One of the main ways to use these guiding thoughts (or any guiding thought) in order to really “get at” a deeper, broader meaning is to dismantle it; to take it word by word, phrase by phrase, line by line and think it in pieces.
I went through the guiding thought in total, picturing different people and saying it to them. Then I went through it in pieces, taking it apart, and putting it back together.
First, I said the guiding thought to you– you reading this right now: Know that you are filled full. Wherever you go, whatever you do, fulfillment accompanies you. Fulfillment accompanies you as certainly as you are…and…you are.
Then, I gave the guiding thought to someone with a lot of money. I thought, “Let’s see what it feels like to give this to someone who does not seem to need it.” The feeling or impression I “got back” –that I saw in response to this giving—felt like impatience, distraction, like this person had no time or need for my good-wishes of fulfillment. I thought this was curious. Fulfillment is about having material needs met, but it is also so much more than that. The impression I got was that this person equated material success with fulfillment, and so did not have time to be fulfilled in other ways. I did not feel my time wasted.
Then, I gave the guiding thought to someone who is very spiritual. The picture I got in response was an abundance of sun, sand, and water and the feeling associated with it was, “yup, I have everything I need!”
Thinking about comparing these two, it occurs to me that one of the things I have been mentioning throughout this journey is the idea of being overflowing or filled full. There was definitely a different feel in this regard between these two. Do you see it?
Finally, I just went through and gave the thought to different people—friends, family members, people I’ve never met. My choices are not quite random, but they are not specific or selective either.
Then I moved on to dismantling the guiding thought.
I started with (obviously), “Everywhere fulfillment is, I am”. “OK”, I said to myself, “where is fulfillment?” And I started looking for it. It was sort of like that children’s book, “Are You My Mother?” where a lost little bird is going around asking everyone/everything “Are you my mother?”. Every response was “no”…until…well, you’ll just have to read the book….
Anyway, I was “going around” asking things “Are you fulfillment?” I asked my dog…”no”. I asked my big toe… “no”. I asked a dollar bill… “no”. I asked some trees… “no”. So where is fulfillment? And if I can’t find fulfillment, where am I?
(Moving on to the next line of the guiding thought) Fulfillment is everywhere.
Well…that changes how I understand the responses from my dog, my big toe, the dollar bill and the trees. None of these things could tell me, “I am fulfillment”; yet, at the same time….they are.
There is a fairly common metaphor that tries to explain God, using ocean imagery. The corresponding words are basically, “God is the ocean, and you are a drop in it; the ocean/God surrounds you, and you are part of the ocean/God.” I am a drop, you are a drop, we are all drops that make up the ocean, but we are also all individual drops, retaining our unique “dropness”.
Any “trying to understand God”, though a worthy pastime, has its limitations. But, I have been trying to use this imagery to understand, and it has been difficult. I have just never quite gotten how God surrounds me, is me, and I am part of God in the way that a drop is part of the ocean.
But now, thanks to my dog, my big toe, a dollar bill, and some trees, I think I have a better understanding.
Neither my dog, nor my big toe, nor the dollar, nor the trees could say, “I am fulfillment”, when asked directly.
Just like a drop of water cannot say, “I am the ocean”.
Just like I cannot say, “I am God”.
But my dog, my big toe, the dollar and the trees can say, “Fulfillment and I are one”.
Just like the drop of water can say, “the ocean and I are one”.
Just like I can say, “God and I are one”.
Every part is exactly a part and exactly One with the Whole while remaining a part.
From this perspective, the statement “Fulfillment is” becomes simply matter of fact. It becomes solid, tangible, un-questionable. “Where is fulfillment?” “Everywhere.” “It just is.”
Where is Love? Everywhere. It just is.
Where is Oneness? Everywhere. It just is.
Where is Peace? Everywhere. It just is.
Where is God? Everywhere. It just is.
Where am I? I am…Everywhere…One with Love, One with Oneness, One with Peace, One with God. I just am.