Monday, August 6, 2012
Clinging to Separation
“No one desires pain,” The Course says, “but he can think that pain is pleasure. No one would avoid his happiness. But he can think that (happiness and) joy is painful, threatening and dangerous.” This confusion happens because we mistake the ego’s gifts for spirit’s gifts, and our self for our Self. The self, the ego, perceives itself as separate from spirit, its true Self. The self’s very existence depends on the denial of spirit, on being separate and keeping the Self away.
If the self is part of the Self, which it is, then the self has no individual identity, no separate existence and would cease to exist as a separated self. This is very threatening and frightening to the ego self. It will do anything: hurt itself, suffer, attack, fear and blame to keep itself busy in the illusion of the world and thus maintain its separate individual identity. Only by being willing to relinquish our separate identity and awake from the ego’s nightmare version of the world of separation, can true sustainable and lasting joy and happiness (and the cessation of pain, fear and anger) come.
Thinking we are bodies, instead of accepting our at-one-ment with our Source, our Self; believing more in our physical external identities than our inner spiritual identities, confuses us and we really do not understand the difference between pleasure and pain. If we believe the body can give one, we believe it can also give the other. Joy is giving up the ego self, our individuality and self importance, what Emerson called “our bloated nothingness,” and choosing our spiritual Self. As egos, we are like the drop of seawater thrown into the air by the crashing waves, thinking it is separate from its Source the sea, rejoicing in its ‘freedom’ and fearing its inevitable fall back into the ocean from which it came and of which it is a part.