Allow me to share with you what I recently remembered; that memory is wealth: wealth in terms of possessions and prosperity, of health and well-being, of career and ambition, and especially of spiritual attunement and Self-Realization.
Wealth however without contentment is not wealth at all. A recent survey of people in the United States who earn a six-figure salary, own at least one home, and are sitting on $1-M of investable assets found that 70% of them do not consider themselves wealthy, and are unsatisfied. This is consistent with the concept of the ‘Wealth Paradox’ which states that the more money you make, the greater is your need for more money; it is like a drug dependency wherein you need more and more of a drug to get the same effect. You can have all the material wealth in the world; but if you are not content then what do you really have?
We forget that we don’t need much to be happy, to enjoy the simple pleasures of life. We forget that the happiest moments in our life have to do more with relationships, and sharing time and helping and loving others. We forget that happiness is when we are able to be ourselves authentically and use our competencies and creativity in the world in the service of others. We forget that happiness is simply being balanced in all aspects of our life. We forget that happiness is seeing with God’s eyes- the Awareness that God is everywhere including deep within us.
Without genetic memory, we would have to start from scratch at birth to learn all the instincts to survive on this planet. Without karmic memory, we would forget why we were on this earth in the first place. Without historical memory, we are doomed as civilizations to repeat the same mistakes that have led to wars, famine, and indescribable miseries. Without muscle memory, we would be sentenced to a life of clumsiness and accidents. Without mental memory we would be neither educable nor employable; and nor would we be able to create the artificial intelligence bots that will do our learning and working for us down the road. Without memory of the past, we would not know the future.
So it is fortunate that we are able to encode memories, consolidate and store them, and retrieve them to create information. Memory is localized, where ever there are nerves, as physical changes produced by experience. These changes in synaptic activity in large ensembles of neurons allow us to create new memories with new experiences so that we are not limited and tied to the past.
“All learning is but a remembering” is part of Plato’s doctrine. He taught that we are born possessing all Knowledge, but forgot that Knowledge when our soul got trapped in and distracted by the body. And the goal of life is to awaken again to that Knowledge within us, to remember, to recall; to come Home.
What is this Knowledge? It is that at the core our being is God; or Spirit if one is hesitant to use the ‘G’ word. Spirit is the immortal part of our being; it is the Well, the source we can draw from continuously. It is the well of our being; our wellbeing literally. And forgetting this is our damnation while remembering it is our ‘heaven on earth.’
Wisdom is the attainment of this Knowledge and remembering to conduct our lives in this greater Consciousness. Suffering is forgetting this Reality and being totally enmeshed in emotions and obsessions born from a created ‘ego’ that chases desires that can never be satiated leading to dis-ease and doubt.
That which you hold in your awareness is that which controls you. Your mind can be your worst enemy or your best friend, maybe even your best friend’s friend, depending what thoughts you hold on to. We mistake ourselves for what the body wants or what the mind craves, forgetting that everything we ever needed, ever wanted is already inside us. We forget we are Spirit, the Creative Principle, which co-creates the world with our other Spirits-in Bodies (SIB). We are all sibs.
And it is our past deeds, our karma, which binds us to cycles of pain and pleasure. The chickens will always come home to roost. You will always reap what you sow. Karma is forgetfulness. If you can remember, the karma will not affect you. That is true wealth! There is a direction relationship of a memory of things past to your wealth. Wealth and goodness may not go together, but remembrance and wealth do!
Break the automatic actions of your karma. Meditate to remember, and remember to meditate. You are the Great Consciousness lost in a material universe of your own creation. Drill it down to one dream, one dedication: live with unselfish service to and love for others in your Divine Self-Realization. Namaste.