Once you learn to discern the voice of Mother Culture humming in the background, telling her story over and over again to the people of your culture, you’ll never stop being conscious of it. Wherever you go for the rest of your life, you’ll be tempted to say to the people around you, “how can you listen to this stuff and not recognize it for what it is? ~ Daniel Quinn
I have come to realize through my life experience that the more I think I know, the less I actually know. This is a good thing, a very good thing. I don’t have as many opinions as I used to because I have come to know that everything is true, right and correct, at least from the perspective of the person who holds those perceptions. And that’s okay; it is, after all, their world, their creation, and we can’t possibly know what they’ve been through or what they are doing to maintain that perception. And unless they ask, there is nothing we can tell ‘em.
We humans become so fixated on how we need to create ourselves or what we need to become, always seeking something outside of ourselves to believe in, to give our power away to. We are obsessed with getting it right and are hard on ourselves when we are not in so-called balance or living up to the ideals of so-called masters. We cling to our ideas of what awakening, enlightenment, and freedom that are often based on the teachings of the Buddha, Castaneda, Jesus Christ, Zen Masters, Allah, Bodhisattvas, etc. We compromise each other’s state of being by assuming to know where someone is at and what they are experiencing. We cast doubt upon each other by questioning the reality of others and then we may even have the audacity to tell others that what they believe in is a lie.
Our freedom is contingent upon our ability to remain awake and fluid, to not become bound by ideas, stories, and patterns. All of the paths in the world have the potential to enslave us, to turn us into followers of specific protocols, doctrines, or dogmata, many of which are detrimental to our natural existence within this beautiful and constantly changing web of creation. It is when we decide to belong to a specific membership that we adopt the ideas of another which carries the danger, for a warrior, to act from a point of reason. Structured and limited beliefs ultimately lead one to inadvertently uphold tons of judgements against those who believe differently.
A warrior cannot have the luxury of following people’s ways, nor can he be a reactionary, because his freedom means to exercise other alternatives. ~ Carlos Castaneda, Encounters with the Nagual
We work so hard to become aligned with our perspective of liberation through the teachings of our favorite guru that we rarely consider or seek or are open to that which resides outside of those parameters. We judge each other’s progress, evolution, and levels of awareness cynically and are bold enough to think we know when, how, and why someone needs to experience growth, do more work, have a healing, choose a different direction, stuff their emotions, etc. And we judge ourselves.
We must recognize that it is our aim, as warriors of freedom, to go against the grain, to free ourselves from the preconceived ideas and patterns of how to live in the world. To exercise other alternatives, as Castaneda said in the above quote.
The only thing I know with certainty right now is that the things that are buzzing around in my mind are there because of what I experience, create, and how I perceive my reality. In our creative, individual, diverse paths within this magnificent gift of life in human form, it is just fine if we, by another’s definition, are perceived as wrong or right, wounded or whole, enlightened or non-enlightened. There are no labels, dualities, illusions, delusions, descriptions or goal posts that can define or limit an individual’s freedom. And, we cannot possibly make anyone understand what we see or what we know, we can only share our stories in freedom and stand as a witness to the individual stories of others. Our ultimate freedom comes in giving others the right to their own reality, even if we do not agree with what they have created.
When a warrior learns how to toss self-importance aside, his spirit unfolds, jubilant, like a wild animal liberated from its cage and set free. ~ Carlos Castaneda