Getting perspective

Things have not been working out in my life. The usual stuff: money, relationships, the daily boring grind.

I came to realise that I was holding myself back. That being average, not succeeding, and not excelling at what I do, was somehow safer than fulfilling my true function and being all that I could be.

For a while I thought it was because I did not want to harm others, or be a charlatan, or to make false claims about my abilities. Then, with help, I realised that much more significant was my fear of being seen by God. My shame over my ‘sins’ of what I have done and what I have not done, had me living my life as an attempt to hide from God and His condemning gaze. Of course it doesn’t take much thinking to see that rather than hiding from God, it would be more accurate to say that I was pretending that God could not see me.

I was helped to begin to understand that God is an all loving, all knowing, and all caring presence who wishes only the best for me. That this is not a God to be feared but something, that if I stopped and opened to it, I would love to be aware of: a God that does not condemn. And so, over some time I decided that I wanted to experience this, to see me as God sees me.

And in a practice I received the following visualisation on perspective.

Imagine an ant looking up at a great hill and thinking how much effort it would be to cross that hill. Now picture a human looking that the same anthill and seeing it as a small bump easily stepped over. And then the human looks up and sees that the bump is on the side of a great mountain that will take much effort to cross. Then picture a person in an aeroplane looking down on at the same mountain and seeing that it is not that large and that it can be crossed in a matter of a minute or so. Then again, picture looking at the whole solar system where you can look at the whole or at any part of it. How would you think of the mountain or the anthill? They would not figure in your thinking. They would have little relevance on a solar system level.

Strange as it may sound, I was then asked to consider as a human could I condemn the solar system. I found I could not because the solar system is so vast and its workings are a mystery to me. I do not know what I could condemn it for.

And so it is, I was told, how God sees me, so vast the solar system would not appear even as a bump; where the vastness that is me is greater than the universe. This is what God looks upon, and not any ant-hill sins. My ‘sins’ just don’t register. There is nothing to forgive, nothing to be ashamed of, and nothing that says my little human perspective has any meaning that can stand against the vast truth of who I am.

How can something so vast, so eternal, hide? And why would something so complete and innocent need to?

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