Parable of Abundance
J J Dewey
In the beginning, there lived a Body that dwelled in the land of fresh air. The Body saw that there was beautiful, clean, fresh air as far as they eye could see with all the life-giving oxygen one would ever need. The Body also saw the impossibility of ever having a shortage of oxygen because, after it breathed it in, it breathed it out in a different form that was food for plants. The plants showed their appreciation by reciprocating and regenerating more oxygen usable for the Body. Thus, the Body lived in a cycle of endless supply and expected to have abundance forever.
All the cells in the Body were also very happy and content. They drank deeply from the great breaths of oxygen the Body took. No one ever thought of saving, or hoarding, for all had all they needed. The brain cells needed a little more than some of the others, but no one seemed to mind, for they all had all they wanted and needed, and since all were fulfilled, everyone was considered equal. They functioned in perfect cooperation with the realization that all cells must be fulfilled for the Body to be healthy, and the Body must be healthy for any individual cells to be fulfilled. Thus they realized their interdependence, and with this realization came sublime independence.
The Body lived in a state of perfect functioning for a long long time until one day the land of fresh air was visited by a sick Body that was near death. This Body was off color, contorted with some dread disease, the eyes were cloudy, its temperature was hot, its breaths were shallow and quick and it could barely stand.
The sick Body told the healthy one: “I have one last request before I die. Share this apple with me and I will lie down in peace.” The sick Body took a bite and handed it to the healthy one. The healthy Body looked on with pity and took a bite, but when he did something strange happened. One of the cells from the sick Body hopped off onto the bite taken by the healthy one. The cell knew the Body he was in was dying and he saw an opportunity to start a new life in the healthy Body.
Unfortunately, the foreign cell brought with him the philosophy from the dying Body, a philosophy completely unknown and unthought of by the cells in the healthy Body.
In the sick Body, from whence came the foreign cell, there always seemed to be a lack of oxygen. At times they made futile attempts at sharing and being interdependent, but separateness seemed to prevail and the cells lived in a constant fear of lack. As the Body got sicker and sicker they seemed to be forced more and more to hoard up oxygen for themselves, or else they would not have enough for the morrow.
Now the foreign cell had just come out of this great struggle. He was one of the stronger ones and always seemed to be able to garner enough to insure his own strength, often at the expense of others, and when he found himself in a healthy Body with an abundance he was quite excited. He immediately started gathering around himself all the oxygen he could store. After this was complete he created storage containers and hoarded still more.
Some of the healthy cells were curious about him and gathered around to watch. They had never seen anyone hoard oxygen before, no one had even thought about it, for they had always lived in natural abundance. They had to ask: “Friend, why do you waste your time gathering around you oxygen when we live in perpetual abundance? There has never been a need for such a task.”
“You are ignorant fools!” said the foreign cell. “You assume that just because you had abundance in the past that you will have abundance in the future. I know from experience that this is not the case. I originated from another Body that was once healthy like this one, but health is a whimsical thing. Sometimes it is there and sometimes it is not. You have been fortunate that you have always had abundant oxygen. If your Body had had an extreme shortage, in your ignorance, you would have all starved to death, for none of you have ever had any oxygen put away. In your blindness you have always thought that you have had nothing to worry about. It is now time for you to wake up and take responsibility for your own health.
“Look at me,” he said. “If this Body were to get sick, as my previous Body did, and have an extreme shortage of oxygen, then I would be the only one here that would continue to have abundance. You would then look like fools and look toward me as your savior.”
The healthy cells listened in stunned silence. “We have always assumed that there would always be abundance,” they said. “Tell us what happened in your Body.”
“We lived the good life like you for a while,” said the foreign cell. “But all good things must end. Certain wiser cells realized this and started teaching others about the potential crisis. Some listened and started saving for the evil day. It’s a good thing we did because it was not long before we needed it. When the shortages came the ignorant ones who had saved nothing, but trusted to the abundant supply, were caught with their pants down. They suffered and tried to get those with savings to share with them, but they would not. If those wise ones who saved shared with those who had not, then neither would have enough. The shortage got worse and worse until all were force to take what they could. Now I was one of the few who never had lack all the way through the great ordeal and I am the only cell to yet remain alive. If you want to learn how to survive the coming crisis, that I am sure is coming to this Body, then you should listen to me.”
“What shall we do?” asked the other cells.
“We must labor diligently to gather and store up additional oxygen. I will be your leader and guide you in this for a percentage of what you gather, and surely I will be your savior; for I am the only one here with knowledge of things to come.”
The word of this new philosophy spread throughout the Body and caused a great consternation and division among the cells. Most did not believe there would ever be such a shortage, but some did and joined with the foreign cell in hoarding the oxygen.
After a period of time, those who did not hoard found that they were indeed suffering a lack, yet they continued sharing that which they had with each other and managed to survive all right. On the other hand, the hoarding cells took joy in the seeming correctness of their moves and lorded over the other cells. “See, we told you this would happen. Look at us. We have more abundance than ever because we worked harder than you and put away for the evil day.”
Some of the non-hoarding cells felt foolish at this and joined in with the hoarding cells and united with them in labor to gather all the possible oxygen.
As time passed the shortage among those who did not hoard became very severe. So great was their lack that many cells began to die. Those who remained were exceedingly alarmed and decided to cease any sharing and join the hoarders. Each cell had to gather what he could for himself. Thus, all the lives in the Body found themselves in the midst of a great struggle for survival, and the Body as a whole became very sick, approached the point of death and called in a friend who had once been sick to the point of death but survived.
The friend said: “This disease is a mystery. I am one of the few who was able to make a complete recovery and I know not why. But I do remember that I did begin to get better right after my father shared a glass of sweet nectar with me.”
The sick Body then asked: “Will you share a glass of nectar with me in the same way.”
The friend agreed and took a glass of nectar, first taking a drink himself and then giving to the sick Body to drink.
Now, one of the cells in the friend’s Body, who had lived through the disease and recovered, desired to help his millions of brother cells in distress and hopped into the nectar and was transported to the sick Body.
When he arrived there he found a sad state of affairs. Cell was struggling against cell in a fierce battle for survival, oxygen and control. Very little cooperation seemed to exist. He cried out: “Listen to me, Oh ye cells, for the Body does not have to die and you do not have to lack. I come from a Body that had great health, then was sick, but was later healed, and I know the secret of healing.”
Most thought the newcomer was a crackpot, but a few listened. “There is plenty of oxygen for all,” he continued. “We must return to being our brother’s keeper, stop the hoarding and cooperate with each other. Then all will have abundance.”
A heckler came forward: “When the shortage first occurred we tried that and it did not work. Our only salvation is to follow the example of the foreign cell and work to gather surplus.”
The newcomer spoke again: “It only seems that way. Your greed has led you into an illusion so deep that you cannot see your way out. The foreign cell came from a Body which died. I came from one that lived! Your whole problem is what you think is the solution. The greed and hoarding create the shortage. The Body breathes in enough oxygen for all. Labor for the health of the Body, and not your individual selves. The Body will give you all the oxygen you can possibly use just the way it used to be. The foreigner is not the solution to the problem. He IS the problem.
“Here is what we are to do: We must gather together all those who are willing to cooperate into one part of the Body to work and share together for the health of the whole Body as you did before. It will be difficult at first, and there will still be shortages for a while, because we will be in the midst of hoarders, but in time we will demonstrate the laws of abundance. When the others see it they will follow our example, for in their hearts they yearn to return to the abundant life as it was.”
The newcomer set his hand at gathering together all those who would listen to his message and began to practice an interdependent cooperative order.
Now when the foreign cell heard of this he was very angry, for he had been receiving much praise and adoration and had received glory for the vast supplies of oxygen he had accumulated. He also donated some surplus oxygen from time to time to get the support of his comrades and was looked upon by many as a great benefactor.
The foreign cell spoke to his followers: “This upstart is a liar and deceiver. Do you really think he came here to help us? Of course not; he is after something. He wants power and dominion over you. Do you really think he came from a healed Body? I tell you there is no such thing. The struggle we are in will remain and those who are wise will have vast riches; whereas the ignorant will endure unspeakable suffering. If this poisonous philosophy the stranger teaches spreads, all of us will suffer. No one will have enough then. We will all be poor. We must attack this group of do-gooders and destroy them by completely shutting off their oxygen supply.”
Thus began the great war and struggle between the two groups of cells. The cooperative group was far inferior in numbers and many got discouraged and left, because for a time it seemed as if complete cooperation was impossible. But in the time of crisis the Body became aware that it could help itself by breathing more deeply and sent additional oxygen. Since it was a time of war, the cooperative group did all that was possible to gather oxygen for the group, but shared as one.
The uncooperative group gathered oxygen only on an individual basis and found their power to amass was not as great as it was, and, slowly at first, they found they were powerless to shut off their opponents’ oxygen. Next they began losing their reserves. Then, after a time, this group began to suffer lack whereas the cooperative group had abundance.
The foreign cell became very wroth, gnashed his teeth with great anger and began to abuse his fellow workers and ruled them with great fear. No one dared say it, but they now knew in their hearts that he was not the benefactor they had thought. Finally, he used his power so obnoxiously that his own fellows rebelled against him, created a prison, and threw him in it. They then approached the cooperative cells, desiring to join with them, and asking them to share their surplus oxygen with them.
The foreign teacher rejoiced at this, but desired to instruct them in the true principle of abundance, once and for all. He took all the surplus oxygen in the Body and released it so there was now no extra in existence. The cells all gasped with fear and disbelief.
“Do not fear,” said the stranger. “I did this just to demonstrate that there need never be a shortage. There is always enough for all. Now here is all that we must do. Let no one try to hoard any oxygen. When the Body takes its next breath, only take that which you need for yourself and see what happens.”
They all did this with some apprehension, but everyone followed the instructions and did not hoard, but only took that which they needed. From that point in time on, to their delight, they found that every single cell in the Body had all the oxygen it could possibly use.
The Body was also delighted, for it experienced a miraculous recovery within a period of minutes.
All the cells in the Body were wiser now. They understood the principle of abundance and knew they would never lack again. Once in a while a foreign cell from a sick Body would drift into view and start hoarding everything in sight. Instead of joining him, this time they smiled knowingly and left him alone. After a while even the foreign cells lost interest in hoarding, for it had no meaning. After a time, they even let the first foreign cell out of his prison, for they saw he had no power to harm anyone and eventually even he stopped hoarding and came to believe in the principle of everlasting abundance for all.
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