Death/Rebirth and the Evolution of Consciousness

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The editorial by Janice Dolley in our Spring issue gave us an insight into the vast changes taking place in our collective humanity, and the Easter message of the death of the old leading to the birth of the new. Here we offer a supportive view of the place of death/rebirth in evolution.

Our awareness of ourselves and the world around us comes to us through two separate but connected channels in the brain, and each has a specal skill in the field of knowledge – the left hemisphere with rational knowledge and the right hemisphere with intuitive knowing, in Greek Epistemi and Gnosis. For healthy functioning we need a harmony between the two, but throughout human history it seems that this balance has not often been attained, in individual people or collectively in society. For the past few centuries our western civilization has been off balance by giving dominance to the left hemisphere, with its concern for exploitation of the material world to the detriment of intuitional knowledge of the mental/spiritual world. As a result of this imbalance we are destroying the material world around us and endangering life on this planet; and the collapse of our civlization is already on the horizon.

However there is evidence that Life exists on other levels beyond the physical, and is characterized by a repeating pattern of birth, maturity, old age and death, leading back to new birth. With this understanding we may see the present time in history as a natural process when one system has run its course, and is therefore closing down through collapse, but bearing within it the seeds of a new birth. The form that this rebirth will take is unpredictable to us in our present mindset. But it seems that the rebirth may come at the cost of great suffering as we are drawn into a cosmic struggle between “Good” and “Evil”.

In the death/rebirth process we can expect to continue with our same identities but in an environment made up of mental/spiritual rather than material realities, where bricks, mortar and money are replaced by meaning, purpose, emotions and intentions. We can prepare for this now before death by increasing openness to the vision and spiritual guidance available in the present moment. We may also discover that we are not alone, for as we let go of our egocentricity we enter into communion with higher powers and likeminded people both here and beyond in service to the Greater Whole.

To summarise:

* We are already at home in two worlds, the material world and that of mind/spirit.

* We have two ways of knowing – reason, which is most prominent in the material world, and intuition which is more tuned in to the mental/spiritual world.

* Our present Western society is out of balance towards greed and materialism, with the likely result of self destruction. And beneath the social upheaval lies a spiritual struggle between light and darkness.

* A key feature in evolution is the death-rebirth process, operating on both the individual and collective forms of life. This process involves hard choices, and may be accompanied by deep suffering.

* Collectively our civilization is disintegrating because with our separateness and greed we have defied the rules of the universe which are based on mutuality in community.

* Individually, and using the increasing powers of perception that often come with old age, we have a key role with others in rescueing from the old what is needed in the birth of the new.

Harry Underhill  10.10.2015



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