UNITY IN DIVERSITY
The article below was written in June 2017. Since then a surprising amount of progress has been made. An increasing number of the alternative projects are becoming stabilised. They still have their core spiritual inspiration, but materially are being run in a stable and sustainable fashion with good management. A happy balance of the spiritual and the material. These are early days, and there are still relatively few of these projects, but the stability appears to be expanding. As projects become more stable, and those running them become more confident, there comes a reaching out to others to see whether energy can usefully be shared. That is a sharing without in any way diminishing the individual characters and strengths of the projects. This is not yet completely true of the split between what we might call the conventional town and the alternatives, but considerable progress has been made. There seems to be a most encouraging flow to the energies of the emerging Glastonbury as a great centre of spiritual transformation
The concept underlying the Ageless Wisdom is that there is one unified Whole embracing everything that is spiritual and everything that is material. This Whole is all love, knowledge, truth, beauty, unity, harmony and compassion.
The entire universe is one Whole - held together by the dynamic of Love.
Lying behind everything in this Whole is the Mind of All. This mind is pure Spirit that is, in its majesty, Unknowable Indefinable and Incomprehensible to the material human mind and is only understandable in the material forms in which it appears.
Unity in diversity is the concept of this Whole taking the form of:
"Unity without uniformity and diversity without fragmentation"
This idea shifts the focus from unity based on a mere tolerance of physical, cultural, linguistic, social, religious, political and ideological differences towards a more complex unity based on an understanding that difference enriches human interactions. The idea and related phrase dates back to both Western and Eastern Old World cultures. It has been particularly associated with Patanjali who wrote the Yoga Sutras and lived in Kashmir around A.D. 400.This is a simple idea, but for it to manifest there needs to be both the diversity and the understanding of just what is the common unity – the Whole.
We see this very clearly in Glastonbury - there is much talk about unity in diversity and a real understanding of the diversity – but perhaps a lack of understanding of just what the unity of the town as a whole might be.
This in a way is a reflection of the moving from what the Wisdom calls the Piscean Age into the Age of Aquarius. The Piscean Age was said to be one of authority and control - strong leaders deciding how people should live and compliant individuals doing along what they were told. This was clearly seen in the age of the Abbey with the abbot controlling his monks, the town and most of the surrounding countryside. All parties understood that the monastery was acting as the centre of spiritual activity and attracting wealth into the town, whilst the town provided the necessary supporting services, mainly paid for by the Abbey.
In the 1980s there was perhaps the last echo of this vision of a coherent Glastonbury. Some 500 people were living in the town who felt they had been ‘called’ to work in its spiritual energies. This small group shared similar spiritual understandings and had a clear concept of just what they thought the town was destined to become - a great internationally recognized centre of spiritual transformation. At this time many projects were started but most were in an embryonic stage and few were well grounded and working successfully.
In the 30 years since we have started to move into the Aquarian age, that the Wisdom holds is an age of developing individuality. People want to look after their own lives, make their own choices and are suspicious of authority. This has led to a dramatic fragmentation. There are now some 3,000 people in the town who feel they have been 'called' to live here - but there is no longer a shared vision of just want the purpose of the town might be. At the same time many new projects have been started and these are flourishing and working well as individual activities.
This process of individuality seems to bring with it the capacity to concentrate on an individual project to make it work successfully in the material world. But with it also seems to come a fear of losing control or of being absorbed if an attempt is made to work with others. As a result we now have a range of dynamic and successful activities working in an individualistic fashion but without much coherence.
In Glastonbury we now have excellent Diversity - but a lack of real Unity.
It does seem that the teaching of the Wisdom is correct.
The nadir of complete diversity has to be reached, in the downward devolution, before the upward evolution is able to move towards Unity.
This Unity will only occur when the individual people and projects are confident enough of their own strength and ability to enable them to reach out to others without feeling a loss of power or identity.
Unity will arise as people gain confidence in their individual projects
But in order for it to strongly develop there is a need for a shared vision of the purpose of the place.
This cannot be imposed from above but has arise from the inspiration of the individual. This will happen - but has not yet happened.
Once again we see one of the great lessons of the Wisdom - negative influences tend to disrupt what we set out to do but these forces play a constructive role in compelling us to focus with clarity on what we are trying to achieve
There is an interesting exchange between Arjuna and the Lord Krishna in the ancient Hindu holy book - the Bhagavad Gita.
“And Arjuna, the beloved Disciple, spoke to the Lord Krishna, saying, 'Canst thou tell us, dear Lord, what happens to a man if, incarnation after incarnation he follows the Way to Wisdom, and what may be the condition of those who dwell within the Higher Realms, when they have done with earthly matters and the scourges of the flesh?'
And Krishna gave answer, saying,
'But the greatest Mystery of all is to know the secret of the Unity. For no man can stand alone; on earth or in a Higher Realm, and man should realize that there exists a mighty Bond that links him sure with all that is, has been, will be, or seems to be.