In our modern world, we are pushed every day to achieve and “go somewhere”. Indeed, we’re not fulfilling our role in society unless we are breathlessly busy every waking minute! The pressure to achieve is so great that we are not given even a moment of time to ask why this pressure exists, or what “achieve” actually means. And this pressure is growing because of economic factors that make it increasingly difficult to provide the basic necessities for ourselves. For those who do not struggle with providing the basics, there is the added pressure of performing as a technological being, to purchase the latest and greatest gadget and be up-to-date on the most recent advances in a technological paradigm.
If one were to ponder this, one might begin to think that this is deliberate. That there is some power at work behind the scenes striving to keep humans from Knowing who we really are. It is an interesting contemplation to consider, perhaps even an important one. But then, I couch these things in rhetorical language because it is up to each individual to discover the truth for themselves. Filling our lives with busy-ness and noise serves to keep us disconnected from our Truth and our true self, from each other and nature, filled with distractions and negative energy. Such an environment creates many impediments to Receiving.
What is Receiving? This is not simply the act of holding out your hands and letting another place something in them, but it is important to remember that happy feeling you had when this occurred in your childhood. Remember the smile that would transform you and shoot little sparks of joy through your small body. Remember the way it made you want to laugh and dance when somebody handed you a small present. At the time, it was not about the gathering of things or greed or hoarding. Allow your awareness to travel back to a time before you were aware of the commercial holy-day known as “christmas” to a time when you and your tiny playmates would hand things to each other for the joy of it alone. When you re-member this state of Being, you will see that it was not about the consumption of useless junk. Such moments were the experience of joy one feels when one is loved, and the outward expression of it that is not in the thing given, but in the Giver and the one Receiving.
As we get older, we are told that nobody is going to give us things unless it is through an obligatory construct, such as expected birthdays and holidays. It is because these things have become obligatory that we sometimes avoid people on birthdays and holidays. We don’t want anyone to oblige us into gifting! That would be terrible. Our responsibilities and demands are already stressful, and adding to them would make our heads explode! At least, this is what we believe, because we experience the feeling of overwhelm and stress on a daily basis so long as we abide within the dark matrix.
To cope with such stress, we learn to build Walls. In our childhood, it is through exclusion and prejudice. We are trained to feel bias toward certain people, and the patterns are input into our programs, where they become fundamental to our being. As we get older, and our natural aversion to status quo as pre-teens kicks in, these programs can lead to bullying and great harm. Sexism, racism, classicism become the realities we face daily, and even though they are programs, they are no less real to our experience. Here the promise of harmful programs begins to bear deadly fruit, and humans show the warping that toxic social structures intend. It seems impossible to uproot this evil fruit, so it is internalized and normalized. Everyone becomes this way, it seems, and empathy becomes a dangerous luxury.
In order to maintain these unnatural and toxic patterns, more walls have to be built. Just as the natural forest cannot be contained into a proper English garden without careful planning, tending, and construction, so is the healthy human consciousness. We are beautifully wired for a deeply cooperative and empathetic society where there would be no conflict or wars, should we be allowed to develop naturally. Without toxic intervention, we are so much more than aggression, terror, and avarice. The bad programming is so insidious that once immersed within it, one believes that his/her basic nature contains these terrible things. How clever this long game has been to convince us that we are bad.
When good people believe at their root that they are actually bad, and must follow harsh laws in order to mitigate their innate evil, they become very easy to manipulate and control. The key to understanding what is “bad” is very simple: do our intentions and actions negatively impact others? This is all we need consider to break the cycle, and why maintaining a Wall that prevents you from conscious responsibility is important in controlling you.
Because these walls are unnatural to us, and so disruptive to the way we are naturally configured, we have to build more walls to cope with them. Slowly, over time, it becomes more difficult to function according to our true natures. For those who have experienced greater levels of abuse in this system, it is difficult to experience a moment of joy in true gifting. One may find that the energy body has shifted and receiving can feel very foreign. Even the flow of energy changes from flow to a kind of pre-emptive aggression, pushing our energy outside of ourselves in yet another type of Wall.
Imagine a scenario where you are outside on a beautiful twilight evening. It is warm and pleasant with a cool breeze. The lawn you sit upon is green and fragrant with recent cutting. You are alone where you sit in a beautiful park surrounded by hundreds of people who are similarly enjoying the evening. All of you are there to hear a magnificent symphony played by a world renowned orchestra. The event is free, and refreshments have been provided to everyone. Every face around you is smiling, or engaged in conversation with friends, or rapturously soaking in the beautiful music.
What are you feeling? Are you happy? Are you fluctuating between moments of happiness punctuated by moments of worrying about this or that thing that you believe requires your attention? Are you distressed because you are there without friends? Are you checking your cell phone for text messages? Did you bring a book so that you wouldn’t be embarrassed by your solitude in a crowd? Do you close your eyes in meditation so that people will think you are someone who is above all of this and won’t judge you for being alone?
I think that we have all been there at some point, hitting one or more of our Walls. And this is okay. It’s human. The exercise is intended, not as a life lesson, but as an opportunity.
One can shift this energy by Remembering how to Receive. By consciously opened up the energy body and allowing the riches of the moment to flow into us, leaving the notions of what we do or don’t deserve behind, we can dissolve those Walls.
There can be a poverty that comes from being extraordinarily gifted souls who are forced into a deeply toxic paradigm where we are told we must be closed off from others and our environment. Learning what gives us the ability to release those walls is an important endeavor toward regaining our sense of Wholeness.
In the example, it is more than listening to the beautiful music, or smelling the grass, or drinking a beverage. It is the practice of allowing the entire experience to penetrate and fill you with its energy, taking down the barriers between you and your experience of Being human. In such an exercise, we are breaking the laws imposed on us to remain aloof, selfish, and disconnected from those around you.
To Receive means that we have to Feel. It means we have to do the most dangerous thing of all – to become larger than we think we are capable of Becoming. You that you are greater and more important than you know, because you are a necessary component of the Greater Consciousness. This isn’t something that you have to work toward or strive to achieve – it is already a component of our Truth. But when we live such a small existence inside of tightly controlled walls, it seems impossible. To experience a Larger Life and Receive the immensity of it, we must find great strength within ourselves.
This strength is something that we must learn over time, and via a longer journey, whereby we realize that it is something we also already possess. The lessons can be very difficult during this process of Discovering, but they are ultimately worth it. Just as we must work to enlarge a muscle, so we must work to become more and more comfortable with Opening to Receive. You can find Moments throughout your day to practice this, be it a nice scenario like the one I described, or a less pleasant one such as a public transit train station or a boring office meeting. These are very valid places to learn how to be Open to the world around you, and to begin to recognize that you are part of something Greater.
Remember the joy of receiving you experienced in childhood, and allow that joy to suffuse your practice. Those moments of joy are part of your toolkit for life, and deserve to be employed as often as possible. Use them in joy and peace.