The One arises through the Many and the Many arise through the One
by Julia Woodman
We are all different yet the same. We come from the same origins, yet are each unique.
When you connect with the common link that exists deep within us all then you
celebrate the magic of the differences more. If we were all the same then life would be
incredibly boring and we wouldnt learn anything. Yet we all belong to that field or
ocean from which we arise and one day return, that field which gives us consciousness
and life, that field which gives us a sense of fundamental peace when we connect with it,
and which is also reflected in a lake or a sunset or a view from a mountain top.
One of my favourite Shakespeare quotes is Her beauty is her infinite variety (when
speaking of Cleopatra). This can apply when describing consciousness or life, which to
my mind are much the same thing. You could use it to describe Gaia the earth, with her
infinite variety of ecosystems and amazing things existing in them. I love both the
overall imperative of life or consciousness, and the gorgeous details of things.
In our differences, we allow the One to arise in infinite shape, thought, experience, and
action. Every one of us is like a uniquely cut chink of coloured glass in a kaleidoscope,
reflecting what life is like for us. The dark or cracked bits of glass are still part of the
overall picture. We have to accept them along with the rest, or there would be no
contrast. Universal love or being embraces even things we do not like as well as
those we do all has its place and purpose. Universal love does not retreat in fear it
knows that suffering is part of experience and learning we have to accept ALL to be in
it. We are here to embrace life in its entirety, take our chances, get on out there and live
fully in order to really appreciate it.
The two best ways I know to connect with everything in this way are either through
spending time out in the natural world, or through meditation. Contemplative time in
nature does not necessarily mean inactive observation; it could also be active
contemplation while walking, running, climbing, swimming, canoeing, surfing etc.
The thing is to enjoy the beauty of your surroundings as well as what you are doing.
Neither method, of regaining that connection with the deep thread of consciousness
within us and the beauty all around us, should be considered as ways of escaping or
retreating from life though, except perhaps for temporary relief and renewal. They are
tools for allowing you to destress, recharge, and gain a better perspective. The trick then
is to bring your revitalised self back to integrate with life in a more balanced and
Ideally you would then be both accepting and reflecting the joy of both the one and the
many both inwards and outwards. At the same time you would be expressing your
unique individuality through how you choose to live your life.