John Rabe was a Nazi expelled from the Nazi party because he had a Jewish grandparent. He went to China to work for the company Siemens. When Japan invaded china in 1937 he turned down the chance to flee, instead he decided to help the people of Nanjing, the former Capital of China.
The Japanese had no care for life when they overtook Nanjing, they would rape, kill and destruct. The Japanese did what they wanted with the poor common people of Nanjing.
Yet John Rabe stood firm, he created a safe zone, which was had the Nazi flag at its perimeters. The Japanese would not attack anything that had a Nazi flag, due to their good relationship with Germany.
Even though John Rabe was no longer a Nazi member, he knew the flags would make most think twice, before entering the safe zone.
He saved thousands of lives during the war. Afterwards, he was given many awards by China, and was called a living Buddha by many.
Later he went back to Germany, but was put into prison, for speaking out about the atrocities in Nanjing.
He left prison, a destitute man, when the people of Nanjing found this out, they asked him to come back to China to live, but he wanted to stay in Germany his homeland. So instead the people of Nanjing collected over two thousand dollars, they sent this money to help him get back on his feet.
The fascinating part of this story is the fact he used the Nazi flag, which is really a Buddhist symbol, which the Nazi’s stole. The symbol is supposed to provoke Shakti, the sacred force of empowerment.
With all the atrocities of the second world war, it does bring a tear to your eye, thinking about John Rabe standing firm behind a symbol that was only used for racial hatred elsewhere, but he knew the true meaning of the symbol and he was blessed by God to save so many people.
Read More: The Good Nazi
Over the last week or so, the word ‘Duality’ has come up in different media forms and also in books I have read. Because this word kept ‘popping’ up, it made me think. I thought, what does this word mean to me. So I decided to write about it and this is where my thoughts took me. I’d like to share them with you.
Duality, to me represents division, or an inner pull in two directions. This can be taken as a contradiction within our natures or personality. For example a spiritual aspect or facet of the personality, pulling against a more pleasure loving in its base form, or materialistic aspect of the personality. This pull between the esoteric mind with its higher spiritual aspirations and the desire for more physical gratification, often presents itself as a dilemma for someone who seriously wishes to follow a spiritual path, believing that they must be of either one or the other mind set.
Just as a small child discovers, as it becomes more independent and starts to explore its world for the first time alone. It is only by making mistakes, that it learns for itself , what is safe and what is not, what is wrong and what is right. We are so hard on ourselves and we really shouldn’t be. Self love is something many of us fail at as sadly it seems to be easier to love others, then ourselves.
Without the development of age and the development of the intellect and the benefit of life experience, how can we grow towards a more satisfying way of being or an enlightened way of being. It takes time!!
I believe the answer lies in ‘acceptance’, accept who you are, for what you are!! Don’t try to break yourself down into little pieces of what is, or is not acceptable. As human beings we are multi faceted, but we are also fragile and vulnerable and we do make mistakes. Each facet being an integral part of the whole, the sum total of all that we are, is what makes us strong and propels us forward.
The fire that fuels our earthy, pleasure loving, sensuous natures, is the same fire that ignites the drive and desire to discover and understand, the most beautiful and profound spiritual truths. The overwhelming yearning to find our way to connect with the highest and divine, pushes us to the limits and beyond, in terms of self analysis and self growth. The exploration of our inner world as well as the outer, in our search for knowledge and truth.
To me duality is a mental state of being, a mind in turmoil and pulling against itself in two or more directions, and not an external reality. Duality, only exists, if ‘we’ allow it too
It is often said that there is strength in numbers, many souls standing together in unity. This same analogy could be used with regard to ourselves. By bringing your internal self together, into balance and harmony.
When someone experiences conflict within themselves, the results can be disastrous. For a clouded mind cannot see clearly, emotions unrestrained like a riderless horse, galloping ahead without thought or consequence.
Unruly feelings and thoughts distorting the reality around you. Fear and uncertainty, inhibiting your actions. We lose our own true sense of self, often looking to others for guidance. No one else can advise you for they have not walked in your shoes, seen what you have seen, felt what you have felt. Who are these people to guide you? Do they know what is right for you? No..they don’t, only you, can know this. Never give your personal power away to another.
Never make an important decision in haste, no matter how urgent it may be. Take a step back from what you need to do and calm yourself. When making a decision, heart and mind need to be in unison. If the mind says yes and the heart no, then wait. If the mind says no, but the heart says yes, again wait. Usually some extra piece of information or something you need to see will happen, which will help you to decide.
The inability to make decisions for ourselves can have many root causes, but the most common culprit, is the loss of self belief. Loss of confidence brought about by having made mistakes through haste or bad judgment. So how can we overcome this?
The first thing is to stop mentally beating yourself up over it. What is done is done. We cannot change it, we have probably learned several painful lessons, because of it! Try and take comfort from that, draw a line under it and move on. Do not allow others to keep making you relive it, as excess guilt will only hold you a prisoner to the past and not allow you to move forward. Take responsibility for what happened and then remind yourself that just because you got it wrong once, doesn’t mean you will do so again.
As life beings anew each day, so do you!! Every second of every minute of every day, we change. Our bodies constantly shedding old cells and making new ones. Our minds change by every thought and action we experience. As the student learns and grows from his teacher, so do we. Life is our teacher and our lessons are many and varied.
I ask you to have faith in yourself, for if you do not, how can you expect others to. As human beings we have the gift of resilience as part of our make up. Many before us have experienced great hardships and heartache, but always carried within themselves the light of hope. Hope is what propels us forward and love is what sustains us, when life is fearful and uncertain.
Gather together within yourself your own inner conviction, how you would like your world to be and what kind of life you want to lead. If your intentions are good and always for your highest purpose, then you will succeed.
I read this passage recently, from the book ‘Living Magically’ by Gill Edwards. I would like to share it with you.
“When the god’s created Heaven and Earth, according to an old Eastern story. They were left with just one problem; Where to hide TRUTH. They did not want it to be too obvious, since observing the search, would provide them with great amusement. One god suggested, placing it at the top of the highest mountain; another on the furthest star. A third god said, it should be hidden in the deepest and darkest abyss, and another the dark side of the Moon; the oldest and wisest god said, ‘No. We will hide the Truth inside the heart of each and every human being. That way, they will search for it, all over the Universe, before discovering it.”
I loved this story, it made me smile and it illustrates beautifully, how man, continually makes life complicated for himself. We know so much about the world around us, but so little, about ourselves and the world within us.
We would rather climb the highest mountains, foray into the wildest and remote places in this world, then tackle the mysteries of our own psyche. We seem to be more comfortable with the idea of outer challenges, then working on our own spiritual and inner growth.
We simply refuse to accept, that something so important with all its mystical connotations, profound Truth and Wisdom can be found residing within ourselves. We would rather believe that it is hidden away, in some secret location, which to reach, we have to put ourselves through an Indiana Jones type quest, to find.
Why do we find it so hard to believe in ourselves, that within the human heart and mind a treasure lies, just waiting to be discovered. The challenge is, scaling the barriers we have erected within.
The problem is we lack inner discipline, sitting quietly and finding stillness is a problem for people who are used to being active. They feel that striving for something requires movement. The movement required in spiritual introspection is different to movement in action with the outer physical, especially in western cultures. Eastern philosophy has always had a great respect for balance in mind body and spirit, seeing that they were all connected.
Perhaps among the more obvious signs of awakenment is having a certain level of calmness. People who have awakened spirits have proven to be more focused in attaining their goals. They seem to have reached a degree of calmness where experiences, memories, events, issues, problems, and even desires are no longer causing confusion and interruptions.
It is like, worries and self doubt can be set aside, resulting in having a clear path from the start to the finish line. And just like the song: “I can see clearly now, the rain is gone, I can see all obstacles in my way. Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind.” When this happens, you can be your true authentic self, without being blinkered by the many layers of conditioning and lack of self love that has held you back.
A zest for life for living fills you up and overspills and affects all those who come into contact with you. As they cannot help but be uplifted just by being in your life. A spiritual awakening is a blessing not only for you, but for those you love.
Read More: An Awakened Spirit