"METAPHYSICS: A Branch of Philosophy That Deals With 'First Cause' and 'The Nature of Being'"



Diligence in our vigilance against instinct in general is complicated by the proposition that “the original instinct” was, and remains; self defense. Our personal welfare has always been instinct’s bailiwick. By Divine Design we have relied on every aspect of instinct, in order that we may survive to the point in time when our experience and individual behavior could use free will to shape our activity and attitude, as best we’re able, to determine the course our path takes. To its credit, the energy invoked in the defense of self, may very well have been the impetus––The Divine Spark, if you will––prompting the earliest single cell organisms to divide, not just for the very first time (although it had to have started somewhere), but from that instant on to the present and for as long as the advancement of growth in the physical environment is needed. By the time those that survived that initial creative spark long enough to be in the majority, instinct was ingrained enough to appear genetic. With that in mind it’s much clearer, even from the “now”, how after countless eons down that path and as diversity permitted (or demanded), the complex recombining eventually to be understood as procreation, had its roots in self defense. Considering the depth and antiquity of instinct’s bane to our advancement, is it any wonder that after many ages of little or no distinct advantage over it, we would choose to disinherit it––consciously and subconsciously––giving it an identity apart from our own? Our attempts to alienate instinct have become so thorough that we no longer simply deny any relationship to it, but hold it responsible for all that takes place outside our definition of “good”. As a result, the narrower perspective of self lifted instinct out of the depths of our embryonic cell division to a plateau equal––in every way––to free will, imbuing it with powers worthy of an eternal struggle, largely because the choice to control our actions, instead of impulsively reacting, was not yet considered a behavioral option by the people of this pre-history juncture on the path.

We’re necessarily reminded that our apparent need to alleviate fears of vulnerability and doom seemed important to us at a point in time thousands of years ahead of our most rudimentary written language, when knowledge was passed on through story telling and the ”have nots” life was little more than a hand to mouth subsistence. Those oral recollections of course were subject to illumination by fervent imaginations and when one’s greatest concern centered on avoiding anything that might threaten their very survival till the next day, any moments of reflection that might have led to some semblance of insight were often short lived by the need to react in self defense, instinctively. Life resembled a submission to circumstances beyond control. The freedom of having a choice to be anything else went unrealized by the majority. Consequently, this ancient practice of appeasement through sacrificing eluded the attention of this wider audience, for having little to offer, they weren’t solicited to participate in the first place. It was only after generations of lore regarding the alleged benefits of such proceedings trickled down to them, did the less prosperous show any interest in following that path. Even so, the growth in their attendance was very slow because of the afore mentioned stigma and secrecy attached to the ceremonies, not to mention some cause for concern at what seemed to be mixed messages about demands made by the facilitators. The fact was, the only direct exposure for anyone otherwise excluded from participating was either as a guest, or a sacrifice. Guests were rare and chosen with the utmost scrutiny. Sacrifices, were another matter and could not be expected to “spread the word”.

Not surprisingly, those invocating on our behalf could see that the growing number of believers might put their desired degree of secrecy in jeopardy, if an offering of only simple possessions continued to be the measure of a follower’s commitment. Guilt needed fresh motivation to keep it from withering into the complacency that would threaten to expose their dominion. Greed made our selective deification more specific and urgent, creating unrealistic expectations for deliberate results, in turn, taking us to a new level of offering. Personal property included more than rare or precious commodities and livestock. Under the cloak of sacrifice, “giving” modified into “giving up” something we weren’t prepared to do without, so “original instinct” came to the rescue of our better judgment (guilt) to rationalize; no cost was too great in fostering an advancement of the material agenda (greed).

The gap between the “haves” and “have nots” was such that some who attended these mysterious ceremonies thought of themselves as “owners” of some those who didn’t. Servitude and slavery were increasingly familiar and a real, if not necessary, adjunct to social development. That is to say, since the advent of self awareness, variations of personality characteristics were becoming more clearly defined, assuming qualities that demonstrated commonality enough to share in developing traditions and moral value systems on which to base relationships with others similarly inclined. The chronic contention between our attempts to stand alone and our desire to belong, was just finding its stride as we sought out comfort zones where life suited our expectations as reasonably as was possible, under truly desperate physical circumstances.

What we previously viewed as pecking order continued to evolve into a social structure that on the surface could seem unfair and cruel, but in reality allowed the Divine Plan to unfold in its most fruitful manner because, as we’ve seen, every person has the same opportunity for growth. Our definition of the goals we set for ourselves between incarnations, pre-establish the point from which progress will proceed along the next portion of our physical experience. Seemingly random behavior, identifiable as physical life, actually connects to eternity through each and every experience or interaction, and is nothing more than a lesson that, once overcome, allows us to advance spiritually. In our return to “at-one-ment” there are no victims. Each of us are both students and teachers during this Divine enlightenment. Nothing happens that isn’t shared equally by all parties involved. Individual lessons or assignments differ according to each participant’s current path, but everyone benefits in accordance to their own advancement. The facility of our efforts are enhanced only through repeated tribulation, (“practice makes perfect”)!

The appearance of experiences in the context of the “now” are limited in scope for all the same reasons we are limited in our understanding of them. We cannot grasp the depth and beauty of an ocean by playing on its shores. To be told what eternity holds and how we personally fit in, without including all the decisions that provide the myriad opportunities of living it, is comparable to expecting a toddler to fully understand all the facets and responsibilities of being a mature compassionate adult, striving to live in and emulate the unconditional love of, that which represents graduation from this school called “life”. To grow, is to progress through phases of activity where the next step wont even present itself until a foundation has been laid for it during the previous one. If it were possible to see the rewards awaiting each of us after all of our lifetime’s efforts, before taking the very first step, most would wait to claim possession of what seemed rightfully theirs, without any participation in its manifestation, affectively neutralizing the free will that sets us apart from the rest of creation and superseding the original intent of the ego’s receiving enlightenment only through conscious choices.

The limits of our physical comprehension are framed in the “now”. The practice of being judgmental toward an event or behavior is to take it out of context from the body of reality, which is the embodiment of eternity. For example; we have occasion to observe fragments of evidence from past ages, but only as they appear to us in our “now”. Any speculation as to their origins or historical relationships to each other, remains firmly grounded in the present as long as our understanding is confined to the physical. No effort to reconcile clues, no matter how vast the pool from which they may be drawn, will ever result in absolutes, because the reality that makes the beginning as clear as the end is outside physical time, beyond the meager means afforded by any languages bound in the restrictions inherent to that frame of reference. Even so, society has long regarded the judgment of their own kind as an inalienable right, even though the vignettes used to emphasize specific behavior patterns lack sufficient information to satisfy an acceptable understanding of that behavior’s source or real purpose. Arriving at a point on our path where we can admit that a focus so narrow finds itself inadequate to judge any event, practice or person, is the epiphany that spells the end (or at least the beginning of it) for instinct.

Outside time’s limitations, perception expands to include the origins of our “judgment bias”, envisioning enough to clarify both its intent and depth, with regard to our psyche. (Its future, as a behavior pattern, is equally clear from Eternity's horizonless vista, but wont be addressed until doing so serves a purpose of its own). Predictably, a belief system that warrants the practice of judging others, also owes its inheritance to the “original instinct” alluded to earlier. In order to rationalize the cast of a disparaging eye on something different than oneself, one must be able to defend ones own merit if and when that should be questioned. Self defense, originally promulgated as a trigger for animation on the cellular level during life’s incubation, remained (by Divine Guidance) instinctual through the eons necessary for those earliest “seed” organisms to evolve into self awareness. Does awareness need defending? Case in point; our thought processes, in spite of the befuddlement that might have attended the uncertainty of their initial independence, began interrupting instinct’s automatic “knee jerk” reactions, causing our expression of “original instinct” to have its power of inducing actionability be supplanted by reason, thus engendering a requirement for an impetus of its own. After having been the impulse to action for so long, self defense the instinct, found it necessary to adapt by adopting the guise of a compulsion, looking for a means, a need, a provocation to be expressed. Although it wasn’t through molding our character, and we weren’t due to be rid of it yet; by definition, self defense will eventually be dominated and overcome by reason. As long as it remains a teaching tool however, it will be provided a rationalization, forestalling that eventual requiem, in the form of a trigger, an animator, a discerner for turning it on and off, as it were. Delaying the inevitable for this oldest of instincts, demands the knowing of when and when not it’s appropriate to act. So, that rationalization is awareness. Believe it or not, our first manifestation of our awareness, what became self defense’s animator, the trigger’s trigger, was; judgment! Does awareness need defending? No, defense––even in-stinctual––needs awareness.

However that might sound like a learned behavior, and indeed it was the result of a trial and error process spanning countless millions of years, the original instinct’s antiquity provided all other instincts the time to grow into a complex symbiotic layering of involuntary responses we have come to accept as human nature or intuition. It almost goes without saying that life as we recognize it in the physical world, would not exist except for the ability instinct developed in securing a basis from which cell growth could advance beyond the microscopic level. The remote headwater of this stream called life, would no doubt have met too many obstacles to allow its flow to continue without instinct’s abil-ity to allow life’s energy to increase in volume, until nothing could prevent it from becoming the torrent that has swelled to occupy every environment, those imaginable, as well as those we couldn’t have possibly imagined, in the physical world. By Divine Design alone, our survival was assured eons before any path recorded our first bipedal steps. Instinctual self defense and judgment prevailed often enough to promote the advancement of each and every step that preceded the awakening of ego. Before choices were made available by free will, every action was judged intuitively according to its benefit toward our survival. Being judgmental was the decisive role Divine Guidance played in our growth to minimize personal threats as well as maximize opportunities for the healthiest progeny, all but guaranteeing the future of a creature whose “race or group spirit” could advance toward an extrapolation of “self”.

Once awareness was imprinted, judgment was taken to a new level where consciously exercising choices meant examining multiple options, thus bringing into manifestation a mental process whose forebear had been purely involuntary. Is it possible the earliest differentiation imposed by one group of people on another, because of appearance or conduct, coincided with self awareness, when the ego first chose to choose rather than relying on instinct alone, as it had done for so many millions of years? Was our first contemplation, discrimination? With judgment as a rule, could our newly cognitive species be expected to do anything less than assume dominion over the rest of creation, including each other? Exercising this fresh advantage we had no reason to hesitate casting doubt on or demonstrating acceptance for, all else. From those tentative innocent origins, rose an axiom; any behavior bent on emphasizing a distinctness between groups or individuals, whatever the criteria, motive or resulting stigma, would come to be judged itself as narrow minded and discriminatory by all held captive in the tunnel vision of their own “now”. That is to say, we all continue to prejudge others without wit or, for that matter, serious consideration as to why, because we aren’t capable of comprehending motivations from within the physical experience. Our insensibility leaves few if any among those who find themselves in a position to act on a perceived dominance or authority over others willing to accept, even if they could be made aware, that their actions are anything but tangible benevolence. In the narrow view their eyes offer, slavery is providing for the welfare of people who otherwise are incapable of fending for themselves. From the broad perspective afforded the observer, however, its clear any rationalizations that expect obedience and submission in return for domination, does so in self defense! Being in control of those around them gives the authority an assurance, false or otherwise, of survival. The “ideal” scenario, if it can be called that, is that everyone survives, even under such restricting parameters. The “downtrodden” benefit from at least a minimal––if not materially equal existence––with the severe restrictions on their freedom of actions bent entirely toward being available to provide the obligatory needs to, and meet the incredulous demands of, their “benefactor”. As seems too often the example in the physical experience, the other extreme––or worst case scenario––in this infinitely diverse spectrum of social interaction, would be––by civilized standards––savagery; comprised entirely of circumstances too horrific to imagine when witnessed and judged solely from within the limits imposed by the “now”. Which only serves to remind us; our exile from eternity includes all manner of relations and emotions, from elation to debasement, none of which we can ascribe a basis to beyond how it makes us feel! Our feeling about any given experience is both, our motivation for it and our solution to it. It’s our feelings during that experience that determines how, not if, we will benefit from it. Once inaugurated, choices are relegated to our attitude only. Considering the inherent circumstances to each experience, its outcome, is as beneficial and positive as we choose to accept. Though consciously unaware, and in the only fashion sensitive enough to incur the desired influence, we are Divinely Guided by way of our feelings to and through every conceivable encounter, including the most abominable.

It’s not surprising then, that those who share very similar backgrounds, beliefs and aspirations would congregate in order to seek out comfort zones minimizing confrontational situations, thereby offsetting the day to day struggle of surviving judgment. This instinctual social tendency to associate with those whom we have something in common, is both expected and welcomed considering the discord anticipated among the alternatives. On a positive note, the societal customs that evolved out of this practice of communal segmentation was a reflection of the interdependence each group had for the other. Depending on our belief system or agenda, it’s our perception of said behavior that either condemns by judgment or condones by acceptance what is, in all other respects, a perfectly normal, healthy pattern of interaction among individuals in the infancy of societal growth. On the other hand, our preoccupation with labeling the way we act or look, especially when it seems judgmental, has been as much for convenience or categorizing, as it has been for differentiating or segregating and has survived as a practice into modern times because there are individuals who are only beginning their personal path of awareness and can not be expected to act like those who began many millennia ago. Although some of those monikers start out innocently representing a person’s or group’s most outstanding feature or asset, they more often than not result in a social distinction that, for better or worse, sets a standard of behavior that we come to expect of or identify with that particular individual or clique. Surprisingly, we may perceive a deviation from those expectations in behavior to be cause for suspicion, tending to make us uncomfortable enough that our own surroundings seem threatened and frankly, anything deemed a threat to our comfort zone, perceived or real, stimulates our infernal bane labeled herein “original instinct”, to assume its now predictable defense posture.

So, whether by attitude or action, we’ve all been allied with the intuitive judgment that isolates and contributes to a continued separation of social classes in the cultural “neo-pecking order”. This disparaging aspect of the human psyche is one of the most crucial obstacles on our path to at-one-ment. Instinct served us well during the period of our development when we could not think for ourselves. It was the only means by which we could be Divinely Guided through the darkness of incognizance. It lingers in the light of awareness only as a last resort, and until it is usurped by the truth of faith-filled insight, at which time we will respectfully declare our freedom from its familiar and tenacious grasp. As said before, discarding instinct is the primary objective of engaging the physical. That contention has, thus far, occupied every moment of this physical time line and will continue to do so in direct proportion to the life forms that require it. Those who grow into awareness and move toward enlightenment, however, demonstrate an ever decreasing degree of reliance on instinct until, each at their own fulfillment, deny its last vestige. The absence of instinct will not be realized until we can choose, of our own free will, to love unconditionally.

The commonality of social structuring was analogous to the ceremonial ritual of appeasing gods, in as much as; neither was limited by any geographic propensity and both manifested out of our spiritual advancement at nearly the same instant on the physical time line. Divinely Guided or instinct? After all, Divine Guidance is as valid a precept as intuition is, but because their comprehension suffers from the lack of articulation, they’re often believed to be one and the same. Don’t let such confusion deny that reacting instinctively is indeed the opposite extreme––on the behavioral spectrum––of our sensitivity to and the acting on, a Will outside our own.

Our return to the world of physical emotions and demonstrations is deemed necessary because of our misunderstanding of relationships to each other in the first place. We lose focus on The Truth and begin to take our reason for being “One”, for granted. In the eternity of timelessness, the fabric of unity (being One with God) requires renewing or strengthening to assure continued totality. Returning to a time line where physical expression, by its nature blurring The Truth, demands of us a commitment of faith, to overcome once again the obstacles ego and instinct represent. The overcoming enhances our focus. The devices or stratagem employed to provide the greatest benefit and the most far reaching results in any opportunity for growth, seldom if ever appear appropriate to the circumstances, and certainly would not be our choice, if choosing our path were left entirely up to us. Living in the “now” limits our choices to the more mundane, so awareness and reliance on the Divine must be encouraged and nurtured if we are to be expected to participate actively and willingly in our own spiritual growth. During the physical experience our eternal reality is blurred. With no conscious history of spiritual awareness, the method of introducing us to what will, “in time”, become our answer to all things profound, begins in increments indiscernible from the purely carnal surroundings in which we eke out our subsistence, hence the confusion between Divine Guidance and instinct. As far removed from each other as these two influences are, representing the two extremes of behavioral activity as they do, it’s the period during which the active is displacing the reactive, that represents the whole of our physical experience. The Guidance from “without” through those experiences manifests the displacement, promoting our advancement and return to at-one-ment. The practice of following that Guidance realizes our overcoming and actualizes being “at One”.

Being cognizant of the influence perpetuated by the The Divine however, is not a prerequisite to benefiting from Its grace. Opportunities are offered in ways unfathomable to the physical senses. We are led and directed to action, and inaction, through channels that seemingly have no relationship to the circumstances we’re immersed in. The narrowness of the physical “now” predisposes us to act in our “own best interest” first. Supported in that focus by the original instinct of self defense, it becomes clear even to the neophyte why faith had such innocuous beginnings. The introduction of any new way of thinking is always approached, by necessity, in those terms familiar to the old way. The rationalization that any change will be of benefit enough to warrant the shedding of accepted customs, must be preceded by an understanding that; what is to come, will be better than what is being given up. Risk represents a measure of discomfort that precludes action unless the anticipated gain is of greater significance than any reasonable outcome expected from the status quo. The longer circumstances are bereft of hope for improvement, the more receptive we are to suggestions for change. Out of that “end of the rope” desperation, are manifested the most qualified advancements. Until a genuine seeking is undertaken, by what ever motivation, these answers which are always there, remain indiscernible.

The quest representing a truth seekers walk, reveals what lies outside the “now”. With that in-sight comes the revelation that what was eluded to earlier, can be averred as fact; the “now” is but a snippet taken out of context from the whole of eternity. Can a millisecond of arc, when viewed alone, provide a full understanding of all that might contribute to the area of the circle, from whose circumference it was taken? No more so than the manifestation of an event in time can be justly represented by any one of its countless prerequisite participating influences. Considering then that “now”, by definition, is out of context; would the physical observation of an event, without knowing its eternal attributes or purpose, be complete enough to pass judgment on another for any benefit, except to contribute toward the completion of our own illumination? As spiritual beings having physical experiences, living in the “now” is the venue of choice where the practice of being spiritual affords the most opportunities for growth. Growth is the result of learning, and in the absence of role models or learned mentors, learning relapses into trial and error, explaining why––from a purely physical perspective anyhow––advances in our self tutelage are made at the expense of many mistakes. Don’t forget or despair; in the reality of eternity, there are no mistakes!

Furthermore, once we advance far enough to participate in the planning and placement of our own subsequent incarnations, we’re very likely to find ourselves in the company of a person, or indeed be the person, who has gained a sensitivity to a broader perspective, regardless of any “proper” entreaty. Among them, in every generation, are a few given to share their insights in ways that direct others to a personal epiphany, raising their own level of awareness as well. Until such advancement is realized, the majority of seekers are introduced to the prospects of finding life’s elusive solutions, albeit to the benefit of the whole, by relying on the nearest idolatrous ritual. Naturally, wannabe clerics voraciously seized upon the opportunities presented by these neophytes, who needed to be provided some degree of satisfaction from the frustration of not having all the answers. It was from that need, and the consequential provision evolving from it, that the facilitators successfully promoted the notion; sacrifice produces reward, which, if not palatable in the terms they inferred, found new meaning in the more civilized generations that followed, eventually justifying the axiom; giving is more precious than receiving.

With that in mind, it can’t be stressed strongly enough, and bears repeating often; every manner of arriving at The Truth has its own merit and significance, inherent only to the individual’s needs as determined by what point they may be at on their return to at-one-ment. Typically then, if too simply, we can say the sensitive look inward and the frustrated look outward, on different paths though they may be, they invariably arrive at the same end. One being guided in the silence, the other being compelled to change into something or someone they’re not. Some finding revelations in Truth, others finding confusion in mixed expectations. While an increasing number of practitioners enjoy the inner peace garnered from a very early awareness on their now “well worn” path, most seekers succumb to the lure of self serving opportunists offering, if nothing else, accommodation to what is at least, a means to the beginning of their path. Every journey, including the onset of each, is as important as its destination to the attendant individual, because all paths present the same opportunities, although the material circumstances may bear no resemblance, that lead everyone to The Truth, manifesting at-one-ment.


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