Why Shouldn’t The World Revolve Around Me?

By on December 17, 2013 in Perspective with 0 Comments

world-meMaybe you’ve done it once or twice. It’s late at night, you’re lying in bed. And suddenly, you become aware of your heart beat. The rhythm of your breath. Then the realization– “How does all this work?” It’s so complicated and it could break down anysecond. The heartbeat becomes heavier and the breathing more rapid. The body begins to melt away; fall apart piece by piece until there’s nothing left…but consciousness. Which is what got you to this point in the first place. Consciousness. Of your heart vibrating the bed and your eardrums. Speeding up every time you breathe in and out. Until you are so aware that you stop breathing – waiting for the cataclysm, the end. But it won’t happen there as you lay in bed. And as your hair stands on end and your body stiffens, you feel the fear grip you with a presence so encompassing: “Am I going to die?”

No. All probabilities point to a big fat no for the time-being. It’s a game we play on ourselves and it sure feels real. We are our own aren’t we? And why shouldn’t we be so important. So important that we’re afraid of ourselves and even more afraid to die?

“Why shouldn’t the world revolve around me?”

Probably the same reason why the Greeks were wrong about their belief. It turns out that everything doesn’t revolve around the Earth – our epicenter of consciousness – like was once thought. Why? Lack of information. Because that’s the way it is and no one knew.

I often wonder about what death is. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at things), we are the only living things on this earth with the ability to contemplate our own death. And our deaths are a part of that life. Sometimes I fear death. I think about the sound I will make when the heartbeat slows to a whisper, then stops. The breathing quiets. And what is there? Silence. It’s always been there. We’ve just been so preoccupied with the universe and all that’s in it rotating around the earth; and the earth rotating around the “I” that we haven’t had a chance to hear it. The quiet of the dawn; the peace of a bird in flight; a flower blooming in the garden. No sound. Just consciousness, ever-expanding consciousness.

And then there are our own self-important struggles. The job we seek. The exam to pass. The career to succeed in. Of course they’re real. Of course they’re happening right now, right here. And of course there’s an outcome that we view as a positive or a negative. Of course! But we often forget, operating in this complex mechanism of ours that it will go on forever with or without ourselves. And with or without our thoughts and fears. It will continue to expand and contract, just like our lungs catching and releasing breath from the air. Most of us don’t seem to care too much about the air we breathe in and out, do we? But what about that realization that we are alive.

Late in bed one night. As the panic rises. Or the depression sets in, heavy. The profound perspective shift. Strong, sometimes violent. Thoughts turn into motion. And the concept of consciousness – human life – is fulfilled. The mind rolls and the heart beats faster, responding to nothingness. But still, something-ness to each of us. Then we ask God, like a child running to the parent’s bedroom after a nightmare, “Please! Help me!” We surrender ourselves to the power of God and it’s beautiful. But how real is that? God the parent? I wish God could lift us all into a hand and caress us all as we need to be caressed. But why not also surrender to ourselves? To the fear of dying. Of not being good enough. Of not being the perfect Hollywood people we want to be?

I don’t know what it means to you, but it gives me a great sense of comfort knowing that we’re all nobodies in a nothing world where the only thing that matters are infractions upon the “I.” “I don’t agree with this,” and “I think this person is bad,” or “I don’t think I can do it.” I rules us because that’s what we’re made up of, wholly and completely. And when I becomes the all (even with God in the picture), everything suddenly means great self-importance. And serious consequences when the world revolves around the I.

It might sound cliched, but the world doesn’t revolve around anyone. Afterall, we’re each just one person. And this is an entire world we’re dealing with. It’s when we think that everything is important about us and to us – when the world begins to revolve around us – that brings the most problems.

I am not good enough. No one likes me. I am messed up. I. There has got to be more to this world than I. There are 6.5 billion people here. There is more. But the world becomes very small when all that carries importance is the I. And the problems become so big that I, in my tiny little world, don’t know what to do about them all. As soon as I stop thinking about me so much, though, and start to reflect on the elements outside, too – the people, the sky, the life around me – I begin to pull answers.

I’m not alone. The world is full of people and I’m just one of them. Usually, the answers seem to just come to me after that because my mind has opened up to possibility. Educating myself by learning about others and from others. About the world and from the world. Maybe from the ever-expanding air that’s around me. And I breathe in and out just like I always have done and always will do until the day there’s silence.

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