Caring for Our Inner Biosphere
Over the last few years we have become aware of the problems that affect our planet and of how our actions affect the biosphere. This is why ecology and environment have become common words in everyday language for most of us. We could say that in just two generations we have created the global awareness that taking care of Planet Earth, our home—the home we share—is our responsibility. Warnings about global warming, the ozone layer, air and river pollution are being issued more and more regularly, calling us to take better care of resources such as air, water, trees, soil, and animal species. We have to pay attention to all of these elements of our outer environment to alleviate the negative effects we are producing. No matter how immense and complex the ensemble of difficulties we have to face in this field may appear, interest and commitment grow daily to find feasible, reachable, simple and effective solutions. However, as members of Cafh, we understand that there is a lot more for us to address. We do not think our work is over just because we assume the responsibility of working to diminish the impact that we, as human beings, are producing on our environment. Let us also be sure to look within. In order for us to be able to make the change we are longing for, we need to start by transforming our inner environment, our own world. The harmonious environment we will thus build will help us become integral human beings. Right there, in that inner environment, is where our work should start.
A well-known phrase tells us that each person is a world. It is true. Each one of us is a world with our own way of living that derives from our human condition and the kind of environment we live in. Our human condition forms the context in which we unfold; the environment we inhabit is the variable which we can influence, both interiorly and exteriorly, to shape the spiritual biosphere where we want to be.
As we become aware that wherever we go we take with us an inner environment that influences others, we also become aware that we have to take good care of it and look after its balance. We are aware of the close relationship between our organism, the inner environment we generate, and the outer environment we inhabit. Understanding—comprehending and acting accordingly—leads us to commit ourselves to caring for this spiritual biosphere that is vulnerable and subtle, and yet fundamental for unfolding as integral human beings.
Because we have freedom and the ability to choose we have the capability of transforming a desert into a fertile valley, and a fertile valley into a desert; of purifying the air by planting trees, or of making it unbreathable by deforesting; of keeping rivers clear and crystal-like, or changing them into foul smelling, murky waters. That is exactly what we can do in our inner world.
We are trustees of immense treasures that we have to take care of, foster and distribute. Let us ask ourselves which goods we want to leave as heritage for humankind. Let us especially remember that some goods are nonrenewable and we are accountable for their use. The use we make of time, of our vital energies, of our affective and mental potential, is in our hands, under our care to utilize and dispose of. Let us consider the ecosystem that our thoughts constitute. Let us protect this source of life that our mind is.
Let us apply our intelligence to service for the common good, since together we all constitute the body of humankind. Let us think of the ecosystem constituted by our feelings and longings. Let us protect our inner environment so that it may house feelings of love, compassion, understanding, and friendship.
The study of ecology teaches us to observe the systemic relationships between individuals and the environment, and thus wisely teaches us that interdependence is indispensable for maintaining balance. Each part occupies its corresponding place and develops a determined function; thus the equilibrium of the whole is achieved. We need to make room for this attitude so that consciously united we can fulfill our mission in the Great Work.²
Through a process of unfolding our consciousness we discover the close relationship among everything that exists. Why do we, then, in practice often act independently? On one hand it might be because we are afraid of the coercive power of those who want to impose themselves or dominate us. On the other hand, it might be because we are afraid that living in accordance with the whole might make us lose our individuality. We have to understand that we cannot avoid belonging to the whole, because we are an integral part of it. Individualism segregates because it is contrary to the law of life, which leads towards integration, towards union. In our ignorance what we do is negate our belonging to the whole. There is no imposition in interdependence and nobody stops being what he or she is: a unique, unrepeatable individual. When the reality of our egoence³ unveils itself in front of our eyes, we set aside our fears and doubts. Our individual efforts are reinforced and, multiplied, become a source of good and advancement for humankind. Plenitude and harmony among human beings are the result of a process of spiritual maturity that manifests itself as discernment, participation, and daring to embrace the necessary action.
When we discover the bonds that link us with our fellow human beings, with nature, with our environment, and with the entire universe, we cannot avoid living with a sense of reverence that permeates all of our lives. We naturally learn to respect the individuality of others because we respect our own individuality. The resources that we can count on are gifts that we have received to fulfill the ultimate aim of life: union with the Divine Mother.4 The wise and prudent use of those resources generates harmony and peace in our inner environment and, consequently, in our surroundings. The acceptance of interdependence as an essential attitude in order to live is no longer an imposition, but the result of a process of expansion of consciousness.
We possess the wonderful ability of being conscious of our existence and of what we can do with it and make of it. Let us take the step consistent with this ability: to develop consciousness not only of ourselves for ourselves, but also of ourselves for the whole that surrounds us, humanity within its cosmic magnitude. This requires responses to life that do not depend as much on circumstances as they do on the choices each one of us is willing to make. By placing the interest of the whole ahead of our own interest, we will discover the way to expand our love.
To become effective, our acts need to be carried out with interdependence. This attitude not only integrates the work of the parts, but it also creates values as it generates unifying, harmonizing, and orienting guidelines. When we work in an individualistic way or in a group that acts independently from the whole, we are undoing the path of integration. Instead, when we accept to work interdependently, we spontaneously offer our achievements, even spiritual ones. The desire to stand out, competition, and separativity fade away because we acknowledge ourselves as parts of a larger universe.
Renouncement5 helps us to self-renew our inner world and build this inner temple, this environment filled with peace and harmony that is so much needed for all human beings.
We need the strong, firm and lasting support of Renouncement to assume the role that pertains to us as Sons and Daughters6 of Cafh so that, from within our inner temple, we may radiate Renouncement. We know that roots are essential to a plant’s life. Without its roots the plant loses hold of the soil; it has no way of absorbing nutrients; it has no way of growing and developing. Likewise, we have to acknowledge that only an attitude of Renouncement provides us with a firm foundation. It makes our existence meaningful by placing us in consonance with the law of life. Only when the idea and the loving need of giving ourselves take root in our minds and in our hearts and that force nourishes all our actions, can we unfold, live with plenitude, and grow integrally.
Let us give Renouncement the preferential place that it should have in our lives. When we prioritize we define the entity that rules our actions. We are no longer at the mercy of tides or winds. We take hold of the rudder and decide the course we want to follow. When we have clarity regarding what we want, we free ourselves from inner conflicts. When we have to decide, we know which way to look, because we count on a light that orients us.
Let us smooth the road to Renouncement by making our inner habitat one of balance and peace. To carry out this work we do not have too much time. Let us remember the briefness of our passage through the world. Let us reflect upon the quality of the mark that we will each leave behind.
Let us build the inner temple we long for. Let us humbly search for our path towards the Divine Mother, that road which passes through the heart of all souls.
© 2007 Cafh Order
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1 Cafh: The word Cafh has ancient roots; for the members of Cafh it symbolizes the effort of the soul to attain union with God. At the same time it represents the presence of the divine in each soul. The text "Caring for Our Inner Biosphere" is an extract from the Closing Address of the Director of Cafh at the Cafh Annual Assembly in Mendoza, Argentina, in June 2007.
2 The Great Work: What the Teaching of Cafh signifies by the Great Work is the totality of material, intellectual and spiritual works that as human beings we carry out in order to fulfill our destiny, according to the Universal Plan of Evolution.
3 Egoence: Egoence is the consciousness of ourselves and of our relationship with the whole and the discernment of how to respond to the responsibility implied by that consciousness.
4 Divine Mother: The members of Cafh reverence God in the feminine image of the Divine Mother. The Divine Mother is, in Cafh, the main point of attention and veneration as expression of the work, the love and the omnipresence of God. The Teaching of Cafh recognizes in the Divine Mother a potential state and an active state. It refers to the potential state as Hes—that which has not yet come into being. It refers to the active state as Ahehia—that which continues being.
5 Renouncement: In the Teaching of Cafh, Renouncement is considered to be the law of life. When we renounce, we accept that our small life is part of Life itself, that we are an integral part of the whole. We gain perspective on the ups and downs of our daily lives and also on periods of great difficulties. The spirit of Renouncement helps us to visualize our strengths and weaknesses objectively and awakens in us a deep sense of participation and love for everyone and everything.
6 Sons and Daughters: The members of Cafh are called Sons and Daughters.