The industrial revolution caused tribes to be destroyed, as individuals moved to cities to work without their extended families. The loss of extended family meant the loss of support that was necessary for individuals to thrive. It resulted in the rise of the idea of ‘individuality’ as a ‘strength to be pursued’ because to survive in these circumstances meant you had to fend for yourself without the normal support around you. Over time the ‘State’ became a bit like a ‘Dysfunctional Mother’ who gives everything you need without demanding anything of you, to help you develop and create your own power. And the ‘Market’ became like the ‘Dysfunctional Father’ who tells you what to think without realising you have your own mind and heart, and your need to follow that as a creative being.
Individuality doesn’t get the great need of connection met, but it provides a sense of ‘I can do it alone’ and that sustains individuals while they have a percieved need of material enoughness. This sense of ‘I can get enough from my own efforts’ won’t fulfill the need for connection but does provide a distracting counterpart for some time. It is only when we are taken down the road of tragedy or ill health or general primary enteric gut wrenching existential crisis that the ‘individualist’ comes undone. The State and the Market are a poor replacement for a tribe and family that naturally supports and values us while allowing us to grow and develop our individuality.
Our Human Needs
The epicentre of our species’ development lies in our ability to connect and be supported by other humans. This is what saves us when we are lost and unable to be tugged out of our misery, by our own goals, greed or engagement with whatever distraction is available. When we remain ‘untouched’ we remain an individual with sole goals and great aspirations for ourselves, but within no context of any others’ needs.
Our sense of being supported by others won’t save us from existential crisis but it does allow us to know we aren’t the only one that has gone through it, and we won’t be the last. Our gut wrenching energy for growth and great development can be uncomfortable and downright terrifying. But it doesn’t kill us and it does provide us with clear physical and mental messages that we cannot stay the same. It’s our ability to take these messages and learn from them and engage in our own development which earns us this right: To place ourselves in the centre of our world and take responsibility while also requesting support and comfort. This is the best place to present our lives to the great spiritual wonderful energy which takes us to a new dimension in our lives – to a place of more maturity and ability to manifest what we came here to do.
Our earthly journey doesn’t have to be a lonely one, but it often is when we can’t trust our family, or we place ourselves in a community which can’t fulfill our needs of connection and ritual. The ritual side of connection is expressed in anything that we do together, which creates general connection and places us in an epicentre of support and trust.
Religion compared to Business
This is expressed in religious communities through everyone saying the same prayers, living by the same values and being open to forgiveness and care for others. It also works in any organisation where there is a strong value driven system that acknowledges our need for connection and great support in our lives. Wouldn’t it be great if all corporations realised this! The only difference between a religion and a business is that the religion enlists people based on their beliefs and their values, whereas a business enlists people based on their work, their skills and their goals for their lives.
Businesses won’t replace religions but they will provide for all the same needs when they realise that money isn’t the goal of a great business. When corporations realise that money is a valuable energy which can add to peoples’ lives throughout the world. When they realise that it can help to create wonderful exciting results that help humankind to evolve and look after each other and the planets’ rich diversity of life, businesses will be a valuable energy in the world. There are some out there doing some fantastic work, but not nearly enough. Until corporations change from a greed based system to these spiritual principles they can’t create anything really worthwhile and instead can be extremely destructive to their employees lives, and to the planet.
Our Need for Community
The thing to remember is that we all need community and when we don’t have it we become isolated and sad and we cannot replace the human connection with anything else. No drug, computer game, food or money can replace this. Many try to fill this void through their addiction of choice but it never works in the long run. You will find that eventually this leads to crisis and this crisis leads either to deeper engagement with whatever the person is relying on for relief, or to a realisation that something must change.
The great thing about crisis is that it gives us a chance to break down and realise we can’t really control anything. Our general need to feel in control comes from fear. The fear of no human support is one of the most primitive and terrifying because we really needed others to survive in our history. This fear can only be appeased by reaching out to others and trusting that they will engage us with love and kindness instead of harshness and non-understanding. When we take this risk we won’t know if we will get what we need. However the act of reaching out helps us to realise that we are not alone. We learn that we are as lucky and unlucky as anyone else, because EVERYONE goes through times of great struggle at different times, even those we perceive as having a great life.
We can avoid community in fear of being taken for granted or being abused or being misunderstood but our need for community far outweighs our need for being prioritised every time, or occasionally being vulnerable to others’ egos, or our inability to get ourselves understood.
When we get clear on our need to be in community with others we don’t worry about these things because we know that above and beyond all of these annoying things are the great human virtues of love, patience, trust and forgiveness. Only within community can we practice these virtues and create a world which adheres to these principles of spiritual energy.
Katie Kalin is a kinesiologist and coach with over 30 years experience working with groups and individuals. She runs a private clinic in Cork City and also does online kinesiology consultations. She believes that we can access our innate wisdom that is connected to universal intelligence, through muscle testing. Access one free half hour consultation with her through www.katiekalin.com