War can condition a person to be resilient, tolerant, dependable, strong, and capable of so much more than one who had experienced nothing of it; it can bring out the very best in us, but also the very worst. Where is it, I ask, the proper conduit through which a soldier should be raised from whence they would become an upstanding citizen of the world, instead of a single country?
Becoming aware of our inner man and woman means to discover the roots and creative potential of both the male and female aspect within ourselves. Becoming aware of the inner man and woman means to understand that they have different visions of life. It means to understand that they have different perspectives and views of life. The inner man and woman are our two wings of love and freedom. Through awareness, acceptance and understanding, we can allow our two wings to develop in a deep and natural harmony. In the world today, a one-sided development of the male side leads to destructivity. A one-sided development of the male side leads to ego, struggle, exhaustion and a separation from life. A one-sided development of the female side leads to passivity and dependence.
And I ask myself what it is about me that makes this wonderful, beautiful woman return. Is it because I'm pathetic, helpless in my current state, completely dependent on her? Or is it my sense of humour, my willingness to tease her, to joke my way into painful, secret places? Do I help her understand herself? Do I make her happy? Do I do something for her that her husband and son can't do? Has she fallen in love with me?As the days pass and I continue to heal, my body knitting itself back together, I begin to allow myself to think that she has.
Meditation is the way to be with ourselves and to learn to accept our own aloneness. In aloneness, I experiment with being consciously alone as a door to be egoless. In conscious aloneness, the ego can not function. In aloneness, you are not. I have always been comfortable with my own aloneness as an inner source of love, joy, truth, silence and wholeness. When we depend on other people, it becomes a bondage - instead of a freedom. I took this sunday as a meditation to be consciously alone, and to accept all feelings of pain, of not being loved and the fear of being nobody that would come up during the meditation. This meditation goes up and down during the day: at certain moments, I can totally accept my aloneness. It feels fine to accept that I am alone and that I am nobody. At other moments, I feel the pain of not being loved, when the meditation brings up how dependence on other people is a barrier to totally accept my aloneness. I take a coffee at a restaurant. I am the only person that sits alone in the restaurant, while the other guests are couples and families eating sunday dinner. It brings up painful feelings of not being loved and wanting to be needed by other people, when I see how much people cling to each other in the couples and the families. Escaping your aloneness through relationships and needing other people's attention through being a teacher, a politician or by being rich or famous, are ways of escaping the pain of aloneness. But then the relationships are not really love. Only when you are capable of being alone, you can really love. When we can be alone, we discover the inner source of love, which is our true nature. When we can be alone, it open the door to be one with the Whole.
The author points to the impact of what he called Dutch disease, where the discovery of found wealth from a particular commodity causes a culture to atrophy with respect to work ethic and broader development. Continuing wealth from the single commodity is taken for granted. The government, flush with wealth, is expected to be generous. When the price of that commodity drops, a government which would remain in power dare not cut back on this generosity.
God has made us so that we must be mutually dependent. We may ignore our own dependence, or refuse to acknowledge that others depend upon us in more respects than the payment of weekly wages; but the thing must be, nevertheless. Neither you nor any other master can help yourselves. The most proudly independent man depends on those around him for their insensible influence on his character - his life.
If you will tell me when God permits a Christian to lay aside his armour, I will tell you when Satan has left off temptation. Like the old knights in war time, we must sleep with helmet and breastplate buckled on, for the arch-deceiver will seize our first unguarded hour to make us his prey. The Lord keep us watchful in all seasons, and give us a final escape from the jaw of the lion and the paw of the bear.