I think it was G.K. Chesterton who said, "When Jones follows his inner light, Jones follows Jones." To which I respond, "What choice does Jones have?" Jones has to follow Jones, even if he takes the position of, "I just do what I'm told. It's easier that way." Jones is then following whomever Jones chooses to follow, but Jones is making the choice, and thereby "following Jones" in following whomever is telling him what to do. When Captain Jack Sparrow says, "It's the pirate's life for me, Gibbs. I have no choice in the matter! Savvy?" He is choosing to have no choice. Choosing not to choose is choosing whom/what to choose. Is choosing. Jones/we cannot avoid our place as the sole/rightful authority governing the life Jones is--we are-- living. We abdicate/acquiesce at our own pleasure. What is the equivalent of "the pirate's life" for you? You have chosen it. You are living it. What is it? I have chosen to listen to me, to follow orders arising from within my own psyche/center/source/unconscious, and to know when I am "on the beam" with that, and when I am off it. It's tricky, knowing who is calling the shots, directing my own life. Is it me? Or my Shadow? Or my Ego? Who is in control of what I am doing and what I will do next? I have to be quiet with that question, and confess that I do not know. I am doing what seems to be right at the time. And I am ready to do something else when that seems to be right. How do YOU know what to do, when? What is guiding YOUR boat on its path through the sea? Getting to the bottom of us carries us into The Mystery of Life and Being. We are led/guided/directed by Mystery. And, at the bottom, that is all we can say. And it is a cop-out to say that before reaching the bottom! We have to know that we do not know who/what is directing our life! And listen! Look! For what arises within. For what appears. Emerges. Comes forth. Occurs to us. Compels us with an irresistible force into some version of "the pirate's life." Savvy? Sail on! Sail on! Not knowing who/what is at the helm! But faithful to the task and trusting who/what we do not know to the path that unfolds before us all the way. All The Way.
There are three of us within each of us. We are a Holy Trinity unto ourselves. There is the Knower, and the One Who Knows the Knower, And the Doer. The Doer is the One Who balances/harmonizes the Knower and the One Who Knows the Knower, so that the One Who Knows the Knower doesn't get the big hat and think he/she IS the Knower. The Doer balances/harmonizes the relationship between the other two in a way that results in conjoint, collaborative, action in the field of action. Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit-- which blows where it will-- harmonizing Father and Son in a way that rises to every occasion and produces action appropriate to the time and place of its incarnation. This Trinitarian view of the Self comes to light when we consider the Ego and its tendency to take over and run the show with its Should, Ought, Must, Mustn't, Want, Want, Want... Way. Well, who is going to intervene and say "Stop It Now!" to the Ego? Would that be the Ego's ego? Some Super Ego? Who has oversight of that ego? Who is in charge of all of this? In India they get rid of the Ego entirely, and become submissive to some guru, some Dharma/Duty/Caste, who/that directs their life, so that no independent thinking is going on, and everybody is doing what has always been done. Well, who says so? Who says we must do what Swami-Guru says do? What some Dharma/Duty/Caste says do? Who is giving the order to obey Swami-Guru/Dharma/Duty/Caste? Who says, "Not my will but thine be done (because I say so, because I will it to be done that way)"? Who is the Ego's Ego? Who works all this out? We have Ego, and we have Not-Ego, and we have Mediator Between Ego and Not-Ego, balancing/harmonizing the relationship, determining what is to be done. But WHO SAYS SO? Ego can't get rid of ego! No matter how hard or how long it tries! We can only be quiet, and be aware, and move according to... What? What moves us? What directs our action? What guides our boat on its path through the sea? What determines what we do??? It is a miracle. Every action is a miracle. No one is in charge of us. "We" become, somehow, through our actions an independent, self-reliant, self-governing, autonomous mass of protoplasm, making its/our way through the conditions and circumstances of our environment as though we know what we are doing, not-knowing anything about how we know that, or what makes us think we know that. Why do we do what we do when we do it? Who says so? The best we can do is to be aware of all we are capable of being aware of, and see what we do next. Awash in wonder. Astounded and astonished at the miracle of it all. Stunned and amazed at the ridiculous impossibility of existence. Waiting to see what we do next. Lost in the radiance of Life and Being.
We have seized the ethical dimension of religion, and have rejected the mystical dimension. And that is why God is dead. We killed God by denouncing the God Within as heretical, burning that God at the stake along with the Gnostics, and all the others extolling God's immanence, and striving to live "transparent to transcendence." Just believe the catechisms and "Live a godly, righteous and sober life," was the end of religion. Joseph Campbell said, "Your life has to become a transparency through which light shines... the god in you must be allowed to come through in your life!" Jesus' "The Father and I are one," is to be everyone's model of life. We live to be at one with God, exhibiting the essence of godliness in the way we live moment to moment, so that, "If you have seen me, you have seen God." That is the meaning of "The kingdom of heaven is within you." We bring heaven to life here and now, by becoming the living presence of God in the world, inviting everyone to experience the ineffable in us, through us. So that being with us is a religious experience. But. No church ever said that, or anything close to that. And that is the pity and the shame. So. Who are you going to believe? Me? Or everyone else? What you do with this is up to you. Jesus would say, "Those who have eyes, let them see. Those who have ears, let them hear." He is saying, "What you see, what you hear, is up to you."
Sin is being wrong about what is important. Repentance is changing our mind about what is important-- and being right about it-- and living in ways that are aligned with it, serve it, do it, in the right way, at the right time. All the time. What is so hard about this? And why would it deserve heaven when we die? It's just basic humanity! Why would we have to be rewarded for doing the right thing? And why do we think God dances and sings when we do it? That's just a tiny bit over on the totally absurd side, don't you think? Our mom never got that excited when we pooped in the potty. And that's a really big step! We need to grow up all over the place. And start behaving--and believing-- as though we are.