The Promises and Perils of Seeking Perfection
When we experience higher states of consciousness, we can have an intoxicating and deeply thrilling glimpse of perfection. In these searing flashes of insight that burn away the shackles of the mind, we know without any doubt that heaven exists, and that perfection is our natural state.
Yet the flipside of this huge realisation is that from a relative perspective, here in this deeply complex and often troubled world, we simply cannot be perfect. Our bodies and minds are temporal. We are works in progress. We are developing and evolving, and when we try to embody perfection we inevitably fail – often dramatically and catastrophically.
Under the discriminating gaze of postmodernity, human perfection is seen as a mythic illusion, and chasing perfection is surely a fool’s errand. It seems obvious from this perspective that we must accept the inviolable reality of imperfection, along with all the inherent complexity of our personal and collective failings.
In this context, accepting things as they are, and coming to terms with the endless struggles and complexities of being human in the 21st century, would seem to be the most authentic, spiritually informed way to live and thrive.
Yet there is another perspective. When we aspire for the highest, we invariably transcend our natural boundaries, and reach beyond our comfort zone into territory that is new, uncharted and endlessly inspiring.
Andrew Cohen explores the promise and perils of seeking perfection, and asks us to interrogate these delicate questions from the highest possible perspective: when we have tasted perfection in higher state experiences, what does it mean for our fragmented and ever-imperfect world? How do we embrace the apparent contradiction of these two very different realities? And can we minimise the perils and maximise the promise of these higher states?
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