Daily Insight from The Little Prince
Do you approach your life from a conceptual point of view or in an experiential manner?
In other words, do you come from thought or from your actual experience of life?
To illustrate what I mean, on Twitter you see lots of quotations from well-known people about the importance of improving your life by thinking positively, working the “law of attraction,” and changing your circumstances by changing your thinking.
But did it ever occur to you that if people feel a need to remind themselves to think in a certain way, it’s because thinking in that way isn’t working?
For instance, if you are present in your day, you don’t have to keep reminding yourself to “be present.” The idea of reminding yourself doesn’t even enter your head because you are already in the flow of presence.
Only someone who isn’t in a particular state has to remind themselves to be in that state.
So people have to keep telling themselves to change their thinking because their lifehasn’t in fact changed very much as a result all these little pep talks they keep giving themselves about thinking in a manner that will attract health, wealth, success, or whatever it is they desire.
In the story of the Little Prince, the crashed pilot illustrates the fundamental difference between a conceptual approach and an experiential approach to our life. The two are poles apart.
He points out that if you tell a grownup you’ve seen a beautiful house made of rosy brick, with geraniums in the windows and doves on the roof, the grownup doesn’t form any clear idea of the house at all. It just doesn’t particularly excite them. They respond with a ho-hum attitude.
But if you tell the grownup that you saw a house worth, say in today’s monetary value $ 2,000,000, then they exclaim, “Oh, what a pretty house that is!”
How different this is from the way we all came into the world as children who had no interest in conceptual value at all, just in the real life experience of our world as we encounter it from moment to moment.
As little kids, we braille the world rather than think about the world.
There is an aliveness to a life lived experientially, whereas concepts—thoughts aboutsomething—are lifeless.
If I mention the word “salvation,” what springs to your mind? Chances are you associate this word with going to heaven after you die, which is how religion in the main has used the word.
Yet salvation for Jesus had a completely different meaning. It had to do with living a heavenly life, like that symbolized by the Little Prince, right here and right now—a trulyalive kind of life. He called it “life abundant.” It’s a life that’s just brimming with excitement and enjoyment.
Jesus was passing through the city of Jericho where a very rich man, a chief tax-collector, lived. Zacchaeus wanted to get a glimpse of the famed teacher as he passed through the city, but he was extremely short so he had to climb a tree.
When Jesus saw Zacchaeus in the tree, he called him down and said he wished to stay at his house that day.
We’re not told of anything Jesus said to Zacchaeus, only that during the visit this extremely wealthy man announced, “Half of my possessions I will give to the poor. And if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will pay back four times as much.”
Zacchaeus’ entire understanding of how he related to life and the people of his city changed during that visit. He was no longer about money, but about connecting with people and becoming a blessing to them.
Jesus responded, “Today salvation has come to this house.”
To sit at dinner with Jesus was for this tax-collector a transformative experience. That’s because you could feel Jesus’ intense presence: it was powerful, magnetic, supremely attractive.
Not thought about presence but the personal experience of presence is what transforms.
Jesus didn’t have to teach Zacchaeus a concept of what it means to live consciously, which Zacchaeus would then try to do. Instead, Jesus’ own presence awakened the true being of this man whose whole life had been about material success.
Zacchaeus quite simply became conscious. He became present, aware of his oneness with everyone and everything. This is what salvation is.
To be “saved” means to be delivered, rescued. This the actual meaning of the Greek word. What are we delivered from?
We are rescued from the false egoic concept we’ve had of ourselves, in which we’ve been imprisoned as grownups but which wasn’t the alive way we were when we came into the world as little children.
There’s nothing here about “accepting Jesus into your heart so you can go to heaven after you die,” which is what salvation is usually erroneously associated with.
There’s just the difference between living unconsciously, not recognizing that we are one with those around us and therefore not caring for them, and at last becoming conscious of our oneness and beginning to express our authentic being in serving one another in meaningful, fulfilling ways that are true to who we really are.
If our eyes are opened to see our oneness, we can’t help but begin to treat others in the way we would want to be treated. It’s not a concept we try to do, a different way of thinking. It’s an experience of our inherent connectedness.
Concepts are lifeless, deadening. Thought is a killer of presence.
We can never become conscious of our authentic being by changing our thinking.
To live a heavenly life is simply to become aware, engaged, immersed in the wonder of being—in the way the pilot was as a child and is now learning to be all over again as a grownup from his friend the Little Prince, who is a symbol of our divine essence.
To go deeper into topics like this, we invite you to read the daily blog Consciousness Rising – – http://www.namastepublishing.com/blog/author/david-robert-ord.
If you would like to know more about how Jesus epitomizes a fully conscious, present, vitally alive human being, revealing the potential in all of us, read the author’s Namaste Publishing book Your Forgotten Self.