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You Were Born For Such A Time As This

by James O'Dea

Adapted from his chapter in the anthology, The Mystery of 2012: Predictions, Prophecies and Possibilities (Sounds True, 2007. Paperback release: January 2009)

Beyond the Threshold of 2012

Hold this thought:

As bad as it can get, which is extremely bad, the course of human evolution may also be close to a phase shift that will see the fulfillment of our deepest and most potent dreams. Right here, now, on the brink of calamity, a real possibility exists that we will discover that evolution has been gestating in us all the creativity and wisdom needed to transform our most dysfunctional beliefs. Ahead may lie the alignment of inner life and outward action and the emergence of a picture of reality shared by both science and spirituality.

Do not come to me with all the great insights into human capacities and the tantalizing insights of quantum physicists, brimming with affirmations about how we create our own reality, if you deny your own connection to the great wound in Nature and the great suffering of humanity. It is not someone else’s nightmare; it is ours. What I want to know is, when looking unflinchingly into the painful truth of all that besets us in this hour of our collective history, can you also see why some of us may be looking to 2012 and beyond with a powerful sense of optimism? Can you hold both the meaning of the nightmare and the signs of our collective awakening—because the only way to get a grip on reality is to see that it is indivisible, reflected in both the shadow and the light, the bitter and the sweet. Time reveals the true nature of things, for time is the unalterable process that lets us see things for what they are and not simply what they appear to be in any given moment.

Can we appreciate what time it is on planet Earth? Beyond the terror, can we feel the awe, the power, and the beauty of what may lie beyond the threshold of 2012?

· Are you one of those people who wake with an irrepressible sense of purpose and meaning in your life, which no crisis, however bad, can dull with numbness or despair?

· Do you have a sense that you were born for such a time as this?

· Do you experience an embodied and enlivened sense that a deeply humanized and peaceful planetary civilization will actually prevail on Earth?

If the answer is "yes, yes, yes," it is because all this has been gestating in you for as long as you can remember. You know that what is being born in your being is much older than you and that it has been a seed in the human imagination since ancient times; you are the dream of peace longing to be, longing to manifest its forms and find its fullest expression. Time has carried you to this fulcrum of becoming. The nightmare is not over, but you have begun to learn how to interpret the dramatic and portentous communication that it offers from the great mystery. As much as you feel that the husk of old forms is now destined to crack and break, you feel all the way to your gut that the seed of our higher nature is equally destined to break through.

Just how viable are you as a seed of future possibilities? Are these feelings and intuitions a symptom of naive or even cockeyed optimism, or are they a more accurate reflection of some deeper reality? Let’s take a closer look.

To even conceive of planetary peace, one must imagine that people will be able to let go of—and yes, fully release—any enmity toward those who have perpetrated past crimes. Overcoming the fundamental sense of separation created by judgmental obsessions is a significant evolutionary signpost—one we should celebrate as profoundly liberating.

If you live in a place of sustained hopefulness about the human condition, it is probably because you yourself do not feed off antagonism for enemies. Something has shifted in you. You do not draw meaning or life force from polarized thinking. The shift in your awareness is, I suspect, one that has overcome inherited tendencies to hold on to judgmental feelings or fixations about others.

A Quickening in Our Collective Consciousness

We do not know with certainty what will actually occur tomorrow, let alone what will happen across the planet in the years ahead. What we do know is how to:

· Read the contents of our own hearts and minds

· Discern in each other’s eyes an undiminished capacity for compassion

· Heed our persistent capacity for truth-telling in the face of unprecedented manipulation

· Cultivate forgiveness for those who have harmed us or sought to suffocate our dreams

We can also notice that those who are more loving and conciliatory do not try to force their truth upon us and have learned to express their truth in ways that still allow for others’ truth to be heard and felt. We can see in our daily experience that there are, in fact, many people who carry in their presence a magnanimity and life-enhancing energetic that invites tolerance, spaciousness for difference, and a capacity to be comfortable with ambiguity. When we look closely, we find a story unfolding within consciousness itself that is subtly taking shape and transforming our world from the inside out.

From this interior place, like a great root system growing invisibly beneath the surface, you and many others are having a potent sensory experience of much more love present in the world than is reflected in the dominant institutions or media. You are coming to know, in a primary, experiential way, that love is at the heart of evolution and the source of healing. Love is an evolutionary force because it is the primogenitor of nurturance. We live at a time when many people are discovering that the materialist paradigm, with all its wonderful attractions and distractions, is still unable to feed the more fundamental human longing for nurturance and relationship.

Now, so-called hard-core pragmatists and realists are likely to poohpooh these notions. Familiar with their arguments, we don’t have to rehash them.

The phenomenon we are discussing is not an ideological counter to the status quo; it is to be understood more accurately as a quickening in the center of our being—a quickening less susceptible to fear arousal, not conditioned by the gratifications of competitive advantage, but stimulated by experiences of wholeness, unity, and interconnection. It is what philosophers and theologians call the emergence of nondual consciousness.

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