“Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our minds...Man is a universe within himself.”
Several conversations this week have caused me to think a lot about human beings. About how we move in zigzag lines, forward and backward, three steps ahead, five back. We make progress, and then, we reverse course. We feel deeply compassionate until someone gets too close, and then we run away as though to protect ourselves from seeing what is before us. As Marley says, we use our minds to keep ourselves “enslaved?”
One conversation was about the business of non-violent conversation that I've already written about. We have these big brains, capable of reason and judgment; we have the mental facilities of relationship, compassion, imagination and creativity, but we put the breaks on all of that with our reptilian fear. If we are too expansive and egalitarian, it tells us, there won't be enough to go round. Me first! If there's anything left, then you. We put down, we justify, we criticize, we rationalize out of fear that to concede something to you, I must give up something I want.
Another conversation pondered what percentage of the population is gaining in consciousness. How many humans do you think are “emancipating their minds?” How many of us see the unity of all things, and understand that we must all move forward together? Are we evolving fast enough to keep our species from decimating the planet? Are we close to the tipping point in which there is a leap forward in human consciousness?
And, finally, a conversation about forgiveness. Can we actually forgive, and forget? Is that only a psycho/religious, pie-in-the-sky concept? Can we know that there has been terrible injustice in the past, for others, and/or for ourselves, and even knowing, forgive and let it go? Is it a choice that we can make once and for all? Some say it doesn't happen that way. I say, it has to happen that way, otherwise we can never move forward. We cannot change the past, and all the retribution in the world will not lay it to rest or make it right. The only solution is forgiveness. Anything else is “mental slavery.”
Bob Marley, who's music I did not know except that it was reggae, was a wise man with a free mind. He was a universe within himself—as are we all.
In the Spirit,