By James Westly


By James Westly

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The path of spiritual development on the earth plane is one of movement through illusion. One of the greatest illusions we encounter in this culture is the pursuit of "security". The whole "American Dream" is built upon this pursuit. Each person defines it in a slightly different way, but it is generally concerned with careers or livlihood, relationships, or both. We seek something that we can rely upon, that we feel will always be there, will never change.

The search is driven by a fear for survival, we wish to make ourselves secure from death, disease and pain. However, as long as we remain in this realm, we will experience some level of insecurity. We may feel that money is the answer, then the question is how much? Or maybe the issue is relationship. How long will it last? Maybe the game is status, or fame, or acceptance. Whatever it is, we begin to notice that today we may be up, tomorrow we may be down, the next day we're uncertain. We swing like a pendulum that has as it's poles positive and negative emotion. With observation one thing becomes certain, nothing is constant. When we develop the capacity to be sincere with ourselves, we are forced to admit that the security we pursue remains like a mirage on the horizon, shimmering, ephemeral, just beyond reach.

So, should we just give it up and resolve to bear our insecurity? After all, it is an illusion. Or is this a legitimate emotion, this longing for security. Maybe we need to look for it somewhere else. Perhaps it does not exist outside of us. Perhaps what we seek is an inner quality, and maybe we really don't need to acquire it, maybe we already have it, but we're not aware of it. What a shocking thought.

Now, this sounds deceptively simple, and maybe you've heard it before. In fact, it is not new news. Our most revered ancient book states that "The kingdom of heaven lies within". Every great teaching, from Lao Tsu to Socrates, from Buddah to Christ, has counseled the same thing. Our problem is that we don't have ready access to the wisdom that lies within us. For most of us, most of the time, this idea is theoretical, or mythological. We may believe it is true, but this serves us no better than anything else we have believed in, for we have the capacity to believe in anything.

So, what is the next step, what effort will bring us to a new place? Here we must acknowledge that the simplicity of the idea is complicated by an inner psychological structure that effectively blocks ready access to inner knowledge. We become lost in a maze of thought that requires logical linear reasoning as support for inner knowing. We hesitate to act on the promptings of inner voices for fear of not "looking good". We build possible outcomes in our imagination that are self-defeating, holding us in paralysis.

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