Our goal is truth, and it behooves us to simplify our lives – to clarify them – so that truth is our only goal, our only focus.
Salvation is simple (T-12.I.6:4). Complexity of not of God (that in which we know salvation) but of the ego (T-26.III.1:1, T-15.IV.6:2).
Thus, when we find ourselves in complexity – be it emotional, psychological, social or whatever – we need simply give attention to the fact that we are not in the space of God but of ego. That attention is itself healing and if gently and willingly sustained will rectify all errors and restore to our minds the necessary power of decision.
It is so hard to remember that we are not called to solve our seeming problems: the relationships that don’t work, the money that isn’t there when it needs to be, the bodies that don’t cooperate with eternity and perfection. Indeed, approaching them as if they do need to be solved is to make them real. Give them to the Holy Spirit who will turn in the direction of God where and in which all errors and problems are undone.
Practically, this means that we must give attention to our state of mind. On what are we focused? What, in this moment, do we believe? Are we bent on truth and grace or are we following the labyrinthine masochism of the egoic self?
In any moment – in any situation – we can simply turn our attention to that symbol of Love and Peace that is most helpful to us, most functional. Jesus, Buddha, the Holy Spirit, Saint Therese, Guru Nanak . . . the symbol is not critical. The willingness to accept the Love it symbolizes is.
I walk early in the morning – or as my wife says, the middle of the night – because most of the time it is clear and quiet and still and in that space I slip most readily into the Love that awaits us all. Watching the moon between slips of cloud, listening to deer bound away in the woods, or coyotes howl crossing distant hills . . . the incessant chatter of ego dims and the Voice for God arises gently asking me only to listen, only to give attention.
I don’t know what it is like for you – what works, how it works. It is important to be honest about this: how our path may not be another’s, or may resemble it a little, or maybe a lot. I have nothing to teach and – as time passes – less to say because there is nothing to be learned, really. Only that we already have what we need and know what we must know. How you will bring that into application is as intimate as falling in love. Nobody can do it for us.
Though I do think often of my friends and loves – and even my hates – out there in the forest. I bring you with me, as you bring me from time to time here and there. There is a level at which we are not separate, at which we go together, the way beams of moonlight cohere into brightness. One can make too much of this. But it’s not a mystery. It isn’t magic.
There is a very simple and natural way to be in these bodies in the context of the world that is not anxious or painful or frightening but gentle, peaceful and healing. It has to do with attention, with finding what (or who or where) works and staying close to that. It has to do with simplifying one’s focus so that work and creativity and relationship all serve the single objective of truth. There is nothing else to do.