ELIHU’S KEY by Mal Garvin – Spiritual intelligence and the fortunes of the self.
Chapter 41 – short excerpt
“We consciously practice spiritual intelligence when we intentionally choose spirit over ego, love over fear, the highest good for all, over self- interest.” Dietrich
The fascination and joy of tracing the source of our fantasies
We can discover the deficits that were shaped in our first five years of life. They fuel our fantasies which are largely designed to help us transcend our frustrations and limitations. Our problem is that our fantasies tend to become obsessions. It has been well said “Our ultimate desire is our ultimate delusion, unless our ultimate desire is to fulfil the words of God.” (Verner & Lotte Pelz)
So here is the human dilemma – a yearning that by its very nature will create obsessions that can never be realised. The incomplete and unfulfilled sense of self, the ego, is motivated by these deficits and is always wanting to go beyond its self to escape the exquisite ache. Viktor Frankl says that the most significant feature of the human personality is our desire for self- transcendence.
Our fatal flaw: We cannot transcend ourselves by focusing on ourselves.
In our subconscious search for fulfillment we are unwittingly on the journey toward self- transcendence. Hence the fatal flaw we human beings have – we can never transcend ourselves by focusing on ourselves. In a narcissistic world that continually tells us how to gain satisfaction by indulging ourselves, we find we are deceived into a self-destructive morass of self- absorption. Down deep within, we know it’s not working. No wonder Mick Jagger’s song “I can’t get no satisfaction” and U 2s’ “I still haven’t found what I’m searching for” are the anthems of a generation.
Small wonder we still haven’t found what we’re looking for.
Only the most unaware among us can ignore the destructive impact of unfulfilled dreams or the fulfillment of self-indulgent dreams for attention, wealth and celebrity. Thanks to the merciless probing of the media every day we see so called stars who supposedly have it all, self-destruct before our eyes.
The love orientation that can save us from our ego
Viktor Frankl believes there are two options – to give ourselves to a cause greater than ourselves or to love someone unconditionally, both of which take us beyond ourselves. But there is another one that the likes of Mother Theresa and Francis of Assisi believed was the answer. It is to let the voice within lead us to an awareness of God’s love for us, then respond to life from that position. After all Jesus called it the first and great commandment, to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.” ie: get this mind-set right and all the other orientations will fall into place.