In Our Separateness

(c) Microsoft images
(c) Microsoft images

Separate is a root word that metamorphoses into multiple meanings yet often reminds most people in the personal level emotionally-charged experiences. For those who have endured difficult marriages, to separate is to end the suffering of living with someone’s hell; those separated are the ones who did it. Separation is either an action that cuts off what was once an ideal relationship, or a state that describes such tough decision to make or being made. Separate has a its common related words – break-up, divorce, annulled, estranged – words that reveal the faulty and fragile truth of  human relationships.

I have heard stories of friends and strangers who have experienced the bitterness of the word separate. The word reveals us how relationships are deeply important for human existence, even if it is inevitable for many to end up in separation. In the moment of separation, our emotions and memories, which are both potentials of our our inner and outer experiences, bring life to such word, and this explains the negative energy we put into it.

The major default we often do is to think that the word separate is about the wounds of our differences, of our inability to harmonize our intentions for each other’s welfare, our enmity towards each other as a reality of our separation. If we scale this reality down to our personal relationships, we can easily relate to the pain and discomfort that this  dynamic brings to us as we live our lives with our families and friends who separate from us; who, to face a very unwanted truth, have torn our hearts apart.

We as humans are born into separateness to realize the magnificent truths of Love – our nature to grow and our live out our inherent freedom…

But I want to bring the word separateness to the fore, since that noun, as much as it is related to all derivatives of separate, has a different story. If you are quite aware of the many spiritual buzzwords, the word oneness comes to the scene as the exact opposite of separateness. Briefly, we can describe oneness as the sense of harmony, unity and co-existence despite our apparent but very human differences. I’m putting this into context since the search for oneness is impossible until we become aware what wisdom separateness can bring us.

Separateness is more than a reality of separation. Separateness is a truth found in our physical, human existence. It is the cosmic potential that allows every mother to give birth to her baby as they finally separate after months of pregnancy, and become the human being it is destined to be. In separateness, the Earth revolves with enough distance from the sun that makes it warm but not to burn, and cools it enough but not to freeze. It is separateness that makes stars twinkle in constellation, or islands, like my beloved homeland, exist in beautiful archipelagos. It is in separateness that everyone and everything in the universe exist in their distinct characters.  Without such potential, all would be melted in a soup of nonexistence.

(c) Microsoft image

Our society has been sick enough to confuse separation with separateness. Since we are all separate, we often thought that we are meant to compete, as we are taught that it is the only means for us to survive. Since we need to survive, we have to fight, and to fight is to harm. To harm is either through our action or through our words. We exclude and label each other, because we are all separate, and it is, as we are deceived for the longest time, the reality of life. But there is thin line between them, and it takes our awakened awareness to distinguish the stark difference.

We as humans are born into separateness to realize the magnificent truths of Love – our nature to grow and our gift to live out our inherent freedom, leading us to recognize our fellow human beings living the same birth right. Reflecting over separateness reminds me of Kahlil Gibran‘s words: “Love one another, but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.” We are all islands and continents of separateness yet the ocean of Love brings us into oneness. In our separateness, we can always realize that we all are truly one in Love.

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