Feeling of Belonging
We are here—and an incredible subject matter to talk about. Because when it comes to belonging, this is amazingly important for us as human beings.
When we are in this world, even when we are children, we have a need to belong to the family that we are in, that we are with. Because without feeling that we belong, all the little skirmishes that might happen with the rest of the family members will never make sense.
But then when we grow up and we have a bigger circle, perhaps a circle of our friends, we still need that feeling of belonging—because if we don’t, we feel alienated. Then if we get a job, we need to feel like we belong, we belong in that environment, we belong with the circle of our colleagues.
So, what exactly is this belonging? Why do we have a need to belong? And as a human being, what should we really belong to—that will help us be who we are? What would that environment look like?
Yesterday, I had just arrived from the mainland—and I immediately looked at my phone; I got this call—“There are ten questions, you know, this reporter wants to ask you—and do you want to answer them?”
And I looked at the questions—and the questions dealt with the symptoms: “Why is it this is this way? Why is it this is this way? What’s going to happen with this; what might happen with this?” And I answered them, but then I started thinking about them—and it’s like, “Why is it that we look at what has happened but not ‘Why did it happen?’”
We look at a war and we say, “Oh, that’s terrible; that is terrible; that’s terrible”—but we don’t look at, “Why did that happen; why is it that we failed, repeatedly, to learn from history? Why is it that we failed repeatedly to understand that these things that we do....?”
Because you look at it, 16.5 million people displaced—I read one of the headlines. And it’s certainly very sad, and of grave concern.
And I know the pineapples weren’t responsible for that. (They may be responsible for some other things, but they weren’t responsible for that.) Tomatoes were not responsible for that. In fact, I can say with great certainty, neither were the dolphins, whales, and even the rather mean crocodile was not responsible for the displacement of 16.5 million people.
“Hmm. It wasn’t the grapes, wasn’t the pineapple, wasn’t the whales, wasn’t the dolphin—I wonder who it was? A vampire?” I mean, it, this reminds me of the joke....
Two nuns were walking along a very dark road one night and a vampire jumped out—and proceeded to show his fangs and you know, his red eyes and.... And one of the nuns turned to the nun next to her and said, “Sister Margaret, Sister Margaret, show him your cross; show him your cross.” And Sister Margaret said, “Get out of here!”
So, one intent and something else comes out, and it’s like, everybody is bewildered—everybody—I mean, it’s like the world is bewildered. It’s like, “Huuh, how did that happen?”
Well, make a list: who do you think is responsible? Pineapples? Grapes? Sparrows? Hawks, eagles? Little green men? I mean, who? And, you might be really surprised at the answer: “Us! We’re responsible. We did it.”
And a lot of people sitting here are going, “No, I, I had nothing to do with it.” And a lot of people take that attitude—and I understand why. Because there is a great need in us to feel vindicated—regardless of the circumstances, we want to feel vindicated. When the police officer pulls us over and says, “You were speeding,” our first reaction is to say, “No....”
I got pulled over once, a long time ago—and the officer said, “You were speeding.” And I said, “I know.” Because I was. And he was shocked; he just looked at me like.... And the good part of it is, I didn’t get a ticket.
But we want to be vindicated. We don’t want to take the responsibility, all that’s happening in this world, “But how can—and how is it mine? What can I do?”
So, let’s stop. Now let me ask you this question: “Who are you?”
In a dark room, a very dark room, I say, “God, it’s really dark here. I can’t see a thing; it’s really, really dark,” and a bulb answers, “Nothing to do with me.”
What am I insinuating here? Are you a bulb? And that perhaps you do have the power to repel the darkness—and you don’t realize it? That all you need to do is shine a little bit...? And you might say, “Well, but what’s that going to do?” All right—I’ve got an analogy for you.
If you have a lamp—you know, remember the old lamps with the wick and oil—if you have one of those lamps.... Or a candle, (much easier to imagine), a candle, one of those long candles—and one candle is extinguished and one candle is lit.
And, okay? So there’s one candle; it’s extinguished; one candle is lit. Now, you take the lit candle and put it next to the extinguished candle, right where the two wicks meet. What will happen? Will the extinguished wick also extinguish the lit candle?
No? Are you sure? [Individual: Yes, that’s right.] Or it’ll be the other way around, where even the extinguished candle would get lit with virtually no change to the lit candle.
Note both things: when the lit candle lights the extinguished candle, nothing diminished. It wasn’t like it went to fifty percent brightness because I gave fifty percent to the extinguished candle. No, but that one lit up too!
How can that be? Why is this rule there? I mean, in our opinion, doesn’t “negative” take over? Haven’t we believed for a really long time that the negativity of this world would influence us and make us more negative? (That’s why those people go sit on top of the mountains, about as far away from anybody as you can possibly imagine, because they don’t want to have anything to do with you.)
But is it the other way around? That you, if you are lit, there is no limit to how many candles you can light. The only limit is the day you are not lit anymore—then all your power of being able to light another candle is terminated. Finished. Now you can’t. But till you are lit, regardless of how many candles you light....
Oh, yeah, there’s the other word called “sacrifice,” isn’t there? But the analogy that I just gave of the candles, there’s no sacrifice involved. “Oh my God, no sacrifice? This candle just simply lights that one? Now that has the same power as this?” And they can light two, and four, and sixteen. And if you keep doing this on a calculator, it’ll basically just run out of digits very quickly.
And people wonder how peace is possible. Do the calculation. It’s very, it’s mathematically possible. But it’s dependent on one thing—that you are lit, not unlit. And the only way you can be lit is if you understand who you are.
And that you belong. You belong! On the face of this earth, you belong, not because of what you do. You belong, not because of what you think. You belong, not because of your ideology, not because of your philosophy.... But you’re here. You exist.
That one moment when the universe began, (not just our universe, all of them—and it’d be just where it began), did not the possibility of life exist in that moment—has to. Maybe oxygen did not exist but the possibility of being able to have oxygen existed. Maybe hydrogen didn’t exist but the possibility of having hydrogen existed.
And so, from even that moment, your cards were set—okay? Do you feel like you belong? You being here alive on the face of this earth is made possible by the same possibility that put the moon where it is—not any different, put the sun where it is, put all the stars in our universe, known and unknown.... That’s the same force; that’s the same possibility that has put you here: “cct.”
The same one that has put all the ants on this earth, that has put all the termites on this earth, (by the way, which, there are tons of termites for every living human being), but has put termites on this earth, the blades of grass, the sand on the beaches, the water in the ocean, the stars that you see that are and are not there....
Has made—the same, exactly the same force has made it possible for you to be alive right now. Do you belong?
So far this breath is coming into you, so far you are alive, that should be your marker that everything is going your way. I’ll be honest too, then—I should be. Is it like that for me all the time—absolutely no way. Do things tick me off? Absolutely.
And that’s when I have to remember, “I have to make the effort”—and I’ve been doing this for fifty years, telling people about the possibility. But even I have to remember (and make the effort to remember) that even when things don’t look like they’re going my way, the fact is they are.
That when everything is dark and it seems meaningless, and you feel abandoned, have the candles switched their role? No, the lit candle will still light the unlit candle.
Understand your nature; understand that you belong. You belong on this earth. Understand that you belong—when you take this breath, you belong. When you light yourself up, you belong. When you’re happy, you belong. When your heart is full of joy, you belong. When you are full of clarity, you belong.
And if these things even remotely intrigue you, then you need to look no further than your own self to find the source.
Where we need to belong, to understand—that this is the precious time. It will not be repeated—but you’re alive, and you have the possibility of seeing. Right now, you have the possibility—that same power that allows the lit candle to light the unlit candle, this transfer is afoot. This is what life means. This is what belonging means. You recognize; you grab it—and you take advantage of it.
Glow in that light—and you will be surprised how many other candles you end up lighting during your time on this earth.