Experience validates experience when we are open to experience and to The Silence, listening/watching for what arises, emerges, appears, occurs to us in the silence to affirm or question our interpretation of our experience. We are self-correcting, self-guided, self-validating, self-conscious, self-regulating, self-developing, self-enhancing self-determining vehicles of life and being. But, there is a catch. We have to trust ourselves to That Which We Do Not Know and live in good faith with ourselves all the way. Joseph Campbell said, "We know when we are on the beam and when we are off." We have to know what we know, and stay on the beam!!! We cannot do it alone! We have to surround ourselves with a Community of Innocence-- innocent in the sense of having nothing to gain or lose by its association with us, but existing solely for the sake of staying on the beam itself by assisting all of its members in their work to stay on the beam. Another term for "staying on the beam" is "Finding our life and living it." We belong to our life. Our life does not belong to us. We are here to serve our life. Our life is not here to serve us. This is the lesson of the Garden of Eden and of the Garden of Gethsemane. We are learning what it means to say "Thy will, not mine, be done," with the "Thy" understood to be "Our Life," moment to moment in each situation as it arises. Our Community of Innocence is composed of those who help us find our life and live it. They are our Guardians, Gurus and Guides. Many of them are long dead, but living in us and through us to keep life alive, in us and those like us, through time. We live to keep it going! By going ourselves! My Community of Innocence consists of Joseph Campbell, whose works: Myths of Light, Myths to Live By, A Joseph Campbell Companion compiled by Dian K. Osbon and A Joseph Campbell Companion edited by Robert Walter, The Power of Myth Pathways to Bliss are especially not to be missed. Carl Jung's Memories, Dreams and Reflections Modern Man in Search of a Soul The Undiscovered Self The Portable Jung, edited by Joseph Campbell Jon Kabat-Zinn Marianne Moore MC Richards T.S. Eliot W.B. Yeats Martin Palmer Thomas Cleary Eva Wong And a host of others. Who comprise yours?
Managing our life is basically a matter of to the silence, listening/looking for what arises, emerges, appears, occurs to us, from a level deeper than thinking, sparking realization, awareness, awakening, illumination, insight, enlightenment pertaining directly to what is happening here and now and what needs to be done in response to it, recognizing and offering what is being called for out of the gifts/genius/daemon (sounds like "diamond") that are our original nature from beyond the womb to be expressed and exhibited in the context and circumstances of our life throughout our life, moment by moment in each situation as it arises. Living in this fashion is life at its best-- sincere and spontaneous, without contrivance or exploitation-- lived in service to what needs to happen because it needs to happen, here and now over the long sweep of time.
Listen to your body: Listen to your heart (What makes your little heart sing?) Listen to your stomach (What is your Gut Feeling?) Listen to your bones (What do you know in your bones?) Listen to your nighttime dreams. Listen to your intuition. Listen to your instincts. Listen to what resonates with you. Listen to that “Uh-oh feeling.” Listen to your experience. Listen to the silence—see what emerges. Listen to your feeling: We feel our way to what. We think our way to how. Notice what feels right and what feels wrong. “Some things can be experienced, but not understood. Some things can be understood, but not explained.” (Sheldon Kopp) Engage in internal dialogue with yourself. Ask questions and answer them. Ask the questions that beg to be asked by the answers. Say the things that cry out to be said— at least internally, and externally when the circumstances allow it. Notice everything. Take up the practice of mindful awareness— and devote yourself to it. Watch all of the Jon Kabat-Zinn YouTube videos (The shortest ones first). Become proficient at attending the present moment— without becoming emotionally engaged, without judgment or opinion, but with compassionate awareness and acceptance of the fact that this is happening and that is not happening. Endeavor to see what you look at, to hear what you listen to, to know what’s what and what needs to be done about it in each situation as it arises. Practice. Practice. Practice. Practice is performance. Performance is practice. What is our practice? What are we practicing? The right practice makes all the difference!