(Introduction and Chapter 1)
All of us are students
of self-knowledge in varying degrees of commitment and intensity.
Some of us are concerned with knowledge of physical and biological
matters; others with subtler, inner realms of meaning. But whatever
form our search takes, we are all seeking the ultimate knowledge
that has brought about our individual destinies. Our present moment,
our present situation, constitutes our momentary destiny. This
momentary destiny is the result of the interaction between the laws
that govern existence and our individual wills, an interaction that
results in a balance of these factors. The moment is the only
reality of which we can be totally certain, subjectively and
The truth of 'now' is
what human beings share, and 'now' is beyond time. It is not subject
to the moment just past or the one to come. It is simply now -- and
the now that one experiences is the product of the past and the
cause of the future. Now is both independent of and connected to
past and future. This truth is the root of the dynamism of cause and
effect and of the balance of duality in this existence.
Absolute, pure 'now' is
that state of balance achieved when the pointer on the scale of
duality is at the exact mid-point. When this occurs, each side is in
total harmony and balance with its opposite. Duality is nullified
and only pure, blissful 'now' exists.
We are born into this
world in order to grow in experience and wisdom and to recognize the
one unifying principle of Reality. We may recognize it in a limited
way -- for example, when we see ecological harmony -- or we may know
it in a more pervasive way when we experience the overwhelming
presence of the Creator of all.
However we look at it,
we must still ask,
the unifying principle of Reality, what comes next in our search for
the purpose of existence?'
After we have gained a measure of wisdom, wealth, harmony and
security in this life, we then ask,
'Is there meaning
beyond this? Is the recycling of the body to the earth from which it
came the end of all experience?'
The majority of us avoid this question, or try to rationalize it
away, instead of confronting it totally and fearlessly.
Everything acts in
accordance with its own nature. For example, steel belongs to the
earth as iron oxide. Because of its strength, we use steel to
construct bridges. But the moment a bridge is raised, the steel
starts moving toward its destiny, back to dust; thus, it starts
rusting. If we want to preserve the bridge, we have to balance the
natural inclination of steel to return to its source with our human
desire to keep the bridge from rusting. We cannot, however, pretend
that the bridge will remain for ever. Steel belongs to the earth,
and it will fulfill its destiny; man belongs to his Creator, and
wherever he finds himself, whatever he does, his natural disposition
will lead him toward the knowledge of his Creator.
Experience is the
meeting of two opposites. This meeting point is the human heart, for
in it we experience love and hate, hope and fear, peace and
agitation, wakefulness and sleep, security and insecurity. The heart
of man contains the entire spectrum of experience; whenever we
appeal to the heart, we find a common denominator in humanity.
Otherwise, our interaction becomes transactional or hypocritical,
based on economics, politics and other man-made disciplines.
Although these disciplines have their place, they are limited
because they do not lead us to the awareness that whatever appears
negative in existence is really in harmony and balance with the
total ecology. Because we do not know this, we see incongruity,
imbalance, confusion and division in life.
The philosophy of our
spiritual model is based on the existence of a merciful Reality that
transcends time, encompasses Its creation from beyond time and in
time, and creates out of love in order that It may be discovered.
Man's purpose is to discover the one and only all-pervading Reality
that encompasses his existence. When we are mindful of our purpose,
we find a common denominator in everyone's aspirations, hopes,
disappointments and problems. All of our experiences -- positive and
negative -- are part of the process of self-knowledge. The root of
our behavior can be explained by viewing it through the binoculars
of the divine unity of the one Creator.
This work is a
collection of glimpses which reveal the unifying substructure that
underlies diverse experiences and actions, which is, itself, the
truth. It is presented in the hope of confirming to the sincere
seeker that the ultimate discovery is that all creation, attributes
and actions, stem from and are sustained by the one Source Whose
nature is independent of creation. A taste of the vast ocean of the
Oneness increases the thirst of the seeker. Ultimately, the boundary
between the seeker and the sought, the questioner and the
questioned, and the effect and the cause becomes so faint that one
is immersed in the joyful intoxication of the complete beauty and
absolute harmony where subject and object have merged.