This sky will pass away;
and the one above it will also pass away.
The dead have no life,
and the living have no death.
On days when you ate what was dead,
you made it alive.
When you are in the light, what will you do?
When you were One, you created two.
But now that you are two, what will you do?
(The Gospel of Thomas, Logion 11, Leloup-Rowe translation)
Meredith: I’m curious about this question, “What will you do?” It suggests a question about volition, about free will. This has always puzzled me. Where/when does free will begin and end?
But there is also something else in this passage that I find interesting. It is that distinction between One and Two. Where is the distinction? What defines the edge - that invisible line that marks the separation between this material world and that other one, the One that we swim and breathe in but seem to only glimpse or recognize once in a while? One may think of this boundary or distinction as a precipice, or a place where we come to the rim and ‘let go’, or even fall into this other thing. Others may speak of this as a height, such as on the top of a peak where we can now see it All clearly, where before we only could see partially. Where does this distinction begin and end, start or stop for you?
For me, I sense the spiritual world exists at all times and in all places in this herenow, and yet somehow I/we get caught into thinking it is somehow different, apart from us, and that we may only see it when “Awakened”, or when something miraculous happens to us. I’m inclined to see this division, this edge as no edge at all. I see this edge as one not unlike the point of dissipation between steam and air, or the line on the beach between wet and dry sand. This is a ‘soft edge’, blurry, impossible to distinguish where one begins and the other ends. Spiritual is superimposed in/on material, not separate from it. From this, we can realize the “One” or the wholeness, in the apparent “two”, or separateness.
Aki: Here is another way to look at free will, choice and volition. We're moving along in space and time on the horizontal dimension, choosing, exercising free will, growing, gradually cultivating, approaching... And then "suddenly" we realize the vertical dimension, "superimposed" to use your word, upon the horizontal dimension, and what a realization this is! On the vertical dimension, there is Wholeness, no space and time, no choosing. In my experience there is rising on the vertical dimension; rising in grace, a deepening or rising in the field of grace. The experience is one of freedom, warmth, light and bliss; a feeling or presence of Wholeness, connectedness, non-separation.