Nourishment for the Soul
Can Barrack Obama save you? Can study save you? Can you put a band aid on a cloud?
About all that Barrack Obama, Joel Osteen, Paris Hilton, or the latest American Idol or sports star can do is save you from the truth.
Years ago, I read in the newspaper about a young person that was dying. Some make-a-wish group came to grant her final request. Do you know what she requested? She wanted Pee Wee Herman to come and visit her.
Do you remember Pee Wee Herman. He made some funny kids movies a few years ago. I will never forget this newspaper story, because it shows that any human, no matter how nice or funny, cannot save us.
The best thing that another person can do is tell you the truth, perhaps pointing you in the right direction. Or perhaps giving you some timely advice. Otherwise about all another can do is set a good example, and frankly, not try to play God and meddle.
The Dali Llama once said : "Please help the people. And if you can't help them--please don't hurt them."
Trouble is, much of our so-called help does not really help. Much of our help is comfort. It is the kind of comfort that encourages us, but the encouragement only tempts us to begin to rely on outside encouragement. Soon we become dependent on the encouragement, and this dependence prevents us from reaching within to find wordless inner help from God.
That is why our phony encouragement often makes people worse.
Just look at the vast wastelands of our inner cities. The government came to save them, and look at the result. It bears witness to the old adage which says: it is better to teach a person to fish than to give them a fish. It rings true because it is true.
If a person is ill with a cold, maybe a little chicken soup (if not the canned variety with monosodium glutamate and GMO in it) couldn't hurt. But does it make the person well? No. The person becomes well when their body throws off the illness. It is the body that rallies and recuperates. The body might use a nutrient in the soup. But the body does the work, not the soup.
When we are ill with a cold, our natural inclination is to be left alone. Of course we need fluids and someone to check on us, but we want to rest and sleep. We don't want a 24/7 parade of visitors.
So the question is, who do you want: God or Pee Wee Herman? Common sense or Lyndon Johnson and his great society? What you know in your heart is right or someone's reassuring distracting patter?
And while you are at it, don't expect Eckhart Tolle, the Pope, Doprek Chopra, Sean Hannity or anyone else to save you. Maybe some of their advice is good and maybe it isn't. Don't form a judgment. Wait.
Listen to what they have to say, but check with your intuition. Does it sit well? What does your intuition wordlessly say about it? In time, you will wordlessly know if something makes sense or not.
Do you want the truth in the form of our God-given intuition, or do you want the pompous opinion of some writer or speaker?
If someone else's words awaken you to realize the truth, that is good. If another's timely warning awakens you to back off from potentially bad relationship, then their warning is good. If an aunt or uncle gives you a little wisdom, and their words once day come back to bear witness to what you now see for yourself, that is good.
But don't confuse the message with the messenger. It's the message that is important, and only because it awakens you or reminds you to see for yourself. The internal testimony is the thing. Any external words only bear witness to the wordless Truth. The Truth is the truth. Does it really matter whether the truth is spoken by a supposedly nice person, a failure, or a little child? The truth is the main thing. Always be ready to acknowledge the truth, no matter who said it.
Perhaps you can see that it is hard to really help people. When people are guilty and wrong, when they are needy and want reassurance for their wrong way of living, they are demanding for ego support. It is hard to be honest with them, because it is hard for them to receive. Even if you are honest--if they are not truly receptive--they will accuse you of being mean and cold.
There is much I could say on the topic, but for the time being, let me just say that it is better to give people the cutting edge of the truth (the truth is like a sharp edged sword, Jesus said).
That way, the few who will benefit from your awakening words will be grateful. Those who hate the truth will go off and cling to someone else. If you permit them to cling to you and draw false reassurance from you, then you, too, will become guilty.
Don't misunderstand me. If you can do a kindness, do so. But keep it simple and don't add extra ego supportiveness to it. And don't expect anything in return.
A final word. If someone says something mean, don't resent them. If someone says something nice, don't like them unduly. Careful not to reject the truth, just because the person said it with meanness.
The cruelty is calculated to hurt you, in that they know that you will become resentful, and therefore guilty and controllable. They might secretly want you to reject the truth. Instead hear the message, but don't judge the messenger. Check with your intuition. If there is some merit in what they said, then acknowledge the truth within. Never mind the other person.
Likewise if someone praises you and says nice things about you, their secret intent may be to weaken you. Don't resent them. Let the words go in one ear and out the other. It is okay to acknowledge good performance; just don't let it puff up your ego.