The Illusion of Separation

Separation is a farce. There is no separation between me and you. There is no separation between you and God. There is no separation between God and the gravel that crunches beneath your tires as you leave for work every morning. Everything is connected.

And you’ve heard it all before, right?

That’s the problem – you “heard” it.

And after you heard it, you processed it on a cerebral level. It may have sparked something in you, might have made you think (that would have been a step in the right direction), or it may have made you roll your eyes and dismiss the concept with a mixture of contempt and anger. Either way, unless it settled in your chest and opened like a flower, you may as well have been pondering the ingredients on a cereal box. Interesting enough to think about until something more important comes along, like how the guy in front of you cut you off right before your exit, or how there’s not enough money in your bank account to pay the mortgage. Then it’s back to being all about YOU. You, your anger and your fears become the center of your universe, and everything else is secondary.

Ever done that?

THAT’S how I know that the only part of you that sunk it’s teeth into the concept was your frontal cortex. Otherwise, your first thought would have been that maybe the reason the guy in front of you cut you off was because he needed to get home for an emergency, rather than that he was just a shithead who set out to ruin your morning.

Do you ever see those folks panhandling on the side of the road? You know the ones – the guys with signs that say “homeless – anything will help – God bless“, or “my car is broke down, need to get home – please help” – and what do you think to yourself when you see them? Do they make you uncomfortable? Do you hope that the light turns green so you don’t have to sit in your car, close enough to see the dirt under their fingernails, and pretend that they don’t exist? Do you look at your buddy riding in the seat next to you and say “Christ, they probably make more money than we do …” or “There’s no way I’d give that guy any money – you know what he’d do with it – he’d run right down damned the street to the 7-Eleven and buy some of that rotgut shit and sit up under the overpass gettin’ stoned”.

Let me tell you a secret – it doesn’t make even the slightest bit of difference what the guy in the filthy plaid shirt does with the $5 after it leaves your hand. The defining point of the situationĀ rests with YOU and your decision to hand it to him to begin with. THAT’S what makes a difference – your willingness to offer a token of kindness which is not burdened by condition. In other words, give him the $5 and a genuine smile, and move on, giving no thought to what he may spend it on and whether or not his choice would meet with your approval, for, if you have the courage to look hard enough, you will find yourself reflected in his face.