Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Objection #1, continued

Let's sum this up here. I have outlined the victim consciousness and essentially called the very concept of the victim a false belief and misperception, and I have acknowledged that this may not sit too pretty relative to the common belief in our culture that victims are everywhere to be seen, starring on the nightly news, daily paper, etc. For those of a christian orientation who might be reading this, let me speak on this topic from that perspective, and afterwards I'll approach it from a more esoteric perspective for those who can hear it.

Happily, this was actually this morning's snuggle-time conversation with the whole family at the Hedley household. Anyone who has read the gospels will pick up on the themes of service and the extension of the concept of the neighbor to all. My daughter was asking this morning: What is a Samaritan? We talked about how someone may call themselves a christian, yet not act upon the teachings of Christ, and someone else might not ever get around to identifiying themselves as a christian, and may fulfill Christ's teachings through their action, by doing the will of heaven. What you do for the least of my brothers, that you do unto me. The neighbor is an icon of Christ. Love the lord your God with all your heart, mind and strength, and your neighbor as yourself. Many may call out "Lord, Lord," but shall not enter the kingdom of heaven. That's because the kingdom of heaven is a direct experience of the will of the source of all acting within oneself. The kingdom of heaven is within you, waiting for you to experience it, and express it. The kingdom of heaven is no fortress "over there" with a moat, hiding an old bearded tyrant who's content to open the door to a perpetual party or shut out for eternal misery his own children based upon their mouthing of sycophantic platitudes at some point during their physical lives. Christ spoke, when you fed the hungry, comforted the sorrowing, visited the imprisoned, clothed the naked, that you did to me. The implication of this is decidedly NOT that those experiencing misery on this planet are victims modeled after the "greatest victim of all." Rather, the implication is that every person on this planet, every neighbor, every Samaritan, Palestinian or Jew, every Armenian or Turk, every disenfranchised, disabled, dissed in general person, every rich, conniving real estate tycoon (you're fired!), every Tutsi and Hutu, every grandchild of a "white" european and every grandchild of a bought and sold slave, every single blessed one of us represents a temple of the source of all, a flame of the holy spirit, an expression of the consciousness of Christ-in-form, perhaps distorted, but nonetheless a beloved child of the "divine will-pleasure."

Christ was not a victim but a master. He chose his path. It was not forced upon him. When the soldiers came to take him away, and Jesus stepped forward towards the soldiers, John reports that they literally fell over. How's that for a commanding presence? Doesn't sound like a victim to me. This bit about Jesus being a lamb led to slaughter is off the mark, to be kind. His "spotlessness" was not some sort of meat grade, nor was it a function of his "innocence," but rather it is a function of his perfect identity with the will of the heavenly father. Through introspection we can polish the inner mirror to the point where we will no longer mistake ourselves as victims of our life experience, either. Jesus did not defend his innnocence. The truth requires no defense. A person in truth need not justify themselves before those who are in error. If the body is shed in the process, oh well: it is a gift, but not the ultimate value. The spirit blows where it will. And as the story of his suffering is told, from within the constricting circle of possibilities leading up to his death, he continued to express himself as the masterful servant, acknowledging the state of ignorance of his tormenters: "they know not what they are doing"--and pardons them. See the truth here! Victims do not pardon perpetrators, but masters serve their neighbors, and true servants percieve in those whom they serve not victims, but masters in disguise, masters in forgetting, the divine swirl of truth resident in flesh, regardless of disguise as sufferer or tormentor, or knight in shining armour.

Especially when we reach out to those in need, our ability to perceive the divine light within them and the source of all shining through them will absolutely serve to enkindle that light, magnify it, place it on a lampstand to light the whole room. When instead we see someone suffering as a victim, we become dis-ablers, placing their light under a bushel basket, and we become judges condemning the christ-in-them by false trial.

If it sounds like I'm piling a whole lot onto the idea of the victim, well, I'd say that is because it is indeed an incredibly loaded concept, that the load is a wicked burden, and that the concept stands at the crux of the moral problems of our day. Our politics, religion, medical culture, and society in general is thoroughly invested in victimhood, and the payout of this investment is the near universal rejection of self responsibility, regardless of whatever lip-service it may be paid. The concept of self responsibility as a function of self mastery must arise at the expense of the victim consciousness and all of its choking tentacles. Clinging to the mentality of the victim and championing the roles of its sordid drama, these are the machinations of our lower self wallowing in self pity, self righteousness, and the negative pleasures of judging others. The christian who would truly be of service rejects the portrayal of Jesus as a victim, and embraces him as the master who came to serve to his very last breath. Such a christian follows Christ not by mimicking his suffering and identifying with his "victimhood," but by identifying and proclaiming his real living presence in every neighbor, friend or foe, gentile or jew, servant or free, woman or man, so that all may recognize the kingdom of heaven where it lay, on earth, now.


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