The Illusion of Separateness

Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh is famous for saying, “We are here to awaken to the illusion of our separateness.”

What exactly does this mean?

In my way of contemplating this teaching, I think of the following with Lissa Rankin which I received this morning:

Dear Jerome,

What if there is no “right” or “wrong?”

What if it’s not just “black” and “white?”

What if such judgments are just a way for your ego to get all self-righteous and make itself “superior” to others you deem “less than?” What if your attempt to label people or actions with judgments and criticisms is just a way to reinforce your illusion of separation that leads you to falsely assume that we are NOT, on some energetic level, all ONE?

Even more so, what if it’s not your job to judge anyone?

What if it’s your job just to LOVE MORE, judge less?  

Not sure how? Bingo. That’s my schtick, sweetheart.

Call on me,

Your Inner Pilot Light

In my investigation into the fall of the Roman Empire for my upcoming trip to Italy, I learned that it was the separation of “Romans” from “Barbarians” (anyone who was not Roman) that ultimately caused the Roman Empire to fall apart. The armies that held the empire together initially were composed of Romans, but as the empire grew, more and more non-Romans (barbarians) were needed to protect the borders. By 498 CE, there were many generals and other military leaders who were originally “Barbarian” Roman citizens and came to power. Once the different factions vied for control of Rome, itself, they would raid Rome and try to eliminate anyone who was different from themselves.

This kind of behavior has been repeated throughout history, and our age is no exception. This “us” vs. “them” is not working.

We must awaken from our illusion of separateness!

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