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Archive for the ‘moment of truth’ Category

Contrary to popular usage, myth does not mean a falsehood. Myth is a very real representation of reality. For indigenous and ancient peoples, myth is the representation of the way things really are in the world. Just as scripture in the world’s religious traditions, myth operates at the sacred level.

The most common and profound archetype in mythology is that of “the hero’s journey,” a form of the pattern of birth, death, and rebirth, or in Joseph Campbell’s words: departure, initiation, return. This pattern defines the process of transformation. Myth thus expresses a dialectic of opposites, which provoke an interaction culminating in a synthesis of the thesis and antithesis, which further combines and transcends them both. Transformation occurs by following a dialectical process which itself makes up the archetype of transformation.

We get to the sacred, mythic level of our life story by telling our universal story, the story of our lives that connects us not only to those we know directly but also to all those throughout time and across distances who have lived similar experiences or archetypes as we have. This is how and why our universal story carries the sacred and enduring truth – and power – of myth.

A 43rd way to explore your soul’s story – Sometimes in our lives we are not aware of the truth that we are living, especially when we are in the midst of experiencing struggle, conflict, or tension. Yet it is precisely this kind of challenge or “muddle” that is needed to show us the truth and the necessity of the difficulty, which is really the only thing that can lead us on to a “resolution” and the completion of the transformation process. Think of a time in your life when you were able to turn what felt like a falsehood into a truth, when something that you didn’t want or didn’t like the feel of eventually showed its value and importance to you in a way that ultimately led to the completion of the process of transformation in your life. How did a new realization, clarity, or awareness assist the quickening of this process for you by helping to bring about the unity of opposites? Please share this story here if you would like to.

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What was C. G. Jung really saying when he reflected in his autobiography, “In the end the only events in my life worth telling are those when the imperishable world irrupted into this transitory one.” He actually compared our lives to the life of a plant that lives on its invisible, hidden rhizome. The visible part appears above ground and lasts only a single summer. His point is he “never lost a sense of something that lives and endures beneath the eternal flux. What we see is the blossom, which passes. The rhizome remains.”

Following this intriguing analogy, what is most important in our lives, as well as longest lasting, are our inner experiences, the dreams, visions, goals, and values that carry us onward toward our becoming who we are inside us, that “splinter of the infinite deity,” as Jung puts it. Everything else withers in comparison.

Our lives are “so fleeting, so insignificant, that it is literally a miracle that anything can exist and develop at all,” Jung also says. So what do we do with what we have, before it all passes so quickly away? How do we address the mysteries of our lives, of life itself, and how do we fit into this wondrous grand mystery? Is the story we would tell of our lives that of the blossom or the rhizome? (Or, is it at least some of both?)

The story of human development, and the life story we would tell about our life as a whole, is incomplete without the recognition of the soul and what its existence signifies – not only spiritual development but eternal life as well. Mystics and poets the world over have long described how consciousness continues on, in the eternal human soul, after death. And now some scientists are saying the same thing.

A 38th way to review your life story – If our life on Earth is but a fleeting moment, if our soul is the medium for spiritual growth, and if Earth is a platform for the ascent of the soul, what is the most important lesson you’ve learned in your day in this soul school? What inner experiences mean the most to you? Which moments when “the imperishable world irrupted into this transitory one” are the most meaningful to you? How have you learned to “isolate the eternal from the contingent,” as the mystics do, to shift your focus in this life toward eternity, toward the one, and away from the temporal, and the many? Tell this story of your deeper remembrance, and share it here for others to enjoy, as well.

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In stopping the daily flow of life, in noticing the things that often pass by unnoticed, in looking closely at images that appear as frames in a quickly passing movie, in focusing on the fragments of stories that come to mind, we can witness the emergence of our soul. This makes visible to us, maybe for the first time, the arc of our life, the path we now realize we were meant to undertake with our life, and this is what allows us to step for a moment out of time and into an eternal realm, which in turn gives us a new interpretation of who we really are. Finding that revealing space where the soul comes to life is where life renews itself, in the magical moment when past converges with present to give deeper meaning to both.

The stories we tell of our lives are like water, making more fluid the hardened events and facts of a life. Our life story softens us up, preparing us to see the things of our life more clearly. It dissolves the sedentary elements of our life, making us more ready to experience the flow of life, thus facilitating the necessary transformations of life, which ultimately move us along toward a unified consciousness.

A 22nd way to review your life story – reflecting on the flow of your life, see if you can identify a moment of truth when what you thought was solidified became liquefied, when you experienced the softening up of your self, maybe even the breaking down and the reforming of your essential self. What was it in particular that allowed your life to become more fluid? What was it that you suddenly became aware of that was always right before your eyes? What did this tell you about your soul and what you were meant to undertake in this life? After you have digested all of this as much as you need to, see if you can tell this story of stepping into an eternal realm.

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We can easily discover in the process of telling our life story that we are more sacred beings than we are human beings. Telling the story of what will endure about us long after we are gone is transformational. This is a gift we can give ourselves at any point in our lives. Telling our story while it is in process, wherever we are in our lives, will help us gain a sharper perspective on our past and our present. Telling the stories of our lives can give us a clearer sense of what we really hope for in the relations we have with each other.

There are unforgettable moments in the telling of our stories when we recognize a connection in our lives, a connection that links one moment of our lives with another moment, maybe years apart, or a moment that connects us in some deep way to our parents, our grandparents, our ancestors, and maybe even to all of humanity. These are moments when our whole perception of the world and ourselves can change in an instant – and we become totally transformed. They can occur often when we reflect on and share the stories of our life with others. In this moment, new insights take over, and all we want to do is savor them, and do whatever we can to not let anything else interrupt this new connection we have made to ourselves – to our own soul – or to others.

A 9th way to review your life story – When we compose the story of our life, we can tell this story in many different ways, with any number of variations or emphases. For now, think of your life, from as far back as you can remember to the present, as one on-going, connected series of events, experiences, and moments to gain lasting meaning from. Think also of all your relations and what they mean to you now and what you hope they will mean to you in the future. How would you describe these connections if you were telling their story? How has your soul created lasting connections for you? Does this story, like all other enduring stories, have a beginning, a muddle, and a resolution? Tell this story here in a short version that expresses how these meaningful moments in your life are the glue that holds everything together for you and establishes deep and lasting connections across time and space.

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