Tuesday, May 06, 2008

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Existence is One, Many, and Him

by Reb Gutman Locks at Mystical Paths

The sunlight rests upon the water. When it is still, there will be a single, bright ball of light bouncing off the water.

When it is agitated, there will be many small reflections ricocheting off the water. Each reflection is somewhat different than the others. Each has its own location, its own size, and shape, and each faces in its own slightly different direction. Looking at the reflections we see that they are many.

When we raise our sights, even a fraction of an inch up off the water, we see that all those reflections are actually a single light. The reflections are many. The light that they are made of is one.

Both of these perspectives are true. The reflections are many, and their light is one. The error comes when we mistakenly call the reflections lights, thinking that there is more than one light present. There is always only a single light coming from the sun. This one light radiates in all directions, fills the sky, and rests on everything in its path.

This same understanding can be applied to our view of the world around us. There is the multiple perspective, that is, when we are focusing on the vast distinctions that are found within creation, and there is the singular perspective, when we raise our sights even a tiny bit, and recognize that the entire creation is actually a single, one.

The importance of this information is to know that we all interact with the rest of the creation, even the creation that is beyond our immediate presence. When there is corruption in the world, we can not say, “Since I am not doing it, and since it is not happening to me, it does not bother me.” It does bother us, even when we are unaware that it exists. Like pollution in the air, whether we realize it or not, it reaches our lungs. Corruption not only reaches our physical lungs, it reaches our spiritual lungs, too.

Conversely, whatever good we do, no matter how insignificant it may seem to us, also goes out into the world, and helps to raise the world’s spiritual scale.

This discussion of perspectives has been addressing the nature of the creation in relationship to itself. Seeing and understanding these perspectives shows us that the things in the world, the buildings, objects, and people, are both one and many. From the higher perspective, we realize that it is all one creation. From the lower perspective, we see that the creation has many distinct objects within it.

Considering both of these perspectives, we see that the creation is all one, but it is not all the same. This single, universal one is not made up of the objects within it, but rather, the objects within it are made out of the one. A pie that is cut into pieces is not made out of its pieces. The pieces are made out of the pie.

(To be continued)

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