SPIRITUAL MATTERS: Truth clearer amidst nature

In this modern age it can be very hard to detach from our daily lives. With cell phones, iPads, and laptops; everywhere we go we stay connected to the work, school, and groups that form the busyness of our lives.
We are reluctant to be out of touch, and feel naked if we ever leave those devices behind. And, it is nearly impossible to get away from those who are using their mobile devices in public places.
Two weeks ago I had a couple days off and went for a drive. The weather had turned cold and wet so I headed south. Leaving behind my computer and turning off my cell phone, I unplugged from my daily life for 48 hours.
I found myself driving through the Daniel Boone National Forest and enjoying an afternoon hike in the Natural Bridge State Park.
A strenuous three quarter of a mile hike up over 600 stairs and a 500 foot elevation gain, I could tell that I had been way too sedentary last winter.
At the top is a gorgeous view of the valley, tree covered hills and the river running through them. I found a nice little shelf on the edge of the bridge where I was protected from the breeze, and could sit and admire this beautiful creation.
Eventually, I closed my outer eyes to open my mind’s eyes and commune with my Counselor: the Spirit of Truth (John 14:16-17).
A while later, as I was coming out of my meditation, I realized that there was a man walking past behind me talking on his cell phone conducting business, “Make the meeting for 2 o’clock and tell him I’ll call him in the morning.”
I opened my outer eyes once again and looked out to see a two hundred foot cell tower rising from the ridge across the valley which I did not notice earlier when I was admiring the scenery. I had to laugh at myself, how could I miss seeing that before? How often we only see what we want to see.
It is a sad testament to our times that we have come to accept the fact that every candidate for president, virtually every politician, CEO or public figure, lies and most often there are never or very rarely any consequences to their lying. The only thing that seems to matter is if they win, are successful at seducing voters, raising profits or donations.
And why is that? Because they are telling us what we want to hear.
A common joke these days is, “I read it on the internet so it must be true!” I have almost given up trying to correct some of the erroneous postings that come across my Facebook feed.
All these incredible statements of dubious facts that have no basis in truth that when I take the time to research can easily realize are false. I’ve caught myself more than once beginning to repost something just because it agreed with what I want to believe before taking the time to verify the claims.
Noted psychiatrist, Carl Jung, said, “One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light but by making the darkness conscious.”
He introduced us to our Shadow which is the unconscious aspect of our personality, primarily the negative aspects, the parts that get us into trouble. In order to feel and be whole and complete we must become aware of these unconscious aspects of our selves and integrate them into our conscious selves: we must bring the light to the darkness.
“The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light.” Matthew 6:22
What is obvious to me is how shadow driven our leaders and candidates are. In most case they may be unaware that they are lying. And, they are a reflection of the people they seek to serve.
Usually, I am unaware when what I think is true is not. That is why I take the time to unplug from the busyness and connect with my Source regularly. I can step back, rethink and choose again before sharing what I know to be true.
On my drive back north I could feel myself beginning to take back all the responsibilities I had left behind.
And, because I invested the time to unplug from the world and connect with my Source I am more conscious of the choices I am making and what I am choosing to believe.
This is my wish for you, that you choose to see the light bring it to the darkness and realize the whole and complete child of God that you are.
Blessings of peace, joy & love
The Rev. Matthew E. Long ministers for Peace Unity Community