Wednesday, January 25, 2017

From Tom Stella..


“When an individual lacks the inner sense of being connected to God or being part of the Tao then a wound exists that the person experiences as gnawing, pervasive, persisting insecurity… A person thus wounded seeks novelty, excitement, power, or prestige to compensate for the lack of joy or inner peace. Chronic anger and depression seem to hide just below the surface of the persona… This wound affects the capacity to both give and receive love. Emotionally, scarcity, rather than abundance prevails, and thus joy and growth are stifled.” 1 
The anger, depression, and emotional scarcity that psychologist Jean Bolan writes about in her book The Tao of Psychology are symptoms of our failure to experience that God is not primarily a being that exists apart from us, but a sacred reality that is the heart of us. Given the frenetic nature of our society it is not surprising that many of us go through our day and even our life without the awareness of our inner-connection to God. 
We don’t have to look far – sometimes no farther than in the mirror – to see the prevalence of the “wound” to which Bolan refers, and the “novelty, excitement, power, or prestige” that issue from it. In referring to “chronic anger and depression” and to emotional scarcity, Bolan is naming a reality that defines our culture; so many of us exhibit the symptoms that are the price we pay for losing touch with our soul. 
We may not have to look far to see the effects of our wounded condition, but neither do we have to look far to find a remedy. Psychoanalyst Carl Jung has said: “Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.” The Buddha has stated: “Peace comes within. Do not seek it without.” And in the Hebrew Scriptures, Psalm 46 encourages us to “Be still and know that I am God.” In the silent stillness within we can discover the presence of the divine that is often referred to as the True Self, and with this discovery, the wound of our disconnection is healed. 
Psychologist Carl Rogers has said that what is most personal is most universal. Nothing is more personal, more intimate, or closer to the bone of who we are as persons than our spiritual essence. Because this is true we owe it to ourselves and those with whom we live and work to spend some time being quiet, still, and alone, so that our wounded souls can heal and we can come face-to-face with the divinity of our True Self and that of all others. Nothing less than personal fulfillment, interpersonal happiness and, ultimately, international peace depends upon the realization of this inner-union which is the basis for our communion with all people. 

Tom Stella, NCC 
Corporate Chaplain

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