Taking both Part I and Part II combined, we learned that humans have vices and by definition in Part II, vices are dissonance in a relationship between a lesser reality (the person) and a greater reality. Further, we learned that oneness is the pursuit of harmony between realities. Finally, we learned that oneness does not judge anything as right or wrong. The goal is harmony among many realities, indeed among all realities. If the reader needs to refresh the meaning of greater and lesser realities, read Part II again. The dynamic of oneness hinges on relationships between realities.
The mariner resists adding further trappings to an interpretation or to the behavior of oneness. He knows that readers will recognize ideas and virtues that are part of their own religion, especially moralistic ideas and rules of behavior. This is because ethics and morality are by nature universal. However, the mariner makes a special effort not to be drawn into judgmental elements of religion or its specialized practices.
Part I took issue with many human behaviors. Quoting Part I:
“Any, ANY activity pursued for the sake of personal gain or stature – whether mental, spiritual, physical, pursuit of success or pursuit of empirical reward. This statement eliminates thousands of pseudo-virtuous activities.”
Humans have active minds. In addition, genealogically humans are not far removed from apes. In fact, humans are classified as part of the family tree. This evolutionary mix produces an ethical behavior prone to empirical gratification and self-guided pragmatism.
Yet humans feel a need to organize, to overcome obstacles, and to achieve consciously some definition of superiority. The trouble is that the simplistic urges passed to us by our ancestors move more easily to greed and chest thumping than to the finer elements of oneness.
Following the spirit of oneness, an individual must not consider themselves a completed product; one must assure there is harmony between themselves and the greater reality of their neighborhood, town and neighbors. As an afterthought, harmony in the family might be nice. Further, a sense of absolute oneness is required as a tool to evaluate lesser realities.
The moral act of oneness is enabling harmony. Therefore, an individual must identify a greater reality that will provide requirements for harmony. It can be civic, as mentioned a moment ago; it can be an organization; it can be any institution from a religious one to a special activities club. There is virtually no limit to greater realities. Greater realities can be as simple as rules for crossing a street, as complex as one’s national ethic and culture, or awareness of nature and planet centric realities.
The mariner will not examine the unending list of pseudo-virtuous activities. It is easier to restate the principle of oneness:
In this moment, doing what you’re doing, saying what you’re saying, thinking what you’re thinking, what greater reality will guide you to harmonious behavior? In other words, do not approach life from within yourself. That process leads to judgmental, pseudo-virtuous behavior. Instead, approach life from the outside, consciously knowing you are enabling harmony within a greater reality.
Pretend you need a map to go from your home to some distant, unknown place. The rational person would acquire a map and follow the path to the destination. The process of knowing that you did not have an answer within yourself but looked for guidance outside yourself is precisely how oneness works. You are always the lesser reality. Enabling harmony comes from outside and is a greater reality that shows you the way to the most harmonious behavior.
A few insightful questions are provided. Trying to invent exceptions to the obvious answers is not helpful.
You are walking on a sidewalk on a street that has moderate vehicle traffic with gaps every so often. You want to cross the street. Do you time your crossing to jaywalk between vehicles or do you walk to the corner? Jaywalking is dissonance to what greater value?
You are walking through the woods. You come upon an animal trap of the kind that is illegal. The trap is set. What do you do? This is a trick question. Any number of greater values can be applied. Maybe the animal is food for a destitute person. Maybe it was set by an uncaring, pseudo-virtuous person with no empathy. Maybe you should report the trap to the authorities. Maybe you should take the trap with you. Maybe……
Each of these actions enables harmony from slightly different greater values. No one said life was easy! The correct behavior is not to be judgmental about the illegal trap. Oneness does not judge right or wrong; only determine what the most harmonious behavior should be.
A business is having financial difficulty. The situation has come to a point that labor costs are too high to pay the twenty people who work for the owner. What greater reality provides her with the most harmonious solution?
Part IV will address escapist behavior.