Brian Wilcox 'Impatiens Blossom'
A follower said to the Sage, "It seems impossible to be in communion with everything, seeing I'm only one thing. How's it possible?" The Sage replied, "Since the Totality can't be divided, to be in communion with the Whole, be in communion with this one thing, even this one moment."
Another follower said, "But I don't feel oneness with everything, no matter how much I want to." Said the Sage, "Unity isn't a feeling. Don't try to feel one with anything or anyone. Simply surrender yourself to the One in Whom you're already one with everyone and everything. You feel relief in sinking into the One, so into oneness, rather than striving to be one or trying to feel at one."
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I lived a lonely life amid others; now, I live alone amid others. Embracing the solitude I am, not as isolated from, but one with others, human and nonhuman, I can be with and share with them more intimately. There are depths of intimacy I cannot know with Spirit, other beings, or nature, if I deny my aloneness. Embracing the solitude I am, I can meet others in their essential aloneness, and there we discover Love anew - for Love is ever-being discovered again in meetings heart-with-heart. I know that living faithfully to my aloneness is necessary, or I will not live fully this life that comes to me moment-to-moment as a gift, as Grace.
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Thomas Merton, in Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander -
In Louisville, at the corner of Fourth and Walnut, in the center of the shopping district, I was suddenly overwhelmed with the realization that I loved all these people, that they were mine and I theirs, that we could not be alien to one another even though we were total strangers. It was like waking from a dream of separateness, of spurious self-isolation in a special world....
This sense of liberation from an illusory difference was such a relief and such a joy to me that I almost laughed out loud.... As if the sorrows and stupidities of the human condition could overwhelm me, now that I realize what we all are. And if only everybody could realize this! But it cannot be explained. There is no way of telling people that they are all walking around shining like the sun.
Then it was as if I suddenly saw the secret beauty of their hearts, the depths of their hearts where neither sin nor desire nor self-knowledge can reach, the core of their reality, the person that each one is in God's eyes. If only they could all see themselves as they really are. If only we could see each other that way all the time. There would be no more war, no more hatred, no more cruelty, no more greed.... But this cannot be seen, only believed and 'understood' by a peculiar gift [i.e., by divine Grace].
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The Communion - co-union - arising out of and returning to the Source transcends the opposites of "apart" and "together." This Communion is present already, everywhere, for Spirit is all-inclusive.
We all live in Spirit. Hence, how can we not be together? Though we are different, we are together.
Spirit is inclusive, not by including, but by all already being within the Light as the atmosphere wherein we live, breathe, and are. Lives flow, Life into Life. Spirit is this Life; this Life is Spirit. So, how can you not be in unity? How can a rock, a sunset, a raindrop, a tear, a birdsong, a child, a continent, a galaxy, a speck of dust, a smile - anything, anyone - not be together?
Seeing anything, you see Life, and you see Communion. Still, do we see or simply look at? To see is to know Spirit is happening. And we are invited to participate consciously in this wondrous Assembly of spirits.