Patience (Video Script)
We live on an impatient planet. In our 24/7 global culture humans appear addicted to a frantic lifestyle – racing against the clock – chasing time – always in a hurry, trying to cram as much living as possible into every single second.
Our electronic global village has seemingly shrunk the surface of the planet – cramping our personal space, but also providing new possibilities for being connected to each other. At the personal level, we thrive on instant gratification, relentlessly marketed through the mass media that pursues us everywhere. We want all that we can imagine and we want it now. That’s the prevailing, materialistic mindset in much of the world.
Survival of the fittest capitalism – that has increasingly become the economic standard throughout the world – leaves little room for patience. Money-driven economics focus almost exclusively on productivity – ramping up the pressure to produce and making every minute count in the creation of goods and services. The workplace has become a pressure cooker and place of competition – not just with our neighbors and co-workers – but for workers on the other side of the planet who would take our jobs and replace us in the workforce. We are left to wonder – are we really our brothers keeper?
In our current worldly state of affairs, the spiritual side of life seems to evaporate. There’s just not enough time for spiritual practice or room for sacred space in our lives. When caught up by the compulsive, driven lifestyle that has become synonymous with modernity, it can seem as if we are possessed by our own impatience.
Patience and the Soul
The Bible contains a curious remark by Jesus about the relationship of patience to our awareness of being souls.
In your patience possess ye your souls. (Luke 21:19)
What does it mean to possess your soul in patience? First, patience represents the spiritual dimension of material experience. Thus in patience we become AWARE of ourselves as souls, as individual spiritual beings with will and choice.
You will recall the separate sense of self discussed in a previous lesson. The separate self requires experience in a material universe of space and time to become aware of its apparent detachment from it Source. This is the unique expression of soul, the individualized manifestation of spirit.
Thus we each are a soul, making its way through eternity, finding its way back to its Source. This return journey of the homesick soul requires patience, for it is a long trek.
Patience allows us to REMEMBER that regardless of the extent of our wayward voyage – our adventure into materiality – we all do make it back to the Source. And in some eternal, simultaneous sense, we are already there and have been all along.
We awaken to the reality that past, present, and future are all NOW – that we can dip into that pool of eternity with our consciousness. When we are impatient, we become too narrowly focused in the intense sensory experience of space and time – the realm of worldly shadows – and lose a sense of context and purpose. We forget our destiny as souls.
We are timeless beings in a world of shadows. Our daily waking consciousness is the dream.
- Patience is an awakening to the reality of the soul in the midst of shadows – becoming lucid, as it were in the midst of life – waking up.
- Patience is the recognition of our true identity as spiritual beings in a material world.
- Patience is a virtue – a spiritual attribute that allows us to meet the challenges and lessons in life from a spiritual perspective.
- Patience is an activity of the mind that measures and assesses our progress in soul development.
- Patience is NOT tolerance that merely accepts or endures things as they are.
- Patience is NOT resignation that submits to difficulty out of despair or necessity.
- Patience is NOT passive or negative.
- Patience IS a constructive, positive influence that moves us forward gradually in space and time.
- Patience measures space and time from a spiritual perspective.
Thus our development as souls is incremental but sustained – line upon line; a little here, a little there; precept by precept … In patience we become aware of ourselves as spiritual beings. In patience, truly, we DO possess our souls.
Time, Space, and Patience
The physical universe of space and time is a testament to the patience of God. Astrophysicists are united in the belief that the universe is rather old by human standards – something on the order of 13 to 14 billion years of earth time.
If the universe was created by God to allow souls to experience the awareness of separation from their Source, it would seem that God is patient indeed – allowing us to learn at our own pace, yet ever active and attentive when we do turn attention to the divine.
The experience of patience for incarnated souls living in flesh bodies on planet earth is another matter, as we have seen in the introduction to this lesson. Part of the challenge of developing patience is the inherent experience of three-dimensional consciousness. In strictly physical terms, humans perceive objects in the world as having width, height, and depth – a triune of three dimensions of space.
Conceptually, we have already encountered various triune models – a triune model of the self – physical, mental, spiritual – a triune pattern of mind – conscious, unconscious, and superconscious; and of course, the Christian triune representation of God as Father, Son, and Spirit. Apparently, when having a three dimensional experience, we tend to group ideas in threes.
The Cayce readings acknowledge another important triune related to soul development – time, space, and patience. Time is a chronological measure. With it we track fractions of a second, minutes, hours, days, weeks, and so forth through the eons of time – about 14 billion years if modern scientific chronology is to be trusted.
Time allows us to make take our lessons in soul development in small increments – one at a time, so to speak. Otherwise we would be overwhelmed by the immensity of the process. Understanding comes gradually – line upon line; here a little, there a little; small steps in the flow of time.
And yet time urges us to act. Life on earth is time-limited. If we are to progress, we must not become stagnant. We must move forward continuously.
Space is a measure of distance – ranging from the miniscule gap between subatomic particles to the gulf between galaxies. As souls, we need space to grow and development. The universe provides the space we need to experience the awareness of separation. It is like a giant sandbox or playground for fledgling gods to try out their wings.
I am here and you are there. We are separate beings – at least, so it would appear. Space as a measure of distance provides the illusion of separation – separation from other souls – separation from the Creator – space to be ourselves and yet one with the whole.
Patience is a measure of soul development. Patience provides an assessment of our progress in spiritual awareness and application. Patience reminds us that we have as much space and time as we need. Yet we must keep moving, for movement is the essence of spirit. So patience is active yet assured. In soul development, we make haste slowly.
Thus the universe is configured to provide us with feedback on our soul development. As souls we are constantly meeting ourselves and the choices that we have made. What we do with that feedback is itself a matter of choice, for will is a gift of the Creator. In patience we come to treasure that gift.