Awakening the Sacred: Re-enchanting Our Ways of Relating
We are living through a crucial time where we bear witness to a profound opening between two worldviews, that of yesterday’s story, scientific mind-set and socio-economic behaviour and the emerging dawn of tomorrow whereupon the mind-sets and cultural scaffolding of old melts away in an alchemic co-creation of new pathways. This moment of metamorphosis in our midst is what the ancient Greeks called Kairos – a supreme moment of indeterminable time which, if not adequately engaged, embodied and acted upon, may pass us by.
So let’s cut to the chase. The root cause of our carcinogenic culture is a corrupting logic at deep and partly unconscious levels. It is a logic that sets us apart from, and in competition with, our own true nature, each other and the world around us. It creates a flawed philosophical, scientific and socio-economic worldview of anthropocentric materialism pervading our daily consciousness to such an extent that much of our collective activity assumes it to be just-the-way-life-is. As a result, many of our well-intended sustainability solutions apply the very same logic that created the problems in the first place with seemingly competing urgencies vying for our attention.
Findings in quantum physics, facilitation ecology, neuroscience, transpersonal psychology and many other disciplines, are shedding light on what ancient minds have long known: Far from our bodies being dis-embodied, as they are in our prevalent mind-divorced-from-matter philosophy, our bodies are resonating within a flux of interrelations, embedded and embodied in a rich unfolding Dance of multiplicity-in-unity. Patterns of meaningful interrelations abound within a sea of synchronicity. This is Nature raw and feral, uncut by the dissecting Cartesian mind, where true reality may be glimpsed, however fleetingly, in its awe-inspiring unfathomable wisdom beyond words. The process of life is re-cognised as an organic participation within this cosmic Dance, where the importance of pattern and relation as ebbing and flowing ripples within a deeper oceanic presence is deeply known. Each and every moment is imbued with consciousness as a sentient, holy presence. As William Blake knew, ‘Everything that lives is holy’.
The word ‘holy’ creates unease in our materialistic culture. It is an old word with the same root as the word ‘healthy’ and, as the author David Cadman has said, ‘it speaks of humility and reverence that is no longer common’, a timeless way of being that arises when we are truly ourselves. Through our attunement with what is in this present moment of life we realise this holiness. As we open ourselves up to the Dance, through nothing simpler than allowing the all-pervasive holy presence to permeate our awareness, we begin to allow a remembrance of our true nature, beyond separation. Here we begin to awaken the Eye of the Heart which mystics such as Meister Eckhart have long spoken of. It is a way of being that is quite natural and yet radically different from that which prevails today. Einstein spoke of ‘holy curiosity’ – a direct perception of life unfettered by ego-entrapment. It is this full-bodied awareness that enables us to perceive reality beyond the illusion of separation, an illusion we have created with our own self-reflexive minds. This holy curiosity is a vibrant and vivid, expansive and enchanting, pregnant quality of presence; a naked, fertile embracement of Nature; a shamanic experience that touches the plenitude of the soul. As phenomenologist Cheryl Sanders-Sardello explains:
‘To be here requires attention, listening, and gazing deeply without assaulting each thing seen with a conclusion. The silence here is not just in the ‘what has been’, it is most deliciously waiting, too, in the ‘what will be’.
To embrace life with holy curiosity is our choice, a simple case of intention and attention.
Scientific studies have shown that when we embody this holy way of being our left and right brain hemispheres cohere, our neo-cortex brain activity entrains with our heart’s electromagnetic pulse, stem cell production increases, as do rates of tissue repair, hormonal changes occur and our senses liven. Our intuition improves markedly as quietening ego-chatter gives way to the subtle wisdom of the heart. With this holiness, we become not only healthier but also wiser.
Inviting this sacred presence into our daily consciousness is the most profound undertaking as it robs the illusion at source and allows our thoughts, words and deeds to self-right themselves. Our way of attending becomes one of care rather than control, of humility rather than hubris, and of synchronicity rather than separateness. This emancipation from egotism allows a more loving attention of thy self and thy neighbour. This is the common ground of humankind’s destiny within which we each have unique tunes to play. From this sacred place we can co-create our flourishing future.
‘The modern condition of soiling our nest reflects how we’ve become dissociated from our somas, our communities, and the earth itself. This has become a pathological condition so widespread that we think of it as normal…When we feel ourselves as part of Nature we invoke a vast intelligence that is both deeply spacious and deliriously ecstatic. When we tie in with the life force it rights us from our distractions and reconnects us to the rapture of life.’ Richard Strozzi-Heckler
While it may not always feel like it, we are in the midst of a seismic paradigm shift. The challenge of our time is less about intellectualising adaptations utilising yesterday’s logic, and more about creating space within our manic schedules for a real embodiment of the innate wisdom life affords us.
As the Presocratic Greek philosopher Thales famously noted, all things are full of God. Every particle and every vibration within it flows with holiness and now is the time to consciously step into this holy river.
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Giles Hutchins – author of The Illusion of Separation