Implicit in the idea of right direction is making conditions better not worse, both subjectively and objectively, inside and in the world. To many thinking people direction means development cognitively and spiritually, leading to the eventual evolution of consciousness, as well as for economic development to eliminate poverty, and human rights to protect individuals and minorities the world around. The use of meditation to cultivate higher consciousness results-if used persistently-- in increased intuition, reason, the ability to discern truth, and to live ethically. It results in engagement in the world and the use of meditation as world service. We are the world. Whether we speak in terms of God-transcendent and God-immanent; or in terms of clear, pristine Mind and the obscuring layers of the conditioned mind; or in terms of the meditative mind and the calculating mind, we are speaking the languages of meditation and are united in intention. There are many types of meditation. Some focus on lucid emptiness, or breathing in and breathing out, or seed thoughts or syllables, points of light, qualities of enlightenment, the Sephiroth, centering, the Practice of the Presence, or the imitation of Christ, to name a few. All begin with one-pointedness.
Cultivating enlightened mind or bodhicitta means cultivating a mental attitude of benefiting others, based on love and compassion. It means the union of an intelligent mind and a loving heart or thinking in the heart. It involves becoming increasingly aware of the suffering of all sentient beings, human and non-human, friends and enemies alike. Practicing the wish for enlightened mind is the first step, leading to practice or engaged bodhicitta. The soul qualities of idealism and intuition, inherent in all of us, directed and used, produce a fusion of head and heart, of light and love, which releases the potent energy of wisdom and reveals spiritual purpose. Whether building bridges in consciousness between aspects of human beingness, or building interrelations between spiritual worlds and the natural world, bridging is primary to our meditative work.
"Remember the clear light, the pure clear white light from which everything in the universe comes, to which everything in the universe returns; the original nature of your own mind. The natural state of the universe unmanifest. Let go into the clear light, trust it, merge with it. It is your own true nature, it is home." (cited in Teachings of the Buddha).
Earth, too, is home. Earth stewardship awareness is a hopeful direction of world thought needing care and the meditative mindfulness of a wide group of people over extended time, who listen without rushing to do. Imposing the iron grid of control on the map of nature as we have on the social grid, imposing our will on nature without regard for relationship or harmlessness would have unhappy results. Efforts like the Green Cross, the Earth Charter, "An Inconvenient Truth," the Kyoto Protocol, and the cycle of conferences on the environment of the United Nations provide expressions of regard that lead to humanity's growth of conscience, and acceptance of responsibility for its own actions. Cleaning up what we have already done to earth, water and air is an obvious beginning. A major energy of Shamballa, the center where the Will of God is known, is purification. Approaching the natural world with the same attitude of respect, relationship and regard that characterizes our approach to spiritual worlds is the goal. We have much to learn and unlearn. As George Bernard Shaw wrote, "No man manages his affairs as well as a tree does." The mystery of evolutionary goals, direction and achievement of each species and kingdom is profound.
Building bridges and cultivating enlightened relationships between religions is another direction of need and hope. All sacred books write of light, love/compassion and peace, yet the world is experiencing the opposite. Few people can evolve from within themselves the thoughts and ideas that would lead them to the full realization of truth. The aspiration to discover truth and motivation to persist in the path must come from within, but the books of sacred teachings around the world offer the seeds that eventually spring, through much cultivation and time, from the ground of Being, the Ground Reality of each one of us. Although religions come and go like nations and civilizations, the need to know enough of the truth to live a meaningful life is universal, whether it is the biological truth of birthing and aging, or creativity in the realm of ideas and mind and in the evolution of consciousness. The energy, teaching and presence of truth in the form of a divine incarnation, avatar or enlightened Being, or a Son of God will never end. It is connected to the source of life itself. All great teachings come from the same place, the center where the will of God is known, the Father's House, Shamballa. Over time this truth becomes theology and is eventually resolved into the formulas of faith of their followers, and become simplified and formulated into the cultural expressions and organizations we see around us.
"If the acquisition of knowledge should dull the edge of continuing inquiry, we are then in danger of succumbing to authoritarian teaching and limitation of the mind by a single thoughtform." Nothing is more detrimental to the path of discipleship than limiting spiritual authority to a bible interpreted literally. This becomes the fear driven fundamentalism of fixed forms, intolerant and inflexible, incapable of change or thoughtful intelligent application to the times. This is the opposite of discipleship because it lacks acquaintance with the source of the teaching or bible, with the energy and the presence. "The only authority is our own soul. The method of contact is meditation." In meditation the antahkarana bridge is built.
The soul is the light of the personality. The light of the world, it is said, will be to the natural world, as the soul light is to the personality, a center of radiant magnetic interplay of love or attraction, instead of repulsion and conquering. We have conquered nature outside, but have failed to conquer human nature, as Mary Bailey used to say. When our heroes are not conquerors who plunder for themselves but those who practice earth stewardship and work toward right human relations above and below, we will have resolved conflict into a workable equilibrium and stabilization in our whole environment. When nature becomes the beloved, and is treated with the same sacred respect that God is, than the light of the soul will be shining forth from the human family. "As extremes of all kinds are eliminated, and moderation and reason become descriptive of humanity, the word 'united' may begin to approximate its true meaning within the assembly halls of the United Nations."
In the language and literature of myth we have many stories of heroes whose qualities of character are tested in many ways before they are given a place in the stars. Hercules of old was known for his physical skills in vanquishing the predators of humanity; he was a warrior and strong man. In Bailey's reinterpretation Hercules is a hero because he had both the wisdom and the skills necessary to eliminate the causes of fear in his environment. During this ninth labor, a method came to mind for scattering the iron birds of prey from Stymphalus who were terrorizing the community. Hercules made a clamor louder and more frightening then theirs, causing permanent confusion and disorder in their ranks. One wonders what the truth was that he spoke to a menacing power, and what is the larger truth we too can speak which will vanquish the terror in our world? True greatness, Bailey writes, is not expressed by Alexander, Ceasar, or Napolean but by "those who see life, humanity and the world as one united whole, interrelated, cooperative and harmonized. Those who struggle for this world unity, and who educate the race in the Principles of Harmony and of right human relations, will someday be recognized as the true heroes." (The Rays and Initiations, p. 621-623)
"As we study the effect of the Principle of Conflict as the instigator of eventual harmony in relations to the nations, let us remember that the widespread extent of the conflict is indicative of climax, that the 'points of crisis' which express the conflict are today well known to all men that a point of tension has now been reached (of which the UN is a symbol) which will eventually prove to be the agent that will bring about a 'point of emergence.'" These three phrases--crisis, tension emergence-- are descriptive of the ray of Harmony through Conflict as it acts through individuals, nations and humanity as a whole. This is the means by which the spiritual Hierarchy "brings good out of evil without originating the evil" or infringing on humanity's free will.
Wishing you all the joys of Home in this planetary meditation that unites us all.