Electronic circuitry has so wired the planet that within twenty years–a few hundred months–just about everything that the human race is doing or has ever thought about will be available at its fingertips. The human spirit is now coming in waves at us through computer, TV, CD player and joystick. The electronic revolution is returning us to a tribal world of instantaneous information and dialogue.
–Jean Houston, A Mythic Life
I have several times reminded my children that in the course of my lifetime, I have progressed from the manual typewriter and a sheaf of carbon paper to the electric typewriter, the electric typewriter that is self-correcting, to the “mag card” I remember during my days as a legal secretary, and eventually to the computer, one that interfaces with the entire world through the Internet. What a life! How much more intelligent we humans must be becoming, with an increasing body of knowledge at our fingertips that eventually will include all the knowledge there is, as if the Akashic Records have become manifest. But that isn’t the most important part of the electronic revolution, I think: what is most important is, as Houston points out, that we are fast becoming a world village through Facebook and its ilk. I have made so many wonderful friends online, and I’m sure I wouldn’t have made them otherwise, if only because I have never been inclined toward snailmail, possibly through sheer laziness (or lack of postage). Most of us these days–if we wish to–have friends all over the world and information about places we’ve never been and may never go is right at our fingertips. I tend to bemoan not having been able to travel more in my life, even though I’ve traveled a fair amount…but now, all I have to do is Google anything I want to see, any place I want to know more about. What does this mean for us as a collective being? Surely any answer to that becomes an obsolete one almost the moment it is spoken.
One of the friends I have met online is a man who lives in in Utah, a man who grew up a Mormon and a farmer who is becoming increasingly self-actualized through his own intuitive process. He is a fascinating combination of wisdom and pragmatism, and strikes me as one of the people I have met on this planet who genuinely enjoys being here. He mentioned this when we were talking recently, commenting that it seems that so many people become involved in what we used to call–in my hippie days–the “spiritual trip,” are people who have lived lives of misery and limitation of one kind and another, people who began to search for a higher meaning in life because they did not find sufficient meaning in their current experience to be content with the world as it is. He is, he says, not one of these: he finds life endlessly fascinating and meaningful, and his interest in expanded consciousness is an outgrowth of that, rather than a reaction to misery and limitation.
Well, I suppose he’s right. When he said this, the only thing I could reply was “Yeah, you’re right, I hate this life and I want to die.” He didn’t seem to have much to say to that, and I don’t blame him. It occurred to me later that I must have sounded like a profoundly depressed and hopeless person, but that isn’t it at all. Recently, toward the end of one of my meditations, I found myself saying over and over again to the God of my understanding, “Let me die, let me die, let me die…”
Now, there is no doubt that I am one of the people in the group this man mentioned: I have not particularly enjoyed the earthly experience, although I have a great love of nature, the joy of relationship and many of the sublime aspects of life on this planet. But that isn’t the source of my misery or of my search for a higher existence: it is nostalgia. Inayat Khan and the other teachers who have formed the foundation of my spiritual tutelage teach of the path of the soul as one that takes Being through world after world, level after level of the unfoldment of God in God’s creatures, and the soul picks up and carries impressions from each place it passes through in its descent and ascent away from and back to its Totality. And it is my understanding that depending on the route taken by each ray of that Sun, each soul takes on and carries impressions from the different realms it passes through. Over and over, the soul is born to parents in each plane, passes through worlds of that realm, lives and dies and passes on to the next. And the next. One soul may carry a primordial impression of the celestial planes, where angels of fire or light carry out the work that they are drawn to. Another soul may carry the impression of the astral planes, or the mind-world of djinns. Still another may be most deeply impressed by the earth plane, where the soul passes through the realms of animal, vegetable, mineral influences. And for some souls, their abiding attunement is in their memory of the Absolute, the silence and solitude of God beyond becoming. Thus, a feeling of strangeness and even alienation with one’s current experience may be motivated by the soul’s longing, its nostalgia for its true home, not a dislike of this one.
If I wish to become self-actualized, I will at some point be drawn to and recover my memory of all the worlds I have passed through on the way into and out of God, and it seems that, based on my current experience, I may carry the memory of one more than others. In my case, I have a strong angelic attunement: I am drawn to the pure, pristine world beyond earthly emotions and inclinations, and have needed to guard myself, as all souls do, in an earthly guise that might seem to preclude such an impression. It is natural that I would find myself often unable to tolerate the present moment and locale I find myself in: I remember too well those worlds beyond physical limitation and ugly emotions. The planet earth, of course, contains many reminders of where I come from: a fresh snowfall, a great painting, a Tallis Mass, a beautiful emotion that seems beyond what I consider to be ordinary emotion….all of these remind me of where I come from, and on my journey I meet souls who embody the reality of the realms they have descended from. Do we speak here of parallel universes, quantum reality….or of the Divine Sun unfurling its rays and drawing them back in? One’s interpretation of what one perceives seems to depend on the knowledge of other realities that it carries.
What does this existence, then, mean? Well, speaking of Facebook and our growing global village, I saw the following this morning, from a page called Where Angels and Lightworkers Meet:
A bit simplistic, perhaps, but…it’s all true, I’m pretty sure. This is what it’s all about, and my path of love shows me this in some way nearly every day.
So I do want to die. I want to go home.
I also want to follow the path of True Love. The Prophet, peace be upon Him, said in some Hadith I’ve forgotten the source of, that to be human is to be higher than the angels, because traditionally, the angel is caught in the contemplation of God, while the human experience allows for the full realization of God. In other words, I love to look at God, but I have a feeling that my highest happiness is in becoming the Divine Glance. So I suppose I’ll just have to continue to put up with this mess, Republicans and all.