Profound Meditation in a Troubled Land: Practicing in Honduras
My wife Pam and I recently returned from a very powerful trip to Honduras, where we had been invited to stay with some very dear friends. As we got on the plane on the way there, I was talking to my older brother who is an international security expert, and he said, “You know what? Honduras is the most dangerous country in the world right now.” Sure enough, three days after we arrived, the State Department sent out an advisory warning to Americans not to travel in Honduras. It was simply too violent. We were staying in San Pedro Sula, which is considered to be the most violent city in the most violent country. That was really something; I could feel it. We were also hanging out with some very wonderful people, and we met beautiful people wherever we went.
The people in Honduras are struggling with some systemic issues that are overwhelmingly hard to deal with: crushing poverty, great wealth, the left and the right, and the drug cartels. We saw pick-up loads of people with pistols in their pockets or their waistbands, with sunglasses, and very dark energy. These were the cartel narcos, in other words, the soldiers of the drug cartels.
Towards the end of our trip, I was sitting in meditation in the home of our friends, a beautiful place up in the mountains, and doing my daily practice. I was sitting with the hurt from all of my impressions and feeling the pain in my heart. As I tell my students, “You don’t have to do anything about your pain. You don’t have to think happy thoughts, breathe special ways, or whatever. Just allow the pain to be there.” I knew the pain I was feeling was the pain of being in this country and being around people who are in such a state of crisis and struggle. So, I sat with that.
I went into a deep meditation and began to tap into the ground of being, emptiness, spirit, source, whatever you want to call it. If you get through all of your ego structures and keep going, this is what you tap into. In fact, I think the whole idea behind meditative practice or contemplative prayer is to make available this part of the human psyche, which is none other than divinity. I believe this part of us is accessible to all. One of the reasons that we use the Profound Meditation Program as a spiritual practice is because it takes us into these deep meditative states in a healthy way and an ongoing way that actually stabilizes this type of awareness in our lives. It allows us to have an ever deepening and maturing spiritual connection.
On this particular day, as I sat with all of my heartfelt impressions of what I had seen and experienced in Honduras, looking at the whole picture, a kind of macro politic of the issues confronting this country, I felt a profound sense of love coming straight from the heart of creating—from the creator, or God, or however you want to say it—for all the people involved. Love for the poor, love for the narcos, love for the DEA agents, for the police, for the wealthy, for the struggling middle class, for the cats, the dogs, the trees, and the donkeys—all while the human violence and the suffering go on and on, because the politics and the economics are not meeting the needs of the people, and because of the criminal corruption, the biological, the neurological, and the spiritual corruption that the whole plague of drugs brings on.
Looking at the whole picture, using the Integral map that Ken Wilber and a lot of us have been working with for a long time, I could really see all the different parts. But coming from a place of deep love, it was no longer about the lefties trying to do in the righties, or the poor trying to bring down the rich, or the rich trying to oppress the poor, or everybody trying to make a buck, just a deep, deep love.
It is firmly embedded in spiritual realization that at the most profound levels of our consciousness and reality, there is compassion and love for all sentient beings. This is what all the great spiritual teachers, from the dawn of recorded scriptures to the native traditions to the modern teachings, have all been saying: “God is love.” (1 John 4:7-8) Sometimes I think if we had dispensed with all the rest of it and just stuck with that, we would have been better off.
By the way, I’m not talking about the “let’s all hold hands, sing, and be nice to everybody” kind of love, because love can be ruthless; love can be smart; love can be wise; and love can even be violent. Enlightened warriors and policemen express this when they use violence with compassion in order to protect the innocent and to protect those who cannot protect themselves.
An “it’s-all-love, let’s-be-nice, and everything-will-be-cool” approach won’t work here. Changing the way things are will take a lot of hard work. It will mean working at many levels: economic, military, police, and spiritual. It will take Integral practice. If more of us start to find out what matters and start to wake up at a deeper level, then we can begin to make wise and informed decisions, and point our internal compasses to true north, our true selves, our true divinity, and our true purpose.
All this to say, I credit where I am today, and my vision for Honduras on this particular day, to my ongoing practice and being willing to feel all the impressions available to me as I traveled throughout Honduras. I sat with the pain and the hurt in my heart in my meditation. I got a new breath of something, a new inspiration, an illumination, and hopefully, with God’s grace and a lot of hard work, some light will be shed on a very dark area that needs to be healed and needs to be looked at, if our human family is going to progress together into a world that is sustainable, inspiring, and dignified for humans and all of the life forms that we’re evolving with here.
Adapted from iAwake Technologies’ free, weekly teleconference call on December 19, 2012.
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John Dupuy is the CEO of iAwake Technologies and the founder of Integral Recovery, a holistic addiction treatment approach inspired by Ken Wilber’s Integral Model. As a pioneer in the use of brainwave entrainment in therapy and personal development, John has dedicated his life to helping others deepen their spiritual practice and transform their lives.
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