a bee on a flower

The Way I See the World

How the Metaphor of the Bee Enlightens Me

Last week I explored my soul and discovered that I can stand in my own power and strength and be myself. This is because I stopped to listen to my own heart. I found my light, my inspiration and my soul. But where did this soul come from, what does it signify?

I navigate through this world of confusion with metaphors. Last week I explored my grandmother's tapestry. This week I look at the purpose of the bee. I find this works because, in a sense, everything we experience is a metaphor. Life is not quite what we see, it is, as Rupert Spira says, the way we see. Metaphors help me understand the way I am seeing the world.

The Soul of the World

Paulo Coelho, in 'The Alchemist', suggests that The Soul of the World represents spiritual unity, and that everyone has a Personal Legend. To accomplish my own Personal Legend I must tap into The Soul of the World. This view states that I am part of a single spirit and everyone is interconnected with each other and with me.

In ending my seeking by finding my buried treasure back where I started—in me all along—I discovered that I had always been part of this spiritual unity and, as such, I was part of the source of everything. In touching the Soul of the World I came to realise that I was one with it.

This can all seem a bit esoteric as it did to me, for a time. Once I saw, however, that these concepts are simply metaphors for something intangible, I was able to see a lot deeper. For me the Soul of the World represents what Deepak Chopra calls the field of infinite possibilities or pure potential. It is the source of energy that my own soul came from and will return to. I tend to call it Source or the Universe.

In simple terms I came to understand that my soul, or spiritual nature, is an offshoot of a universal source of spiritual energy. When the time came for me to be born into my physical body I connected with what my purpose was in doing this, by choosing the time, place and family of my birth. At the time of my birth I lost awareness of this purpose so that I could fully grow and integrate as a man. Inside though is a lingering memory of what I am here for, what that original purpose is.

My Purpose

My journey here on earth is to re-connect with that purpose and carry it out. I believe, though, that it is not necessary for me to consciously articulate what that purpose is, because it will naturally be underneath all that I do. This means that what I have been doing throughout my life is intimately connected with my reason for being here.

That reason is my Personal Legend, using the language of The Alchemist. In writing I am fulfilling my Legend. In working as a lighting designer I was fulfilling my Legend. My return to myself was simply my realisation that I was already fulfilling my Legend. I no longer needed to seek, not because I discovered what I was seeking, but because I was there already.

In my years of seeking I had a feeling that my life was about more than just living in the period from birth to death. Yes, I wanted to feel that I was important, yes, I wanted to feel that I was not just a biological accident, but it was deeper than that. There was that hint of something already there, something that came with me.


To connect with that deeper sense I needed to read the signs that were put in my path. My initial task was to become aware of these signs, to see what was in front of me daily. It was then important for me to accept their existence and what they meant. Finally I needed to develop a way of living that was an authentic representation of what the signs intended.

I talked about this a few weeks back in 'The Birds Around Us [The Deep Significance For My Future]'. I said,

It is absolutely clear from the influence of the eagles that it is time for me to soar into my spiritual future. I am already seeing things which I had up to now ignored. I can tap into large-scale shifts in spiritual energy that are out there right now. I can fly high and focus on the individual items I need to catch onto.

The Bee

To fully understand what I mean about my purpose I often fall back on the metaphor of the bee as defining its concept for me. In the article 'Challenge Your Spiritual Awareness [How The Story Of The Bee Is Critical]' I explore the simple idea that our conscious perspective on life may, in fact, hide the truth of our purpose and existence.

I set up a thought exercise to demonstrate this,

Imagine that before you were born here on earth you were a spirit in the realm of the collective consciousness. As a spirit you have an all seeing eye and an all encompassing understanding. You see something that needs creating or curing on earth and you see how that can be achieved.

You choose to go back to earth as a human to alleviate some suffering or to create some enlightenment. You choose the family you will be born into and the time of your birth to give yourself the greatest chance of succeeding in this mission, this purpose.

Before you are born you go through a process that makes you forget the details of your mission because your mission needs to grow from within the person you choose to be.

Now you are here on earth it is your purpose to fulfill your mission and achieve your objective.

But this, apparently puts the seeking of your purpose in the conscious realm. Hence many people come to obsess about knowing what that purpose is before they can even think about fulfilling it.


But what if this is entirely inconsistent with the reality of the situation?

I go on to explain this in the story of the bee,

A bee sees its purpose clearly. It is meant to go out into nature and collect nectar and pollen from flowers to make honey back in the hive. This honey feeds young bees and the Queen Bee.

But in nature the bee has a deeper purpose. It is to transfer pollen from flower to flower to allow reproduction. This enables flowers to grow and increase.

The bee does not know its deeper purpose, but it has one.

It goes about its conscious purpose while, unknowingly, fulfilling its deeper purpose. That explains how we can go about fulfilling our deeper purpose as human beings, without realising it. We act as part of the Universal Consciousness while apparently acting as individuals. This is the dichotomy at the heart of spiritual understanding and the confusion that many feel about non-duality. A confusion I had for a long time.


Rupert Spira, for whom non-duality has been the foundation of his interest and practice for more than twenty-five years, said,

The world is not what we see, it is the way we see. Consider the possibility that nature, or reality, is the imagination, or activity, of one universal consciousness, that assumes the form of each of our minds, through which it refracts itself into an apparent multiplicity and diversity of objects and selves.

What I have been saying, here, just touches on the heart of spiritual consciousness refracting itself as expressed in the concept of non-duality. There is more depth to explore here but, for me, this is a turning point. I have come to a stage where I now truly believe what I have been writing about for some years. I now accept this 'truth' about the world I live in.

That, for me, is a great step.

Thank you bearing with me as I explore this essential part of consciousness, as I explore a sense of balance in who I am and what I believe. In an earlier letter 'Entering The Labyrinth' I explored the concept of surrender in a spiritual life,

A spiritual life, whatever that might mean for you, has surrender at it its core. A spiritual life is one where you let go of control and follow the flow of life.

I have let go of control and am following the flow.

I am fulfilling my Personal Legend as part of the Soul of the World.