“Why can’t the ego just evolve or wake itself up to the greater realities? Why can’t it just start realizing all this interconnectedness and wholeness?”
In a way, ego does wake up as enlightenment arrives. But the whole derivation and function of ego was to be separate, to defend its position of separation, and to survive there. Once ego realizes its nature, nature overtakes it, and dissolves this function that is no longer fit to survive. An awakened ego must dissolve, and eventually die! It must go the way of the saber-toothed tiger or the stegosaurus.
As I’ve said, natural appreciation draws itself from the Source, infinite and empty, into the form life that is finite and full. Appreciation is essential awareness—before there is any thing to be aware of. This appears an impossible abstraction from the mind’s perspective; hence the separation at ego level. The human mind cannot encompass or comprehend the depth into which consciousness must plunge in order to truly appreciate. The mind rushes up to the threshold of this depth and peers through the ‘glass darkly’, but it can go no further.
The reality of true appreciation is not abstract at all; it is the essence of practicality. It is the natural mechanism for appraisal of any situation, internal or external. It enables the relations of all things among themselves. This is possible because all those things and selves are really just one Self. Appreciation is embedded in the very fibers of manifested consciousness on all planes, binding them as one.
“On all planes? So you are saying there is appreciation in nature before humans or vigilans?”
Certainly. All of creation is manifesting appreciation continuously. The forms it takes vary immensely. A tree, for example, appreciates its place in the universe through its roots, through its acceptance of sunlight, the greening leaves and ripening fruit. It absorbs the appreciation of any animal, human or vigilan who touches it and uses it for shelter, sustenance or splendor. A quartz crystal appreciates its essence through the nourishment it receives among the minerals and energies that give it birth. When it emerges into the lighted world, a new appreciation dawns for it through its exposure to illumination. An electron appreciates its place within an atom, relative to the forces that measure its form. Only the human intellect is capable of shutting out this deep connection with oneness, with its innate appreciative sense.
Appreciation connotes presence. In this sense it is a living entity, like faith. In this presence, the truth is known; the oneness is known. It is a tool unlike any other. It not only establishes reality within the awareness, it leverages its own contribution to that reality; that is, it provides a feedback loop of enhanced attention. It generates consciousness and consciousness generates it. Out of it comes allowing, gratitude and grace. Out of these qualities comes more appreciation. But humanity was disconnected from its own presence, its own native qualities—thus the breakdown in appreciative presence.
“I see what you’re saying. We humans are our own worst enemies, because we don’t know who we really are. We don’t know our own presence. But you do. You have evolved to know your presence. This must be remarkable for you.”
“How have you used appreciation in your world? What effects does it produce that are different from the human world?”
First, it guarantees our living in the Now. The appreciative faculty lives in our conscious awareness at all times. Going inward is not something we have to practice as the human species did. We live inwardly a priori. We come out from there—the reverse of your orientation. In fact, your destined path was to go in; ours is to go out. We are manifesters of spirit; you were seekers of spirit. I spoke earlier of the human mind as always looking to the outer world for validation. This is the illusion again—counter to true human destiny. True validation, for you and for all creation, comes only from within.
Second, the appreciative faculty gives us the ability to regulate ourselves with a natural sense. The benign anarchy of our world is founded on this. We know viscerally the effects of our actions on those around us. There are no environmental crises, as you often had, because we see our actions from the perspective of the environment itself. We have no fear, envy or hatred of one another, because we are the other; we cannot escape knowing this. It is no euphemism, but a living moment-by-moment experience for us. It applies to individuals, as well as nations and the whole global population.
Third, appreciation allows us to find natural balance in all our relationships. Our children and parents, lovers and friends, are recognized as aspects of the one Self, manifesting its own appreciation into the world of form. We are outposts of the one Self, applying its universal embrace and beneficence to everything we do in the world. As I said before, this renders morality obsolete.
“I hear your words. But I can’t imagine what that would be like. What does it feel like to be an individual always aware of what others are feeling?”
For you, I understand, it would be highly disorienting. Your entire orientation is the opposite of this. For us, however, it feels only natural. We know our individuality as a representation of the undivided whole. It is at once humbling and exalting.
I hasten to add, however, that we have, by no means, reached perfection. We have not created utopia. Fittingly, the Greek meaning of utopia is ‘no place’. The Void itself is thus, the only utopia. Vigilans see into perfection. We feel wholeness. But we do not manifest it completely. We are still an evolving society, still living in duality. This means we make mistakes. We see the world from diverse perspectives. We have regular disputes and disagreements, with the resulting need for our dialogues and congresses. But we always learn from our errors.
One more important thing I must add: Appreciation is the source of all joy. Joy is what appreciation feels like. Joy arises only from within, as distinguished from happiness, which is an outer emotion. Appreciation is the source of feeling abundance in our lives, indeed in yours as well. Happiness is a fleeting condition, dependent on situations and events. It arises through avoidance of its opposites—sadness, frustration or disappointment. Appreciation and joy embrace all—even so-called opposites. As soon as you link with objectless appreciation, there is a joy and gratitude that wells up inside you, limited only by your own degree of openness to accept it…
Copyright © 2010 by Robert Lee Potter