Walking the Balance
Niánn Emerson Chase
From the time I was a child I have had dreams of higher more sustainable worlds—worlds that are more sane, more compassionate, more reasonable, more joyful, and more peaceful than the one I am living in. I dream these visions of truth, beauty, and goodness when I sleep as well as when I am awake.
Our joy can come from knowing that there is reality beyond what we live in, a reality that lies in potential within us and within each human being. In those times when all else fails us, we can go to this reality within. It is a reality that percolates in potential, sometimes manifesting in small ways that seem so big to some of us. This reality continues to unfold like a lotus flower, like a desert agave. It is within this reality that we can have faith and hope—faith in the stability and absoluteness of a loving Creator who is continually renewing all things and hope in a better future for this world, for a better "us" as human beings.
Our joy increases daily if we choose to try to walk moment to moment in our understanding of divine pattern and divine administration principles. The layers of protective shields that we have built up in this life (and in other lives) can be peeled away, layer by layer if we allow ourselves to be broken in order to be rehabilitated.
Our hardness will soften; our defensiveness will crumble; our ego will diminish in this dying-of-lower-self process that we allow ourselves to go through. Our hearts, in their desperate fluttering to beat the way they are used to beating, fight against their transformation into a more open, more compassionate heart. In their chattering to remain in certain mind sets, our minds argue with the divine mind we hear within, fight against the unlearning and rethinking that transformation requires. Our lower selves in fear and selfishness, pride and misunderstanding, squeal and bleat like terrified and angry children who are being asked to pick up after themselves and then graduate to the next grade, to grow up, to move on to the next, higher level of comprehension.
One New Year’s Day a group of us who are members of Avalon Organic Gardens & EcoVillage shared about the highlights, accomplishments, and disappointments of the past year. What we realized was that life in the sustainable culture we are attempting to create in this intentional community is dynamic, alive with a constant moving forward.
It seems that there is no allowance for stagnation in a lifestyle governed by our acceptance of the reality of spiritual values and ideals that can be applied to daily human living. There is no strolling on plateaus and plains of flatness for us dedicated to implementing divine administration ideals in all areas of our lives; we climb the gentle slopes of rolling hills and the steep sides of rugged mountains, and when we think we have got the struggle of a particular difficult trek "nailed" as we sit momentarily at the top for a rest, we realize that before us is another climb, another reach for a higher level of thinking, feeling, and doing.
The URANTIA Book tells us that idealism is "the approaching concept of the divine," that idealism is "the higher urges of the soul and emanates from the spiritual forces that indwell the human mind." In other words, true idealism and altruism come from spiritual leadings, and though idealism is innate within us humans, we have to choose to live by those ideals every day with every choice.
We have been given the gift of the revelation of the life and teachings of Jesus (found in the fourth section of The URANTIA Book) to inspire, educate, and encourage us in our struggles to live a life of true sustainability. His life and teachings, as well as the living spiritual forces within and around us, can help us reach for ideals within divine pattern.
Any act outside of divine pattern, outside of the Creator's physical and spiritual laws based upon the supreme foundation of love and sustainability disrupts the balance of life and the chemistry of order and beauty on this world, even beyond our world.
What can we do about all of this? First and foremost, we must establish within ourselves on a personal level the balance of idealism within divine pattern and living it on a practical level. As citizens of a troubled world, we too must step out in compassionate and intelligent activism for a kinder, more sane and sustainable world. Long-time activist and practical idealist Marian Wright Edelman once stated: "A lot of people are waiting for Martin Luther King, Jr. or Mahatma Gandhi to come back, but they are gone. We are it. It is up to us. It is up to you."
Niánn Emerson Chase co-founded Global Community Communications Alliance, a 120+ member intentional community (at Avalon Organic Gardens & EcoVillage).
Niánn is a world-renowned spiritual leader, educator, activist, and a prolific author with many articles on society, spirituality, and sustainability.
Niánn shares her visions and teachings to reveal a global outlook toward a future of world harmony as one planetary family.