Individual & Society

QA148 QUESTION: My question has to do with the individual as opposed to the mass of individuals. I tend to see myself as being almost an unnecessary appendage to society, whereby society is something that can get along without me. The next step is to say, well, what am I doing here in the first place? What is the value of one individual as opposed to the society at large? Is there a value?

ANSWER: The society at large consists of so many individuals. Society at large is not a separate body from one individual. Now, it depends on the attitudes of the majority of the individuals of this particular society whether this society is constructive or destructive, whether it contributes to the general cosmic, evolutionary process, or whether it is a temporary hindrance or blockage to it.

If the majority of individuals are blind, destructive, self-enclosed, such a society will be a temporary blockage in evolution. If the majority of individuals are constructive and wish to contribute to life and seek for truth and enlightenment in each individual, such a society will be extremely furthering to evolution.

The individual’s part is therefore a tremendously important one. The moment you begin to discover the power of your own inner processes, the power of your thoughts, of your emotions, of your attitudes, of your whole approach to yourself and your environment, to that extent you will realize how contributing an individual may be.

Now, your personal problem here is very obvious when you consider the fact that due to your blocks and fears and infliction of your psyche, you have fortunately arrived at the realization – which is a very constructive step – that you do not want to be constructive.

This knowledge, this self-facing, in itself, is more constructive than the denial of such a fact and the superimposed, pretended, pseudo-constructiveness that many people attempt and with which they are merely deceiving themselves. What is constructive and destructive is therefore a question that cannot easily be settled.

It is quite true that, as you have discovered, you have a fear of positively contributing to life and to others. This is true. But it is also true that you attempt to understand this, to see yourself in truth, to eventually try to change it.

For even if you still are too afraid to make this change, you would not be on such a path if, in the long run, you would not somehow have this constructive core that you perhaps are as unaware of in yourself, as the pseudo-constructive person is unaware of his underlying destructiveness.

Therefore, I would suggest in your case, that you, number one, understand that your idea that you are not adding to society is precisely because you are afraid to contribute to it; number two, that you realize that this is not necessarily so, because your truthfulness with yourself contributes more to the cosmic pool of creative energy than the denial of what is in you, in a person; and number three, that you seek and ascertain the constructive elements in yourself that you utterly deny and do not take into consideration.

It is a similar thing as with a person who is unwilling to face the destructiveness in him. The destructiveness may manifest in many little ways. These little ways are obvious, yet the individual says, “Oh no, I cannot see it; I do not feel it; this is not so,” and the only reality he gives credence to is what he immediately thinks he wants. He refuses to look deeper.

It is the same way in reverse with you. Until not too long ago, you were unaware of a destructiveness. Your Pathwork has made you aware of its power. And you have even begun to find out certain elements why this is so. But now it is time that you also look and ascertain what is constructive in you, and also that the very recognition, the very truthfulness within yourself, adds more to society than many an outer good deed.

QUESTION: I wonder about the concept of the cosmic pool. It seems to me that the effect of my understanding of my own negativity is just one that is transferred without any positive physical action?

ANSWER: Action exists also in a person’s inner processes: of conscious and unconscious thinking, of the way energy is directed, of the whole inner reality of a person. In recent lectures, you may remember I spoke about man’s basic response to life, which is the sum total of his being. This is an action too.

An action is not only a physical act. An action lies in his entire life, which includes – and it’s certainly not one of its least aspects – man’s truthfulness with himself. Not only with his outer conscious and detectible aspects and layers of personality, but also with the more hidden and obscure ones. This is action too.

Now, the cosmic pool is an energy pool, the energy that derives of every movement in existence. It is nowadays even scientifically, according to human science, provable that energy is contained, not only in every object – even inanimate objects – but also in every thought and in every emotion; there’s a movement. These are movements and therefore creators of energy, which pool.

QUESTION: You seem to say it’s meaningful to be part of this pool, whereas I might tend to say, well is this an addition or a subtraction? It’s not that important.

ANSWER: It is extremely important. It is extremely important in one sense, and yet in another it may not seem important. I mean, it is not important from the point of view that evolution on the whole will take its course, inexorably.

But it is important from the point of view that every individual consciousness is a manifestation of the whole of the universe. It is individualized consciousness, and the whole Creation is permeated with supreme consciousness. The more the supreme consciousness individualizes, it splits itself off. Since it is a part of the whole, how can it not be important? It must be important.

Yet, this kind of importance must not ever and should not ever be a burden and become a cause for guilt. For it is true – and this is very difficult to understand for the human dualistic approach to life and way of perceiving things – that an individual can infinitely contribute to this evolutionary process.

Yet it is true that no one individual can possibly be the cause of anyone else’s suffering. If this apparent paradox is inwardly experienced, self-responsibility becomes a natural result that frees the person from the burden of guilt.

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