Inner Circle

The Dharma sometimes appears very esoteric. The term esoteric has its root in the Greek word esōterikos, ‘belonging to an inner circle.’ The teachings and practices seem to have limited appeal and only a few will engage. I suppose this is true because it takes work to experience the fullness of love, and not everyone is interested. Can you believe that? Some of us do not really want to experience the fullness of love.

Love and Dharma are synonymous. If we practice the Dharma, we are choosing to remove any obstacle to the full expression of loving kindness and compassion. We aspire to recognize how love permeates the universe and want to embody that awareness in all our actions. I find it amusing this work seems relegated to a small ‘inner circle,’ as if love has such limitation.

Those of us who practice the Dharma know there is nothing special about it. We know we are not an elite group of practitioners. We seamlessly blend into the illusory world and appear like everyone else muddling through the days.  Even the term ‘we’ is transformed into ‘all beings.’ Real Dharma practice dissolves any idea of separateness.

Separateness distracts us from seeing how the Dharma permeates every heartbeat, every breath, every moment. Dharma practice is reclaiming the wisdom we have lost in our distracted mind. Today we have turned distraction into a business. Our economy depends upon the human population being mentally enslaved by technology. We are the product of internet, social media, and all the things we are supposed to value in lieu of loving.

This insanity has to end somewhere, so maybe an inner circle has a place. When I drop a pebble into a pond, an inner circle forms. But it does not stop there. It transfers its energy seamlessly to another ever widening circle—and another—and another—until the whole pond is affected. As long as the inner circle does its work and gives its energy away, everyone benefits.

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