Self Observed: From Self-Important Entitlement to Gratitude


Sacred 333As we creep up ever more closely on the release of funds, I’m going through many spaces.

The one that I fear most is a triumphal return of the ego, with the Reval.

I see the ego as returning through one of two back doors: one marked “Self-Importance” and the other, “Entitlement.”

If you need a short form for it, then “I want.”  Unbridled desire, without stop, restraint, or consideration, feeding myself with an endless array of gadgets and status symbols will only fan its flames. The self-important “I” feels entitled to what it wants.

Andrew Cohen once said that the reason we feel blissful when we buy an expensive car is not because we now own the car of our dreams but because desire has momentarily ceased. That could very well be.

***

The tsunami of abundance may sweep many people off their feet. It’s a time to lash ourselves to the mast if we want to avoid being swept away.

We can be swept away by self-importance – easily. In fact it’ll take discipline to avoid it.

Most of us seem to be invested in our self-importance. Almost everyone – including me – seems to want deep, deep down (way, way down) to be seen as the hero of the story, the savior of the world, the Fifth Element.  That’s almost a universal, though clandestine, longing.

I don’t think there’s any way of getting rid of it until God takes it away. Until then, the best we can do, I think, is sit with it, aware but neutral, until it decides to leave. If I give it no sustenance – if I don’t feed the ego wolf – it does go away at last. That’s the whole foundation of the upset clearing process we discussed some years ago.  And an important practice in meditation.

It works to acknowledge when something like self-importance is up. “I’m feeling self-important. No, I think it’s arrogance. Yes, that’s it.” After a while of being transparent, what was so embarrassing to say in the beginning is a hoot now. “Yes, I’m arrogant.” Next?

***

Entitlement springs out of self-importance. I’m such a poobah that I deserve better treatment than I’m getting. I behave self-righteously, arrogantly, insensitively. When I act that way, most people usually just want me to drop dead.

Entitlement violates a delicate web of social relationship, a refined dance that most of us do. We don’t try to obligate the other or force them to do anything. We negotiate what is given and received; we agree on terms; we keep the terms of our agreement. Or at least that’s our common standard for behavior.

If we try to obligate or force someone into doing something they may not want to, we violate that standard. Entitlement is a missed step in the dance of freely giving and receiving with thanks.

We can choose self-importance and entitlement and devolve a couple of hundred years. The ego would be satisfied.

Or we can choose to show that we haven’t just passed time all these years, but demonstrate that we can do the job that’s been handed to us. We can do this job. Not the ego, but the illumined  will.

We can irrigate society. We can see to the needs of those in crisis and emergency. We can set young hearts free to dream and old hearts free to reminisce and advise.

As Werner Erhard said, we can be so big as to take responsibility for the condition of our world and take action.

“We can choose to be audacious enough to take responsibility for the entire human family. We can choose to make our love for the world be what our lives are really about.

“Each of us now has the opportunity, the privilege, to make a difference in creating a world that works for all of us. It will require courage, audacity, and heart. It is much more radical than a revolution – it is the beginning of a transformation in the quality of life on our planet.” (1)

Out of that wonderful bond of freely-shared personal responsibility for the condition of our world, we can begin to plan together what we’re going to do about it.

Typically we don’t take action unless we can and do take responsibility for the shape of our world.

With our combined resources and an enlightened leadership, we can transform the living conditions on the planet.

***

Instead of being entitled, the really amazing, powerful demonstration, coming from the new handlers of wealth in society, would be gratitude.

Gratitude that the Mother trusts us enough to allow us to play a challenging role in Ascension.  Gratitude that she allows us to play an important financial role via the GCR. Gratitude that we’re being given the opportunity to really make a difference in our world.

The act of thanking another must be the antithesis of the assertion of entitlement. The former recognizes the other’s existence, rights, and offering; the latter demands, obliges, and takes. Very few people emerge from the latter exchange feeling ennobled, empowered, and fulfilled.

After the Reval, let me practice and express gratitude with every gift. Thank you for using me, Mother.

Oh, look. Here is love, following in gratitude’s steps.

Footnotes

(1)  Werner Erhard, Graduate Review, February 1980.

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