He was right of course. Our culture is not our friend. Our culture is the canvas on which we find ourselves trying to paint the picture of who we are. Some seed of awareness within knows we are here to create and to express ourselves. We feel right with the world when we are able to bring who we are to what we do. Yet, for many of us, it is an overwhelming struggle, to be simply, who we are.
Our culture, our society, far from supporting us seems to actively thwart us in our striving to follow the path with heart. We may give up the fight and join the non-thinking majority, who cannot see beyond the weekend. They might complain about the state of the world, but tacitly accept it, in their compliance. If we follow this path, there is never any peace.
Those of us whose heart path lies in the ‘shadow professions’ are more at risk than most – as our culture de-friends free thinkers and opponents of the status quo. Anything in the shadows is a challenge to the ‘system’ that holds the status quo together by withholding and controlling information not supportive of its agenda. There is a certain ‘protection’ given in the highly subjective art world, as intent is so often veiled. But dare, if your world-view is not aligned with the system’s, to express your thoughts in words or actions, and see how quickly you are marginalized. Whether it be in challenging the ‘official story’ of history that we are told in school, or the stories of world events reported in the mainstream media, or the fabricated stories repeated by the accepted medical, educational and law enforcement authorities.
In short, we live in a culture of lies. Challenge the lies and see how unfriendly your culture becomes. The canvas we are trying to paint the picture of our lives upon is tattered and torn.
Astrology is a shadow profession. Those of us drawn to this ancient, artful knowledge system may come to the conclusion my first teacher did – after three decades of working with astrology. He said : “I feel I’ve been imprisoned for 30 years for a crime I didn’t commit.” Such is the nature of our culture.
Ostracized, alienated, belittled, de-friended. For what?
For trying to understand the ways of the universe, the nature of reality, the meaning of life. For trying to help others understand themselves and their place in the cosmos, with a view to living happier, more fulfilling, peaceful and healthy lives. So much easier to paint a pretty picture – or to get an office job. But to our nature we must be true.
Most forms of alternative healing are marginalized in our culture for exactly the same reason. The system that rules does not want us to heal ourselves. It does not want us to know the truth about who we are. It does not want us to teach others the truth about who we are. It teaches, rather, half-truths and lies, and rewards well those who practice the profession of its lie-telling.Challenge the system by sharing the truth and you may find yourself imprisoned – if not literally, then metaphorically.
It isn’t easy to keep the faith in your chosen path, your path with heart, if it lies in the shadows – or more simply, outside of mainstream. It becomes a form of soul abuse to live each day in a place and time where wisdom and freedom of thought are cut down by the ruthless machine that is our culture.
But stay on the heart path we must. The soul will prevail. The system will not. When we leave this world, all we will take is our love and our knowledge of truth – this will live on in the heart seed and continue with us into subsequent lives, as well as live on in the hearts and minds of those we have loved and of those who have loved us. This is the truth we must align ourselves with. Everything else in our culture, in the world around us, is finite and will fall away in its own time.
Acknowledge then, and celebrate, the passions of your shadow – whatever they are. True power lives in the shadow – the secret, invisible, un-manifest world. This is the birth place of everything in the visible world. Those in control don’t want you to know this – so they squash and suppress anything remotely esoteric, while secretly using its energy and power for themselves.
Quietly nurture your heart path then, and keep your allegiance to it. You are not imprisoned for a crime you didn’t commit. The prison is outside. It is in the false structures and authorities of maya – theillusionary world we call the real one. Ultimately, truth will prevail and the prison will fall. In the meantime, we watch the game, maintain our integrity and take heart – meaning, have courage. We can negate the soul abuse inflicted by our culture by staying true to ourselves – whatever it takes. And remember, we are never alone – there are many of us, flying beneath the radar, living the truth of our shadow world – and we are the whispering winds of change, we are the force that will topple our insipid, shallow, untenable culture.
And perhaps, hopefully, one day, culture will again, be our friend.