Notes on the nature of love
It will seem to many readers that this ‘go it alone’ attitude is both arrogant and foolish because on earth we are all living with such reduced visibility, we could not possibly move in any constructive direction without constant guidance from higher levels of existence from which more of the game can be seen. And so if we look at our problems from the every-day situation we are in at this moment, instead of from the position of the Creator’s deliberations before it all began, we feel it is all very well to discuss such high-flown possibilities but they have hardly any bearing upon the pressing problems and responsibilities which come to us from all directions. However, we are not saying that the guidance and help from the sixth formers is wrong or not available. What we are saying is that there is a way of seeing guidance as a means of helping us in daily activity, which, at the same time, is not being used to invalidate our initiative and individuality but to enhance it. We can also realise that the attitude of friendship between our God and ourselves, and between the sixth formers and ourselves, is also supplemented by the growing number of first formers who can now help us whilst they are temporarily living in higher levels of creation between lives on earth. For there must be first and sixth formers who are now becoming wise in the ways of earth and heaven and so producing this deeper objectivity of understanding which is necessary to full maturity of spirit.
We are therefore at the beginning of a deeper understanding of God’s purpose and friendship for us, which is looking to the future of mankind rather than to the immediate conditions of to-day. For there will have to be a marked improvement in the general attitude of our society before many people will be ready to consider the possibility of the conjectures. But those few people who are prepared to give them thought may supply a necessary impetus to get closer to our God than we have assumed to be possible.
We have three distinct situations on earth at present if we follow these arguments. There is the original spiritual religion being taught by the Divine-Human sixth formers. There is the new and more demanding ‘Divine Friendship Teaching’ just beginning, and there is the ‘Rescue Teaching’ which takes many elementary and rather crude forms in order to hold out a life-line to those many Souls who are in danger of being swamped by the difficulties and complexities of the present classroom situation. This rescue level of activity has not received our attention, but it means that the errors which have accumulated as evil, have been so overwhelming for many of the younger Souls among us that temporary, unsophisticated and often misleading methods are being tried to start these pupils, at least in some way ‘consciously’ to engage in the work of the first form. The wrong orientations of these more easily grasped teachings can be corrected later on, so long as the initial effort is made to begin the journey of spiritual development. Otherwise, we may suspect that the time is shortly coming when the non-responders will be seperated from the responders in order that the painful tensions now present on earth can be reduced according to the compassion of our God. Thus the pupils who are trying to progress will cease to be held back by the pupils who still resist the path to unselfishness and responsibility. These latter will have to begin again the work of the first form in some other place and dimension, seperately from those who are ready to learn. The thickness of ‘the soup’ will then be lost again, its supremely testing efficacy will be dissipated and the pain, which has torn at the heart of God, will be reduced and what we call a golden age will repay the sorely tried Earth Spirit for all Her patience.
We must be careful how we understand our own creative participation with our Creator, for here we can also become too quick in jumping to conclusions which will make us appear arrogant and foolish. It must not be forgotten that our God has within His nature a great store of magnificently beautiful qualities and concepts and our own stores are, as yet, very empty and unbeautifulby by comparison. So in understanding that it is our creative and loving friendship that our Father and Friend is looking for, let us realise that our own creative responses are being brought to life by observing and translating the beautiful things of God. It will only be slowly and with a lot of experience that we ourselves will be able to create anything approaching the handiwork of God. Too much pride and conceit in the results of our own efforts will, of course, become an obvious hindrance in our education, but insufficient effort to make a start of our very own will, equally, be a measure of our lack of love and gladness towards the great gift of our own reality and the Divine Parents who made this gift possible. We must expect that, up to now, the true beauties that have been expressed through our cultures have been largely sent to us from our god through the efforts of the sixth formers who come and live among us to guide and stimulate our awaking to qualities beyond our ken. And yet, we in our turn have enhanced the maturity of these sixth formers by our painful and couragous efforts to live more fully in this very difficult and misleading environment. But we are, all of us, comforted by the touch of the great artist whose works are all around us, even on earth, in the shape of the lovely plants, creatures and lands to dwell in. It is mostly the activity of man, in the cultures of his own making, that the errors of living combine to hurt and destroy us. We have taken a long and careful look even at this and found that there is a supreme value to be perceived in the overcoming of such adversity.
It is most valuable for us to learn to exercise our imaginative capability in order to muse upon the possibilities of purpose beyond any we have, as yet, been able to grasp. For we can notice that in human nature we can withstand almost any difficulties except the loss of a sense of purpose. We can make do without happiness, comfort and love, if we feel that the reason for doing so is some great purpose. This will lead us to expect the same principle to apply to all other beings in any other level or classroom in the university. Consequently, if we can deepen, widen and clarify our sense of purpose, it will have a very far reaching effect.
It seems to me that, as far a our most real nature is concerned, purpose is explainable in a scale of terms which vary from the most elementary to the most mature. We have already covered the groundwork of this argument in our earlier discussions, so that we can say that the first sense of purpose that stems directly from our true Being nature is to belong to a form of life that does not come to an end. In this way we move from the considerations of the second hand and the minute hand, to the hour hand of our time sclae. Lastly, if we take in the concept of Divine Friendship, we move out of the ‘Day of Creation’ all together and into the condition from which our Creator set about creation; thus we move away from the clock face too. The purposes which belong to the second hand are shallower than those of the minute hand, and these in turn are shallower than those that belong to the hour hand. Thus we can say that if we move away even from the hour hand, we will expect to meet a deeper sense of purpose than the hour hand can express. This is summarised by saying that our Creator is not content with the relationship we can have with Him within the time and space of creation, He also wants us to realise this levelling-up, mature friendship situation outside the time and space of creation.
The ‘time scale’ of purpose is only the ‘exterior’ way of measuring it. We now need to look at the ‘interior’ significance of purpose in order to get to grips with its reality. If we look the meaning of purpose straight in the face we will agree that it always has to do with movement, and such movement is towards enhancement or enlargement, and not towards belittlement or diminishment. If purpose moves towards this latter direction we say it is sick or perverted. Movement of the sort we are talking about is not, of course, to do with physical movement, although this may be a part of it. We can see clearly that movement, in terms of purpose, is entirely to do with valuing and achievement, thus it is also inseperable from what we have called character and characteristics. These in turn being directly a measure of the treasures of friendship which we can win for one another and be able to offer one another. So the sense of purpose is of movement towards enhancement and is tus in one direction only. If it goes into reverse we say it is improper or sick. True direction of movement is thus towards a qualitative enlargement and, to be real, it must therefore involve the real, or Being, nature in us in awareness of more, or greater, or higher valuations. Thus the Being nature in us ‘moves’ from a smaller set of values and characteristics towards a larger set. This idea of movement we should call growth, and we will remember that we have already made it one part of the nature of Divine Love, where the spectrum of love has, at one end, the maintenance condition and, at the other end, the growth condition. The true sense of purpose is ‘movement as growth’, which growth is concerned entirely with qualities of awareness or consciousness and are, thus, not related to the space-time continuum of creation, but are related to a quality-time continuum of the Divine Spirit from which creation was manifested.
Here the term quality-time is drawing attention to another sense of time which is a part of the growth situation of the spirit, which, in turn, is an intrinsic part of the sense of purpose of the spirit. If we do not wish to use the term ‘spirit’ in its common usage we must try to think of the essential livingness and consciousness which is ‘The Real’....’That which is’. The word spirit, like so many of our words, has become involved with other meanings than the one which we are trying to define here. No doubt, as more of us move into these deeper areas of understanding, we will evolve a suitable language which will avoid much of the misunderstanding we have at present. To many people the word spirit immediately conjures up the idea of ghosts which, again, conjures up all sorts of superstitions and unconscious fears. But it is hard to find another word to represent the numinous breath of life, vital, dynamic, very awake and purposeful which is the nature of Living God and The Absolute Reality from which He has personified Himself.
If we can accept this term, then we are saying that our individual spirits, who share the spiritual reality of our Creator, and whose uniqueness and character is a measure of the value we all have for one another, also share the reality of the One Divine Absolute, this being what we can think of as our common specieshood to which we can only refer as Reality. How this arose in the first place is a mystery indeed, and all of us have pondered over the problem of how there could ever have been an original birth of ‘anything’ in the first place.
But there is a sort of ‘time’ which exists for our Creator in what we have previously thought of as the ‘timelessness’ of His Nature. This ‘timeless time’ refers to spaceless movement, which is the sense of purpose we are suggesting is the most essential attribute of any spirit. If we use the term ‘growth’ we will get much closer to the point we are trying to make, which is that anything living needs to grow. The more it is truly living, the more it truly needs to grow. Our Creator’s university is endeavouring to give us the truest sort of life, which is the Divine Life, and this must have as it’s primary purpose the sense of growth. But growth, in this case, is not from the body of a child to the body of an adult, it is from an elementary form of awareness to a mature form of awareness. Awareness is of the spirit and does not occupy space, so it does not occupy time which is related to space, but it occupies time which is related to growth.
It is somehow wrong to suggest that our God has no sense of time, for this always implies that He has no sense of purpose either, for He is not able to aspire ‘towards’ anything. We can easily imagine that He has created a sense of time for us to learn in but, if we try to imagine Him ‘living outside time’, then we run into the problem that he can foresee and foreknow everything in such a way that it invalidates our own sense of purpose. For, if God can foresee everything, then everything is already ‘settled’ or ‘fixed’ in some way and He is only playing games with us, pretending that we are real when we are not. Whenever we make any great effort to achieve something valuable, that effort is a part of the timeless knowledge of God and thus pre-ordained. Our sense of reality depends entirely on our efforts being effortful processes in which we use our own ‘creative fulcrum’ to bring something neew into the common pool of Reality. If this process is only part of a mechanical feed-back situation which gives us the feeling of using our initiative but is in fact ‘set-up’ for us in the plan of the Creator, then we can never become valuable Divine Friends for one another or for our God.
What we can imagine, is a situation where our God has the ability to forecast the probabilities within creation to an extent that seems to us to be complete foreknowledge. So that if all things remain equal, He can know what all the possible permutations of the happenings in creation will lead to. But, the key words are ‘all things being equal’, for if we learn to use our creative ability in the truly real sense which makes us a co-creator with our God, then all things are NOT equal, and the ability of our God immediately re-forecasts all our future again to contain this new element. The more creatively we respond to creation and the more we build unique characteristics into our true nature, the more the future of all things is recast. So, ideally, our God would like the future to be a continually changing possibility rather than a fixed one. The more we wake up to ourself and behave with faith and responsibility, the more we can choose to add to it the ‘Personal’ friendship of God. Otherwise, the best we can achieve is a ‘Parental’ friendship which is not the same because it has not become self-supporting and mature. This maturity is, of course, relative like everything else is relative and our first efforts to achieve it will take a lot of space-time experience as well as growth-time experience.
We may now say that in the ‘timeless’ reality outside creation there is another time we can learn to exist in which is growth time, which has a past, present and future, just like space time. Within this growth time we can support a true sense of purpose which can move from something less towards something more and, thus, we have made room again for the idea of purpose and growth which we can take part in and delight in, alongside our God, as friends. And, at last, He will be able to take off the mantle of ‘God’ and become our best and wisest ‘friend’.
To summarise the discussions in this chapter we have:
1. The seperation, which may be imminent, of the responders from the non-responders.
2. This will produce a marked improvement in conditions and will enable the
responders to grasp the Friendship Teaching.
3. We will only learn to be truly creative through appreciating the handiwork of our
God and the standards He has set us.
4. The sense of purpose is our most fundamental need.
5. Purpose can be defined as growth.
6. Growth is essentially qualitative.
7. But qualitative growth has a past, present and future.
8. We may therefore propose that there are two sorts of time.
a. Space-time, connected with movement in space.
b. Growth-time, connected with movement in consciousness.
9. Our Creator can forecast the future completely, unless our initiative enters in
and we become co-creators.
10. If we do this with love and responsibility, we come close to understanding the
Friendship which is His greatest gift to us, and ours to Him.