Thursday, August 19, 2010

One Voice in Many: Part 2

I wrote my first manuscript when I was a neophyte on the spiritual path, probably about 1980, and called it One Voice in Many. I have just found it again, surprisingly, in a beat-up file folder among records of long-ago classes I taught. It was typed on an old portable Olivetti typewriter, before the day of computers! Wow! What a surprise to meet myself again as I was perceiving the world back then. Some of it is naive, but some is quite fresh and simple. So I've decided to put bits of it here and short quotes on Twitter. The first bit of it is in my July 12, 2010 blog post.

The quest for Spirit has come to be my major motivating force and the thing out of which all reward and richness flows. No longer is life an unordered array of disjointed experiences; it is a moving continuum of consciously received revelations. My life and I are a single unified experience punctuated only by varying focuses of attention. Perceptions fit into an ever-expanding puzzle, continually synthesizing and creating new wholes within wholes.

There is nowhere to go, no arrival point on the Path—only unceasing oscillation and the illusion of stillness as we become one with the flowing. Frustrations give way to satisfactions, satisfactions to new curiosities—and everything folds over and into itself to be known anew. The process is exciting: incredibly simple yet astoundingly complex. There are moments of pure understanding and times I am overwhelmed and confused by the sheer volume of input wanting to be known in a conscious way.

As I have continued exploring, I've looked for signposts to help me gain my bearings. There are many voices calling out directions, and many directions to go. Some voices are loud, some are silent. I have had to learn to listen in new ways. There are answers seeking to be asked for and questions seeking to be heard. Always, there is the challenge to be diligent that personal truth aligns with the universal. I have found guidance everywhere—in casual conversations, song lyrics, the inspiring words of great leaders and artists (both living and dead), and in my own dreams and random thoughts. As I have practiced noticing what I am noticing, I sense there really is One Voice communicating through all the diverse "voices" on earth.

As I said, we must learn to listen in new ways. Critical to this is the ability to be quiet and centered, to simplify and distill. These habits are a matter of practicality—it's the only way we will ever learn discernment. There certainly is no scarcity of sources of guidance in this world! The universal, or the divine, speaks to us in every cloud, every tree, every face we meet on the street. Everything can be seen as a symbol or sign, pregnant with meaning. Yet each person looks at the cloud and sees a different shape. One person interprets a hawk as an omen of good fortune, another sees it as a warning.

How do we make sense of this glut of communication pouring from every form and event? We need to understand that each of us lives by an individualized system of personal truth and that revelation comes to us accordingly. For each person, place, and moment in time, the universe says one thing. And all forms and events echo that one message because we can only evolve one thought and action at a time, one moment at a time. We receive only the revelation we need next. You and I might gaze on the same scene, but our wise Inner Perceivers will cause us to perceive what we need to perceive. If we listen rightly, we see that all messages from all forms bring us closer to each other and a universal oneness.

copyright Penney Peirce

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