As 2017 comes to an end I am rereading Towards Wisdom it was written by my good friend, Copthorne Macdonald. He passed away a few years ago at about this time of year. He lives on the pages of his books. I’ve pasted below a section from his book that speaks to the need to think deeper about the challenges life brings us. He goes on to talk about nurturing a positive mind state. In a world that can seem filled with anger his message is one of hope. Beware -as with all Copthorne conversations you have to think deeply about it. He was never a "light" thinker. Enjoy. Doug
There is an inherent dimension of depth to existence that we have been missing – a missing perspective that, when seen, makes everything stand out in three-dimensional bold relief. We could compare realization to the difference between viewing a slide in a slide viewer with its flat two-dimensional effect, and simultaneously viewing two slides taken from positions four inches apart. Seen through a stereo viewer (the old Viewmaster, or the like) the whole scene then springs into three-dimensional life.
Realization adds the missing depth, the missing dimension of Being, to our view of the world. It provides us with intuitive cognizance of the cosmic medium to complement our sense-based perception of the cosmic message.
As radical transformation of the person takes place, what remains and what disappears? As I see it the body, most mental and physical skills, voice, and appearance remain the same. But the reactivity is gone. Impulses of anger, hate, fear, jealousy, greed, craving and aversion arise at times. Sustained attention and energy are denied them, however, so they no longer become states of anger, hate, fear, etc.
Positive mind states are present much more of the time: lovingkindness, patience, equanimity, compassion, joy at another’s good fortune, etc. Old, limited, less correct models of reality are dropped, or are relegated to the special circumstances where they are appropriate. More holistic, more correct models are present much of the time.
These new models result in less judgement of others; there is a compassionate understanding that every body/mind is doing the best it can at every moment. What is at this moment must be.
It makes no sense to rail at present circumstances. What is at this moment simply is, the logical consequence of all that has gone before. Acceptance, therefore, is only rational, sane.
Let me accept the present moment’s inevitability and allow intuitive wisdom to guide this body/mind into the next. Let me accept an imperfect present so that I may transmute the next moment, and the next, into something just a little more loving, a little more harmonious, a little wiser. Let me observe the present moment with deep interest. Accept it. Then let it go.