I believe we’re seeing in the world the inevitable effects of the temptation for us humans to use our intelligence to control – Nature, people, groups, nations, ourselves — and control so easily slides into domination, oppression, and exploitation. It’s inevitable what happens in the paradigm of separation and materialism in which we live. Control makes us feel safe in an uncertain, unpredictable and unsafe world, a world that is naturally wild and out of control. I can feel it so strongly inside of me: aspects of my life feeling uncertain and out of control, my mind and body freaking out, especially in the middle of the night, the intensity of wanting to be in control, to not feel this fear and insecurity, to not be so aware of my vulnerability.
The problem is that the more we control and insulate from fear, discomfort, and vulnerability, the more we are cut off from aliveness; and the more separate and disconnected, and ironically anxious, and depressed, we feel. The more we control the more we are cut off from empathy and care for others. With connection and aliveness come joy, peace, happiness, fulfillment, love, beauty, awe. But also what comes is the panic of vulnerability, the ability to be hurt, to suffer and die, to lose what we love in heartbreak. How willing am I to voluntarily choose the discomfort of not being in control in order to live into the world my heart yearns for and knows is possible? Courage is surrendering to the heart’s intuitive knowing and wisdom when other parts of us are desperate for comfort, safety and security.
I think this insight is at the heart of the “nonviolence” of Gandhi and King, illuminating the link between control and violence, and the transformative power of love standing for truth while relinquishing control over others and outcome. Am I willing to dissolve into connection with the wild energy of universal Need, let nature run free, focus on participation, mutuality, and contribution? When I’m feeling powerful anxiety or anger and the desire to control, can I let go and expand into a wider field of connection and the gift of Request, of giving and receiving beyond separateness and the separate self?
To go deeper into ideas related to control and separateness in this context, I recommend Charles Eisenstein, and his book The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know is Possible.