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by David Truman

The costly problem of (presumed) separation.

Many beings, one I (the I of All)

What about our uniqueness?

Rebellion for the sake of individuality

The fantasy and the Reality

High way robbery

God is the One I, AND all of its unique expressions

How can we fully grasp this radical Truth?

True, or false? . . .

God is omnipresent.

Humanity is One.

God dwells within us.

ost of us would answer without hesitation, "True!" But though we believe these things, we rarely FEEL them. Instead, we persist in seeing ourselves as separate from all: separate

from God, from others, and from the beauty of Divinity.

It's common to believe in Unity intellectually and philosophically, but our belief may be superficial. What if we don't ACCEPT Unity as the reality of our lives? What if we believe that individuality MEANS separateness, uniqueness MEANS separateness? Then we miss out on the comfort and illumination that Unity-awareness brings to every part of our lives.

Dear friends, belief in separateness is a terribly costly misunderstanding. Indeed, happiness, love, and spirituality depend on correcting it. For that, we need a deeper, more heartfelt acceptance of Unity. The purpose of this article is to facilitate that acceptance.

The costly problem of (presumed) separation

Believing we're separate from God is terribly painful, whether we're used to it or not. We need God here -- now and now and now. We need a solid connection to inner guidance. We need a present and ongoing sense of affinity and kinship with our fellow man. Nothing short of steady Unity awareness -- and constant God-consciousness -- can satisfy those needs.

Meanwhile, the pain of disconnection compels us to SEEK. Consciously or unconsciously, we seek to fill the emptiness created by feeling separate. All forms of seeking, spiritual AND worldly, attempt to satisfy our deep soul hunger for God, for Unity. And when nothing we crave seems to fill that hollow leg, we seek consolation and distraction from the pain.

But let's consider this search for God more deeply: Could anyone LITERALLY not have God? Could anyone POSSIBLY be in a place where God, the Omnipresent Supreme Being, is not? That couldn't possibly be, or else God is not God. So, in reality, we're not suffering the "fact" that God isn't here with us; what we're REALLY suffering is our CONVICTION that God is not here with us. Although our conviction is an illusion, our suffering is very real, because we can't subjectively have/enjoy anything we don't accept.

The conviction of being separate from God amounts to IGNORING or DENYING the fact that God is here with us. So our seeking God is the RESULT and EVIDENCE of unconsciously REFUSING God. And if we give up seeking in despair of ever finding God, that too results from not accepting God. So here, in a nutshell, is the trouble with seeking: Because seeking arises from the conviction of NOT HAVING, it denies the very thing it is after. In so doing, seeking pushes its own goal away. Therefore, even as we seek God, we are unconsciously pushing God away. That's a hard fact to face, but we need to face it.

How does God feel about that? Just as you would feel in God's position -- sad. Surely you've had a similar experience yourself: Tearfully, a friend tells you, "No one loves me. No one listens to me. I need a friend." -- A sad tale indeed! But what's the cause of that sorrow? It's not that they ARE alone, not really. And it's not that they ARE uncared for. You're sitting right in front of them, caring for them, listening to them. As you sit there, the real tragedy of their situation becomes evident to you: Your friend, BELIEVING that they are alone, will not ACCEPT the fact that you are right there with them, even now, in their grief. Consequently, they can take no comfort from you. And they surely will go on desperately seeking love even after that meeting with you.

How can your assurances of love help your friend if they won't accept that you love them? And similarly, how can God's constant communications of love and support help us if we are certain God is not here? The evidence of God's presence in and around us is almost entirely lost upon us if we don't ACCEPT it. What we believe to be the case is, to us, reality. And most likely, if we're stuck on our conviction, no amount of evidence to the contrary gets through.

Let's take another illustration of the need for acceptance: A woman could be attractive, and all her friends may recognize her as such. But if she considers herself ugly -- that is, if she does not accept the fact that she's attractive -- she can't have the joy and self-assurance of knowing she's beautiful. Sadly, her subjective EXPERIENCE -- the "reality" in which she lives, and which she suffers -- will be the experience of being ugly. That experience results entirely from non-acceptance.

As long as she assumes she is ugly, that woman will do one of two things:




She will work hard to "become attractive" (perhaps by endless exercise, or by extreme concern about other aspects of appearance, like dress, hairstyle, etc.).


Considering the situation hopeless, she may give up on the effort to "become attractive" altogether.

Whether she tries hard to compensate or gives up, this fact remains: until and unless she ACCEPTS her attractiveness, she will continue to experience her life as an ugly duckling. So the solution to her problem is not seeking: it is ACCEPTANCE. Subjectively, we only have what we accept.

Therefore, if we want to be spiritually and humanly fulfilled, we can't achieve fulfillment as a result of any search, high or low. Our fulfillment can only come from our simple ACCEPTANCE of our oneness with God.

Many beings, one I (the I of All)

Why DON'T we already accept our oneness with God? Because, as noted before, we believe that our individuality PROVES that we are separate. We don't know what else to conclude from the "evidence" of having been born in separate bodies. We look around at our fellow human beings and observe that we each have different attributes, different feelings, different thoughts. When each of us says "I" or "you," we indicate one specific person, no one else. The conclusion we reach -- that we're separate and alone -- is natural enough, but not deep enough. If you're willing to reconsider the matter, listen to God's view of who we are:


GOD: In all of creation, there are many creatures, but only One I. Take, for example, this girl. She is I, tangibly. She is an iteration, an expression, a form of I. But though she is a unique form of I, she is not, because of her uniqueness, as different as she tends to think. Although she is one expression of uniqueness, she is not, as an entity, independent of I.

God is saying, ALTHOUGH there are many beings -- of endless varieties, of many shapes and sizes -- there is only one I: the I of All. There IS no separate I. EVEN THOUGH we, as individual beings, ARE NOT the same in our unique qualities, we still have the same I. So, our uniqueness DOESN'T prove that we're separate after all. Wow! And, hallelujah!

What about our uniqueness?

Moreover, God is saying something else here, to help our mortal minds understand the mystery of individuality: "She is I, tangibly. She is an iteration, an expression, a form of I." That means our UNIQUENESS does not express our SEPARATENESS. On the contrary, our uniqueness is a direct and present EXPRESSION of the one God!

Imagine two electric appliances, a toaster and a radio. The unique individual expression of a toaster is that it toasts bread. The unique expression of a radio is that it receives signals from radio stations and plays them. Different functions, aren't they? Sure, but look at this . . .

If we unplug an individual toaster from the current that powers it, how can it function as the toaster that it is? And likewise, if we unplug an individual radio from the current that powers it, how can it function as the radio that it is? The unique expression/individuality of each appliance manifests ONLY when it is plugged into the electric current. What we're seeing is the same electricity manifesting in uniquely different expressions! The Higher Power that animates both appliances -- indeed ALL appliances -- is one and the same Power. And this One Divine I -- expressing in all these various forms -- IS the sameness, the Unity, of All. This, then, helps us understand the secret of Unity in diversity:


What is different is, at the same time, one and the same.

Rebellion for the sake of individuality

Granted, the concept of different electric appliances animated by the same power may seem easier to understand than the concept of one I in all beings. Under the influence of ego, we choke on the concept of Unity, because, we think our individuality DEPENDS ON separateness and difference, and is MAINTAINED by separation and difference. And believing that, we feel threatened by anything that seems to diminish or contradict our separateness and difference. That's why, developing as individuals, we feel duty-bound to rebel against "conforming" or "surrendering" -- to our parents' will and expectations, for example. Or to conventional standards. Or to our friends' manner of acting and appearance. And even, perhaps, to our beloveds' needs and desires. In our rebellion, we are just trying to survive as we believe ourselves to be -- separate and distinct.

Furthermore, to the extent that we equate separate selfhood with personal existence and validity, we tend to disown all that is universal in ourselves. We fear that any implication or evidence of Oneness will cause us to lose our identity. Consequently, we tend to overvalue what seems to show our distinctiveness, and undervalue what shows our kinship with all other human beings. Fearing that sameness threatens our separate existence, we tend to reject or downplay all that is bridging and unifying.


Example: Many of us feel that caring about others makes us feel too vulnerable, too dependent, too much "at the effect" of another person. So we try to figure out relatively superficial ways to love. For example, we may avoid admitting the true depth of our emotions. Or, sadly, we resist treating our loved ones with the reverence and devotion we actually feel. We maintain space -- physically, or at least psychically -- from others.

Tragically, through all those efforts, we create relationships in which we -- our true Selves -- are ABSENT. We withhold the fullness of our passion, our emotion, our heart-involvement, etc. Once again, our non-acceptance prevents having/sharing the beauty could otherwise be.

What is universally human is part of our own Divine nature. And such beauty it IS! But, believing that Unity means personal extinction, ego fearfully rebels against the beauty of the true I, the One I. Ego consistently suppresses not just vulnerability, but Divine Self-expressions of all kinds. Indeed, it rejects all that is most BEAUTIFULLY UNIQUE, as well as all that is most UNIVERSALLY HUMAN, about us. But as God explains, when we rebel against God, we rebel against ourselves:

GOD: The Truth of the soul, the Passion of the soul, the Love of the soul -- I am the source of these things. The Beauty of the soul, the Knowing of the soul, the Delight of the soul, the Desire of the soul -- this is I. If one tries to be without Me, to live and love as a separated individual, one rebels against all these things, and one misses oneself.

If human life is lived as a belief of separation from I, as a belief of difference from I, the human entity is not capable of enjoying its full humanity. Unless one realizes oneself as an expression of I, the way of living as an individual is, in reality, a rebellion against oneself.

Ego's rebellion IS our suffering. Specifically, we suffer the pain of not living freely, happily, as the loving One we ARE. And that loss is God's suffering, too. It deprives everyone of who we are.

The fantasy and the Reality

To the extent that we are ego-identified, we tend to think, "I get to be an individual BECAUSE I am separate." But friends, if you have followed this consideration, then you know that the Truth is exactly opposite. The Truth is, "I can't possibly be who I am until and unless I realize that I am NOT separate in my individuality." Remember:


If we unplug the toaster, it won't function as such. It CAN'T.

In fact, the manifestation of our uniqueness DEPENDS on the fact that we are NOT separate. Here God explains exactly why that is so:

GOD: The reality of the uniqueness of expression of I through one unique individual being does not depend on the individual's idea of uniqueness and separation. It exists freely without that idea. A SENSE of individuality, a SENSE of separation, a SENSE of identity as an individual -- none of that is needed for individuality to exist. On the contrary: Individuality depends on the rooting in Me. Just as the flower's blooming depends on being rooted in the Earth, your identity must be rooted in I for your uniqueness to bloom, for your full humanity to manifest.

As I, one can love through the beauty of the flower. As I, one can be passionate through the passion of the flower. As I, one can give through the uniqueness of the flower. But as the flower, separated from I, one wilts.

In our delusion of separation, the FANTASY is this: You unplug the toaster, and then the toaster starts dancing. It's like a Disney movie in which the housewife goes to bed, and all of a sudden the vacuum, the iron, the toaster, and all her other appliances start partying like mad. They tango up and down the staircase, across the carpet, and along the window sill, in ecstasy! Just like the animated appliances, the isolated individual BELIEVES he will carry on wonderfully, having been unplugged from God.

The reality is absolutely the opposite from that fantasy. For anything to be what it is and do what it does, it MUST be connected to its power source. An unplugged radio sits silent. An unplugged vacuum sleeps in the closet. An uprooted pansy wilts.

Likewise, a human being who is unplugged from God is powerless. An individual who conceives of his individuality as something that functions at odds with, separate from, and independent of the Great I AM is DYSFUNCTIONAL -- not only as a vehicle of Divine expression, but as a human individual.

High way robbery

Holding the idea "individuality means separateness" is highway robbery. It robs us of the High Way, the True Way of living. To the extent we think we're separate and alone, we cut ourselves off from the Higher Power of Divine Being, Divine Transmission. The True Way of living is to live NOT in the illusion of being alone, NOT in the conviction of separateness, NOT in the conviction of conflict and otherness, but as One.


GOD: It is important that we understand the value of individuality as it truly IS, not in any other way. Individuality as NOT SEPARATE FROM I, as NOT OTHER THAN I, but as EXISTING IN I. When individuality is wrongly held, it is because of this belief that separation is associated with uniqueness, individuality. Any sense of identity that is not rooted in I, from the beginning, leads to mistaken ideas, mistaken living. The joy of True Being is replaced with doubt, freedom with restrictions and fears -- and the Life, the expression, fades. But when individuality stays firmly rooted in I, the flower blooms.

Here's a clear and familiar illustration of God's point: A woman who believes she is separate may feel very self-conscious in her sense of difference. She feels anxious; she fears conflict. Naturally, in her anxiety, she tends to clam up. Even if she opens her mouth, what comes out is certainly not the true expression of her authentic Selfhood. Instead, her words simply express ego-generated thoughts, like these: "I feel uncomfortable. I am not sure that you will like me, accept me, or agree with me." Surely, those thoughts do not express the actuality of her unique being. All they really express is her lower mind, fearful attitudes, problematical beliefs, and troublesome suppositions. None of that reflects who she IS. Indeed, she is carefully, deliberately NOT expressing who she really IS.

Dear friends, the moral of that story is obvious: ONLY in joyful Self-confidence will the unique being manifest as it is -- as God made it to be! We feel safe ONLY in Unity; we always feel threatened in separateness. Consequently, the fruit of full Self-expression can mature ONLY to the extent that our notion of separation is released, and is replaced by the acceptance of God within us and all around us.

God is the One I, AND all of its unique expressions

God is the life that POWERS the flower, lives IN the flower, and expresses THROUGH the flower. But also, at the same time, God expresses AS the flower. Truly! The pansy plant ITSELF -- the unique form and substance of it -- is an expression of God. Thus, even that which is ordinarily considered to be merely a VEHICLE of God, and not OF God, actually IS of God.

With this in mind, you DON'T have to merely say, "I am me, and God is expressing THROUGH me." You can also stand up on the stage of life and say, "I myself, as a unique individual entity, am a Divine expression, like a sunset, a bird, a tiger, a mountain -- and MORE."

Here's THE most important fact of your life: Divinity is your nature and your ENTIRE reality -- and not JUST your motive force. The indwelling I, the unique house in which it dwells, and the outflowing Divinity -- ALL of this is Divinity. Thus, we are NOT separate from God in any respect. To accept this Reality is to replace seeking with finding, having, and being. Wonderful!


How can we fully grasp this radical Truth?

How DO we grasp this? It's not enough merely to grasp it with our minds, as mere intellectual knowing, or as a matter of faith belief. That won't make enough difference. We must somehow ACCEPT the reality that we've missed, ignored, or denied. Remember, God can't add to us something we already have, and that we willfully refuse. So the burden is on us: we need to accept what IS.

We can accept the essential Truth of God and ourselves by means of sincerity and integrity. Start by humbly acknowledging this obvious fact:


We'll seek God forever, unsuccessfully, if we assume that God is not here. There is no way we can find God, until and unless we stop asserting that God is not here.

True integrity begins when a person stops believing illusions and lies. Ego is a liar, and a stubborn liar at that. Ego-styled beliefs prevent us from changing our minds despite the evidence of both experience and intuition. Therefore, to progress in accepting the Truth about God and self, we must release the egoic beliefs we're attached to. Then, what is true will become much more obvious.

The truth is, you and God are inseparable -- always have been; always will be. You don't need to become different, or achieve anything more, for that to be the case. That's not to say there aren't greater refinements of consciousness ahead on the path of evolution. The only question is this: ON the path, do we get to enjoy the journey that lies ahead, in God and with God -- or must we suffer the painful illusion that we're going it alone? Which would you rather be: a rich man investing his money to increase his wealth, or a pauper hoping to become rich? Both look forward to riches, but there's a WORLD of difference in how they FEEL.

That said, don't worry. No need to weigh down this moment with the total responsibility for complete, instantaneous comprehension/acceptance of this idea. The acceptance of Truth GROWS within oneself. It is a progressive realization. One warms up to It.

Today, you'll understand these things to some degree. Be glad. Tomorrow, you'll understand a bit more, and better. Even if it takes a while, you will reach the point of full acceptance of Reality. When your understanding reaches full bloom, you'll see that this ever-present Reality -- the One that always was, is, and will be -- is the exact thing you've always sought. You'll never feel yourself to be without It again.

So be it.

by David Truman

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