or fix ourselves with something or someone. A powerful experience of life shared, not dissimilar from my own, yet each unique and authentic.
We need no big drama of ego, or drive from self obsession to make life work, we need only face what we have openly and soberly, with dizzy joy, or deep sadness, as long as we face what is in this present perfect.
Spiritual as I continue to say, its not religious of God driven, indeed Godís account has nothing to do with living any time we might examine our spiritual essence. Spiritual is merely connection as fully as we can to now, the present. To experience what is in front of us simply and obviously, without filters or any dementia caused by our internal fears of life itself.
No one on this planet is more spiritual in their capacity than any other. We are all equally gifted and itís the difference of our living which makes us able or less able to apply our spiritual selves to life and living. We may think we are gifted differently, we are not, for the connection to life is simplest in its true spiritual form. And no one is a prophet or a wise person beyond another, it is only some might find the answer as others lumber for it in other ways. No one has a monopoly or right way. For the right way is your way, authentic and original to you or me. We get it sometimes early, or later, or never. If only we looked to the now of life, we might all get it, this thing called spirituality, and toss away mysteries mystics would wrap and use to control us and manipulate beyond the present moment of now.
That is life I am able to observe, the ever present, present perfect and imperfect.
My friend and I were very happy with our discussion before the meeting, found the two lives shared and our talks after confirmed merely one thing. Life is what it is, best accepted with all the choices we have to experience it now as it is, with ups and downs and better connections as we go. The journey is key, the destination never a certainty unless the destination just passed by as another moment ticked by, tick, tock, our connected clock.
And our love of life and living, in decorum we learn and balance we learn to understand it as we go, itís a personal thing and a choice thing, when of course we have choices in this pastiche we call now.
And of love? Well love makes the world go round and round. Love is manifest and all that falls out of love, we may learn our connection to that spirit of any age our currency of zeitgeist. Timeless and eternal, always ephemeral, the paradox of life is its loss and rebirth as we go.
If we live now and understand the ever present, present, origins and endings are less important, offering us context to understanding the what is manifest, original and authentic and ever so similar in our unique living.
We all clamber along with grace of age and maturity and the simplicity of a childís gaze in wonder, never lost to memory, made good with experience and connection.
Copyright © Don Oddy