What pulls you off course? What attachment is stronger than the call from your center for expression and service? If we are not going to live to incarnate what is deepest, truest and best about us, what are we getting that will offset that betrayal? The story of the Garden of Eden is the story of the betrayal of our center. The story of the Garden of Gethsemane is the story of faithful loyalty to our Center. Both stories are about our dying. Only one is about our being restored to life. Our center is the source of life. It is our vital core of life and being. When we live from the center, we are as alive as we can be. When we fail to guard the center, and live to serve some other promise of gain, delight and well-being, we choose a path that leads directly to the depths of the wasteland. Joseph Campbell said, "The crucial thing to live for is the sense of life in what you are doing, and if that is not there, then you are living according to someone else's notion of how life should be lived." And, "I know that I am on track when everything is in a harmonious relationship with what I regard as the best I have in me." When we sacrifice our best on the altar of our wants and desires, we sell ourselves for the equivalent of glass beads and silver mirrors.
The moment we have something at stake in a situation, or a relationship, a disturbance is created in the flow, and we are living with our self-interest at heart and not the interest of the situation, or the relationship. Then we are in a "Get My Way At All Costs" mode of operating and the true good of ourselves, the other person, or the situation as a whole goes out the window. Getting our way is not always what the time and place of our living is calling for. And, even if it is what is called for, it still creates a disturbance in the flow by virtue of putting us in the position of calculating where to draw the line-- where does what is good for us become what is bad for us, in terms of the price we are willing to pay to have our way. There is no price we will not pay when serving the good of the situation as a whole. Men/women sacrificing themselves on fields of battle, are examples of people paying the ultimate price for the good of others. Jesus died in service to his cause as a model to all his followers of what was to be/is to be expected of them in their service to the same cause-- that is to say, "The truth of what matters most in any situation." This is the "Love of Fate" put forth by Fredrich Nietzsche as the ideal way of embracing one's circumstances with a bold, "Yea!" and letting nothing stop us from doing "what we are here for" in the places with the worst likely outcome. Or of "participating in the suffering of another to such a degree, that we forget ourselves and our own safety and spontaneously do what is necessary" (Joseph Campbell)-- "in service to the truth of what matters most in any situation." Our life is always moving toward our death. "The Secret Cause" (James Joyce)-- that is, what we are living in the service of-- directs our steps toward our final breath. And, through 10,000 psychological/emotional deaths at every transition point (where we are asked to "grow up some more again" all along the way), "dying to our idea of how things ought to be in the service of how things actually need to be." The trick is to die the deaths that lead to new births and not dying the deaths that just lead to our being dead. That is living in the flow of our life all the way to our last breath.