Your inner life is your outer life. Your second life is your first life. Your fantasies are your reality.
Too much like or dislike can be very narrowing and corrupting. It seems to lead to obsession, which certainly is unhealthy? A computer metaphor is in order. Dichotomous thinking causes fragmentation, which causes loss of moral integrity. Obsession blocks adaptability, and nature and life are a flow. Flow and you live. Stagnate and you die.
Can there be “too much” reverence? There can be mistaken identification, and reverence for the object of mistaken identification is harmful, yes.
Reverence vs. worship. How do they relate? Worship is a practice undertaken for any of many reasons. In my experience, most of the common reasons are unhealthy. Many worshippers are very far from reverent, but are adamant, even obsessive, worshippers.
I suppose if you look at it from the point of view of the one being revered, often they feel uncomfortable with such attention? You can worship a person. You cannot revere them. Reverence is only in the context of the greater sacred.
I’ve been the oldest cousin, and having all the younger ones look up to me is a lot of pressure to be “the good girl”. That good girl worship is unhealthy. If they had reverence for the good girl role you play, they would see that the “good girl” has to exist, and that they are as responsible for being the good girl as you are.
You revere a persons role, and not the person themselves? And more than the abstract idea of role. Mother Teresa would have ignored you if you called her a saint, and gone on with her charitable work despite your attention. You revere the work that reverence makes you aware of, the spirit of it. If you believe in orthodox religion you revere the minister not for being a person, but you revere their calling and can respect that they are doing it, if they are doing it.
When that reverence for a role (my doctor for example when I’m sick) becomes about the doctor as a person (worship) then it has been twisted? There are ministers, priests, imams, rabbis that are helping people see that life is worth living, and that they can live in some degree of peace in this world. I can respect this. They help people see the world and themselves as worthy/holy/meaningful, but they are not the majority. The majority have no reverence and instead worship their institutions. Keeping reverence would allow forgiving the fallen priest.
To respect the role vs. person distinction is also to avoid the fall when one of them “falls from grace”. I can still revere Tiger Woods golfing. This would make there be no spiritual disturbance. Yes, you can revere his mastery of golfing. You can revere Michael Jackson’s gift with music. You can revere the heroes of our history who otherwise often lead sordid lives, and will avoid any loss of faith because you are seeing the truth. The sacred is here in this life that you may have judged profane, and any spiritual ecstasy you may know will come from the great harmony of this truth, not a delusion/sin/whatever, that leads to a fall.
Why is it so hard to be compassionate for someone that has assaulted a child for instance, using their role to take advantage? Is that person still allowed to be revered? The person was never allowed to be revered. If they had any connection to reverence it was from their practice, not from their presence. The role is not profaned by the individual, like priest. It has been scandalized. But tell me, will people stop seeking spiritual guidance? Stop needing it? The spiritual guide has always existed, and will always need to exist. Reverence tells us this and the individual priest doesn’t matter to this fact.
But it makes it more difficult to trust. It makes me more inclined to follow my own beliefs in the first place. This is best. Your teacher is the one who seems able to help you with your own insight. They didn’t give you your life. Hopefully, they won’t take it from you, but it is possible someone can help you along in your understanding. The fit spiritual teacher can address any spiritual issue for the simple reason they have a spiritual life themselves, and may be very engaged with it.
Specialization isn’t bad. A karate teacher isn’t an obsessed psychopath, and they do know that path enough to help another into it. I have been immersed in these studies for twenty four years give or take. Does that make me better or worse than anyone else? No, but it does make me twenty four years old in this study.
I don’t believe anyone can know it all. If you do know it all, then you are probably dead, because you never stop learning. Very sensible disbelief and true. I found the structure of a dojo helpful for understanding spiritual leadership. If you are with like minds, spiritual family, then like a family there are those older than you in that practice and younger than you. Each is deserving of respect, but when questions of understanding come up, do you not go to your elder?
It just gets scary when you realize someone sees you as one. Sometimes very scary.
I guess everyone becomes an elder when they have children. Yes, and everyone becomes a leader in a practice/path when they have matured in it to the point it becomes part of their nature. Second nature, as they say.
The first person you learn to revere is probably your mom or dad. That one often leads to a fall when we worship a parent and then find out they’re human. If the parent is self aware they will model reverence for their child, and the child’s focus will be on that and not the parent.
I suppose babies just revere themselves? Babies revere the mother, and all spiritual people revere the Great Mother (mother/father/life principle).
So we should all be more like babies? In that sense. Baby doesn’t understand mother, but still trusts mother.
Even when people tell us to stop acting like a baby. That advice is bad. They usually say it when you are acting like yourself, acting like a feeling person. Never stop that.
I suppose an expecting mother will revere the growing life inside her. We can learn from the mother that way too. It is maybe how we could learn to revere all life enough to allow us to survive on this planet, because it’s the mother who has reverence for the “other”. The baby inside them that they do not yet know.
All life is inside you, and you inside it. Reverence is realizing this.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.One World class participants. Thank you!)