Hear, O Israel: The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. (Deuteronomy 6:4, NRSV)
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. (Deuteronomy 6:4, JPS Tanakh)
These two translations of the same verse express different aspects of oneness. Oneness describes the primary condition of God and the universe. Everything, every being, is tied together, created, connected, grounded in, and manifest through the oneness of God; only through the one true God alone can this be accomplished. Our understanding of perfection needs to begin with diversity and multiplicity because oneness is not sameness. Multiplicity is an expression of the capacity of oneness to be creatively unique over and over and over, in an infinite number of expressions. Perfection in sameness would deny this infinite capacity of God to express oneness in unique ways.
In human beings, who have been given free will, becoming one with God is also a process of discovery and orientation. The primary realization or discovery of our higher self is the realization of our oneness with God. At the same time that we acknowledge our spiritual origin we must also accept with humility our emptiness in relation to the fullness of God. We are the vessel that God creates to pour out love and energy in an infinite and eternal way. This oneness is the source of our mystical union with God, a state of being which is always present for us, and it is the energy that propels our return to God, the return of our consciousness of God. When our being becomes one, our mind is absorbed by our heart, our consciousness re-connects with the most intimate part of our being, our consciousness becomes one with the consciousness of God. We are no longer aware of a duality between our heart and mind; the most intimate part of our being is intimately connected with the divine.
The highest form of mutual love extinguishes any separate consciousness or awareness. The initial feeling or sensation, for just the slightest moment, is a breathless entrance to emptiness or annihilation, yet at the same time there is an expansion and ecstasy of oneness with the source of all love and being. We are absorbed into oneness without any effort on our part. Everything is beyond our control, beyond our learning, beyond our understanding, beyond our ability. We find ourselves at the door that opens into the eternal being of God and we realize that it is the divine that has brought us there with grace, we are at the boundary where everything from this life is absorbed into greater life, greater love. Oneness with God is the full realization of God in a human being. The being of God and the presence of God are the oneness of God.
Ever present God, God of oneness and love, may your divine love pour through my heart and absorb every aspect of my being. May the light that enlightens us grow in expression, increasing our capacity to be a channel of your love in the world. May we be this channel of blessing to everyone we meet. We give thanks for all of the blessings we receive through the expression of your oneness in the world. May our strengths and our abilities find their source and their purpose in your oneness, in your love. Amen.
From The Readings
2012-02 It is important to understand that we speak sometimes as if there are many present. Human consciousness has a hard time understanding the oneness of God and the consciousness of God. The perception of the human mind separates and divides various streams that radiate out from the consciousness of God, but there is an underlying unity. Very few people understand the unity of God. It is such that people who will speak about the multiplicity of God are sometimes closer to the truth than those who proclaim the oneness in a dogmatic fashion. It is as if in the material world, one sees distinctions that don’t exist. Conceptually people might say, “two sides of the same coin,” but this is such a crude approximation because the oneness is held on every surface, and in the very background in the object and the reflection all at the same time. So when we say “we,” there is a oneness speaking.