Ernest Holmes said: “I believe the ultimate goal of life to be a complete emancipation from all discord of every nature, and that this goal is sure to be attained by all”.
He didn’t say partial emancipation. He said a complete emancipation. That’s not like somebody declaring emancipation and you still staying in slavery. That’s not like embracing a concept of emancipation while still being bound to stagnation. That’s not like talking about freedom and not embodying freedom. That’s complete emancipation.
If you’ve seen the movie Selma or lived as an adult in the early 60’s, then you know the fight for freedom that many died for so that Black Americans would be allowed to vote in America. In 1965, the Voting Rights Act became a federal law so that voices from those who were denied the privilege could be heard. If you listen to the news, you might have heard about what happened in McKinney, Texas, when the White officer beat down the Black teenage girl who was in her swimsuit, just out there with an intention of having fun. Or you might have heard about Michael Brown in Ferguson or Eric Garner in Staten Island, or heard the many ways in which law enforcement has profiled people of color in denial of their rights afforded them by the Constitution and their citizenship. You may remember that it wasn’t until 96 years ago, in 1919, that women were allowed to vote – 143 years after the country was founded. And you may know that’s it’s only been a year since homosexual people were allowed to marry – and still on the federal level only. For there are still many states that will not acknowledge this federal law.
It’s not any of these people became more deserving. It was about the evolution of the consciousness. Fear replaced freedom somehow. There was the fear that these people would have the capacity to make decisions about my life. The perception is likely to be that that those people cannot be trusted because I have something to lose. The perception that we have something to lose makes us want to keep other people limited, at least our perception of them limited. It took us a while because we were working on evolving our consciousness. The world cannot evolve our consciousness. It is our consciousness that must evolve the world. As my Science and Spirituality teacher, Amit Goswami would tell us, “Consciousness is the ground of all being”. It’s really important to know that you do have the capacity to move past a previous experience into a greater experience. It’s been proven time and time again in your own lives. And you’ve seen it on a larger scale in public terms and in very obvious ways.
It’s not that you can’t learn in the valley. The shadow aspects of our persona are part of the journey too. It’s important for us to know that the challenges and the tribulations do not come so that we can make our homes there. There are people who are hopeless, and thank God, there are people that are hopeful. Once you know about Principle, once you’ve had a glimpse of Truth, you are no longer clueless. An awakening has occurred and you can no longer go back to sleep. Once you’ve had consciousness classes, once you have had spirituality classes, know that you cannot go back to sleep. You may try to hit the snooze button, but it’s too late. You already know better. You already know that your clinging to your little miserable self is not going to gain you any insight, any movement into your greatest yet to be.
It is difficult for me to spend time with people who insist upon staying in the darkness and limitations. I greeted some people that sit and talk about all the problems. And I’ll generally go by and say, Hey! Are you guys solving the problems of the world today? And they’ll respond, no. It’s too much. I’d said something about how things have changed over the years. They replied that someone had to die in order for things to change. More people are going to have to die in order for things to change. And I walked away.
When you are around that kind of consciousness, you don’t have to stay there. You can be aware of it. And it doesn’t mean that you have to try to change them or try to influence their thinking any differently. If they come into our centers, into our classes or to any events in spiritual environments, then you know that they may be open to that. If they don’t, it’s because they don’t believe that anything else is possible, that anything greater can come into their experience. There are people who are not aware that they are free. They’re scared. They’re fear-full about the world coming to an end any day now.
I called my mother on her 84th birthday this past Tuesday. I said there’s this beautiful sun in the sky. It’s perfectly orange. You have to see it. It took her a while to find the right window to see it. And she invited someone else in the house to see it, the response from the other person was that the world must be coming to an end.
When people haven’t had a glimpse of the Supreme View, they think that God is the illusion and the stuff that is happening in the world is real. Once you know about eternity, you don’t have to worry about anything coming to an end, because it won’t.
We may be disappointed from time to time, about things that the Supreme Court decides. There’s a reason that supreme is called supreme. The supreme is the ultimate view. The Supreme Court is the end of it all. Once it has been decided there, there is nothing further to be done. There’s state court. There’s a Court of Appeals. And then there’s a Supreme Court. It’s good that our first discussions aren’t always the ones relied on or where all of our hopes stop. Granted, some folks may stop at the local level because they don’t have a higher viewint. There’s a couple called the Lovings who did have a higher viewpoint.
In 1958, a pregnant Mildred Jeter discovered she was pregnant and she went to Washington, D.C. with her boyfriend, Richard Loving, to marry him because she was Black and Native American and he was a White man. It was against the laws of Virginia for them to marry. They married there. Five weeks later, they returned to Virginia. An anonymous tip led to the Lovings being raided by the police. Instead of finding them having sex, which was another criminal offense at the time, they caught them sleeping in their marital bed. Mildred showed the police their D.C. marriage certificate. It was later used as evidence of “cohabiting as man and wife, against the peace and dignity of the Commonwealth.” There was a “law” called Virginia’s Racial Integrity Act of 1924, which prohibited them from marrying.
The Lovings were sentenced to one year in prison, but it was suspended on the condition that the couple leaves Virginia and not return together for 25 years. Initially they did just that, but by 1963, Mildred had enough and decided to write to Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy. The letter inspired Kennedy to connect her with the ACLU, which took the case to the U.S. Supreme Court. On June 12th, 1967, the Court’s ruling declared all laws against interracial marriage in the United States to be unconstitutional.
In 1967, the United States Supreme Court put an end to the prohibition of interracial marriage in the case of Loving v. Virginia. I think it’s great that a couple named loving stood for freedom. Loving ones opened the way to freedom so that not only Blacks and Whites could marry, but people of every race, Latina, Asian and any combination of races could marry. Ernest Holmes said: “Freedom of will means the ability to do, say and think as one wishes; to express as one personally desires, to be able merely to think and dream of freedom would not be liberty”.
We must not only think or treat about freedom, we have to move our feet from Freedom. Freedom was never afar off. It always was and always will be because it is a dimension of the Divine. It is our divine birthright. We have a respond-ability to allow ourselves to be free. If you want to explore this further, contact the CSL Diversity Commission at www.diversity.csl.org