About that sparrow thing...
One of the many things I love about the spiritual discipline that I follow, led by the transformational teacher, Dr. and Master Zhi Gang Sha, is that it's so entirely tolerant of all teachings and beings. Master Sha teaches that the high beings of light, Jesus, Buddha, Krishna, Guan Yin Compassion Buddha, all the saints, angels and more, all not only know about each other, but support and join with each other to aid us here on mother Earth, and in all universes. Why not? The notion of toxic exclusivity, "My God is the sole God, everything else is false, and I can attack you if you do not agree", is fast disappearing in the rear view mirror. One hopes, anyway.
In that spirit, that great wisdom is available to us from countless streams of Divine Intelligence, I present a thought that comes to me from a writing in the Bible.
"Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows" (Matthew 10:29–31).
When I was a church soloist, I occasionally sang the beautiful old hymn,
"His Eye Is on the Sparrow"
(A Gospel hymn written in 1905 by lyricist Civilla D. Martin and composer Charles H. Gabriel.)
It is such a comforting notion, that God knows about us and watches over us. Humans often stop right there, though, without digging in to what that might actually mean. I think it's possible that when we incarnate into human form there's a sort of default setting that activates when we are born, or perhaps gradually as we move into our bodies and environment. This causes us to forget that we came from the one Infinite Divine Source, projected here to experience mortal life and to learn our lessons, whatever they may be. We forget that we are eternally connected to that one Source of all life.
Dr. Ernest Holmes wrote:
"There is one life, that life is perfect, that life is God's life, and that life is my life now."
This phrase was my mantra for years, before I truly knew what a mantra was. It always gave me a sense of indwelling company. Good company. This great thinker and metaphysician also said,
"The conscious awareness of the Divine Presence with us and within us, enables us to carry out anything we set our minds to do."
I think one of the steps to true spiritual victory is to wake up from the notion that we are somehow separate from the Divine. People read that text, and sing the song, and think, "How lovely. God takes care of the little bird, and watches over me." I would like to take that further and say, God watches THROUGH me. God watches AS me. We look out over God's creation and think, "God made all that." Without grasping that God is all that. Ok, we get that, then, "Except for me of course. I'm not God." I often wonder if God rolls his eyes and thinks, "Geez. What do I have to do."
If we could for even a moment get that it's all one great cosmic creation of light, intelligence, and energy that flows through everything and everyone, we would see that it's impossible for us to cause harm to any living thing without causing equal harm to ourselves.
The dream of mortal experience seems very powerful, our ego minds and world mind consciousness reinforce this power until it's all we see. Factor in the color and sound circus of television, news, social media and our smartphones, and it's difficult to pull our attention away from that and go in where it's quiet. Not impossible though, not at all.
I bet you're thinking that I'm going to recommend meditation. Ha ha! Nope. Meditation is valuable in so many ways to the body, heart, mind and spirit. But unless you are a dedicated meditator that can do that for hours and hours, that leaves 23-ish hours in a day where our wild horse mind and ego go their happy way.
Master Sha teaches,
"Everything has a soul."
A quiet, perfect little statement that can shift our perspective 180 degrees if we allow it. Everything has a soul. Everything and everyone has some level of soul awareness. That means.... Everything! Every blade of grass, every animal, the chair you are sitting on, the air you breathe, the 7th day Adventists that just knocked on my door, every thought. And you can speak to any soul. That can go a couple of ways, you know.
I had a client who had tunnel carpel syndrome, and her hands and wrists hurt all the time. I overheard her one time talking to her hands, saying, "I hate you! I hate you!" I asked her if she could actually hear what she had said to her hands, and how they might feel about that, and she teared up. It didn't take much of a shift for her to say instead, "I love you. Thank you for all the countless ways that you have served me in this life. I know you are doing the best you can. I'm sorry for whatever I may have done to bring this pain to you. You are powerful to self heal, as all souls are." She truly grabbed the implications of a good solid forgiveness practice, and improved greatly after that. She did end up having a corrective surgery that went well, but the larger lesson was the soul lesson of her hands.
This is the teaching of "His eye is on the sparrow." Well yes! God IS the sparrow.
Now someone might say, "Define God." ahahahaha. Right. I'll stick with Lao Tze in the Tao De Ching, who said in essence..."That which can be spoken in words is not Tao."
“Existence is beyond the power of words to define.” Lao Zi
I remember listening to a Jesuit priest who concluded a talk by saying,
"You know what we actually know about God? Absolutely nothing." I love that. That's an empty container waiting to be filled with wisdom, not a full cup that can hear nothing. If we can get our minds off of fixating on words and definitions, we can be open to listen, to greet every soul in our existence with love and acceptance. Mind/Ego loves to define. It panics without that parameter. But are you not a great deal more than your mind? Your mind has a soul and you can speak to it. I speak to mine every morning before I meditation.
"Dear soul of my beloved mind, I love you. Thank you for your great power, creativity, and intelligence. You are powerful to serve this being by sitting quietly in the lower abdomen. Be still, clear, open, filled with light, healed. You can do everything you need to do from there as I meditate. Do a good job. Thank you." This is called a soul order, and it's something anyone can do at anytime for anything. Keep in mind the karmic aspect, that if you offer good and positive soul orders, that is what will reflect back to you. Negative soul orders have the potential to create very bad juju, so keep it on the up and up. Always end by saying "As appropriate." Heaven does know best.
There's a wonderful documentary movie called "How to cook your life" about Tassajara kitchen zen cooking, and Edward Espe Brown, a zen monk who is also a great cook. It's a marvelous depiction of a day in the life of a zen monastery, what happens when people, even monks, bump against one another and the cooking that takes place to prepare meals. One scene always touches me deeply. Monk Brown is looking at a high shelf loaded with ceramic teapots, just plain homely pots. Tears come to his eyes and his voice trembles as he says, actually beholding the souls of the pots, "They are just so cheerful and willing to serve."
That's it right there, the essence. Soul, the living soul of the Divine Source itself, is everywhere. We walk through it, smell it, breathe it, bathe in it. To wake to this, even for a moment, is to truly wake to life. To God, whatever you perceive that to be. Wakie wakie, it's never too late.
Kristin Strachan - compassionbuddha.net
To learn more about the power of soul find any of Master Sha's books on Amazon, drsha.com
The Power of Soul, Tao l and Tao ll are highly recommended