We know and understand that the Master’s charging into the temple court and tuning over tables and chasing out the money changers was a teaching about our own need to be fiercely focus on keeping our own inner temple free from the distractions and clutter of daily life on earth. That inner court is where we should be preparing to go deeper into the temple, even to the Holy of Holies, rather than spending our energies on other pursuits. “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.”
When we first close our eyes and ‘go within’ we are immediately aware of how much of the mass mind’s chatter has entered that inner court. We know we must rid that place of that chatter and waging jihad or‘cleansing the temple’ as the Master did are examples of one way to do this.
The other way is through ahimsa, non-violence, resisting not evil. In reality it takes both approaches in varying degrees at different times to accomplish the goal of a quiet mind.
As above, so below. As within, so without. It can be said that the ‘reality’ of the world we live in has two aspects, that which is Created and that which is Made. That which is ‘created’ is God’s reality or that which is not dependent on mankind’s involvement; in other words, Nature at its most basic, pristine level. That which is ‘made’ is what we, as co-creators, have layered upon ‘creation’ or Nature. This applies to our own Nature as well as to the natural world in which we live.
Now comes the question of how, as spiritually focused individuals, we are to respond to the conditions of the world that are man-made, such things a war, famine, aggression, violence against people and against the earth itself. Do we raise an angry fist in ‘righteous indignation’? Do we join protest marches? Do we write to government officials? Or do we acknowledge that these ‘outer’ conditions we are unhappy with also exist within ourselves and go about the ‘cleansing of the temple’?
For me the answer is to do the inner work first. To get to that place within myself that is free from all that is man-made and to dwell in that inner place that is Created. I am aware of my Essential Nature as Self. I am also aware of the pseudo-self or psychological-self. It is this limited self that needs healing, that needs to be purified so we can reside more continuously in the Holy of Holies, the Essential Self that we are.
It is only when I am feeling that connection with my True, Essential Self that I feel able to invite in all the ‘evils’ of the world so they can be transmuted. This is a tricky business. In the past I have tried to leap-frog past my psychological-self and settle into the “real Self” but the action did not bring with it the healing I needed. In fact, I seemingly became even more fragmented, more aware of Self as being separate from me! That lack of integration, or integrity, is dangerous. I found that by seeking and feeling that inner place of Peace, my Essential Self, I could then invite all those aspects of personality, psychology and worldly influences, those aspects that I was at war with in myself, into this “open, spacious, well ventilated room” (as the Tibetan Lama Chogyam Trungpa called it) so these ‘flaws’ and influences could be transformed into their highest nature. This is an ongoing process and I suspect it will be as long as I am in an Earth Body, but the process itself if a service to this world!
So, do I march or not? Do I carry a protest sign or not? The answer is ‘yes’, I will march if that is what I am being directed to do from that deepest place of Peace, my Essential Self. The answer is ‘no’ if I am not being so directed because that would mean I am merely in a state of reaction not Action. Self acts. It does not react.
When I react I am part of the problem. When I act I am part of the solution.