Sunday, April 16, 2006

Resurrection, Renewal & Rebirth


Easter Sunday, April 16, 2006 ~ Santa Fe, New Mexico

A few months ago, my ex-wife told me that our six-and-a-half-year-old daughter Guinevere had come home from school in distress. It seems everyone in her class had wanted to play a game she didn't want to play. Even as she stood her ground, she wanted to fit in, to be part of the group.

"I don't want to be different," she told her mother.

"You are different," her mother replied, "and that's okay."

As her mother shared the story with me, my heart went out to this little girl who was beginning to discover her uniqueness in a culture that promotes sameness, in a world that fears, persecutes and prosecutes the very differences it claims to celebrate.

I found myself in tears during our conversation, as the little boy in me recognized himself in Guinevere.

That little boy remembered how he longed to belong as he was. Yet his experiences repeatedly demonstrated that the only safe option was to push his differences under the rug, to repress his creativity, sensitivity and intuition, to pretend he was the same as the other kids...many of whom were probably doing just what he was doing....what I was doing.

Even as the adult I have become has created space for those repressed differences to emerge, scars remain. They play out in snapshot moments of fear and insecurity, often as I move through stores on my travels, watching "normal" people shop for "normal" lives. I recognize the normalcy for the illusion that it is. Yet, in those moments, that child part of me is tired of standing apart.

I still remember my first grocery store visit after I moved into my Santa Fe casita. I was so overcome by the notion of shopping as a resident rather than as a traveler that I began to cry as I placed a bottle of olive oil in my basket. I was just so grateful to be doing something "normal" after more than a year on the road.

Last night for the first time in months, I watched TV, tuning into Monk on the USA Network. It's a quirky series that features a brilliant if eccentric private detective whose peculiarities insure that he's always an outsider.

In last night's episode, Monk goes undercover in an investment office and, for the first time in his life, fits in. The obsessiveness that has always set him apart has the opposite effect in this environment and he becomes "part of the gang."

Anyone who has lived as an outsider could easily identify with Monk's childlike glee at being accepted and, when that acceptance is withdrawn, the familiar pain of loneliness and rejection.

Yet there is no loneliness when we recognize that we're all one (al-one) in our individuality. There is no rejection when we realize that we serve no one by repressing that individuality to try to fit in.

When I was growing up in Montreal, my Grade 10 Canadian history text was titled Unity in Diversity. To me, that's the perfect motto for the oneness we all claim to be seeking.

Whether you believe in the resurrection of Easter, the metaphysics of ascension or neither, it's difficult to deny that as individuals and as a human race, we are evolving into something greater.

That greatness is not about greater homogeneity.

Oneness is not about returning to some amoeba-like uniformity. Ascension is not about morphing into identical light units. Resurrection is not about a renewal of sameness.

We are rising and being reborn into a fuller expression of our individuality. That individuality is our divinity...our mastery...our humanity.

If you're looking for the perfect metaphor for oneness, look at your own body, itself a unit of oneness. Yet within that oneness are individual components — hands, feet, eyes, lungs, kidneys, veins, arteries — each of which is unlike any other. Each of which performs a vital, unique task in the functioning of the One Body.

Replacing my eyes with another set of hands would serve neither the first set of hands nor my body as a whole. That brand of uniformity would make me no safer.

It is in their differences that my individual parts fit in. It is in their diversity that they celebrate, protect and empower my unity.

That's no less true for me as an individual piece of the oneness we call America, western society, the World or the Universe.

As I prepare to leave Santa Fe on Monday for a return to my wandering ways, I am called to remember that my uniqueness is integral to human evolution and that as I accept, bless and honor my differences, I make it easier for my daughter to do the same with hers.
____________________________________________

I created the above drawing, titled Resurrection, Renewal & Rebirth, yesterday from the color-it-yourself activator template that forms part of my Prosper from Your Divine Purpose! program. As an individual expression of a common core, it is for me the perfect reflection of the resurrection of our divinity, the rebirth of our mastery, the renewal of our humanity.

6 comments:

Alyx said...

I've been an "outsider" my whole life and it used to make me feel really "out of it" ... part of me now still "looks in" on those others with their "purpose driven" shopping ......and another part of me is just as happy to not have the stress that goes along with it. So, it's more than okay to "be me". But at the same time .... it still makes you feel alone at times ... and not 'al-one'
What I really wanted to tell you is, Traveling Mercies during your continuing journey. Stay safe and know that you are always protected.
Alyx

Marisha said...

Great blog today. Today starts a new path..............

Satina said...

Hi mark David,

I LOVE the analogy of the body parts to our unique functions in life. I too am sick of traveling and have felt the intense PULL to just settle somewhere and do something NORMAL. And in my travels, guess what, I've ended up in Santa Fe just as you're leaving.

I do feel the synchronicities are lining up to keep us in this amazing place for a little while, and for that I'm exceedingly grateful. I really feel for you getting back on the road and wish you only the absolute best.

My own daughter is very obviously autistic, nonverbal, a true blithe spirit on this planet, unable to be taken for normal for even a few moments, and what a lesson that has been. I've learned to bless both the loving looks of celebration of her specialness and the irritating looks of totally unnecessary pity, knowing that her work on this planet is to be SEEN as the unique light she is.

Vaya con Dios on your continuing journey.

Mark David Gerson said...

Dear Satina,

I wouldn't say that I'm "sick of travelling." There are aspects of it that I love and aspects that are not as pleasurable. Regardless, this nonstop movement it is wearing, particularly when the destination is uncertain.

Yet isn't that a perfect metaphor for life in these times? Whether we're on the road or in one place, uncertainty is the only certainty...and so is constant (and rapid) movement.

And as for normal.... Well, that concept exists only in our minds, for it carries no objective truth...at least not anymore (if it truly ever did!).

Welcome to Santa Fe! It's a wonderful yet peculiar place, where nothing is quite what it seems. May it bless you with all its gifts as you bless it with all yours.

Namaste,
Mark David

Mark David Gerson said...

Dear Alyx,

The trick is to be alone and all-one all at the same time. It's not always an easy balancing act.

As for the blessings, they're always welcome. Thanks!

Blessings on your journey as well,
Mark David

Mark David Gerson said...

Dear Marisha,

Indeed it does. More than I could have imagined...more than I can yet imagine!

Blessings,
Mark David