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  • lucasbfoley

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Updated: Aug 17, 2021

The spirit is an observer, a designer, seeing in geometry. Its realm is unbound by time and space. There is no scarcity, no lacking, no loss. In that realm, the spirit can observe and design without limit.

When the spirit enters the physical world without first passing through the soul, it forgets what it is, where it's going, and where it shall return. It mistakes itself for organism, body, avatar. Bursting with infinite creativity, it looks at its world and its being and imagines countless ways things could be better, more safe, more efficient, more pleasurable, more peaceful, more loving and loved.

Bound by time and space, the spirit bristles: why aren't things better yet? why aren't these clever designs manifesting? who has the real power here? why is this all so...suboptimal? complicated? messy? wrong?

Becoming anxious, the spirit operates as the frustrated fixer, fretting and harassing its environment (its own body, others' bodies, the world) with indignant disbelief at opportunities unseized, problems unremedied, the sickening brokenness and crumbiness of it all, nauseating whirlpools of impotence and helplessness and despair and rage.

Weary, daunted, the spirit withdraws into apathy (stupid me, stupid you, stupid world), marinates in resentment (how dare I, how dare they, who would dare), lashes out as demon (you've earned this, I deserve this, look what you're making me do), annoints itself in righteousness & probity (you're so lucky I'm so good, I'm so lucky my rules are so good), purges & purifies & otherwise punishes reality for failing to conform to ideals (fear masquerading as virtue). The spirit endures suffering, battles suffering, & spreads suffering, perpetuating interminable cycles of woe.

Avatar undergoes a similar struggle, when it enters the spirit world without first passing through the soul.

The avatar is an analyzer, an operator, that processes in algebra. Its realm is physical and finite. It has preferences, goals, plans. In that realm, it can cycle through work, rest, and play, day after day, afloat on time's invisible web of rivers.

Dreaming unconsciously, the body mistakes the ethereal realm for its own. Immersed in nightmare, it feels an infinite, seemingly inescapable terror, with no beginning, arc, or end. Immersed in fantasy, it feels an intoxicating, incomparable bliss - which, upon returning to the weight & ache of mortal body, makes waking life feel like limbo, or even hell. Immersed in boredom, confusion, malaise, it feels hopeless, helpless, sickeningly lost, and the meaninglessness becomes deafening.

Cycling between the physical realm and the spiritual, over and over, without an abiding sense of progress, growth, how, or why, the avatar begins to feel like life is some elaborate or diabolical test, some doorless waiting room, some endless performance or audition, some cosmic punishment deserved (self loathing) or underserved (self pity). Raging, the body lashes out with violence (spreads suffering). Scared, the body distracts itself with comfort & familiarity (endures suffering). Confused, the body denies the fact of its own struggle (battles suffering).

Good & evil, right & wrong, light & dark, are separate only from the confused perspective of avatar obliviously adrift in dream or spirit obliviously awash in body. Suffering in our confusion, we idolize what seems to bring relief (good, right, the light) and demonize what seems to bring pain (evil, wrong, dark).

Sin is whatever reenforces that confusion.

Condemning. Punishing. Shaming. Destroying. Banishing. Exploiting. Pitying. The habits of a spirit, drunk with pride or power, sick with guilt or fear, swirling in dread or confusion (existential angst), desperately attempting to impose its misguided will, while salvation awaits on the other side of surrender, the sacred space where spirit can contemplate & co-opᵉᵣate with avatar by embracing the other in soul.

Withdrawing. Avoiding. Addict-ing. Numbing. Evading. Shunning. Denying. The habits of a body, craving weightless transcendence, lusting for infinite control (pleasure, protection), loathing the messiness and unpredictability of organic being, desperately attempting to impose its misguided will, while salvation awaits on the other side of surrender, the sacred space where avatar can contemplate & co-opₑʳate with spirit by embracing the other in soul.

We are avatar. We are spirit. We, reading these words, are soul, the intersection of avatar & spirit, the sacred space in which they commune, the mystic portal through which they pass.

The divine mystery is how we can be all three, and one, and simultaneously aware thereof.

As soul, our purpose is to remain open: to maintain a safe & loving space for communion, a secure & edifying portal for passage, for body and for spirit, and, thereby, for ourselves.

The yin-yang demonstrates this divine wisdom.

It is blackness, whiteness, the cur[]ing borders between, the balanced inter-embedding, an emergent, endlessly symbolic whole. It is a maportrait for the human experience.

Beholding the yin-yang, avatar remembers the truth: it is a finite being, that visits infinite realms, and it will die, and its spirit will not. So edified, the avatar dreams with wonder, analyzes with humility, operates with gratitude, and lives & dies in peace.

Beholding the yin-yang, spirit remembers the truth: it is an infinite being, that visits finite realms, and it will not die, and its body will. So edified, the spirit awakens with acceptance, observes with serenity, creates with joy, and surrenders in ecstasy.

As open soul, we serve as a channel for apology & forgiveness. Spirit apologizes to avatar for its sins of absoluteness, its judging & condemning & other cruel tortures of the body. Avatar apologizes to spirit for its sins of avoidance, its shunning & evading & other cold tortures of the spirit. Each accepts the other's apology, forgives, and accepts forgiveness, powering the divine hydraulics of grace.

Now that wounds are healing, peace is celebrated with the exchange of gifts. Through the open channel of the soul, spirit infuses avatar with gifts of the infinite: unconditional love, inexpressible knowing, irreducible wholeness, visions beyond reality, notions beyond reason. So infused, the body glows with divinity.

Through the same channel, avatar infuses spirit with gifts of the finite: humility, courage, tenderness, gratitude, and other worldly virtues that, like honey, emerge only through struggle; like an essential oil "not expressed by suns - alone - / It is the gift of screws." So infused, the spirit radiates life.

And O-you, the soul, bathing in this glow & radiance, suffused with generosity & gratitude from the gifts' exchange, erupt into a standing wave of color, a rainbow being, aflow in time and awash in Oneness, fully material & fully spiritual & thereby fully divine, dancing to Universal harmonies with your own unique style, splashiness, signature, & song.

In this state of enlightened surrender, all concepts and distinctions fall away, and there simply is what it is: emerging in form as Universe, emergent in essence as One, expressed in uniqueness as you.

We are yin, we are yang, we are yin-yang. We are all three. We are a mysterious fourth that emerges only through & as the three uniting. The yin-yang symbolizes distinctions so we can see past them, reminds us of separateness so we can transcend it, articulates relationship so we can become it, embodies Love so we can be I(T).

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