[This is a re-post of an article I wrote in 2010.]
The morning of Christmas Eve, I was delighted by Judith Coates’ message from Mother Mary, “The True Christmas Story,” because in it she relates how the Christ Consciousness is in each of us and poses the question each one of us has raised at one time or another.
“If I am”—and you are—“the Christ child walking the face of the Earth, how can I have negative feelings? How can I have judgment of myself and others?”
My first serious goal on my spiritual path was to master #5 of The Pattern on The Trestle Board, “In all things great and small I see the beauty of divine expression”—to be able to see God in all things. That was in 1980, studying lessons from the Builders of the Adytum, (B.O.T.A.). I have already mentioned in an earlier post my experience with Oneness, a gift I received while hanging out with Huichol shamans in Mexico.
“I’m thankful that I have actually seen Oneness with my own eyes, in the overlapping energy fields of trees, mountains, animals— while standing in a desert watching the rose and orange sunset fade into smoky mauve. Knowing that we are, in fact, ONE helps me a lot with forgiveness” (from “Gratitude,” November 24).
Still, knowing that we are both “…the Christ child walking on the face of Earth” doesn’t necessarily tell us how to deal with the duality of that statement—Christ consciousness and Earth. In the physical form, we butt heads every day, because, as Coates puts it, some experiences “…will be good, and some of them will not be so good.”
For example, later that day, when I was walking through town, I came up to this intersection where a driver had planted his big truck in the pedestrian crosswalk, eager to jump into that right hand turn the instant it was clear. Several people, including a young couple with their baby in a stroller, chose to simply walk around the truck into oncoming traffic. But the elderly lady in their footsteps waved at the driver to get his attention.
“You’re parked in the crosswalk, asshole!”
And she was blasted by the driver in the vehicle behind the truck who yelled out,
“Hey! That’s not very Christmas-like!”
Because metaphysical teachings are worth nothing if we can’t actually apply them in our life, I believe this is worthy of analysis if I’m ever going to learn to treat others if they are, in fact, “the Christ child walking on the Earth.”
For instance, despite her choice of words, wasn’t the old lady right in pointing out the error of the man’s careless choice to block the crosswalk with his vehicle, thereby forcing pedestrians to walk in the street?
If so, why didn’t the previous pedestrians say anything? They also walked into oncoming traffic to get around his truck. Even the young couple with the baby in a stroller.
Perhaps they are of the Kiowa Indian tribe who do not point out a child’s error but let him discover it himself. Or not.
Perhaps, like that new age book I read when I was trying to survive a political powder keg situation in my college teaching job, they are “choosing their battles” and did not deem this one necessary.
But the old lady did. Was she wrong to voice objection to the driver’s inconsiderate behavior? Perhaps she read in the local newspaper about that elderly couple who were killed on main street last week when the driver of an SUV lost control on the slick surface and ran them down as they waited their turn to cross the street.
Was she refusing to see God in the truck driver?
How about the man who wasn’t even involved who yelled out at her that “That wasn’t very Christmas-like!”? Is he the self-designated moral police who has the authority to label behavior according to his ideology and expectations? Was HIS behavior “…very Christmas-like”—doing his best to shame an old woman on Main Street?
I’m fairly certain this mind-numbing experience is one of the main reasons I choose to keep to myself.
Which is not to say that I haven’t developed a code, of sorts, to guide me when I must venture out into Earth walking populated areas.
I know that God is in all things. Knowing that, it is my intention to be considerate and kind to others.
At the same time, because I walk the Earth and have to deal with mundane situations like the one that happened today, my intention now more than ever is to figure out ways I can let them be them and let me be me without having confrontations.
In the past, I have simply gone mute and let it slide. But I was a smoker then and stuffing emotions was easy. When I quit, I had to memorize little things I could say to buy time to allow my emotional self to simmer down, because I have learned from experience that I can’t take back anything I say in anger.
For example, when I arrived as a volunteer to sell tickets for the annual fund raiser, “Taste of Durango,” the supervisor asked if I could take charge of that table over there. She said that one woman there was not letting the other volunteers do anything, and the lines waiting to buy tickets were getting longer by the minute.
“No problem,” I said. So I showed up, pulling my volunteer tee shirt over my clothes, and sat down next to the lady who wanted to be center stage more than she wanted to service the people. “Let me help you,” I offered. “How about we work together to handle folks on this side of the table and let those two ladies handle the others?”
Without waiting for her consent, I motioned for the crowd to divide itself into two lines and then counted out the tickets for each order that came to our side. I let the Prima Donna deal with the customers—take their money and hand them the tickets—but I counted the tickets for her. The mob around the table got served quickly and the other volunteers were happy to have something to do.
At the end of our shift, my partner shrieked at me. “Everything was fine before you came! You ruined everything!”
“Is that what you think?” I replied, one of my favorite responses. She had nothing to say to that and it was over.
She didn’t know I had been assigned to take over her table by the supervisor because she was trying to do the work of the whole team by herself and wasn’t selling the tickets quickly enough. Nothing would be gained by telling her that.
But having a pocketful of pithy sayings isn’t the whole answer. Sometimes, as Coates wrote, In the case of the rude truck driver, if it bothered me to walk around his truck into the oncoming traffic, I could simply choose to go a different route—like up the side street and cross there, where there was no traffic. Over the years, I have frequently chosen to go out of my way to avoid confrontations.
What about the man who yelled at the old lady? Anyone watching that scene might have been tempted to take him on for treating her with disrespect, even if she did have a mouth on her, because she’s old. Where does it stop? When does it stop? My point is this: there’s always going to be something. There’s always going to be a challenge getting along with a fellow in this existence, especially for those who aspire to being more and more evolved spiritually. There’s a whole squad of cosmic cops who can’t wait to put something in our path the instant we imagine we’ve gone up the mountain a little higher than someone else.