Saturday, September 8, 2007

A Loftier Race?

These things shall be- a loftier race Than e'er the world hath known shall rise With flame of freedom in their souls, And light of knowledge in their eyes

John Symonds, the English novelist, children's author, and playwright, was born in 1914. His poem of a loftier race sounds like it came from a children's book. But, not just kids take those thoughts to heart and imagine them to be real. We all like to read about such myths and fantasies. We put the self in dreams and live them for a moment, and find the experience real in some innate way.

Ken Wilbur one of our modern day philosophers had something to say about that sort of experience:

Notice what it is that you call "you"- you might notice two parts of this "self": (1) there is some sort of observing self, an inner subject or watcher. (2) there is some sort of observed self, some objective things that you can see or know about yourself, such as I am a father, mother, doctor, clerk etc.

The first is experienced as an "I," the second as a "me" or even mine. The first self is the proximate self since it is closer to "you"; and the second is the distant self since it is objective and father away. Both of them together, along with other sources of selfness are called the overall self.

Ken's thoughts and Symonds poem are related in the fact that the inner self is watching the distant self, and lighting a flame of knowledge. This knowledge is an aspect of awareness. Knowlwdge is realizing that this journey through time and space is the playground of dreams, and the theater for the play we write for ourselves. It is the manifestations of our impulses, thoughts, beliefs, and desires.

We all are part of that enlightened race. A race with the knowledge of eternity in our souls. A race with love deeply rooted in our bodies and minds. A race that is a whole part of another whole.

We experience our beliefs and become what we believe. Our flame of freedom burns every life experience. All we need to do is become aware of what makes that flame brighter.