Introduction: Working With Oneness
Lifts its glass to the sun
THE ENERGY OF THE NEW AGE
I am by nature a spiritual traditionalist. My journey has taken me down the ancient path of the mystic, and although it has been a solitary journey, from the alone to the Alone, I have walked in the footsteps of those who have gone before. In the writings of the Sufi masters I have found guidance and reassurance, knowing that they have mapped out the stages of the heart, the mystery of the heart's awakening to the divine presence. "New Age" spiritual teachings held little interest for me. Therefore, I was surprised to find in January 2000 a new energy arriving unannounced, an energy that carried with it promises and ideals that extended beyond my own spiritual horizons.
At first I thought that this energy was just the next step on my own journey. But it soon made known to me that it was not personal, but belonged to a whole new beginning. With power and speed it swept away years of spiritual conditioning, and brought with it a quality of fun and pure joy that I knew I had always been waiting for. Mercilessly, laughingly, it began to change my life, my way of thinking, my way of relating. This energy is alive, demanding change and needing to be lived in the midst of life. And it has a quality of oneness that brings with it a stamp of divine presence.
A few months after this energy awoke me with its demanding intensity, I visited an old friend in London, a seventy-year-old woman whose clarity, humor, and down-to-earth spiritual wisdom I have long valued. I told her about this energy, and she said that she had also experienced it, and seen the effect it had on people in her meditation group: how it brought things to the light which had long been kept hidden, and had a clear, impersonal quality. Then I began to see this energy arriving in the dreams and visions of other friends, expressing a new image of divine oneness that is now alive in the world. One friend had a dream in which she was part of a membrane of light and love that covered the whole world. Another friend dreamed of the earth, "and around the earth is a beautiful web of light, and everything is in movement, like little stars and suns. I was fascinated by the harmony within everything—so much light and movement and so few collisions."
One friend had a vision in which he saw "a gigantic, golden grid composed of either circles or octagons, each circle perfectly melded into the next. I knew that this had just come into being, as a whole, or as a part of a whole. It had just been created, and was awesomely powerful."
And another friend describes a similar picture she was shown in meditation: "I saw a nearly round golden net against a total blackness. It was made of extremely fine golden wire, and the threads which went to the center were at some points folded or bent into Arabic writing which I could not read. But somehow I knew that it had to do with the aspects of God. The center was an empty circle or octagon. The threads which crossed the 'spokes' were without writing. Only the 'spokes' carried the aspects."
These dreams and visions all carry a quality of light and wholeness, and an energy that is alive with the oneness of divine presence. And they have the sense of something coming into being, arriving at the threshold of consciousness. Mystics have always worked at the threshold of consciousness, where new life comes from the unformed and uncreated into manifestation. Lovers are familiar with the unknowable vastness, the infinite ocean from where love flows into the world. It is here, at the borders of the beyond, that changes first take place, and it is here that this new energy is now dynamically alive, flowing down into creation.
This energy brings with it the promise of a new future, a future born not from the past but from the eternal moment. And it carries the joy of life, unpolluted and unconditioned. It is impersonal and powerful, and needs to be lived. Only through being lived can it be brought into the world. It requires our full attention and participation; otherwise its promise will not come to fruition. It is very fluid and organic, and has the capacity to change very rapidly, to adapt itself while staying true to its essential nature. And yet because it has not yet reached the plane of manifestation, it has little form, is hardly visible.
Everything that is created comes from the inner worlds. The energy of life flows from the uncreated emptiness out into the planes of manifestation. This is why events first constellate on the inner planes. As the energy of life comes into manifestation, it becomes more visible. At first it takes form as a pattern of energy, a fluid, dynamically flowing reality out of which the primal oneness of creation begins to differentiate itself. This is the archetypal dimension where undifferentiated energy constellates into the forms behind the physical world. Finally the energy of creation enters the physical plane and becomes part of the world of the senses, at which time it becomes fixed into matter, into a physical form or event. Once energy becomes embodied, takes form on the physical plane, it is fixed and more difficult to work with; it requires more effort to change. On the inner planes one can move energy through conscious attention, while on the physical plane change often involves laborious effort.
WORKING WITH WHAT IS UNDEFINED
This new energy demands our attention and our participation, yet it is hardly visible, glimpsed mostly in dreams and visions. How can we work with what we do not know, what we cannot see? First we need to know that this energy is present, and that although it is invisible, our consciousness can become attuned to it. Like subatomic particles, which are visible only through their effects, this energy can become known through its signs, the way it interacts with us.
The energy of oneness dynamically moves, interacts, and constellates in a new way. This book offers some guidance about how to work with it and the attitude that is required for this work. Because this energy is new and undefined, there are no fixed rules, and yet it has certain qualities that will define the nature of our participation with it. For example, it is so new that we ourselves must be as free as possible of our personal and collective conditioning in order to work with it. Also, this energy has an impersonal nature and a global dimension that require that we shift our focus away from our own individual inner journey and give ourself to the work of the whole. And it is an energy of life itself, and so it demands that we live it in all aspects of our ordinary, everyday existence.
This energy and the patterns through which it comes into creation cannot be defined or described with any exactness. Instead they require a new way of relating to life, of interacting with life as an energy flow rather than something fixed or static. If you try to grasp it as a defined concept you will be frustrated, because it is too fluid and alive to be made concrete. As with flowing water, the moment you hold it, its essential quality of motion disappears. Yet through observing its movement we can come to know some of its qualities, how it flows, how it carries things along. The energy patterns of life are very dynamic, but if they are met with an attitude of receptivity and attention they can reveal to us their nature and how to work with them.
This is a time of wonderful opportunity because we have the capacity to create our own destiny, to work directly with the energy of life as it comes into being. We may have to renounce our spiritual expectations and leave behind many patterns of conditioning. But there is a celebration waiting to be lived and we are being asked to participate. This shift is so fundamental that it requires courage and a sense of adventure. We do not know what will happen and yet we are standing on the edge of a new age that has arrived so completely we have barely noticed it.
The danger is always to try to make something concrete and defined, to look for clear advice or an exact path to follow. But the mystic who swims in love's infinite ocean knows that nothing real can be defined, it can only be glimpsed or hinted at. We need both common sense and a commitment to what is new. We have to live the reality of what is here as well as the infinite possibilities of the future. This energy will affect us each in our own way, and will often go undetected because it is so new. We always look for what we know, for the way our conditioning has prepared us. What is wondrous and unexpected takes longer to accustom ourselves to. Nor do we realize the degree to which our intention, our attitude, our individual participation can affect the life of the whole and the way the future will unfold. At the dusk of a patriarchal era, we are still conditioned to being children who are told what to do.
The future is here and waiting to be lived, and it carries the stamp of divine oneness. The energy that is needed to change everything has arrived, and although it has not yet come into manifestation, we can work with it. The energy of divine oneness is not separate from us, and individual consciousness has the capacity to become directly attuned to it. Through conscious attention we can work with this energy as it comes into manifestation. One of its qualities is that it carries within it the knowledge that is needed in order to work with it. This knowledge is also fluid, organic, relating directly to "the need of the time and the place and the people." This is why the first task of the future is to learn how to be attentive and responsive. The knowledge of the future is too dynamic and too responsive to the changing conditions of the moment to be fixed. It is given freely, and only requires that we give it our undivided attention, that we say "yes" to the now. Through our conscious participation this knowledge is revealed to us; it comes alive through us. We are needed to help this energy come into being, to bring it alive in our world. Without our conscious cooperation the future will not be born in its full potential. We are the book in which the knowledge of oneness is being written.