Monday, January 8, 2007

INTEGRITY IN THREE EASY STEPS

[First published in the August 2005 issue of VIDA!]

The First Step. You have to expand your self-awareness to include the possibility that you are not merely a one-dimensional social ego forever seeking approval, recognition, and status. You are, in fact, a multidimensional entity with personality aspects known and unknown – and you exist on many levels of consciousness simultaneously, from the ridiculous to the sublime. In short, you have to acknowledge that there’s a whole lot more to being YOU than meets the public eye.

There’s that poor little neglected kid, for instance, that nobody paid any attention to in your early years – and who silently swore to someday make a big splash in the tadpole puddle of existence (and who ended up being a major control freak with tyrannical tendencies). There may also have been the severely traumatized little you, innocently playing with your genitals in the bathtub one morning, when your mum or your maid caught you at it and screamed, “Hai-ya! No shame!” and then whacked you a hard one. These are just some of the more common forgotten aspects of ourselves that are permanently embedded in the subconscious regions of the mind; but no matter what we later become, they still occasionally impinge on us as restimulated memories, causing us to react to specific circumstances or personalities in irrational and erratic ways (often inappropriately and counterproductively).

And of course there are the heroic, sagely, saintly, angelic, or deific aspects of ourselves that must be incorporated and reintegrated with our conscious beings – without which our existence would be pathetically inglorious and prosaic indeed.

Step Two. Forget about doing it “right” or doing it “wrong.” Grown-ups spend so much energy trying to teach their kids the difference between “right” and “wrong” – and then, many years later, spend thousands of dollars on all kinds of therapies unlearning deeply ingrained notions of “right” and “wrong” – just so they can feel INNOCENT again. No matter what you think you’ve done at any point in your existence – even if it’s an act so shameful and, to your mind, so heinously disgusting you would never want to share it with another soul – you are, in truth, INNOCENT!

Innocent in the cosmic context. Innocent when you arraign yourself against the vast backdrop of The Big Picture. Innocent in the eyes of whatever or whoever you have chosen to identify as God. Yes... even if you were Idi Amin’s personal chef, or Idi Amin himself... you are ultimately (and were originally) innocent and no proof of guilt is worth the paper it’s printed on. How so? Simply because the Divided Self is purely an ephemeral condition – and a totally illusory one at that. The Divided Self, better known as the Smeagol-Gollum Syndrome, is what happens when society tries to impose an artificial “moral code” on real people, especially when they are young and defenceless against erroneous notions of “acceptable” behavior.

Our vital essence is on the side of our animal nature, which has been so severely suppressed over countless generations, that it has literally “gone underground.” Our so-called ids, our shadow selves, our Gollum sides, if you like, cannot be destroyed – only denied and swept under the carpet or locked away in some dark cupboard or packed away in a box and left in some ancient attic to collect dust. Where we do not label any action as a crime, no punishment need be meted out; and where no punishment is feared, no action is concealed; and therefore no hypocrisy exists. In that state of undistorted clarity, all situations can easily find their own resolution – without the use of coercion, without the rule of fear.

For in the end it is always fear that drives out all possibility of compassion and true understanding. And without true understanding, we can only exacerbate whatever problems arise in our lives with our mindless reactions to other people’s actions. Remember: the person whose behavior most upsets you is really holding up a mirror so you can examine hitherto unexamined aspects of your greater self. Instead of chasing him or her out of town, out of your reality, you would do much better to simply say, “Thank you for the feedback.”

The third and final step is as easy as 1-2-3
. Knowing now that you are a whole lot bigger and more complex and more mysterious than you ever imagined you were, you can set about INTEGRATING all those aspects of yourself and aligning them with your own Core Self – that’s the Innermost Self you’ll find seated majestically on the throne of your own kingdom or queendom. Every one of us is a king or queen in exile, subject to external authority and life’s vicissitudes – until we reintegrate ourselves and locate the very core of our beings.

Integrity, you see, is a purely technical condition and has absolutely nothing to do with man-made concepts of morality. When all aspects of yourself are integrated, you attain the status of an Integer, and thereby leave behind the emptiness and meaninglessness of Cipherdom. Only as a whole being – an Integer, in effect – can you possibly manifest Integrity as a tangible quality. Integrity goes beyond mere honesty in that it considers all perspectives as potentially its own. Without integrity, you cannot experience honor and your own nobility – and will be condemned to seek it in others, a search doomed to perpetual disappointment.

And what’s so cool about being in conscious integrity? Things fall apart, they disintegrate, according to the Second Law of Thermodynamics – a condition otherwise known as Entropy. In other words, the 3D reality of Decay, Disease, and Death... in other words, Holographic Hell!

Being in conscious integrity nullifies and neutralizes entropy, and leads to syntropy (a term coined by Buckminster Fuller, who also gave us the word “synergy”) – a condition wherein everything just keeps improving and renewing itself. Now, that’s what I would call Heaven on Earth. Get my drift?

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