Ralph Alan Dale wrote a beautiful book translating the Tao Te Ching, as written by Lao Tzu more than 2,500 years ago. It’s beautiful because of the stylizing chosen for nature photographs and illustrations in hues of black, gray, white and highlights of shining sliver. Dale’s informative introduction and inspired commentary brings the past current. (publisher Barnes & Nobel, Inc., 2005)
Verse 29, We are the World begins- “Those who have the most power and wealth treat the planet as a thing to be possessed, to be used and abused according to their own dictates. But the planet is a living organism, a Great Spiritual Integrity.”
There are those who will attempt to violate the Integrity, to control and possess the world. They will fail, and so will we all. As “The world’s pulse is our pulse…[it’s] rhythm’s are our rhythms.”
Dale’s commentary discusses three illusions humans create. One is that we are separate from the world we live in. The second is that the world is here for us to abuse and use as we decide. It’s arrogance, he says, which the third illusion comes out of. That is that we are competitive with our own species. “This illusion allows us to accept the institutionalization of the principle that most of us are here on this planet to serve those who establish hegemony (authority, influence, direction) over us.”
As I look around our country and the world through the news coverage and current events reported in print and video, the illusions seem to be intact, more or less.
In many places, these illusions are entrenched in the people’s thinking. They don’t ask questions. They cherish their belief that they are separate from those they see as less fortunate than they, sick or needy. I hear the word pathetic is used often as of late, to describe the suffering and disasters that have befallen many during these extreme economic times.
The health of the planet is athematic to them and they are uninterested in what a mutual influence means. The earth doesn’t have a pulse they would say. Only people and animals have a heart. Well, (with sarcasm) some people I would say do, that is true. And so does the planet and nature, the seen and unseen. (without sarcasm)
The same people and others too, blindly follow and serve as if institutionalized, those with power and wealth who are treating the planet as a thing to be possessed, to be used and abused according to their own dictates.
Is it possible times haven’t changed that much over the last 2,500 years? I keep hearing about how fast the changes are coming these days. It feels that way, but let’s not confuse speed and chaos with reaching a higher consciousness.
Let’s wake up…now. Let’s lift the veils, clear the illusions, and fill up our hearts with compassion and love for others. Let’s combine our strengths with the earth and with each other, as if one.Together, going through the changes on the path to possibly a better connection. It’s up to us, isn’t it?