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26 Jan

The Myth of Love vs. Fear

For 20 or so years now, those who have been adherents to the New Age, New Thought, Human Potential movements, as well as many who call themselves “spiritual but not religious” have been hearing that love is opposite to fear.  That love and fear cannot occupy the same place, that we must rid ourselves of fear because perfect love casts out fear.  This starts with a Biblical text in 1 John, and it flows from there into a quote from A Course in Miracles:

Perfect love casts out fear.

If fear exists,

Then there is not perfect love.


Only perfect love exists.

If there is fear,

It produces a state that does not exist. (p.12)

The problem with that thinking, however, is that it means that we must repress fear, pretend love and do all that to please a false standard that doesn’t even really exist.

The simple truth is that if only perfect love exists, then fear is also love.  It isn’t true that fear doesn’t exist.  It isn’t true that life here on planet earth is an illusion that we can just ignore and get on with the bliss of living out of touch with life.  We are meant to have real experiences that transform us at fundamental levels here on this journey to planet earth.  We are still in the creative process.  Trying to bliss out means that we avoid the more difficult (so-called “negative” feelings) by repressing them.

When we repress we continue to stay split off.  The hard emotions and thoughts go to the unconscious while we contrive other thoughts and emotions to take their place.  How can we possibly think that is authentic?

But if only perfect love exists then fear is a loving message to us.  It intends to care for us, nurture us, even guide us.  Fear can tell us to get out of the road when a truck is coming.  It can tell us to slow down, look around, really assess what is going on.  It can tell us when we are pushing too hard, or running too fast.  It can tell us that someone is not a safe person.  It can tell us when a job or a project is too big or too overwhelming for us.

And yes, fear can also rise in response to a trigger, that only references something that happened in the past, but isn’t happening in the present.  But even then, it is a pull to resolve that old unresolved past issue.

But if we spend our lives trying to meet a standard about fear, trying to be fearless so that we can prove to ourselves that we are truly spiritual people, then all we do is continue to increase the split between the conscious and the unconscious.

So next time you are afraid, sit with your fear, listen to what it is gently trying to say, hear it as a gift from your authentic Self to nurture and guide you.  You might be surprised at its profound capacity to take you to the deeper more authentic realms of Self.

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09 Sep

Making One of Two

Why is it so difficult for us to imagine ourselves as One with the divine, with each other and with all of nature?  Why is it that we struggle so hard to repeat those rare unitive experiences in which we have found ourselves as One with the light, one with the divine, One—not two?

The reason is that we have all accepted as part of our human journey a hypnotic trance state called duality.  Our very finite natures seem to prove to us that we are not One at all, but two, a duality—separate and distinct from all else.  We are born and we die—thus proving to ourselves that we are not divine beings in a human experience—rather we are separate from the life force—i.e., we must be born into it, and die to it.

Our suffering also seems to prove to us that we are not One with the divine.  How, we say, how could the divine allow such suffering?  We don’t know that we could ask that question of ourselves in this way:  Why am I, as a divine being, allowing this suffering in my life right now?  What gift does it have to give me?  What piece of my Self, left behind, does this suffering remind me to bring home?

The duality trance state is actually a part of our journey to wholeness.  It will allow us to finish the creative process begun when we decided to take physical form. What we are trying to do is bring physical form and the formlessness of soul together into One entity.  But as Carl Jung reminds us, we must differentiate before we can integrate.

We must begin to see and clearly understand the distinctions between the false and the true.  There is only one way to do that:  We must experience both.  Like any other experience in life, once we have experienced it long enough, examined it thoroughly and begun to outlive the experience, we know what was false and what was true about that experience.  We know, for example, that we talked ourselves into marrying someone we actually knew on an intuitive level was not going to work out for us.  We know that our naiveté was misleading us into all kinds of false assumptions about the character of a boss who later turns out to be quite unethical.  We know these things on a deep personal level, because we have experienced them.  And we will come to know duality and Oneness in the same way.

We will experience the seeming separation of the human from the divine in enough incarnations to come to see that duality was a state of deep hypnosis—in which we totally believed an absolute falsehood.  There is no actual duality.  We only believe that to be true and, therefore, we act as if it is so.  When we get that, really finally get that, we will have finally finished the creation we started eons ago—the creation of Oneness.

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27 Jun

Desire as a Personal Power

We generally do not think of desire as a form of empowerment.  But it is actually a personal power of immeasurable influence.  The problem is that most of us don’t live out of desire.  We live, rather, out of should, ought to, have to, obligation, loyalty and lots of other synthetic demands.  These synthetics were manufactured in a society that demands that we conform to its obligations to image as a way of maintaining the social order.

Most of us have a long list of obligations, duties, shoulds, ought tos, have tos.  We have to go to work, we should spend quality time with the kids and the spouse, we ought to be there for Mom or Dad, we have a duty to be there for our friends, the church, temple or mosque in which we participate, and we are loyal to the government, city, state and federal.  All of these obligations and duties, tie us to the mule, so that the mule and its labor are our only focus.  Desires come around only when we are exhausted, and with a deep sigh of regret, we implode “I wiiiish I could have….”  These longings have been dismissed, repressed, put on the back burner while we live lives full of the synthetic—that is, false, fake, unreal, contrived—obligations placed on us by the external world.

But we are so often afraid to allow ourselves to live out of our desires for fear that they will make us selfish.  We will become self-involved, self-absorbed, selfish, self-invested, all-about-me kind of people.  Because there is nothing inside of us that desires anything for anyone besides us, right?  We want only for ourselves.  We never want for anyone else.  But think about it.  Is that really true?  Don’t we also have deep desires for the happiness of our loved ones?  Don’t we long for that?  Even when they are making all the wrong decisions, going down all the wrong paths, aren’t we praying, pleading, cajoling for them to choose a life with more promise of happiness?

What we don’t know, have not been taught, is that compassion is also a desire.  We have not been taught this, however, because we have all made an under-the-table of consciousness agreement to deny that the inner world has anything of importance to give us.  Rather the should, have to, ought to, of the external world’s bidding is what we are obligated to do.  We have all agreed with the powers that be that the inner world is of no value, while the mores of society are the truth.  Therefore, body image, ego, ego aggrandizement and obligation are the orders of the day.

But if we look within, we find all manner of interesting messaging systems and personal powers.  Desire is a personal power.  It asserts the authentic Self in the real world, that is, IF we allow it to have a say in our decision-making processes.  Desire is a sacred connection to the authentic Self.  In expression, it is an I AM.  In fact, the ancient root word for the Jewish God is desire.   It is hava’ ‘aher hava’, which has been translated as I AM that I AM.  The word hava’ means to fall, to exist, to become, to happen.  It is rooted in ‘avah, which means desire, incline, covet, wait longingly, wish, sigh, want, be greedy, prefer, crave, long for, lust after; and in hayah, which means to be, come to pass, exist, happen, fall out. The word ‘aher means which, who, that which, that, when, since, as or a conditional if.  The name became Jehovah Hwhy, the existing one, the primitive root words of which are hyh (hyh), to be and hwa (hwa), to desire.

Of course the Jewish God is not everyone’s God, nor does everyone have or need a God.  But the point can be made here that desire is sacred.  Yet, we have put it on the back burners of our lives because we fear its power to make us selfish.  Indeed, as a general rule, we fear the inner sanctum of the individual and collective humanity.

When we get past the identifications with the external world, however, the desires of the authentic Self are sacred. The do not make us selfish.  They make us Self.

~Andrea Mathews

Learn more about Andrea at www.andreamathews.com


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