Barbara Hebert – USA
The challenges we face in our world today seem almost impossible to overcome. We often look to our leaders—religious, political, and spiritual—to make a difference, but it doesn’t happen. Instead of looking outside of ourselves to make change happen, it is time to start looking within. Each of us has the power—as well as the responsibility—to change the world. We cannot wait for others to step up...each one of us needs to take matters into our own hands.
Everywhere we look, we see evidence of cruelty, anger, hatred, injustice, and so on. These things aren’t just happening to other human beings. They are also happening to animals and to our great mother, the Earth. We want it to stop. We want to live in a world filled with love, with equity, with justice, with kindness.
The truth is, it doesn’t matter what we want. Systems that maintain inequality, injustice, cruelty, and hate are created by human beings and are run by human beings who do not seem to want change. Albert Einstein said: “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.”
What, then, do we do? Who can change the world? YOU. You and me and many, many others who not only want change but are willing to take steps to implement change.
Some may be wondering...How can I change the world? The answer to that question is different for each one of us. However, those of us who are aware of the Ageless Wisdom have a responsible to change the world, so we must find the ways in which we can do it.
Many of us have spent our lives trying to help others, either in our full-time jobs or in our volunteer work. Many people work with homeless shelters, in food pantries, with social service organizations. Others have joined demonstrations and marched for social justice. Others have worked with animal rights groups and ecological organizations. The list goes on and on.
However, there is another very important way that each of us can change the world. We are talking here about an occult or hidden way to change the world, and like many occult teachings, it is hidden in plain sight.
H.P. Blavatsky writes: “It is an occult law …, that no man can rise superior to his individual failings without lifting, be it ever so little, the whole body of which he is an integral part.”
She is telling us that every time one of us takes a step forward on the spiritual path, no matter how small, all of us move forward on the path. It is an occult law that when we expand our consciousness, no matter how large or small, we are expanding the consciousness of all beings. The importance of expanding our consciousness cannot be overstated. It is of paramount importance, and it is the answer to our question.
We can change the world by expanding our consciousness. But, what does it mean to expand our consciousness? It means that we begin to recognize that we are the Light and Love that is the Ultimate Reality.
When we consider the many instances of inhumanity inflicted on others, on animals, and on our earth, it becomes clear that these actions are symptoms. When people don’t care about others, we find that cruelty, hatred, anger, injustice, etc. is often the result. We must address the root cause of these actions because constantly addressing the symptoms will never correct the problem. We are simply putting a bandage on a festering wound that continues to infect the body of humanity.
The root cause: no awareness of the unity of all life; no recognition that we are Light and Love. For many human beings on this planet, there is no understanding that all life is connected, that we are all One as aspects of Ultimate Reality, as beings of Light and Love. As this awareness expands, then the beings on this planet begin to change. Until the consciousness of humanity changes, we will continue to see cruelty, selfishness, injustice, etc. That is, nothing will change. Again, Einstein’s words: “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.”
Every step we take on the spiritual path is a forward movement for all of humanity. Many of us are already using techniques such as meditation, contemplation, listening to the silent voice within, in-depth study of the Ageless Wisdom in order to expand understanding, self-examination, and so on. We use these techniques in order to walk the path, and we must continue in this way.
But there is more that we can do. Many think about reaching enlightenment, expanding consciousness, becoming one with the ground of all being, whatever we want to call it—as a destination. We perceive ourselves as moving toward this place of enlightenment and expanded consciousness. This, like much that we experience in the physical plane of existence, is an illusion. We don’t have to move toward enlightenment and expanded consciousness: we ARE beings of Light and Love already.
We are not these physical bodies; rather we are consciousness inhabiting the bodies. When we break through the veil that blinds us to this reality, we begin to see clearly. We recognize the impermanence of the physical and work toward the dissolution of the personality while still using the physical as a tool.
This is a difficult concept to discuss using language; however, it is more easily grasped through contemplation and meditation. Perhaps an old Persian story can best describe this process: The fish were swimming in a pool. One of the fish began to think about water and had a desire to experience it. Little did the fish know that he was surrounded by water: it supported him, it provided him with life, it passed through his gills constantly. Water was so much a part of his life that he never stopped to look at it and realize that he was immersed in it.
The same is true of us and our awareness of who we truly are: being of Light and Love who are connected to all Life. We are immersed in Light and Love, but we are not aware of it. It surrounds us; it supports us; it is constantly flowing through us. We are forever connected to it in unseen ways. When we begin to have an awareness of this connection, it will become easier to detach from the illusion of physical separation and differentiation and to step into awareness of Unity.
Mystics and spiritual leaders throughout time have talked about dissolving the “lower” self and merging into the Whole. They have encouraged us to recognize that we ARE the Ultimate Reality; that we are beings of Light and Love.
Thich Nhat Hanh writes: “Enlightenment, for a wave in the ocean, is the moment the wave realizes it is water. When we realize we are not separate, but a part of the huge ocean of everything, we become enlightened. We realize this through practice, and we remain awake and aware of this through more practice.”
Lao Tzu says: “To the mind that is still, the whole universe surrenders.”
Eckert Tolle tells us: “You are not IN the universe, you ARE the universe, an intrinsic part of it."
Ultimately, you are not a person, but a focal point where the universe is becoming conscious of itself.
Rumi writes: “I have lived on the lip of insanity, wanting to know reasons, knocking on a door. It opens. I’ve been knocking from the inside.”
There is no door. There is no outside. There is no inside. There is just consciousness, awareness of our connection with all because we are ALL.
This is how we change the world. You and me. We change the world by losing ourselves and expanding our awareness that we are Light and Love, thereby expanding the awareness of all beings. In this way, we change the world.