Am I special? If fortunate, we are taught by our parents or in grade school that we are the stars of our lives, unique to this world. For those of you who don’t know, I have been struggling with chronic illness for the past 4 years, which stems from my battle with cancer 8 years ago, and probably deeper than even that.
If I can’t get better, and my body fails to exist, and my soul goes who knows where, is this as unfortunate as it feels?
My family, friends, loved ones will mourn my departure, the movement will have one less advocate, my fields of interest one less pioneer. I will have been mostly unable to create and see finished many wonderful ideas I have had over the years.
Is this tragic? Or is it just my personal proximity to this ubiquitous daily occurrence that is death; tragic likely to my close circle, sad or unfortunate to some, and pretty irrelevant to the rest of the Universe.
It’s difficult to find meaning when one realizes this. I was probably 15 the first time I REALLY let this understanding sink in deeply. My daily life was forever changed, the knowledge of my relative unimportance nagged at my subconscious, and to my discomfort used to break through to the surface of my awareness a few times a day.
However now I realize that questioning ones significance is simply a universal step in the path of awakening. It’s an important one at that; to stay humble, to deflate the ego, to connect with vulnerability, mortality, and the oneness we all share as circumstantially voluntary participants in this existence we call life.
I believe that yes we are actually very special, but also not at the same time. We seem to be born as sparks from the same fire, coagulations of essence from the same cosmic substance. The quality of this substance previous to ego fabrication appears to be pure awareness. This awareness is not unique, its likely there are other beings in our universe who have this, but what is unique is our collective consciousness, our cultural narratives, wisdom, music, art. These are the phenomena that transcend our simple temporary existence, have the potential to reach millions, and to live on as ideas and creations unique to the human race.
Consciousness itself is a miracle of the Universe. Our cells were once the earth and the earth is simply star dust, remnants of supernovas and nebulas long ago. These particles found their way towards organizational coexistence after millions of years of evolution, and have constructed beings who are born to be aware of their temporary existence and inevitable departure.
We have so much potential to be a collective force of love and understanding, “enlightenment” and creativity, wisdom and knowledge, peace and equanimity.
An amazing truth is that when we look at history, whenever a culture undergoes a great tragedy, an ego death per se, they band together and embrace these principles of higher consciousness.
The same is true on the micro as the macro. For most people, its only when the shit hits the fan, or they are on their death bed, that they choose to reevaluate their lives and search deeply for what is most important to them. How long will it take for us to learn that we can and should do this on a daily basis, and not wait??
Those in power, with the most financial resources, who have played hard the game of capitalism, have at the same time vehemently suppressed their higher consciousness, their deepest moralities, their connection with nature and love for all of life. They are also the ones who are currently most effectively writing the macro stories, the current cultural narratives, and they must be dethroned from this if we are to evolve.
It seems to me that learning how to embrace death as a beautiful phenomena that gives great meaning to our lives rather than a terrifying one is of incredible importance to my and our journeys.
I am going to focus on how to shift the cultural narrative towards openly embracing the necessity of ego death, acceptance of mortality, and of not waiting until its too late to search deeply for what is truly most important in life.