2007-10-15-Time, True Discovery
• 1 Heading
o 1.1 Topic: Time, True Discovery
o 1.2 Group: Marin TeaM
• 2 Facilitators
o 2.1 Teacher: Michael
o 2.2 TR: JL
• 3 Session
o 3.1 Opening
o 3.2 Lesson
o 3.3 Dialogue
o 3.4 Closing
Topic: Time, True Discovery
Group: Marin TeaM
Dear Michael and Mother Spirit, We thank you for your lessons on how to realize and then transcend our unconscious conditioning to achieve a greater freedom of will and living by tuning in to the spontaneous, creative realm of spirit. We ask you to help us achieve this not only in ourselves, but help us see this in others; help us see through their unconscious and unintended impulses and habits that mask their own original personality. Help us to help them achieve a greater freedom of will, and give us the courage to welcome this whether their will coincides with our own or not. In other words, help us grow to be more like the two of you–our divine parents, and our Universal Father. Amen.
MICHAEL: Good evening, the two of you. This is Michael. I want to thank you for your persistence and for your loyalty, your dedication to these meetings, and what each of you brings in your own separate way to them. For as you, D, bring your uniqueness of personality, and you, J, are able to suspend yours to transmit, I really enjoy this combination, this special energy we can create together. Once again I offer the two of you and all who will come to read these words my own invitation to visit with Mother Spirit and me in your stillness as regularly, on the one hand, and then just as spontaneously, on the other hand, as it occurs to you during your days.
Whether of the longer periods we’ve recommended–setting aside a certain amount of time irrespective of whatever effect you’re experiencing, or the little mini-meditations you use for punctuation all through your days–just remembering to sit down and tune in to us if only for a few minutes; this invitation opens the door to what I would like to address this evening, your concepts of time and temporal reality, and how they affect your life. For this too is a continuing chapter of learning about your unconscious conditioning that comes from the various notions and usage’s of time you were raised with and accepted as matters of fact.
Your Urantia book states, and it is true, that your personality is endowed with its own realization of temporal sequence, and this was true as well hundreds of thousands of years ago in those primitive men and women who had little sense of duration, or future, as you do now. So this sense of time, of one thing following another, of before and after and next, is inherent on your God-given personality. You’ve even had your imaginations stretched when the book mentioned that on Paradise there is no time as you know it, since all motion/activity is volitional, but still the citizens there have this innate sense of sequentially along with the other hundreds of dimensions of existence you have yet to encounter.
I would like to compare this mental time as you know it, as the human race has developed it over just the last few millennia, compare this to the physical development of your metal alloys, the really fine steel you’ve learned to make. For just as this material helps you form the most exquisite tools that you use to make your modern world, so too it can make the strongest bars of a cage that can imprison you most securely. And so it is with your concepts of time. These concepts are your most useful tools for organizing and directing and controlling your ever more complex lives, and yet at the same time, form the most rigid bars that determine your lives—I’ll offer this notion—quite unnecessarily. Mother Spirit brought this up last week in terms of how, for so many of you, the future seems to exist in a way it really doesn’t. In the most profound way, the future does not exist at all; yet this statement will seem to some fatalistic souls radically improbable, almost silly. You have all your plans of what to do tomorrow and you are very assured that, baring some improbable catastrophe like an airplane falling on your house while you are asleep, you are definitely going to meet your friend at exactly 11:35 at a very precise place out there in the world. And you probably will.
But all this only exists now as you are thinking about it. In this sense the future never happens—ever. It is always now. But in this everlasting now you have as a race developed such a facility with measuring duration, with fragmenting sequence with your creative, spiritual imaginations inventing time-measuring machines, you’ve created a wonderfully shared reality called the future. With first the written word, and then printing presses and books and magazines, and now the enormous expansion of detail with your digital machines, this agreement, this social contract between you all in the living present has taken on a reality quite independent of any one, or even any group, of you. All nation/states of your world have an unconscious agreement as to what day it is, and even some rough agreement as to what going to happen tomorrow, though of course in the competition between them there is some disagreement about they would like to have happen.
That competition and contention can lead, as it has so often in the past, to very active warfare. Indeed, it is right within actual warfare when each side is doing its best to surprise the other and come up with what is not expected that you can experience the greatest terror of not knowing what is going to happen next. The increasing randomness of modern warfare where your future can be destroyed–you can be killed or horribly maimed from someone flying at six hundred miles an hour, forty thousand feet above you–is a rather gruesome but all too real demonstration of my point tonight that time, as you know it, is a largely unconscious social convention.
(Welcoming asking what is best to do)
I would ask you to bring this point home and feel it within yourself. In my last lesson I mentioned how so many of you would consider it a failure to be brought to a moment of not knowing what to do. You consider it only an ultimate lifeline to cling to, your ability to sit down and ask God: What do I do next? Yet I would like to offer the radical suggestion that this can be instead a marvelous spiritual achievement if sought voluntarily long before desperately needed. This is a way in which you can break those rigid steel bars of conventional or habitual assumptions and with a joyful heart and a gleeful anticipation ask: Father, what is the best thing to do today? You can see how welcoming this suspension of your normal, conditioned concepts of time can open up the reality you call the future by realizing it does exist only as a shared mental projection.
That future you experience inside as so objective, so out there, so absolute and determining, is your own construct. You can transcend it so you have it consciously, rather than it having you. This is an expansion of consciousness for these notions of time only have you from your own habituation. They have no other reality. If you wish to be free from this social conditioning you must take the time—no pun intended—to break free. You must devote part of your life to freedom, to sitting down and realizing just how much you are—now, and just how plastic, how flexible is that projection you call the future.
This is another aspect of your maturity, my children. This is yet another dimension in which you need to stand unique within yourself in your spiritual essence, independent from all those around you, to be of greatest service to them as well as yourself. For in a way you are all in this situation together, and until and unless one of you breaks free of unconsciously held assumptions of an immutable future, none of you will. With this freedom of realization you can help fulfill your prayer this evening. You can help others be free in this same way, first by being the example, then by expressing to them these same truths I’m offering you now.
Discovery (True discovery: living on the edge)
What exactly is it you will discover when you sit down to ask of yourself and our Father’s presence within you: What is the best thing to do today? That is precisely what I cannot answer now because of the very glorious, wonderful, delightful essence of it is: you cannot know until you try. True discovery is a qualitatively progressive experience you cannot second guess or only half-heartedly anticipate. So the better you are able to accomplish this, the more spontaneous and liberating will be each separate time. You will realize to an ever greater degree what we’ve been offering as the notion that time is not repeating itself. Each separate moment is unique, and there is an enormous quotient of this uniqueness you can realize within it, of what has never happened before, and so is open to your will, your determination, your ability to influence.
You are capable of emerging from your past conditioning and living ever more in an eternal now, letting go more and more of those steel bars of your own imprisonment in notions of what has to happen. In your own personal life you will be helping along all those around you in what is another facet of a general, racial evolution. First for yourself, then for all the others, you will be approaching a greater truth, a fuller consciousness, a far deeper and broader reality of possibility and potential. This is how you increase your potential, my children, how you develop your flexibility, how you delight in bringing yourself to the edge of the vast chasm of the yet unknown, and enjoy standing on the edge, more and more open to whatever may come next.
Whatever will come next will seem more amenable to your will, while at the same time you will be more open to the vast concourse of cosmic events, and their evolution, that is our Universal Father’s will. For this freedom is His will for you, just as it is Mother Spirit’s and my own. We literally enjoy your greater freedom with you. And so we do our best to lead you up to the edge and get you comfortable just being there, unafraid, wondering and delighted that it is all now. So, much of that unreal future you seem to have needed once upon a time, you can see clearly now was just a temporarily necessary illusion you’ve outgrown.
So take a break, my children, from this ongoing push you feel. Sit calm and open in your stillness and let it all fall away. Realize ever more this marvelous now that contains all your freedom, all your life. If you have any comments or questions, let them spring forth in this present now we share so fully.
Student: Yes, Michael, I feel like I’m ready to make a shift in my understanding of time, and timelessness, and living in the moment. I can see how our preoccupation with the future takes away from experiencing our present potential. It seems like we get fixated on performing certain duties to insure our future well-being whether it be our retirement, or getting a house, or getting a mate—whatever. So it really resonated with me—what you were saying.
I can see in my family how they’re not really enjoying now, although having my little granddaughter around does keep us in the moment. I do feel at times I’m behind those bars. So thank you for that.
MICHAEL: Yes, my son, I emphasized the prison nature of your concepts because there are also those ways in which your uses of time are wonderful and necessary tools so you can relate with those around you; you can set up dates and make arrangements in planning your future. Here the thing to realize is the difference in consciousness. The problem is not that you have plans; these are necessary; you must make provision; you are responsible to a large degree for what will happen. But just how conscious is this?
Consciousness (Grow in consciousness)
For many people how they use time is a zero-sum game, and so when we say to live more and more in the present they can only see this as some kind of terrible irresponsibility, living willy-nilly with no responsibility for what they’ve done in the past, no plans for the future. And as long as your consciousness is a zero-sum game, that is true. That’s another prison to hold you tight. But the way out of this situation is to grow in consciousness. So we’ve offered before the notion of reliving parts of your past as consciously as possible to actually escape their determinism, to stop doing things habitually that were established in the past. Do things consciously with choice.
Yet this choice does take effort. You may have to improve your basic health to have more energy to expend in this effort, to be conscious, to be free. Sitting down in stillness to open yourself to something new, something even more right, something better to do in the next five minutes; or this evening when you get home all tired, and tend to fall back into your habitual patterns of resting perhaps a little mindlessly: you can see the need to grow, and in what dimension is this growth. It is predominately in spirit. It is how you spiritualize your mental and physical life. It is one of spiritual value, valuing your understanding of the nature of time–how living more and more consciously in the present moment actually gives you a truer sense of your past and your spiritual soul. It also augments your understanding of the true nature of what you call the future. It is the only way to insure it too will grow in possibility as you grow your present potential through increasing decisiveness.
Also you are quite right, my son, this is one of the ways in which these little spontaneous creatures—(Michael laughs)–these children of yours, do help you stay here and now, because that is all they have so far. The greater the realization and understanding the parents have of the nature of time is another facet of the evolution of human, social interaction. The greater your understanding of time, the greater will be the understanding your children inherit. This is another roundabout way in which you help each other grow.
Student: As you were speaking I thought about how we’re always thinking about retiring, at age 65 or whatever, and then not doing much after that—maybe a little golf. But what happens, I think, is we limit ourselves with that concept. We stick to a job or lifestyle that may not be beneficial, but we stay with it because it will provide for our retirement. And we’re living longer lives, so our retirement is longer too. But like for me, I have no provision for so-called retirement, but if I allow myself to live and work in the moment, and be open to other possibilities, then who knows what my future will look like. So…I don’t know where I’m going with this, but there are those concepts we seem to hold onto along with time and the future. And we sometimes do ourselves injustice with that.
MICHAEL: I can see where your intuition is leading you. You can unconsciously be giving away the present moment for the future in the sense of: someday I will start to live. In fact I think it’s a saying of yours that: Life is what happens while you’re waiting to start living. People hold their noses to the grindstone perhaps unnecessarily out of habit or sheer spiritual laziness, limiting their activities today with the notion of really starting to live either upon retirement, or some business success, or when the children grow up and move away–all these future events that will be quite different when they actually happen. Because meanwhile they are not developing those living qualities and abilities of spontaneity, flexibility, being here-and-now that they need now, as well as upon that coming event.
So the event happens, or the retirement comes, and they find themselves suddenly cut off from what gave their lives meaning, horribly adrift in a limbo of purposelessness, unable to realize the freedom they’ve looked forward to enjoying. They’ve acquired no living here-and-now abilities, of how to have fun—now. Strange as it may seem in your so-called hedonistic, pleasure-seeking society, there are so many perishing for this lack of having fun—real, true, soul-satisfying fun. For those who have worked so hard physically their whole life, retirement can seem like a blessing of doing nothing, only to perish a few years later in some unexpected activity like shoveling the snow off the driveway. They go keeling over from inactivity, the longed for and accomplished doing nothing killing them off. These are really tragic ironies we hope to help you see through.
Student: Along with the notion of living now there’s the possibility and opportunity of being open to other forms of self expression–soul expression. It seems like most of our lives are geared to just surviving. The only thing I can do now is become more familiar with my soul, my spirit, and my true nature. I’ll just keep going forward in the moment.
Work, Play (Work and fun)
MICHAEL: Yes, my son, this is what I meant by developing your abilities to live. I find it interesting you also have a saying that presents a cynical comment on older age, that as you get older your fun becomes more like work. Yet the converse can be that your work becomes more like fun. Instead of this being a rather cynical comment of an oldster’s inability to distinguish between the two, I present it tonight as a great spiritual triumph. Your fun can be more thoroughly engrossing and taste of timelessness, while your work can become more spontaneous and satisfying because you are giving up all these other notions that take you away from here-and-now. This is the total non-separation between you and your present activity, whatever it is. The union leads to the expansion of the present moment you can know now, even in your first human life. We can only promise you it will become even greatly more so in your next Morontia phase as you become more spiritually sensitive.
Student: Yes, that’s what I desire, is that spontaneity. I do feel at times I’m boxed in to a set of circumstance of living, and desire. It’s what prompts me into wanting a sense of freedom from the constraints I put upon myself. Although I do enjoy my life; I do enjoy my daughter and my granddaughter. I do enjoy my work and the people I work for. I really enjoy coming here and my various other spiritual functions.
MICHAEL: This is why we offer you the somewhat artificial distinction—because they are all one in your living reality—the separation of your life into its physical, mental, and spiritual aspects. While you are bound up physically by so many hours you’ve committed to doing someone’s work, you can at least know some greater mental and spiritual freedom within those committed hours. You can try to spiritualize your physical work and make it more fun.
Student: I do feel gratitude for the opportunity my work has given to me, to, in a sense, ground your lessons, to know the realizations I have experienced. So I am grateful for this.
MICHAEL: Mother Spirit did mention what might seem a back-handed kind of blessing: you also have your spiritual ambitions for more—a need to reach, to stretch. It is with an ironic sense of humor we suggest you welcome these as well—(Michael breaks up laughing)—in spite of yourself. (Student joins in…) This is what you get for all that spiritual study… (I know, I know…) But you would have a much less value-sensitive life otherwise. This is literally how you evaluate what you are doing–even the ambitions that have you on a rack at times. And so you also need to see through them as well, to get back to now.
This is bringing all the complex facets of your human reality into consciousness. And though you pay a price for doing so in terms of loosing a kind of mindless comfort you may think exists in others around you, you have to see them clearly—these more unfortunate souls—and question that Shakespearean saying: When ignorance is bliss, ‘tis folly to be wise. Ask yourself: when is ignorance bliss? Is it truly ever? What kind of cynicism does that express?
Student: I sometimes wonder about if there are people who live a very secluded life, who know nothing about what is going on in the world; and yet they live their lives. Maybe we who get inundated with so much information would be better if we weren’t—but I guess not. We are a human race. I do wonder if ignorance is bliss; but that’s not me.
MICHAEL: And how much of your view of another person’s life being simple and purely blissful is only another illusory projection? Who knows what demons and fears they may be experiencing by having no spiritual respite from the necessities of their human condition?
Student: Yes. I just experienced a few days ago: a person I once knew who seemed to be a picture of happiness and family values, who had three beautiful children, and a supposedly good marriage of fourteen years: I read in the paper he shot his wife and killed himself. She’s hanging on apparently… But no one saw that. Who knows what was going on behind the good material front, and all that?
MICHAEL: And the only way out, as Mother Spirit and I have been suggesting, is to welcome disillusionment, rather than seeing it as some terrible thing. People generally fear being disillusioned, but they have to ask themselves if this is not something to welcome, and trust that Reality—being so much a product of God’s will—is not always supremely greater than their own human illusions. It’s always a good trade to be disillusioned–past the initial feelings of loss. The illusions have to go to make room for the real; and make real the choice between the two.
Student: One of the prices I feel I am paying for desiring to stretch myself spiritually is the sense of loneliness. There are times I feel I’m completely by myself. I know I’m not alone in the grand scheme of things, but there is that sense.
MICHAEL: And as I said in my last lesson, I too, my son, experienced this very profoundly as Jesus. I was so often humanly frustrated at my inability to convince even those closest to me, and who loved me dearly—who would ultimately give up their lives for the truths we had shared: even at our last super together they were still so totally mistaken about what I had talked about for years as the kingdom of heaven being within them here and now.
Personality (Loneliness and unique individuality)
For there is that other consideration that as you accept a certain individuality and uniqueness, it is possible to feel the concurrent expansion of your spirit, and touch God’s presence within you that is the doorway to us and the spiritual community here on Urantia. And we are always delighted when you can perceive us—sense our presence.
So maybe we’d better close on that note. I enjoy our conversations together, the interplay of Creator Son and human being, for this is just bringing out into the open, into spoken words, what is going on within you, and all of Mother Spirit’s and my children, on an unconscious level. But ours and our Father’s input does break into your consciousness now and again. Mother Spirit is always here, part of your actual mentality, so it can truly be said you are experiencing her Mind/Spirit kind of mind here in your first, human life. When you awaken in your next, Morontia phase you will know another, much expanded kind of mentality concurrent with a much greater facility of accessing your own spirit, as well as ours.
Ascension Career (Spiritual ambitions)
From the spiritual viewpoint you are growing, this gives rise to ambitions that can chafe at your physical and mental limitations. So be aware of this, and allow your spirit itself to be humbled and acknowledge the ongoing necessity of your physical limitations. Soon enough you will trade this physical/mental vehicle for another of much greater sensitivity to many more dimensions of reality. So enjoy this one while you have it. (Michael laughs)
Take this as another little reminder to value whatever you find at hand: meaning: enjoy these hands you have that have made the tools you use, even the mental “tools” that have created your notions of time. Use them consciously least they use you. Grow in this one dimension you do have immediate control over—the mental. You can decide and, to some degree, focus on whatever you choose. Choose to expend a part of your life just on reflection, sitting down and being still and opening to wonder. That’s where you find Mother Spirit and me, and our Father, waiting to say hello. It’s where you can find another measure of my peace. Good evening.