Cause/ Effect and Integrity

Earlier in the week, on my way home from a conference on the other side of town,  I found on the $1 cart outside of Second Story Books, Starhawk’s Dreaming the Dark — Magic, Sex and Politics.  Though I always learn something from reading Starhawk’s books and I had not read this one yet, the book was so heavily underlined, I thought twice about getting it.

Something made me hesitate before putting it back, and I opened it at random.  On the page was the following:  “Directed energy causes change.  To have integrity, we must recognize that our choices bring about consequences, and that we cannot escape responsibility for the consequences, not because they are imposed by some external authority, but because they are inherent in the choices themselves.”

I wondered why this had not been underlined in full when so much of the rest of the page had been underlined because I thought on reading it:  “Exactly right; that speaks to our current condition.”

And being in the midst this dialogue in which there has been so much discussion of integrity (along with what we might have caused and how we might have been affected by certain actions), I dismissed the possibility that the underlining would be too intrusive for my own reading because, yes, this teaching comes at just the right time in just the right context for deep contemplation of the deep truth that to act with integrity, we must appreciate our own contribution to causes and results/responses in the undulating fabric of our connected being.

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