The Web of Life

The interconnected and inner connected web of life is something I love to witness. While I was photographing the spider web on the left of this photo-montage, the squirrel in the middle photo was watching me. I believe this might be the same squirrel which welcomed me home last October. He appeared in another blog “Being Welcomed”. I was so happy my squirrel friend was curious about what I was doing. I feel a friendly connection with the squirrels where I live. That is just one way I experience how I am connected to everything else.

“It is through mysterious power that we have our being, and we, therefore, yield to our neighbors, even our animal neighbors, the same right as ourselves to inhabit this vast land.”
– Sitting Bull (1831-1890)

While I was teaching English-as-a-Second-Language to people from all over the world, not only did I teach English, but through my students, I began to learn and feel how connected all of us humans are. Yes, we have our differences, but we have so many common needs and human problems. I was fortunate to learn, first hand, how similar all of us humans are.

I do not claim to fully understand quantum physics, but I “grok” a sense of it. In a way, it helps me to “get” this idea of inner connectedness. It helps remind me to include all people, animals, insects, and things on our planet. We may see ourselves as separate with our eyes, but at a cellular and automic level, that is not TRUE. I also wonder whether this connects us all to what I call my source. I find this also hints at what Sitting Bull is calling “through mysterious power”. For me, this has also become a visceral feeling of inner connection to all that is.

When I look at politics in the USA today, I see us humans fighting to keep our separateness. Instead of love, support, and acceptance of others, I hear leaders proposing control and division. I hear FEAR dominating their conversations and proposals and ego-driven ambition pushing their own agendas. To me, this is the old way of thinking. We humans have thought this way for thousands of years, and look at what we are doing to ourselves and the planet because of this way of thinking. To me, this way of thinking is NOT WORKING. The other piece to this is that when we work together, I believe, we can conquer just about anything. That may mean that I (we) compromise with others, even if I (we) think I am (we are) right. I (We are) am not alone on this planet; I(we)need to consider others.

“Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.”
– Chief Seattle (1780-1866)



Are we REALLY  one? 

My simile for us humans is we are like a pile of leaves that have fallen from trees. On the ground we all mix together and look like one mass.

piles of leaves fall 2014

piles of leaves at night

If we look closer, we will see the individual leaves, as we will also see individual people.

From the science of quantum physics and one of  its major thinkers:

Quantum physics, thus, reveals a basic ONENESS of the  universe.”  

Ervin Schrodinger

leaves  on ground fall 2014

leaf piles in day light

Since the universe is one, so are we. Even though we humans see ourselves as separate and not connected; this is a delusion that we learned when we learned to focus our eyes as babies.

The neuroanatomist, Dr. Jill Taylor Bolte, has added to our understanding about ONENESS with her first TED talk, when she experienced a stroke herself.  Consider watching her TED talk:

Our human challenge now, is how do we begin to live what we are finding out to be our human truth. Even if we embrace the fact that we are one, our even bigger challenge is to learn how we can live together with our differences. How do we become kinder, and more respectful of others while we maintain our own honesty about who we are? 

A major way I have learned for myself to become kinder, is I have had to learn to love and accept and myself and what has happened in my own life before I have become able to be kinder to others.  For my part I have learned this ongoing journey within to know myself better has helped me to become more open and accept and care about others. It is freeing to not judge others or myself as harshly as I used to.

What are your ideas about how we can be both ONE and celebrate our individuality, too?