910th Week: Entanglement: Individual and Collective Well-Being

There’s a concept drawn from quantum research that resonates deeply with many spiritual traditions and also touches into ideas that are found in psychology. It is called “entanglement”, and it proposes that we are intimately connected to and affect the world around us in everything we do. It also proposes that we, as individuals, are part of a collective within which there is no real separation, even though our physical bodies lead us to imagine that we stand alone. In the Rig Veda, there is a saying that says something like: “We are all woven into Indra’s net, out of which we cannot fall.” According to quantum research, it appears that we are, indeed, all part of a living system out of which we cannot fall. In addition to that, as part of this system, everything we do has an effect on the larger collective system.

As I thought about writing a practice today, I found myself orienting to a deepening sense and understanding of entanglement. I think that part of me is also chewing on subtle activism practices for these times. And so, with entanglement in mind, here are a few subtle activism possibilities for you to explore.

First, notice what you experience if you settle into a meditative or quiet state and take some time imagining that the quality, the frequency, of universal love enfolds everything and everyone, everywhere, leaving out nothing, leaving out no one. You might imagine universal love as a color, a sound, an image, or an energy you don’t have to clothe at all. You may sense just the pure quality and presence of universal love. You may find that one of the challenges in this particular practice is that not leaving anyone out means imagining that people with whom you may vehemently disagree are also enfolded in universal love. Be sure to allow room for mixed feelings as you explore this practice. Remember that universal love is impersonal. It just is.

Another practice can draw on something like Tonglen, the Buddhist practice where you breathe in a problematical frequency/quality/energy. You might focus on fear, perhaps hatred, whatever negative or destructive quality you see in the world. Then, allow the fiery love in your heart to neutralize what you have breathed in. On the out-breath, breathe out a quality you want to share with the world. Some people choose ease, some choose peace, others choose love, compassion, kindness. Whatever quality you breathe out offers a healing quality to our world. If you are uncomfortable breathing in negative energies, begin by imagining that you are surrounded by a beautiful white light that begins to neutralize the negative energy even as you breathe it into your heart.

A third option is to bring into awareness an image, symbol, sound, or fragrance that represents the frequency of love and then filling yourself with that quality, taking it into every cell, every particle of your body, and also including your emotional aspect of being and your mental aspect of being. Hold the awareness that whatever fills you also radiates out into the world around you and immediately becomes part of the entangled collective which we all actually are.

The fundamental focus of these practices is a recognition of the fact that we are all entangled, inseparable, and the frequencies with which we resonate affect not only us, but also everyone else. Remember that whenever we engage subtle activism practices, we hold an underlying intention that whatever practices we engage as part of our subtle activism serve the greatest good for the greatest number. I hold this intention because I recognize that my individual human awareness can’t know what constitutes the greatest good for the greatest number, so I don’t want to impose any preconceived ideas, limiting perceptions, on the offerings I make to the collective with these kinds of practices.

Please remember to bring along curiosity as your constant companion and to pat gently on the head any judgments that may arise, allowing them to move on through without your having to do anything about them right now. Also, as I mentioned above, be sure to leave room for mixed feelings, as they are an inevitable part of our human wholeness. As with the judgments, there’s nothing you have to do about mixed feelings right now, except to notice them and to become aware of whatever information they may offer.

Here’s a recorded version of this practice, if you’d prefer  to listen to it.

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