November 2007 - True Community: Additional comments
Nine Circles of Community
The Nine Circles of Community overlay the Nine Circles of Acceptance. The Circles of Community wrap an envelope around us, as do the Circles of Acceptance.
The idea of community has many elements and communities are expressed in many ways. There are communities of the heart, the mind, the spirit, the professions, of play, of geography, of every kind of drawing together that human beings can imagine.
The concept of community implies a common interest. It has no other element to bind people together. This common interest may be any of the objectives mentioned. Consider the community that forms when people live at a certain place on the earth’s surface. This place is known among you as your address. Those who share this space on either side, on adjacent paths within the extension of the space, are said to be of one community. This application of the word ‘community’ is easily understood. Nothing else may be shared beyond the geographical location; nothing emotional or professional or spiritual need be involved, just place. Certainly a community, however.
Now, within that geographical space two or more members may find an affinity of interest beyond surface considerations such as leaf collection, taxation and noise levels. They may discover that they share an interest in sports. This interest may take the form of belonging to groups who also share this interest. This then becomes another kind of ‘community’ for those so inclined, based on their common attraction to sports, either watching others actually involved in activities or participating in them themselves.
Take the community of the spirit. This is what you who call yourselves students of this teaching belong to. You share a common interest in the teachings that we bring and you have, by virtue of that interest, a commonality of purpose.
Even the designation ‘International Community’ is one of spirit. It has no physical expression at all, but is only a vision of purpose, not necessarily agreed upon but nonetheless shared.
A community of the heart means the sharing of an emotional state. When two or more people are drawn together in affection this also constitutes a community of a kind. The affection may begin with sexual attraction and move into a more profound place of body/mind/spirit blending. Or the affection may be one of attraction without sexual overtones and is then known as friendship. The human family is another heart-based community, but can also mean those who come together to live as family without the element of kinship. All of these heart-bonded communities are based on common purpose or interest, even though the emotional element implies something less remote, something more personal.
The community of profession is a common interest in a particular way of earning a living. It is usual to speak of ‘the scientific community,’ or ‘the medical community.’ The members of this kind of community may not even be in the same geographical space, may not ever have met each other, may not even like each other. They use their affiliation to their profession to create a sense of belonging to something larger than themselves but with a shared purpose.
We will not enumerate all the possible ways that community can be thought of, but we present these examples to assist in the understanding that ‘community’ is not just or only an emotional tie that requires bonding from the heart. This is only one kind of community.
Having said this, we suggest that broadening your appreciation for what community can be will open up a better understanding of how people experience it. Some people are of a ‘professional’ mind. That is, they share an interest in a particular aspect of a particular group, but are drawn to the subject matter, not especially to the humans involved. This can happen even in a family ‘community.’
You have all known, if not experienced, the situation where one or more members of a family seem outside the pale, so to speak, are unattached to the rest. The ‘stuff’ of the family for a person so situated is far less important than it is to others who perceive the community of the family as one of affection, which is to say emotion, or of reason, which is to say a genetic connection expressed by acceptance into the lineage provided. Nevertheless, the "odd-man-out" members are still of the family community by virtue of their choice to be born into it.
We bring these thoughts to your attention so that you may consider the ramifications of the ‘communities’ that you have joined or will join. Not all of them are going to be emotional attachments, only some will have rational components, a few will draw for their spiritual content and even fewer will be heart-felt, that is, centered on agape.
Each of you will choose many ‘communities’ for the specific return they offer. Each of you has already joined a number of communities, either deliberately or inadvertently, not the least of which may be this community. Keep in mind, however, that the range of possible understandings regarding what membership implies or requires, even within our little Community, is vast, encompassing the whole of the membership. Therefore, acceptance of this range of understanding may seriously color how each of you perceives the rest of you and how much diversity permeates this understanding.
The framework of the personality roles and other personality components may be applied here. The discrete shaping of each of you that takes place on the physical plane because of the choices you have made regarding not only the personality traits but also of genetic, social, geographical and other factors contributing to your existence on the physical plane, means that when you speak of ‘community’ as applied to this or any group, you may find that your understanding is too limited.
You look for a mirror instead of a window.
When you focus on only one aspect of all the possibilities contained in the label ‘community,’ the one mind/one heart aspect, for instance, you end up with a much greater mutilation than that which the occupant of the Procrustean bed endured. [A Procrustean bed is an arbitrary standard to which exact conformity is forced.]
Be aware of which kind of ‘community’ you are dealing with each time and adjust appropriately your expectations of yourself and of others who share in that community. This approach will tend to alter your understanding very much for the better and allow much more tolerance of any purely human involvement than you might have if your vision is too narrow for the circumstances.
Go in peace.
Community and tribalism have a great deal in common, although the latter has come to mean a rather war-like stance of "us against them" in many parts of the world. This was not true of some earlier tribes and is not true of all tribes today. We would hope that all of you might strive for community during the coming decade. This does not mean that you must necessarily live in one another’s laps, and it certainly does not grant a license to commit physical, mental, emotional or sexual abuse, nor a license to ignore boundaries insofar as personal space and propriety are concerned.
Community and spirituality go hand-in-hand. In fact, we seriously doubt that you can have one without the other to some degree. We have told you that this is not about enlightenment; it is a about how to understand the lessons of the physical plane, and how to work with the personality system in order to make progress through the ages of the soul or essence.
Time and observation has taught us that when there is True Community, there is also a high degree of spiritual seeking within that community. We do not speak of the type of spirituality achieved by the mystics, although many of them live in community and, as a matter of fact, have formed some of the most enduring communities.
In the successful community, students would have a ready-made common bond in their common philosophy or common beliefs. With this local contingent, all are older souls, so that bond would also exist. Community can only exist if it is understood in its entirety — the reasons for its existence, the methods for perpetuation, the glue that holds it together.personality types in our Personality Game] find communion very difficult, if not impossible to achieve. These people have very strong personal boundaries and feel violated by too much intimacy. We must also say that very few of them desire this deep an intimacy, and, in fact, find the notion of this fairly repugnant.
Servers and Priests frequently seek this spiritual closeness with other people, but tend to withhold negative information about themselves in the earlier cycles. In the later cycles, more mature Servers and Priests often find themselves in relationships that encourage the closeness of communion.
Artisans and Sages, less frequently than Servers and Priests, but certainly more frequently than Warriors, Scholars and Kings, seek communion, but have difficulty achieving it because of the innate inability to focus for long on one item. They desire it, but only through practice with meditation and concentration, can they hope to achieve it.
Warriors, Scholars and Kings must eventually come to grips with their lack of intimacy, then they, too, will seek communion, but this often does not happen until very late in the maturing cycle, and then only between essence connections as a matter of course.
Ironically, the Warriors, Scholars and Kings are better at forming community than are the other roles, primarily because they know the importance of "safety in numbers," and community does mean "a number of people joined by common bonds." People in these roles are very willing to assume leadership in community.
Priests and Servers like community, but would rather not assume the responsibility for one; Sages and Artisans tend to mistrust community because they see clearly all of the "terrible things" that could happen if we all tried to live together.
Usually, if there is essence bonding in a community, terrible things just will not happen. There will be too much work to do, and too much spirituality in the group to allow those terrible things to even come up.
"Culling the herd," is a characteristic of a good community leader. This leader must be able to see who is functioning and who is not, and Warriors are very good at this. Non-functioning people do not belong in communities, unless the entire community is built around a specific need, such as care of the aged, or care of children with special orthopedic problems.
Beware of those people who just want to "hang around" with you. They will not contribute to the community.
About our resource links: We do not endorse or agree with all the beliefs in these links. We do keep an open mind about different viewpoints and respect the ability of our readers to decide for themselves what is useful.
Page updated: October 05, 2013
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