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Two Great Teachings of the Way of Self and Other

   (The following is excerpted from Dr. Husfelt’s forthcoming book The Greatest Lie Ever Told - a Manifesto for a Religious Revolution and a New Consciousness) 

Turn the other cheek.’ What power and enlightenment are to be found in those four simple words! Simple as these words may be, to live and experience them is a different story. They truly sum up the relationship of self to other—an atomized version of living an awakened life.

As it is with oral teachings that are interrupted after the teacher has passed over, the meaning of ‘turn the other cheek’ has been mis-represented. In addition, it has opened a Pandora’s Box of interpretations. I once got into an argument with a man about the meaning of ‘turning the other cheek.’ He insisted that its meaning was totally one of pacification. No matter what was occurring, you would let it happen symbolically ‘turning the other cheek.’ I pressed him on this and he finally admitted that even if his children were being abducted he would let it happen!

Now, of course, this is an extreme rendering of the pacification meaning. But still, this meaning rings true to many people and allows them to justify various causes and behaviors. Many others, as well as religious authorities, have attempted to explain the meaning of this statement, which was one of Jesus’ prime teachings.

Here is the meaning of ‘turn the other cheek’—a volcanic explanation of ‘self’ and ‘other:’

A ‘slap’ on one cheek is a symbolic ‘wounding’ done by another person. Before turning the other cheek, we must release this ‘wounding.’ i.e. through forgiveness—ideally, this occurs immediately, but realistically it may take days, weeks, months and possibly, even years.

Next, we must talk our truth to the one that ‘wounded’ (if possible) and then release any fear—such as the fear that it will happen again. When this is complete, we symbolically ‘turn the other cheek.’

'Love your enemy!’ Connected with ‘turn the other cheek’ is the teaching to ‘love your enemy.’ Again this teaching has been mis-understood over the centuries. Both teachings have nothing to do with a state of passiveness, if fact, just the opposite—a state of action. Both are acts of courage and fearlessness, and are totally connected with a warrior attitude not one of submissiveness. The following is the meaning of ‘love your enemy:’

The foundation of this teaching is fear. The opposite emotion of love is fear. Fear is separation/love is unity.

To love your enemy is to have no ‘fear’ of them. With the absence of fear comes compassion. When you feel within your heart and mind the suffering of others, you begin to understand them more and the unknown, which they represent, becomes more known. And you become less separate from them. This results in less fear and more love.

With more love and less fear, your enemy may become non-existent; and quite possibly, even become your friend. (Enemy is not necessarily a human being.)

 


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