Chris: The thing about a contained dialogue like this is that it permits for a quality of sustained reflection over time.
In an open, fairly uncontained group, you have the advantage of peripheral dynamics, with adds and shares coming in out of nowhere, stretching the container directly, challenging the group to expand and transform laterally, that way, sprouting new threads outward like a strawberry patch, nourishing its members wildly.
But with a more or less defined container in place, as we share here, with our focus more or less defined, then what can happen? This is where I like to think that an “angel of dialogue” can alight in the in-between space between us, and offer a collaborative guidance over time that it is up to us to discern and discover through the otherwise ordinary quality of our interchange.
This angel is quite real, at least for me. I sense it to be an objective presence.
It lends a kind of spaciousness that guides me to listen and inquire together with precision and coherence, while the dialogue itself does its job of wandering forth into the unknown, probing the edges of our shared wonder over time.
This kind of dynamic framework — dialogue as a closed container informed by an angel of presence that enchants the space we share — is one that allows me the freedom to not be too concerned by the outcome of our efforts.
Instead, it allows me to simply trust in the process of dialogue itself, and to be inwardly enriched by its warming influence. To engage it for its own sake, and trust its flow to find its own meaningful way beyond my foresight or control.
It is as if dialogue, in this context, is a structure that invites genuine inspiration to inform our thinking, and surprise us with fresh meanings we might not discover on our own.
There is one other thing I wish to share in this moment. We have reflected together on the correspondences between the idea of heavenly acceptance as the emerging, objective presence of ascension itself, and traditional concepts of the middle path found throughout spiritual traditions.
You have suggested that this middle path is not necessarily static, but may be a way of navigating experience that leads to a self-balancing, self-abiding quality in being quite naturally; at best, perhaps, even quite effortlessly.
I find myself noticing how such natural flowing into a middle way, seems to be informed by another telltale quality: warmth. Warmth of heart, and warmth of being.
Rudolph Steiner developed an elaborate interpretation of how the Cosmic Christ informs us in our feelings of such spiritual warmth. For Steiner, such warmth places us naturally in harmonious relation to the cosmos. To find our place in the midst of things in this oftentimes bewildering time we are in, Steiner encourages us to follow our individual feeling and find our warmth.
Such warmth, infused by imagination and inspiration in relation to the spiritual worlds, works to mediate our being between the potentially dangerous extremes of Heavenly heat and light and Earthly density, heaviness and darkness.
Without delving any further into Steiner’s somewhat complex cosmology, this quality of human warmth seems particularly significant to our discussion.
How? It may be that such living warmth is itself the living signature of divine acceptance emerging at this time, alighting the field of space-time in the various ways we are considering.
Such warmth is self-authenticating and refreshingly simple to recognize. It is the warmth of the heart come alive to its spiritual core. It needs no external reference beyond one’s immediate living depth and reality of being. Such warmth refers us back to ourselves, in our spiritual core.
Not everyone may be equally present to this dimension of living warmth, but everyone is surely capable of discovering it and cultivating it — and, perhaps, most excitingly at this time, communicating it and sharing it.
In our warmth is our balance between Heaven and Earth, where we are neither manically driven away from the Earth by an unintegrated spiritual inspiration, nor possessed by density and heaviness at the expense of our spiritual core. In our warmth we are naturally at rest in the temperature of our own balance; the temperature of the middle way.
Neither too taut nor too loose: in warmth we return to a creative tension just right for us to each vibrate in resonance with the whole that we are fluidly, inseparably a part of.
Steve Beckow: The “angel of dialogue” is quite real for me as well. I have no difficulty imagining angels informing or inspiring our dialogue.
It’s not for me that the middle range, usually thought of as a center-point, is not static as it is that it is a “point” that I can endlessly fall into.
I would point to the image of water draining from the bathtub. The water forms a whirlpool. The whirlpool seems to get smaller and smaller as the water falls downwards.
Imagine that center becoming smaller and smaller while “never “ reaching an end and you have more the image I intend.
It’s not as if I find the center and can say, there, the job is done.
That quality cannot be said, I think, about the extremities. They are finite. I just get denser and denser when I become more extreme, but I become more and more rarified as I fall into the center.
But your point that the middle way could be “a way of navigating experience that leads to a self-balancing, self-abiding quality in being quite naturally; at best, perhaps, even quite effortlessly” is quite intriguing. I’ll look at that.
As to “warmth,” you have me. I would not ordinarily describe myself as a very warm person, although others have on occasion. My life, since my early years, has been about resisting in the name of social justice so I haven’t concentrated on developing that side of myself, except to those who cause I’ve taken up.
“It is the warmth of the heart come alive to its spiritual core.” I can only hear you here and await the blossoming of a warmth of this kind in my own nature, which should come with Ascension, by 2012 at the latest.
To use your words in an earlier instalment, it is “ too early” for me to comment on warmth and I just have to humbly acknowledge it without finding fault with myself.
“Not everyone may be equally present to this dimension of living warmth, but everyone is surely capable of discovering it and cultivating it.”
I’m pleased to hear what you say and open to the experience, myself.
I can imagine that the warmth you know and point to would return us to the balance point, the infinite center.