Sabbatical: Ending Death-Fear
As I have journeyed throughout my sabbatical I have been diving deep into self-reflection through meditation, conscious breath, yoga, retreats and living more present throughout each moment of my day. Using techniques I have learned from Eckhart Tolle, my wife Nikita Gearing, Elena Brower, Janet Stone and even my dog Simba. One technique I have used is to place a trigger or a reminder at the crossroads of unconsciousness & reaction. If I ever catch myself disconnected from the present moment or following a thread of mind-creation, like a pain-body reaction, those triggers set off an inner-alarm bell reminding me to stop and breathe, look around, receive the moment, and inquire within “what is this teaching me”. Everyone’s trigger or reminder is different as it is directly based on your individual experience with what it is that you are reminding yourself about.
I have found that when you start to become conscious of the world as a reflection of you, reminding you of who you truly are and why you are here, you begin to look at everything as a teaching. All moments and all experiences, whether good or bad, become “evolutionary opportunities” as my wife calls it.
With all of the challenges humanity faces in this moment: NSA overreach, Government secrets, Corporate agendas, War on Terrorism, War on Drugs, GMOs, Bees Dying off, Ocean die-off, Climate Change, Famine, Water Shortages… and the list goes on, provides all of us with an “evolutionary opportunity” - “a teachable moment” - to see who we truly are and to awaken to why we are truly here.
The purpose for this writing…
I have just come off of one of my most challenging days, yet probably one of my most successful as a human being.
I created multiple evolutionary opportunities; to notice myself blaming another and judging them for their actions or in this case inactions, struggling with a reaction to something someone said that triggered pain and sadness, watching myself make a choice that created suffering for a close friend, then reacting at another person for their own process of those actions, solely because of my own self-judgement. Each time, I either became disconnected from the present moment, got caught up in reaction and my inner alarm bell went off or I remembered my breath and settled back into presence. I found myself more aware of what was really going on for me than anytime ever in my whole life.
Pondering the day, it dawned on me. What if this awareness was applied as a collective, a community, an organization, a corporation, a political party, a nation, our species. What would happen?
My immediate focus zoomed into the manifestation of War and the question “what is it that our collective species must learn from this so that we may evolve beyond it?” The answer emerged deep from within the moment and said… “Death-Fear”.
This insight hit deep for me. This has been something that has been coming up quite regularly as I am approaching the sunset horizon of my 35th cycle around the Sun. I feel I have always been afraid of death, and therefore those moments gasping for my breath, anxious with the unknown of it all. Recently though, I have begun to notice a deeper peace about death. So many of our thoughts and beliefs are set to keep us in fear, which in turn continues the path of forgetting who we really are and why we are here. It seems that Death-Fear is the key to this forgetting.
The moment I realize myself as a part of something greater, my fears dissolve. The moment that can we realize that “you and me” are not separate and are a part of “OneLife”, and that that OneLife does not operate within the human context of “time” therefore it has no past or future, then the only thing that dies is the thought form that limits our experience of Life now. I fully recognize the cycle of birth and death, however I resonate deeply with the idea that Life has no antithesis. That it is the forms that are born and then die, but that Life itself is formless, living through the forms and when one completes it’s journey it moves on to the next one.
War… What is it good for?
My main impulse for this is to reignite the inquiry made famous by the voice of Edwin Starr “War… what is it good for?” as I have come to the conclusion that it must be good for something, just not what the perpetrators expect. It seems to me that it is mirroring an inner fear that is not yet overcome as a collective. We are co-creating the war’s that we protest against. War is reflecting to us a “disturbance in the force”. It is trying to awaken us to a deeper truth that can free us from the ultimate fear of the Ages… Death. This fear is the ultimate cover-up. The most widespread conspiracy theory as it covers-up the true question… “Who are we, and why are we here?”.
Ultimately, death-fear is based on our limited belief in who we are. As we have believed that we are the “things” in our life, the forms, the ego, our identities, our wealth, our friends and family, our home, our schools, our sports team, our yoga class, the teacher, the student, the labels that we have had placed upon us since birth, and the ones we have placed upon ourselves trying to find our purpose as we navigate a world that is in a flux between total unconsciousness and the flowering of human consciousness.
The only thing that truly dies is form and when you awaken to the fact that we are of the formless, you have nothing to fear. Once that fear is gone… so to War will end. Until then… it will continue until the wave of consciousness has touched the shores of enough people that the dominoes will fall in favor of True Peace.
Who knows if this is meant to happen this time around. I don’t know, but I can at least carry the truth of the OneLife with me in every moment as a deeper knowing that informs every thought, action and choice as I engage this amazing world of form and contrast.
May we each find peace within this lifetime.