When we speak about inner work, of course the emphasis starts out being about “me.” I am not connected; I don't have a good sense of myself, I am not unified, I am not conscious, etc. etc. etc.
This sense of "me" is a large part of what gets in the way. It is not just the connection “I” have with “myself”; the function of connectivity, and the question of connection in general, applies to everything.
Human beings are entities that only function properly in relationship. It is not just an inner relationship; it is not just a “vertical” relationship, or a "horizontal" relationship. The relationship that I seek is actually what one might call a spherical relationship, insofar as anything that is energy based and cosmological in nature can actually have a form.
It extends from a single point–the point of consciousness–in all directions, through both time and space. The function of awareness is to connect and transmit the relationships that it encounters. Consciousness is not an end point: it is a middleman.
I have the potential, if I could but sense it, to act as a neuron. A cellular entity with dendrites extending in every direction: upwards towards the higher, downwards towards the lower–horizontally towards that which is around me. I have the capacity to sense higher energies, lower energies, energies on my own level. All of them come together within me in this organic sense of being, this physical, emotional, and intellectual sense of existence.
This sense of “me" becomes much less precise at such moments; at the same time, it becomes much more concise. Lacking the complication of what “I” am–as though “I” was actually anything at all–a simplicity arrives. The simplicity arrives because there is no longer an attempt to be the authority; there is merely an availability that transmits. With this arrives a clarity that is unencumbered by the usual nonsense.
Perhaps the most essential question at this moment in mankind's evolution is exactly what the nature of relationship to this planet is. Our existence, which because of our psychological abnormalities has collapsed into a generalized form of self worship, is actually planetary in nature, is a direct function of the planet, and is inseparable from both the nature of the planet and what it needs in order to function.
Losing our connection to nature, and being evermore enslaved by technologies that were supposed to serve us, but instead have eaten us alive, we stand in danger of losing much more than ourselves. We stand to lose a whole planet.
This isn't some form of naturalistic romanticism. The question of our relationship to nature is at the heart not only of our intellectual and scientific interests, it is at the heart of our relationship to God. It is essential to our understanding of Being. Yet it is not enough to understand our relationship to nature with the intellect. And it is not enough, either, to understand with the emotion, as so many well-meaning people in the green movement do.
Nature needs to be understood with all of our parts, in a new way, so that the separation between what we experience as ourselves and nature ceases to exist.
This is a delicate question that bears a great deal of pondering. It's related to Jeanne DeSalzmann's remark that without our work, “the planet will go down."
I try to come to a deeper understanding of this every time I walk the dog.
May our prayers be heard.