Richard Rohr’s Daily Meditation
Sunday, March 16, 2014
Although we begin life, as very young children, as non-dual thinkers, usually by the age of seven we are all dualistic thinkers, and sadly many of us stay that way for the rest of our lives. Dualistic thinking is the well-practiced pattern of knowing most things by comparison. And for some reason, once we compare or label things (that is, judge things), we almost always conclude that one is good and the other not so good or even bad.
Don’t take my word for it; just notice your own thoughts and reactions. You will see that you will move almost automatically into a pattern of up or down, in or out, for me or against me, right or wrong, black or white, gay or straight, good or bad. It is the basic reason why the “stinkin’ thinkin’” of racism, sexism, classism, homophobia, religious imperialism, and prejudice of all kinds is so hard to overcome and has lasted so long—even among nice people!
At the risk of being too cleverly alliterative (though it may help you to remember), here is the normal sequencing of the dualistic mind: it compares, it competes, it conflicts, it conspires, it condemns, it cancels out any contrary evidence, and then it crucifies with impunity. You can call it the seven C’s of delusion. This is the source of most violence, which is invariably sacralized as good and necessary to “make the world safe for democracy” or to “save souls for heaven.”
There is a reason why Jesus and all the great spiritual teachers say, “Do not judge!” and why angels in the Bible are always saying, “Do not be afraid!” Our violence—and almost all of our unhappiness—emerges from our judging, dualistic mind—which itself comes from deeply rooted fear. Only unitive, non-dual consciousness can heal this violence and lead us to a rather constant happiness.
Good essay from Richard Rohr and a good instrument of thought analysis.
A friend, Ken Hamilton, inquired about the dark side of immigration. Here is a hint to be expanded later: there are gradations of difference from the worst form of immigration, that being slavery, to various reasons to be able to choose freely; however, even if there is free choice, we carry a dark side of reflection, knowing that we are personally and, as a family, permanently altered and in most cases never able to return home in any real sense.I can illustrate that in my own family.
At the beginning of the 20th Century, the LInds in Russia lived in a medieval, agrarian type village in a patriarchal, communal household where privacy and individualism did not exist. Within a very short time by 1915, they were living “on the little house on the Kansas prairie” where they probably could not see a neighbor for long periods. And the LInds and others, the so-called Volga (Low) Germans, who did not leave Russia were by Stalin’s pogrom of Russification or ethnic cleansing, deprived of property and farming; mature males killed and the remaining population displaced, apparently to Siberia. The two realities radically altered my family’s historic culture and identity. . . What happened to us later is for another time. . .
First Day on the Job.: I am starting a blog especially for my family histories. However, I will also be posting materials that interest me re. genealogy, family organizational development issues, genetics as related to family life and what I consider significant issues around the dark side of American and global immigration as they affect families, communities and cultures. Notices will be occasionally posted.
I am just setting up this new blog. I hope to focus herein on family matters as regards my work organizing, cross referencing archiving and digitizing about two hundred years of Reed and Lind family documents. However, I will also be doing some general essays about ideas that have come to me about family histories, genetics, genealogies, organization and the dark side of immigration seldom discussed in personal and American public discourse. I hope to post a lot of narrative work from what I am getting transcribed from historic documents and some biographies of family members. Eventually by invitation I will let folks look at what I have received and collected in the core archive and secondary sources. Also I hope eventually to send copies of digitized materials in DVD form to anyone who might find them of interest, such a old photos and correspondence. I am also quite willing to exchange documents with distant relatives that may want to add to their archive or things that I would like. For instance, there are hundreds of photos of Frank Steele’s collection I would share or gladly receive.
Below you see the antique steamer trunk I bought and had adapted for shelving on the left side. This will hold the core collection eventually.