The serpent that spoke to Eve from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil still exists within every human mind to this day. This is because the story is a metaphor for the human condition, fallen from divine awareness and lost in the realm of dualistic thought – the mind – which is represented by the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Within that tree (our mind) dwells the serpent, encouraging us to consume the mind’s abstract thoughts, which dangle appealingly like fruits that seem to offer the promise of increased understanding and knowledge.
In its oh-so-subtle voice, the serpent whispers lies to us continuously, and it creates a personal sense of ego as a foundation through which it might work and control us. However, just like the visions of reality the serpent offers us, this ego is also illusory. The serpents whisperings appear to bring us knowledge and understanding, yet all the time it is sowing and encouraging seeds of doubt and fear through the medium of thought, whilst we believe we are being enlightened by its intelligence. In truth, it is creating more darkness through its misrepresentations of a reality which cannot be understood by the thinking mind.
The serpent attempts to create division internally, and externally also, in its desire to keep other people at a safe distance. It feeds into our insecurity and it feeds upon our insecurity also. It pulls a thought-created veil of delusion over our eyes, making us think we know reality, making us think we understand, whilst in fact it is perpetually keeping us blind to the divine truth, by keeping us away from our heart and stuck in our thinking mind. This is the serpents lair, the realm of conceptual thinking, and as long as we are in thought we are at the mercy of its influence.
Consuming the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge in our mind pollutes our being with mis-understanding, and separates us from the divinity of reality. True understanding comes from the Tree of Life, which is our heart. It is here that we open up the deep beauty of the garden of Eden in which we dwell. It is here that love is felt, joy is felt, gratitude is felt, compassion is felt. This is the kingdom of heaven within, the place of simplicity and innocence where we once dwelled as young children, just as Adam and Eve did before the knowledge of good and evil took them away from it and into the realm of conceptual delusion, and thus separation from God.
This is exactly what has happened to each one of us, and to this day, we allow the serpent to continue speaking to us with its forked tongue, through the dualistic thought process of our ego, creating division in our heart, false understanding in our mind and blinding us to the divine truth of life.
The speciality of the serpent is fear. It has the ability to paralyse us, to undermine the strength of our heart and make us feel weak and helpless at the very core of our being. And we are afraid of the serpent itself on a very deep level, deeper than we know. We subconsciously believe it to be vastly more powerful than us, capable of destroying us and swallowing us whole. And thus we think our mind is powerful. We think our thoughts are powerful, and we cower beneath them, terrified of the hellish places they might take us to. But it is the state of fear itself that is the hellish place, especially when experienced in its extreme, which is terror.
This is exactly the method the serpent uses to maintain its dominance and control over us. It convinces us to be afraid of its power, and thus we give it power. It makes us believe it has the power to destroy us, but the truth is that it has no power. All it can do is talk to us, tell us lies and put pictures in our mind. If we believe them, we shrink in fear and experience a deep sense of division within our being. But the serpent cannot hurt us. It cannot make us experience inner pain or separation from God. It can only tell us things that will have that effect if we believe them.
In truth, we are the master of the serpent, and we need to become very alert to its manipulative ways so that we can see this truth. We have to learn to not be afraid of anything it tells us, and in fact to disbelieve everything it tells us, because it speaks of a reality of duality and division, conflict and competition; a reality which is simply untrue from a divine perspective. We need to learn how restore this divine perspective to our mind, which essentially means rejoining our mind with our heart, because it is our heart which illuminates our mind and thus brings true wisdom and understanding. We need the knowledge of love within our heart. This is true knowledge.
Every time the serpent whispers in our mind, we must realise that we are being pulled into thought processes that take us away from feeling our heart. Connection with our heart is vital, because it is the engine room for our entire being. Being in touch with our heart allows us to experience inner warmth, peace, wisdom, joy, fulfilment, compassion and a deep sense of being in harmony with the universe. It is where we come close to God, for God is love. We have to make sure that this is more than just an idea or a belief system. We have to learn how to once again fully occupy the realm of our heart, as we once did as innocent children. And thus we can return to our natural state of innocence, of purity of heart, unpolluted by mental illusions.
We begin to return to our heart as we start to act less selfishly, as we choose to be more generous, as we take more interest in helping others and in improving the lives of others. We learn the wisdom of listening more to people, rather than trying to make people listen to us. We have to do the practical things that nourish our heart, like being physically active, spending plenty of time in nature, breathing fresh air, eating grounding and natural foods that nourish our blood and thus make our heart strong.
We also have to become aware of all the ways that we are feeding our thinking mind. For example, consuming negative and divisive media, news and tv programmes that encourage us to have opinions about everything, to judge and criticise others, and to think negatively about the world. Our obsession with technology that sucks us into a virtual world that completely resonates on a cerebral frequency, rather than on the heart frequency that nature resonates on. Our consumption of all the sugary, starchy and acid-forming foods that stimulates our thinking mind and depletes our body in the process. Essentially, if we become aware of all of our choices we will see that we can either make decisions that benefit and strengthen our heart, or we can make decisions which are in some way is detrimental to our heart. We have this incredible power of creation and destruction, and we must learn to use it consciously, with pure intent.
Our heart is the dwelling place of God, which Jesus referred to as ‘the kingdom of heaven within’. Deep wisdom, peace and divine truth are to be found there. But we first have to navigate away from the slippery realm of the mind, which is where the serpent dwells. It is a very appealing place, because it offers a very comforting, yet totally false sense of security. We are all very familiar with this false sense of security, yet most of us don’t realise that it is false, and thus we pursue it for years on end. We call it ‘knowledge’.
Knowledge is when we think we know what is true. We think we know how things are, how things were in the past, and how things are likely to be in the future, and we base our sense of security on these mental understandings. However, we also base our insecurity upon them, when we allow our thoughts to inspire anxiety, fear and dread within our heart.
Yet everything we think we know is illusory. It is all based in thought, which of course is dualistic and abstract. This is the knowledge of good and evil; the realm of the serpent. If we want true security and true peace, we must leave that realm and return to our heart, the realm of God. As we encounter what the heart has to offer us, we start to understand that trusting in the benevolent force of Love is absolutely essential if we wish to have peace in our life.
As we do so, we slowly relinquish our need to be in control of everything, because the desire to control is based on a fundamental fear and mistrust of the nature of ‘reality’. Slowly we learn to put our faith in that which we cannot see and cannot understand, but which we can feel as all powerful. It is the divinity and benevolence of Love. It is God, the divine intelligence that orchestrates everything; except humans that is. We have free will, and thus we can choose to go against what our heart informs us as being for the best. Instead we listen to the often selfish and fearful voice of the ego, which operates purely on logic and reason. It is blind to the ways of God, which are not rational and thus not comprehendible to the logical thinking mind.
When we follow our heart’s directives, we align ourselves with the higher will, which is communally orientated, rather than selfishly orientated. It is the will of Love, the will of God, which wishes to work through us, to use us as an agent of healing, inspiration and upliftment for the benefit of everyone we know and encounter. This is the potential for us all, and all we need to do is stop listening to the voice of selfishness, the voice of insecurity, the voice of criticism, doubt and fear which speaks through our thoughts. Instead, relax your body from all thought-created tensions, and feel your heart. Listen to what it tells you. Feel its reassuring message of peace and safety, of divine protection and providence. Feel the inspiration and excitement it wants to bring into your life, as you step forward into living a life free of division, control, mistrust and insecurity. A life lived from the joyful depths of your heart.
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“We are all children, longing to find our way back to
the world of innocence, joy and freedom we once knew”
Doesn’t the serpent also symbolise Kundalini energy? In the sense that it’s the energy of awakening – remembering who we are before we became lost in illusion. I wonder if the serpent has a double meaning somewhere. Wonderful post.