“We tend to think of ‘greatness’ as a very far-off ideal. However, it is through your everyday choices that you have the opportunity to demonstrate the greatness that is hidden inside you”
There is a tremendous meaning to the unique human blend of matter and spirit, animalistic existence in a physical body and all-inclusive consciousness. As this blend, we are meant to elevate the material plane to spiritual heights and, at the same time, direct the spirit downward, deeply into matter. The more we succeed in expressing the unlimited through the limited, the more the spirit is realized in material ways.
All the most powerful individuals that have appeared on this planet – the Buddha and Nietzsche, Einstein and Beethoven, Mother Teresa and Martin Luther King – knew clearly why they were here. This was their common ground. All of them were driven to the ideal realization of the unlimited out of the limitation of their embodiment; all aspired to exhibit sublime qualities which are so-called superhuman. In this, there is no distinction between spiritual teachers, scientists, musicians or simple soldiers. This option of human nobility crosses all barriers and unifies all men and women.
This super-humanness is what we are here for: demonstrating greatness within our seeming smallness; managing to give shape and enable visibility to our deepest nature as infinite consciousness.
The key to human greatness: your heart
“Your heart is the miracle inside you: once awakened, it can unveil both your deepest humanity and your deepest divinity. Even more, it can show you that the two are one and the same”
The heart, or the emotional center, is the fusion point in which spirit and matter melt to join with each other and form one being. It not only bridges between the two worlds but it also enables them to unify in a meaningful bond. In other words, the heart is what makes us human – not animals and not spirits, but humans.
The human species is, before anything else, an emotional entity – an entity driven by emotional motivations, that chooses for emotional reasons and views the world from the realm of emotions. Not surprisingly, the very experience of emotion is an in-between psychophysiological phenomenon: neither a sensation – which is a physiological experience – nor a thought – which is far more “spiritual.” Emotions have a resonance in our body, and yet do not seem to originate from it.
As much as we would like to think of ourselves as, first and foremost, reasonable beings – particularly since we fear the realization that our “reason” and well-considered choices might really be emotional – research in the field of cognitive bias, including the breakthrough discoveries of psychologist Daniel Kahneman, have already shattered the rational myth of humanity. The truth is that even when we do activate our reasoning capacities, they are forever intermixed with emotional values.
We are emotional beings even when it comes to trusting certain philosophies and concepts. That which makes us confidently confirm the validity of an idea, or vehemently reject a theory, is essentially an emotional response that then quickly takes the guise of a thoughtful intellectual justification.
Many books and movies depict aliens as keenly interested in, and intensely puzzled by, the nature of the human species. Nearly all of them describe a situation in which the aliens are particularly drawn to that which they perceive as their own missing piece. While enjoying a beyond-evolved technology, an impeccable type of collective intelligence and an all-inclusive intelligence, they seem to acutely miss the emotional center that humans so naturally possess, and so, are driven to investigate it out of the intuition that in it lies the meaning of life.
It is the emotional center that makes us attach to and become engaged with our entire being, and out of this engagement, exhibit qualities such as self-sacrifice, self-overcoming, egolessness and absolute devotion. It is this center – according to human mythology as it is projected onto alien life and its so-called opposing uniqueness of mankind – that aliens lack. These emotionally deprived technological geniuses watch our blue planet of emotions and try with all their might to understand this mysterious “heart” that seems to pulsate next to the human’s physical heart, causing them to express some strange yet noble types of greatness – heroism that stems from the friction between their emotions and their other elements, some of them far inferior, such as fear and desire, and some far superior, such as logic, understanding and thoughtful consideration.
This is precisely it: in this friction between emotion and the other elements the human is given the opportunity to break through one’s own pattern, overcome oneself and demonstrate superhuman qualities. Through the heart, human beings “draw” their spiritual, more abstract elements into the physical world and thus realize them. They are realized precisely because they get to manifest and find expression in the densest, most limited plane – so dense and limited that it is hardly conceivable that it could contain them at all.
Becoming heroes despite all difficulties
The material world is a dimension of hazard and impending death. The body is prone to sickness as well as ceaseless pressures and hostile forces. The opportunity to demonstrate the spirit within this dimension is “against all odds,” and “simply unreasonable.” It is the heart that can bear and exhibit such reason, as it is the overcoming element in the human: the element of faith and trust, goodness and sensitivity, selflessness and choice.
As the connecting point between the limited and the unlimited, the heart easily bears the sense and the meaning of this connection. By binding these two seeming opposites, it endows both with the meaning that, in themselves, they completely lack. Its most significant act of meaning is the human capacity to demonstrate greatness through difficulties.
Human greatness can be truly revealed only through the friction between our spirit and the difficulties posed by the material plane. While the spirit aspires to the unlimited nature of our being, it is constantly thwarted and challenged by limitations and inhibitions. Whenever we meet with a certain limitation and, with much determination, transcend it, we get to express a nearly superhuman ability, thus connecting “heaven” and “earth.”
This ability to demonstrate the unlimited through the limited holds a tremendous range of potential expressions, from the spiritual capacity to realize that we are an infinite consciousness while still within the constraints of a physical body, to the opportunity to help one’s enemies at times of war while endangering one’s own life and family, to the chance to express unconditional love even when our conditioned heart has been completely shrunk and attacked by the strong winds of envy and fear of abandonment.
This human struggle is why we are here. The heart is the one part in us that naturally remembers how purposeful this struggle is and knows why it is so important that one should rightly choose while one’s spiritual and material elements rub against each other.