Deep pool friendships

Loving life in the deep end of the pool.

Loving life in the deep end of the pool.

I have a metaphor for friendships that I especially like. It deals with water, my favorite element. I like to think of friendships and love relationships in terms of how deep I can dive into them.

With some people I can dive way down deep into their consciousness. They sing to me, “Come on in, the water’s fine!”

They provide plenty of room for me to swim around amid their thoughts and feelings. They reflect with me, share with me, emote with me. In the best cases, there are no secrets.

With other people you really have to watch yourself. Don’t dive in without looking for boulders, jagged edges, and other hidden obstacles. These people are aloof, evasive, defensive, argumentative, judgmental. This is what I call the shallow end of the pool. I can rarely merge with who they truly are. They are not big on self-revelation and personal growth.

Much of our society is taught to stay in the shallow end of the pool. Don’t dive too deep or you’ll split your head open when you hit bottom. Don’t get too intimate, too probing, too personal. To me conversations while dressed in Hazmat suits are about as exciting as watching a convention of gnats (which I grant you under certain lighting conditions can be intriguing, too.)

I am a deep pool kind of guy. It probably stems from being a creative writer who always needs to think multidimensionally about my characters’ external behavior and their internal world. It also stems from my college education, much of which clued me into looking for the hidden meaning beneath the surface of the obvious.

Deep pool friendships in Earth School are very rare, and I am so grateful when they manifest. The deeper the pool, the less the censorship, the less the hiding, the less the packaged personality and schtick.

Come on in, the water’s fine.

Does death truly kill us?

What doesn't die when our bodies do?

What doesn’t die when our bodies do?

My personal belief is that the better we answer this question — Does death truly kill us? — the better off we as an evolving planet will be.

This is a question that as a general rule science is not motivated to answer. However, there is an ever-increasing pile of anecdotal evidence that life goes on after death — that consciousness survives the demise of the body.

Some have opined that the reason why science doesn’t want to tackle this question is that the answer is not conducive to profits. Scientific research is most often funded when there is a profit to be made from the work. Ignorance is better for corporations because then they can sell products that play off the fear of death.

It would change the whole dynamics of fear to learn that Earth is not the chaotic mess it often appears to be. Rather, life here is an orderly Earth School curriculum where the point of our physical existence through a multiplicity of different lifetimes is to learn about love. Our bodies die off but our souls eventually slip into new bodies, new lives. It this were proven and commonly accepted, it would mess up the profit-making paradigms found in life insurance, health care, the war industry, the entertainment industry (war movies!) and a bunch of other things.

People who have had near-death, out-of-body, or other spiritually transformative experiences¬† frequently lose their fear of death and radically change their lifestyle to one of love and compassion. It changes their whole outlook on life. They have something to tell us if we’ll drop our preconceptions and habituated thinking long enough to listen. These people are easy to find. They are not hidden in remote outposts of the Himalayas. They’re all over Facebook and YouTube.

We just need to start paying attention.

Networking for win-win outcomes

DreamI know quite a few people who are either currently in dire straights or who’ve been there, done that in the last few years. Every time I hear another story of the jams and fixes that my friends have had or are experiencing, I wonder why we don’t adopt more of a tribal mentality. Why can’t we help each other work through the issues that face us?

People seem to be pretty good helping others during life-threatening diseases or recovery from natural disasters. When my mother was dealing with radiation treatments for cancer, the neighborhood around her was fabulous. Neighbors checked in frequently, brought delicious meals, and offered both my mom and dad moral support.

I would love to see this spirit extended to other life experiences — not just the life-threatening ones. What about handling such issues as loneliness or “stuckness” or emotional decision-making during life journeys? Wouldn’t it be great to have a place you could go where people could give you insight and feedback on whatever it is you’re dealing with — even if it isn’t the end of the world?

COOPERATION OVER COMPETITION

The way I see it, we’re brought up to compete with one another. This paradigm gets set early on in life. We’re taught in every which way possible to look out for number one, often no matter what the cost or breach of integrity is involved. Winning is the most important thing.

But rugged individualism has a hefty price tag. It often creates intense loneliness of all types. We’re so geared toward defending our superiority or controlling our personal universe that we often don’t reach out either to help or to be helped. Reaching out is often perceived as being weak or overwhelmed, and even when it is so, it activates feelings of being a needy loser.

But this is Earth School, I believe, and we are put here to learn life lessons. Despite the earthly illusions of winning and losing, and the wide variety of status levels among everyone, my spiritual truth is that we are all equal. Throughout a multiplicity of lifetimes, we play all the important parts. Sometimes we’re rich and sometimes we’re poor. Sometimes we’re winners and sometimes we’re losers. Sometimes we’re the good guys and sometimes we’re the bad guys. Getting my head around that means to me that in the biggest picture, no one is better and no one is worse.

If that is all so, then cooperation makes more sense to me. The more we look out for one another, the more we simultaneously help ourselves, and the more we are evolving our lives.

In our culture winning is so often depicted as the big prize, the trophy, the ultimate. Yet to me the biggest win would be for win-win.