Lesson
8

Going Forth

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Go forth on your journey,
for the benefit of the many,
for the joy of the many,
out of compassion for the welfare,
the benefit and joy of all beings.

The Buddha

Hopefully this course has helped you to see with new eyes our ineluctable place in the web of life, our connections with all beings through space and time, and the kind of power that is ours for creating a sustainable civilization.

In this lesson we try to help you to use this new vision to discern the distinctive role you can play in the Great Turning and to help you bridge the experiences and learnings of this work and your actual daily life.

Learnings to bring to your life and your community

What can you expect to take with you, as you go forth into the world and your life? From the learnings you gained, hopefully you have harvested gifts to carry with you. Because they are invisible, it is good to name them:

  • a heightened awareness of the suffering and dangers besetting our world; and a heightened self-respect, for our capacity to face them and know them, without dodging, denying or numbing out

  • an upsurge of personal vitality for having acknowledged and integrated our pain for the world, reframing it as compassion, and necessary feedback

  • a wider sense of identity and self-interest as an integral part of the living body of Earth-i.e. the ecological self

  • a powerful, nourishing sense of community--with each other, with our brother-sister species, with our ancestors and future generations. We feel not only accountable to them, but also inspired and supported by them

  • a sturdier motivation to join with others in healing our world; and confidence in the power that can sustain us, because it derives not from our separate selves, but from each other and our interactions in service to life

  • an appreciation of our diversities of gifts, and of the many different and interdependent roles we can play in the Great Turning

  • hence also a gratitude for our own unique self, with all its strengths and limitations, and a respectful cherishing of .our own intention to be of use in this planet-time

  • a liberation from dependence on immediate measurable results, and a commitment to long-term goals that extend beyond our individual lifetime (especially if you were able to do some Deep Time work, as in Lesson 7)

  • a gladness in being alive now, in this epochal moment on Earth and a
    sense of the privilege that is ours, to take part in the Great Turning

Now, as you approach the end of this course, you can both digest these gifts of learning and see quite specifically how they can shape your life and your actions.

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