I saw an article on facebook recently about a woman who had been rescued after 7 years on a desert island. According to the article, she had lost her mates and her boat in heavy seas, and ended up on a desert island, where she lived on coconuts, until she finally managed to kill a goat, which apparently took some effort. The story said she was rescued after a kid saw her SOS on Google Earth.
I started to think about what I would do in such circumstances. I couldn’t blame a person for doing all that they could to survive, including killing another creature, but I wondered if I would do that, if I was in those circumstances.
I started to ask myself if there was a natural instinct that would allow me to forget my pledge to be vegan, in order to survive. In those circumstances, would I put my life above the life of another being, just because I had to choose? Is it natural to always choose life for oneself above life for another?
The first thing I thought of was that I would hope never to have to choose, and I asked God, then and there, to never be placed in that position.
The second thing I thought was that, surely, for God, anything is possible. It would be necessary to choose between another creature and myself, if I was just relying on me. But what if I was to rely on God? Given enough faith, could I merely ask God for a way where I didn’t have to choose, and expect a miracle to occur?
I realised that when I am thinking with only my ego mind, I am seeing myself as separate from other creatures. To the ego, the goat is not me and I could decide that it was going to be ‘either him or me’. But thinking with my Christ mind, that part of the mind which is connected to God, there is no ‘him or me’, there is no ‘them or us’, there is just us. We are one.
The Christ mind part of me would know that I would have no need to kill another sentient being, because in killing another sentient being, I am killing part of us, part of me.
I realised that it is only the ego mind that allows us to think that we can separate ourselves from other sentient beings, including humans. It is only when we see a ‘them’ who is not part of ‘us’ that we can start a war, or perpetuate one. It is only when we are thinking with our ego minds and ignoring our Christ minds that we could allow others to die, so that we might live. Because in truth, there are no others; there is just us.
The third thing I thought was that it is not a natural thing for us to put our own lives ahead of others in order to survive. We hear so often of heroes rescuing a fellow human with little thought for their own lives. We have also seen many occurrences of humans and other creatures who have risked their own lives in order to save the life of other animals.
It would seem that in these circumstances, we are acting naturally, from the mind that is connected to God and all of God’s creation. In fact many people who have performed an heroic act have said that they acted without thinking.
If we allow our ego minds to think, we find ourselves with lots of excuses not to act in the best interests of others. When we act naturally, without thinking, we are acting for God; we are acting as God.
Just before I began to write this blog, I googled the story to remind myself of what had happened. Imagine my surprise to discover that the story of the rescued woman was about a year old, and it turned out to be a hoax. Someone made up the story and borrowed a real SOS photo from a real crisis situation to enhance their story. At least, that is if you can believe that story.
This has been another lesson from this story: you can’t always trust what you read on the internet, especially on facebook.
You can, however, always trust that part of you that is connected to God – that part of you that acts naturally, the part that acts according to your divine nature. You can trust that part of every being on the planet. It is not only you who has a divine nature, but this is the case for all of God’s creation.
A Course in Miracles advises us that if we can remember the divine nature in others, it allows us to remind others of their divine nature, and it helps us remember the divine nature in ourselves, as well.
There is an old Arab saying: “Trust in God, but tie up your camel.”
But if we truly have faith in God, we have no need to tie our camel, for we would know that regardless of whether or not our camel wanders, everything will happen in divine order. All will be well.
We may initially be disgusted that we have been misled by a hoax article. However, without having seen that article, I wouldn’t have considered the true nature of humans, and been given great hope and faith that all will be well, not only if I was ever on a desert island, but also in the wider world through which we need to navigate every day.
May God bring your camel back to you if it wanders, or something even better. May life bring you all of your desires, or something even better. May God bring us a world filled with peace for all creation, or something even better.
May God always come to our rescue, until we realise that God is already here.
Image courtesy of cbenjasuwan at FreeDigitalPhotos.net