The laws of nature are very different on the surface of life as opposed to the depth. For example, on the surface, you are you, and I am me. We are separate. Whereas in the depth, we are all one. For that reason, behavior oriented around the surface of life can look very different than behavior oriented around the depth. It’s as if there are two different fronts that we are negotiating simultaneously. Proper behavior is a matter of the integration of the two.
When a person is disproportionally oriented toward one front or the other, imbalanced behavior is the result. For example, people may favor spiritual reflection with a love for the transcendental depth of existence. However, when they go out into the world, they cease to be practical or effective in the material world. On the other hand, when the imbalance is excessively toward the material world, behavior can become petty, selfish, cynical, and polarizing. Oftentimes, individuals may enjoy reflecting upon the spiritual, but when it comes down to living their lives, they disproportionally become superficially oriented. It is easy to be spiritual on the weekends, but how much do we retain as we live the rest of our lives? How wisely do we integrate the surface with the depth?
Those overly entrenched in the superficial front tend to become overly materialistic and cynical. Those overly entrenched in the spiritual tend to become impractical and unrealistic. Those living a life that integrates the two are often not recognized by those living a less integrated state. That usually is a matter of projection. People tend to project their value system, based upon their level of integration, upon others, and judge them accordingly. For example, the cynical and materialistic scrutinize the behavior of others, assuming they too must be equally cynical, materialistic, and not to be trusted. They spontaneously assume ulterior and selfish motives are at the root of others’ behavior. This is what we face as a society these days. Those immaturely spiritually-oriented judge pragmatic behavior as being superficial and not deep.
However, a life integrating the two is subtle. Attempting to integrate the two in an unsophisticated way becomes a matter of cross-realm projection (i.e., trying to impose the laws of nature of one front onto the other front). For example, just because we are all one doesn’t mean you give away all your money and abandon all pragmatics.
Proper integration of the two is a sublime and exquisite dynamic. It is a state of physiology, a state of being. The majesty of an artful navigation of life integrating those two fronts of life is not easily recognized or appreciated by those living a less balanced state. An imbalanced relationship between those two fronts precludes wisdom, maturity, and artful living. Such imbalance is the source of negativity (e.g., suspicion, mistrust, misunderstanding, hatred, resentment, judgment, polarization, and conflict).
Through meditation, as well as reflecting upon the nature of life and the nature of our own personal psychodynamics, we can cultivate a healthy, wise, and mature relationship with life (i.e., the integration of the surface with the depth). When feeling challenged in life, reflect upon the subtle nature of life. Aspire to understand the sublime relationship and harmonization between the surface and the depth. Aspire to wisdom. Aspire to a pragmatic relationship with the material world integrated with an unending adherence to the Divine.