Leaf of the Tree

Finding the Divine in the Details

Awareness: spirit of a new and wondrous age



As the edits for With Thine Own Eyes: Why Imitate the Past When We Can Investigate Reality? arrive from George Ronald Publishing, I re-encounter in its pages so many themes dear to my heart.

They suggest things like: “In this new and truly wondrous age there’s a door that’s been opened wider than heaven and earth through which we’ve been invited to pass.”

Do I believe that? Do I live and act as though I do?

Am I ready to embrace the truth that my deepest reality, that for which I’ve been created, “is a presence and power in whose light fear and the trappings of mere survival disappear like shadows?”

The blind imitation of the past that my human nature can’t help but fall into “veils me from the principles that are the light on my path and the very spirit of this age”.

Experience has certainly shown this to be the case, without exception. It’s a little sad that I’ve repeated that experience so often, but so I have, and there it is. What have I learned from it? What have I believed that has led me to do that? Why?DKSIMG_0921

“How does coming to understand who it is we are created to be change the way we see ourselves, each other, and our world?” That’s definitely a question to take into the day, and every possible moment.

Perhaps this understanding welcomes in a new way of thinking that evolves out of love and attraction toward the latent spiritual gifts in myself and others that are waiting to be revealed. Do I remember that I can always choose this love and attraction over the kind of near-instinctual reactions that arise from a fear that’s rooted in preoccupation with physical survival? That crippling fear has kept humanity, human thinking and our greatest possibilities entrapped for eons.

Fact is, I’m not going to survive physically forever, nor is anyone else. (I wonder why that aspect of life receives so very much attention? Might it be that some believe that’s all there is?)

I might, however, have the chance to begin living in an eternal kind of way as I invite and employ what lasts forever – those gifts waiting within, like gems in a mine.

“Only our spiritual nature can look beyond outward appearances, first impressions and personality flaws to see `all the virtues of the world of humanity latent within’ ourselves and each other,” I’m reminded. It’s this core part of my self that has the capacity to “perceive honor and nobility in every human being”, including this one who looks back from the mirror each day.

IMG_1258For the first time, the realization of human oneness, in reality, is within our grasp. And each of us is invited to discover our unique, true identity as a soul, as well as our unique purpose, and our unique way of solving problems. 

“Happy are those who spend their days in gaining knowledge, in discovering the secrets of nature, and in penetrating the subtleties of pure truth,” ‘Abdu’l-Bahá has reminded in a book called Some Answered Questions.

Happy indeed.

With Thine Own Eyes: Why Imitate the Past When We Can Investigate Reality?, co-authored by Ronald Tomanio, Diane Iverson, and Phyllis Ring, will be released by George Ronald Publishing.

4 thoughts on “Awareness: spirit of a new and wondrous age

  1. Thanks for such a thought-provoking article, dear Phyllis! For me, compassion is key during this journey from blind imitation to my true self. While it’s frustrating to watch myself repeat instinctual patterns (reacting with fear and anger), I try to be as compassionate with myself as I am with a toddler learning to walk. What an exhausting effort that is! In walking, one must not only fight gravity, but continually refuse to be pushed back to the ground. We do this by falling onto one foot and then the other while keeping upright and balanced. Perhaps walking is nothing more than plunging toward the ground but refusing to fall! As a toddler I fell a lot, got up, and kept on going. As an adult, trying hard to become more and more the being that God created, I plunge forward and refuse to—whoops, I fell! So I get back up and keep on going. If I don’t do this now, then when? If I don’t do this in this world, then in which world?

  2. Ah, Jane — right there in your last sentence is the very question I need to remember each day. 🙂 Do check back Friday for Ronnie Tomanio’s exploration of that same theme.

  3. I have to remind myself moment by moment to look beyond and beneath outward appearances and to “perceive honor and nobility in every human being”. I think I’m addicted to surfaces and, all too often, forget that surfaces are illusory, misleading, like a fairground’s distorting mirrors. Thank you for this heart-touching post. I look forward to reading the book when it comes out.

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