Every artist begins each creative session in touch with infinity. There is at the artist’s center, an infinity of creative thoughts, ideas, and impulses that swirl within, unlimited by style, medium, or canvas. At some point, an apparent choice is made by the artist to consciously limit that infinity by placing a stroke of color upon the canvas. With each additional expression of the artist, more and more infinite possibilities are narrowed until, at last, the painting is complete. Upon its completion, the painting is then looked upon as a “thing.” A single piece of art created by the artist, defined by its color and style as well as the size and shape of the canvas. Few people look at paintings in a gallery and see the infinity from which they originated. Most only see the appearance of a single, individual painting.
Even though a piece of art has the appearance of individuality, it is also true that every painting contains within it the infinite options the artist had available. We see the color blue but we also know the artist could have used the color red. A single stroke across the canvas could easily have been a series of many strokes. Appreciating a piece of art is also the appreciation of the infinite options available to the artist and the finite decisions the artist made use of to express an individual idea.
As each painting is the illusion of individuality, so are you the same illusion of uniqueness. We look around the world and see appearances of millions of individuals, each seeming to be single, separate, self-contained creations. The unseen reality, however, is the very Being we all are is Infinite Spirit. Even though you seem to be an individual, finite creation in appearance, at your very essence you are unlimited.
Spirit is always infinite and can never be limited. However, just as the artist consciously decides to use specific, limited options in order to create what appears to be a single art piece, so does Infinite Spirit allow itself to use limited options in order to create the appearance of an individual. This is obvious when you look around and observe our vast differences. To make these decisions of limitation, Infinite Spirit can be compared to a driver choosing to obey a speed limit. The driver could go much faster or slower but consciously decides to limit the speed of the vehicle for the purpose at hand. This decision may produce the illusion that the car can only drive to a certain speed, when the reality is, the car is capable of going much faster or slower.
In this way, Infinite Spirit decides to take on individual form (you and I) and, in doing so, picks from a palette of seeming limitations, thereby creating this ”individual” illusion. It is not at all unlike an actor playing a role in a theatrical performance. The character appears to be a separate person from the actor, but in reality, is not. Likewise, life’s characters appear to be separate individuals, male, female, light skin, dark skin, old, young, sad, and happy but the very reality of each and every so-called character is Infinite Spiritual Being. As the artist utilizes specific colors and techniques to make the appearance of an individual piece of art, so does Infinite Spirit utilize a variety of human physical, mental and environmental traits to make this world of glorious, artistic creation!
The Human Condition
All of this brings us to observe what we might refer to as “the human condition.” The human condition happens when this so-called individual begins to believe it is actually a separate, self-contained individual. In spite of its real, infinite nature, the individual begins to believe it is autonomous, like the actor’s character suddenly believing it is a real person! The illusionary individual mind begins to believe it is the one in charge and begins dictating its own, limited perception of reality. “I am insufficient and finite” this mind instructs. “Life is full of unexpected events and uncontrollable tragedies that will bring me harm, make me ill and, ultimately, take my life. I must look out for myself and protect me at all cost!”
Now deeply trapped in this human condition, the illusionary individual spends its entire existence searching for a way out. It seeks peace, happiness, and eternal life, never realizing it already is those things! The majority of individuals put so much trust in the dominion of their own limited mind, they rarely take a moment to stop, look to their essence, and experience the Spiritual reality they are. Most people are trapped as a character in a play for the duration of their life experience.
Fortunately, rediscovering and reconnecting with our true Spiritual nature is as simple as looking past the appearance of our limitations, seeing past the body, ignoring the false leadership of the mind, and experiencing the reality of our own Being. Because that Being is always who we are, this state is immediately available to be rediscovered. Always here, always now. It is the only state there really ever is.
When we rediscover our Spiritual nature, we do not cease becoming apparent individuals. The play continues, but we are no longer lost in it, believing we are the limited characters we appear to be. We play these characters to their fullest, all the while silently abiding in the awareness of our true self. We encounter other individuals every day, many of whom are unconscious in the illusionary life-theatre, but we know the truth about them just as clearly as we know the truth about ourselves. We are, at our essence, Infinite Spirit creating Its masterpiece and we, in our individual form, are that masterpiece.