Tuesday, November 9, 2010

(10) Rejecting Dichotomy

"For there can be no Religion more true or just, than to know the
things that are; and to acknowledge thanks for all things, to him
that made them..."
[Corpus Hermetica, Book One.]

Comment: The above quote from this ancient Egyptian text
certainly "speaks" to me! Somewhere along the way I began
not to dichotomize when it came to my sense of Reality. What
I mean by this is not to presume that there is a mystical world
out there, outside our own universe.

Religions--including that of the ancient Egyptians--talk of some
sort of Land of the Dead. There's Heaven and Hades. There's
Elysium of the Greco-Roman cultures, at the ends of the Earth,
and the Island of the Blessed in Arthurian legend, all represent
an other mystical World.

And until recent times this other World was usually another
place, different and separate from the world in which we live
and have our being. Also, for the most part, the priority was
given to this other World by our religions. One was expected
to display a certain behavior, not only being good but also
practicing certain forms and prescriptions. And sometimes
the privileged took precedence over the poor. Occasionally
one could "buy" their place in Eternity, via indulgences.
So it went, and still sometimes this dichotomous attitude
continues to prevail.

This attitude also sometimes resulted in a negative attitude
towards the "world" in which we live. Usually one thinks
of worldly behavior in this case, but it also involved thinking
of the Temporal versus the Eternal. Some religions conveyed
the attitude of spurning the world, or picturing it as a
continuous "veil of tears."

Maybe, actually, there might have been some reasoning
involved in all this. Until our own times just making it
through life for most of us involved tough-going. Survival
was at the top-of-the-list. Due to disaster and disease,
many people simply led short lives. Of course our human
propensity for war helped along these short survival rates.
We sentient beings became conscious of this world and
were at first scared silly, realizing that the world could
kill us.

Hence we evolved Religion, first animism, then polytheism,
monotheism, etc. Imploring gods/God to save us. Mostly
we had to be saved in an Eternal Realm, not of this world.

But today, through modern Science and Technolgy, we are
learning far more about our world, our universe, and have
come to realize that Creation is utterly vast in its wonderful
magnificence. It's full of Space, filled with Time, plentiful
in Galaxy Clusters, packed with Suns, Solar Systems,
and Planets. It is Everywhere, no doubt full of Different
Dimensions of Being. It is ALL THAT IS. And those who
might forge new religious expressions might tend to be
more panentheistically inclined--believing that the universe
exists within God, though the Creator is more than the

So with ALL THIS THAT IS, why ever should there be an
"out there" for us. As for Death and Life, we are coming
to understand they are a natural cycle of Being. And
Being would seem ever recycled. We souls would seem
to be Consciousness Points in the universe, "seeds"
that might perhaps be engaged in the evolution of the
universe via building up KNOWLEDGE and consequent
UNDERSTANDING what the universal process is about.

I suspect we are meant to be recycled, restored in
ways we yet have not yet come to understand. There's
clues in the Out-of-Body Experience (OBE) and the
Near-Death Experience (NDE). Our intuition suggests
another place, hence our religious perspective that
tended to dichotomize. But some scientists now are
considering what they call a "Psi World," which is
another dimension of Being. All part and parcel of
our universe. Even those on theological peripheries
have suspected this, calling such the Imaginal Realm.

And if it turns out there is Nothing, well we can still be
grateful that somehow the universe brought us forward
for awhile in order to help it along as it makes its way.