So Why Are “They” Really Here?
It does make you wonder sometimes, doesn’t it? You know the folks I’m talking about. The ones who seem to be wandering around in the middle of a fog bank. The ones without a clue apparently, as to what life is all about. We see their stories on the evening news, we hear about them from our friends or co-workers, we may even know some of them.
These are the “unfortunates”. The ones who are living in near-miserable to really crappy conditions – on the street, in garbage-filled, shabby houses, apartments or motel rooms, without transportation and often with just barely enough food to survive. The ones who are frequently abused in one way or another by acquaintances or relatives, who are trying to scrape together enough money to get their vehicle back into running condition and who frequently encounter more new obstacles to just living than most of us could possibly imagine.
Why are they really here? On earth? Many of us feel that we have a purpose for being here. That we are contributing in some way to the well-being of our families and maybe even society. We are productive – and even though all of us have had our share of difficulties in life, none of these can even begin to compare with the struggles encountered by those who are barely existing on the very edge of humanity.
They may never be really productive. Their chances for escaping their marginal conditions are slim to none. They probably have a better chance of winning the lottery. Sure, some of them may hold down a minimum wage job – or perhaps even several jobs – at sometime in their lives. Many will not. They are stuck – really badly stuck – in a rut that’s leading them to nowhere. That’s sad.
So, again the question arises. Why are they really here? One possible answer that I can see from my limited perspective is that they’re here to experience life – and hopefully learn from these experiences. From a spiritual and humanitarian perspective, this is about the only reason I can come up with. I can’t believe that a creator that I have pictured as loving, caring and compassionate would have any other reason for putting people into an environment that would result in such an uncomfortable existence. I haven’t been able to convince myself that the “system” would be set up to punish people or intentionally place any of us into crappy situations just to watch us squirm – and hurt both physically and emotionally. And, I can’t yet bring myself to believe that any of this is just the result of the luck of the draw. That “nature” is so unkind.
So what is our role in this? What can we do – or should we do – to help? Or can we do anything at all?
Realistically, we may not be able to do much more than help provide some of the necessities of life. Some of the basic requirements for survival such as shelter, food and water. We can offer support and assistance in the way of training and encouragement to do those things that would be required to step out of the rut and into the mainstream of society. We can make these types of programs available – and know that none of these people can be helped unless they sincerely want to be helped. And many don’t. For a variety of reasons, many of these people will want to stay exactly where they are.
Are they trapped by their own fears and lack of self-confidence? By their addictions? By their mental programming? By their lack of awareness? By mental illness or emotional instability? By a lack of opportunity or education? By an absence of desire or motivation to do better? By a feeling of comfort and security in a familiar but unpleasant environment? By a conviction that “this is as good as it gets” – and someday it will be over?
Looking at a cross-section of this segment of the population, we would probably find all of these limiting factors - plus many more - working vigorously to shackle these individuals to their present situation. It’s sad – but at the same time it’s fascinating. It’s fascinating that almost all of these limiting factors are the product of a single entity – the mind.
The same “thing” that allows us to develop cures for diseases, build skyscrapers and take us into space can imprison us more securely than concrete and iron bars. The same “thing” that produces the great literary works, music and art also produces lives filled with squalor, stench and despair.
Is this really an intentional situation created by the ultimate in universal consciousness and wisdom as a tool to promote spiritual experience and learning? Or is it really just the luck of the draw? I wonder…
Perhaps there is a lesson here for us – for those of us who are inclined to read, think or write about this kind of thing. Perhaps it’s our reminder that every one of us is extremely fortunate just to be able to think as we think and do those things we do. We are all so very, very fortunate. I think it’s good that we understand and remember that…
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