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



Once set in motion, the intent of permanence took relatively few generations to be actualized. The pervading challenges found in these pre-village environs fostered a supply and demand approach to nearly every need and was soon met with a rate of expansion toward satisfying that cause with a response not witnessed before. Even in the beginning, location was everything. It was no accident, even from the narrow perspective the “now”, that these settlements should spring up near bodies of fresh water. Besides the obvious use for personal and livestock demands, its proximity enhanced the chances of a successful hunt and provided fertile ground for the wild grass seeds collected for the consideration of cultivation. All the vital steps along the path of socialization, including the continued enhancement of trade, would require the utilization of water, more to the point, fresh moving water such as a river or tributary system. Finding themselves dependent on the resources available in the region they’ve settled, challenged their adaptive qualities daily in a way that, in time, established routines that would evolve into standards identifiable as indigenous to those people, of that area. Being independent of the familiarity and wisdom of a clan elder, summoned latent talents from the depths of souls that might not have been realized under less stressful circumstances. Imaginations were exercised to meet the most basic of needs. Group memories and time honored lore had to be recalled, sometimes in detail, when searching out remedies and potions for the protection or health of anyone who may fall victim to any one of a variety of potential illnesses waiting for a host to fulfill its own Divinely Guided life cycle. A few, we can be sure, creatively filled that dispensatory niche as medicinal requirements presented themselves, and moved ever slowly toward the initiation of one of the many manifestations pharmacology would assume, before sophistication and regimen usurped a long history of already proven successes.

Finding an identity as an individual, setting ones self apart from the rest came easily, especially for any who looked to prosper by doing whatever they did best. As in the case of the “neo-medicine men”, many brought with them a predilection to specific tasks that had benefited the clan they were disavowing themselves of. Whether it was tool or weapon making, hunting or trapping , no ability that justified a contribution was left untapped. In spite of expected overlapping in service oriented skills, little would be wasted. Competition for a share of any available resource, from its initial acquisition through its demonstration and application, was no doubt pivotal in keeping the population of these very earliest wannabe settlements from growing beyond the ability to supply the demand. Any who could contribute, that is to say provide anything that someone else needed, found a means by which to survive.

Before we get too far away from the first generation of our societal ancestry, let’s not forget that while the extended family of the tribe or clan represented many parts working as a unit toward their common long term survival, any real progress or success relied on individuals of that unit, whose most prominent talent was finding ways to make everything done by the group easier, as well as realizing new uses for things already at hand. It can only be assumed, it was these more imaginative souls who first sensed the attraction of leaving the comfort zone of a close knit clan environment, for the uncertainty of unrealized opportunities waiting at the “entry level position” of an untested but possibly promising type of a very “un-clan-ish” unit. As averred to repeatedly then; “the Ego’s need to express itself was the driving force behind leaving a relationship in which it was part of a unit”, to one, in this case, in which it could be recognized as standing on its own––if still part of a group––providing for itself and those it chose to take responsibility for. This need, of course, manifested itself in countless ways, many of which will be addressed herein because it was at this point on the “now” time line that history, as academia has come to accept it, is considered to have moved out of “pre-history”. Would-be villagers had little else in mind except personal gain or the desire, consciously or otherwise, to be in control of their own future in more or less stable surroundings. The ability to provide a product or service in trade to travelers or fellow settlers whose talents may lay elsewhere––and vice versa––, though very rudimentary at first, is called commerce and represented a huge step, indeed a leap, away from doing everything yourself. Specialization brought, through Divine Guidance, a myriad of talents to the surface of those souls yearning for an expression of individuality. The doors on the paths leading into socialization were standing wide open, each offering countless unrealized opportunities for these pioneers of domestication.

The birth or origin of community, with all the contractions and labor pains inherent to any birth, was a totally unique exercise for all who chose to engage it. Life for those intrepid vanguards would never, ever be the same. For example, though consciously appropriating a radical change in life style for the sake of independence, they were unconsciously exchanging one social group for another. In effect, their efforts to realize individual identities, would necessarily set them among others who wanted the same thing, hence a commonality for individuality, giving rise to the false impression that being different meant leaving common goals behind, when actually, the new commonality of community relied on individuals who all wanted the same thing.

Among other things, the undertaking of this shift in our perception of the world around us was not only necessary but justified, with regard to the narrowing of our field of vision. Justified, because the awakening Ego needed to focus on “self” in order to begin the quest its manifestation was born to, that of discovering who we are and why we are, even if those questions are still thousands of generations away from being asked for the first time.

So, we may beg to ask, this question, here; was this a step forward on some unseen path or should it be considered a natural physical anomaly, that could have been expected to happen at any time and having done so, be nothing more than progress? The answer, of course, is; Yes and Yes! First of all, advancement must be encountered of our own free will, not as a flock that has been led without learning by experience, and secondly, forward is the only direction there is. To any who have not lived it, the end of the path may not appear any different than the beginning. Consequently, only through self-awareness is it revealed that the path represents growth affected through experience.

To put it another way, the difference between “unit” and “unity” is the “why?”. In this analogy to the path “unit” is the race group spirit (or beginning) out of which the Ego evolved and “unity” is the consummate spirituality (or end) denoting our “at- one-ness” with God, wholly dependent on our discarding of Ego. So, why?, Ego is the vehicle carrying the soul through the physical experiences of our spiritual growth. We are after all, “spiritual beings having physical experiences”, not physical beings having spiritual experiences as most have come to accept and believe. The levels of awareness in that regard, that is while in the physical, are as varied and complex as we might find around any specific event where there are a multitude of eye witness accounts. No two are going to be alike and in many cases they would contradict each other. Although the goal, or end of the path, and the attitudes necessary to reach it might be agreed upon in broad generalities, the line separating right from wrong remains incongruous for most. It’s because of this lack of focus, even among spiritual beings who know better, that The Truth be reiterated through tribulation in the physical. So why shouldn’t that vital step seen as community, be anything less than the contraction of “common” and “unity”?

In case it’s not already obvious, it may prove valuable at this point to underscore the fact that; spiritual insight prompts physical advancement only after all the proper requirements have been met to assure the unimpeded period of growth necessary to manifest the essence of the revelation into its physical form. Taking advantage of that revelation and allowing ourselves to be guided by its impetus, spiritual insight, in order to fulfill the manifestation we have been selected to reveal, is a choice we make every day, big and small, but rest assured there will never be a test put upon us we are unable to perform. Divine Guidance, in all its omniscience, born out of the perspective unique to eternity, injects into our physical experience every resource, every piece of the puzzle we need, long before we’re aware of the approaching challenge itself. There are, therefore, an infinite number of paths to The Truth we all seek. Community, eventually unfolds on everyone's path. Those occasional gatherings that began to gel into degrees of permanence did so for different people at different times and in accordance with their individual spiritual maturation. Consequently, and concurrent to the wide spread development of village communities, the clan / tribe group way of life has continued to this day, in its many forms, to serve a diverse spectrum of the growing population’s spirituality as it contributes its own age-old perspective to the world consciousness.

The relevance or benefits of such contributing factors are real, but can only be measured by the degree to which we understand our own place, in relation to where we’ve been and the direction in which we’re going. That degree of understanding, as the reader may only now be approaching, comes more readily after giving up some of what we’ve been taught to believe by the most well intentioned and learned influences in our lives. In-sight, does not come from the out-side. It isn’t taught, it’s experienced and once recognized, more familiar with each encounter. Its source is not carnal, but eternal. Turning our focus from outward to inward opens the venue where insight awaits to share the understanding that, through diligent practice, reveals the eternal Truths expediting our return to at-one-ment. Understanding leads to the essentials that will enable us to accept all things for what they are and what they mean to us with regard to the Divinely Guided plan unfolding for everyone. That’s where understanding is taking us, individually and collectively.

To appreciate it to the fullest we must return, as we will often do, to its roots when fledgling villagers were struggling with the concept of, or more accurately for them, the practice of cooperation. Examining the process, as best we can imagine it, of developing the graces of social behavior, required, first of all, the extreme desire to make what they were trying to do, work. Now, the rules of engagement, so to speak, were probably on a much more subtle level; i.e., you either conducted yourself in a certain way or you weren’t included. It can be very simple, and likely was, when need be. These patterns of behavior were not new to the communal pioneers, but their practice with strangers and/or prospective neighbors, added a factor of reservation not necessary on a daily basis among the family groups of their nomadic past. Interaction was in its formative stages and no doubt relied more on reaction, to an anticipated action, to maintain the upper hand on any given encounter. Body language always played a major role in how people treated each other, you’re either put at ease or on edge by the way someone acts, especially on your first impression. This seeming intuition was in fact little more than a slightly evolved pecking order. The tempering of our ancient suspicions were barely perceptible as we made an effort to approach every new challenge with as open a mind as our primitive emotions would permit. All who wanted to get along well enough to make this fresh start work soon grasped the obvious. The rewards of a fair trade increased the desire to enjoy the relative comfort it afforded, and combined with the increased health benefits of not being contentious or acting out rivalries, dissidence began taking a back seat to acceptance, cooperation, equality and even patience, although the latter two left a bad taste, more often than not. In any case, the ground work was being laid so that anyone, who so chose, could live by a code of conduct that involved giving up something (compromise), in order to coexist in relative harmony.

It might be noted at this point that it speaks volumes to the length ego will go in its search for independence, by alienating itself from family only to seek acceptance from strangers. Oddly, if this were a conscious emotional choice, it seems we would give up more to get less and still consider ourselves ahead of the game. Not only did this happen during the adolescence of our spirituality, but it remains the bench mark of every adolescent, everywhere, since. As far as our spiritual growth is concerned however, what on the surface appears to be a personal sacrifice, and very risky, sets the tone as a prerequisite on our Divinely Guided path for transitioning from clan to village life. If that advance, like many on our path, relied on our cognizant choosing to do so, far fewer would have been ready to commit to such a demanding undertaking. Everything was so different from the life they knew before. Additionally, behavior is a learned trait so, it would have been much less stressful to remain in that comfort zone of being a nomad among peers whose notions were so familiar you collectively acted as one, instead of taking the chance of failing as an individual. These ancient ancestors were explorers in as much as they were embarking into unfamiliar, uncharted territories. They abandoned the daily routine of making and breaking camp in order to follow the migrating herds or seasons along trails they grew up on, just as did countless generations before them. The ritual chores tended to without thought from one dawn to the next and governed only by the phases of the moon and sun, were largely left by the way side, while the customary was given up, for trade with the customer. Relinquishing long held traditions, to impress upon strangers their need for your services and products offered in exchange. Anyone who considered this radical shift in thought and behavior patterns to be worth the risk, necessary or even attractive––and pursued it to any degree of success––were the “point men” of truly independent thought. They had exhibited perhaps for the first time, forethought, by demonstrating the ability, albeit undeveloped, to lay plans that would affect their desired results in order to achieve a long range goal. Mankind was stepping out of their day to day subsistence into living for a future that, with forethought, realized promise.

“The best laid plans” are, at best, a physical compilation of our worldly considerations regarding the future outcome of some material goal we expect to conform to a specified criteria, not only of our own design but by our own time table. Such is the illusion we live by, given the narrowest of perspectives afforded in the “now”. Little wonder we refuse to accept that the most brilliant designs are fraught with every imaginable impedance fully intended to discourage and undermine any who aren’t ready for the responsibility of being unique. Clearly, most who last long enough to overcome the obstacles inherent with blazing a trail, were unique in and of themselves to be begin with, and by the nature of their mindset enhanced, during those trying times, qualities like perseverance and patience. Change, by definition is unsettling, even when one has some idea of what to expect, and has prepared accordingly. To be among the very first to commit everything you call your own toward something that wont even exist until you, by sheer will, bring it into being, doesn’t just set you apart from your peers, it deems you worthy of being followed.

The vast majority who fit that mold and lead in that manner don’t do so with the consciousness or appreciation that Divine Guidance has paved their way. Our focus is too limited by the desire to be recognized as responsible for all we lay claim to, to even entertain the possibility that; the only means by which any opportunity manifests itself in the physical, is that all the requirements to do so had first been met spiritually and entirely devoid of any personal input on our part. Nothing happens without, that hasn’t first happened within. Every illustration of blind faith––stepping out without any guarantee of the outcome––when in concert with Divine Direction demonstrates itself as imaginative resourcefulness, in ways dreamers could be reassured they were not only on the right track, but that it was taking them somewhere no one had gone before. By the same token, every attempt to produce results outside the framework of any Divine support, inexplicably fails to meet any and all aspirations. Spiritually, though unwittingly, those at this juncture of their path are surrendering to the Ego’s free will and its tendency to move away from anything that wants to control it; i.e. the clan / tribe patriarch. In truth, their actions weren’t by choice as much as they were integral to their introduction of awareness. The souls positioned at this threshold of advancement were exposed to levels of consciousness mankind had no memory of. The guidance offered from this point on the path would, for the most part, indulge all emotional extremes, in every imaginable capacity social interaction would bring to bear, from the loathsome dregs to demeanors of the highest measure of integrity.

This was, in every sense, the beginning of the ego’s education and our first assignment was to deceive ourselves into believing we were in control of it all! Our being thoroughly immersed in that delusion has been carried to extremes of its own, by the characterizations we’ve imagined ourselves fitting into. We had to allow the charade to continue long enough, even into modern times, until our repertoire included those God-like qualities of passing judgment on others, deciding who would be permitted to live or die––and under what circumstances––, “creating” new life forms unsupported by any spiritual frame work, thus unable to reproduce. Once having put ourselves on such lofty pedestals, we certainly couldn’t be expected to answer to anyone. Rising to be equal to God, would be the apex from which we had to fall, through our travails with emotion, in order to be “one” with God. At long last, it would be from these ancient origins, perhaps at the behest of our fading memory of each incarnation’s experience, that we would forevermore look back at and wonder, “where did this ego trip we’re on, get started?”. “How did we ever get ourselves into this mess?”. Well, the trip isn’t so much about our hat size or our finding a way out of a dilemma, as it is a quest for The Truth of our being. Even though everything that’s happened since that very first tenuous step has led irrevocably toward that Truth, we have been allowed but the briefest of glimpses regarding the Divine Plan behind any of it and then, only on a need to know basis. Knowing it when we do see it, furthermore, has been a serious matter of contention among even like-minded souls through time immemorial and deserves a thorough consideration of its own at a more appropriate point in this discourse.