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There is a hymn from my childhood which catches humanity's current situation well. It opens with these words:
Once to every man and nation
Comes the moment to decide,
In the strife of truth with falsehood,
For the good or evil side;
Some great cause, God's new Messiah,
Offering each the bloom or blight,
And the choice goes by forever
Twixt that darkness and that light. - James Russell Lowell

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Excerpts from Living The Law of One - 101: The Choice, Chapter 2 - Polarity and the Choice

The Service-to-Self Path of Polarity

Just as there are those whose path is service to others, there are those whose path is service to self and control over others. Each who sits in this circle of seeking knows those whose delight is in controlling. Those who have truly moved along the path of negativity or, as it is sometimes called, “the path of that which is not” or the path of separation, control strictly for their own benefit.

A great virtue of the Game rules is that the main metaphysical job of all service-to-others polarizing people is simply to seek ever more deeply to know themselves and to be themselves. Knowing that they are parts of a unitary creation made entirely of love, they know that at base, they are worthy. Therefore they can explore their consciousness in a direct and truthful way which is not full of fear as to what the seeker will find. It is a way in which judgment and appearances have no part. It is a forthright, radiant, generous polarity. It radiates unconditional love and compassion, both for the self and for others.

The service-to-self polarity, on the other hand, is contracted in energy and “magnetic” rather than radiant in energy, as its habit is to pull things to the self so as to arrange them in the way which is desired by the plans of the self, rather than enjoying things as they are and finding ways to flow cooperatively with their circumstances. A service-to-self polarizing person will likely have much more control over what he says and does than will a positively polarizing person. He will be attentive to details which might gain him an advantage or give him ways to control others’ thoughts or actions more efficiently.

You can label such people as evil, but all that does is embroil you in the lower-case gameboard, which loves to judge and make differences between oneself and others which make the self look “better than.” When you try to use the words, “good and evil” in looking at polarity’s dynamic opposites, you may find that those words carry too much emotional charge to be useful for investigation. It is better for the purposes of thinking about these concepts to use the terms positive and negative, as with magnetic poles. Then there is no emotional judgment rendered while discussing these concepts. I am not suggesting that you need to embrace what you consider evil in the pursuit of unbiased thinking. I am only suggesting that, in thinking about polarity, it helps to use the neutral terms of positive and negative rather than good and evil or right and wrong. Those two sets of dynamics—good and evil and right and wrong—are relative terms. Different things are good, proper or right to different people and groups of people.

The essence of the service-to-self approach to life is control over both the self and others. The service-to-self polarizing person does not agree that all is one. He is Number One. He does not see his neighbor as himself. He is operating out of what psychologists call his ego.

The operant word for the ego is “mine.” He sees the world as something which he shall use to benefit himself. If he wants something, he will make it “mine.” Naturally, the service-to-self polarizing person must identify himself by what is “mine.” He has denied his own true nature, which is unconditional love. He cannot look to his heart, which he refuses to open. In a world in which all is one, we are all in this together. That whole concept is useless from a service-to-self point of view. That view is committed to the path of that which is not— the path of the self alone against the world.

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And so the service-to-self polarizing person identifies himself with his ideas, intents and goals, his possessions and the people and things he controls. Lost in his ego, he cannot let go of these identifying features, as he has no entry into investigating the path of what IS—the path to the opening of his heart. So his hold on what he controls is tenacious, for what he holds as his defines him to himself.

There are strong aspects of service to self in the structure of any organized religion which demands strict obedience to the specific tenets of a belief system. History provides us with numerous examples of “holy” wars. What a contradiction in terms! Clearly a Creator whose nature is unconditional love does not sanction wars.
However, any people whose identity has come to be based on “my” dogma and “my” religion tend to come to the conclusion that theirs is the only way to believe, and all those who do not so believe are in need of being persuaded to join the ranks of true believers or to be eliminated; consigned to Hell after this life and to a state of not-belonging during this life. The various Roman Catholic Inquisitions are another good example of service-to-self thinking. The Roman Catholic Church was enough disposed towards control of others “for their own good” that it tortured many people to death, trying to get them to confess their assumed sins. Their thinking was that the body had to die so that the confessed soul would not have to go to Hell.
Many innocents were condemned to torture and death because they picked herbs for healing and thusly were accused of witchcraft. Many more died for having an inconvenient opinion. Galileo Galilei, for example, was forced by the Inquisition to renounce Copernicus’s theory that the Earth revolved around the Sun instead of the other way around. The ancient view of the world was that it was a flat place, the center of the universe, around which the Sun and all the stars and planets moved. Galileo was convinced that Copernicus was right. He is said to have muttered at the time, “Nevertheless, the Earth moves!” Fortunately, his persecutors apparently did not have hearing as acute as his biographer’s.
As you gaze upon the world scene today, perhaps you may find examples of such religious fanaticism. It seems that the Christian, the Moslem and the Jewish worlds have within them factions which are yearning for Armageddon. Within each of our societies, the armed services of the country, region, state, county or city in which we live have a predominantly service-to-self polarity. The rules of the U. S. Army, as an example, are hierarchical. What the privates do gives credit or blame to the sergeants. What the non-commissioned officers do gives credit or blame to the lieutenants. What the lieutenants do gives credit or blame to the captains. This goes on up through the ranks to the generals, who are given credit or blame for their entire army.
The ranks of officers in other armed forces, such as the Navy, the Air Force, the Coast Guard and police or sheriff’s departments, have different names and the progression of ranks is different. However the collecting of credit or blame for the work done up to the man in charge is the same. The top brass in an army, for instance, has no trouble ordering men into a battle even if they know ahead of time that the odds are that they will all be killed. Their aims are political, economic, corporate and ideological. The living beings in the army who carry out their policies and orders are considered pawns on their gameboard or to use slang terms, cannon fodder. “One fodder unit” or OFU is supposedly the term used for “an average citizen” by some of our leaders. An example of this on the news recently was when a very senior official was televised while giving a speech in a town where a woman was being honored who had lost her husband and two of her sons to American wars since 2003. She and her remaining family were front and center in the audience.
The official received a question from a reporter which was directed to the mother being honored. The reporter asked him to ask the mother if she felt that her sacrifice was worthwhile. However the official immediately answered for her, saying he was sure she would say yes. He went on to say that if more of her sons died fighting, she would be equally proud of them, and that the battle victims would be proud and happy to die for their country. What better death could they have?
I wish you could have seen the look on that mother’s face! It was an expression of utter horror. However the official’s answer showed, in a way which most leaders are too sophisticated to display, that when ideologically motivated people are in charge of policy, they do not even for a moment consider that the loss of life in their battle ranks is a problem. It is simply what soldiers do. The men are not important. The policies are important.
Please understand that I am not judging ideologues such as that official. This report singles out no person or country. I am using this person as an example of the military way of looking at other selves. That official is no better or worse than many other leaders around our weary world who routinely use war as a policy rather than taking the time and compassion to seek for peace and collaboration among nations by diplomatic routes.
It is good to look carefully at this televised moment in order to understand the service-to-self polarity. Service-to-self persons, for the most part, honestly do not consider that they are doing anything “wrong” or “evil.” And in fact our current government has a careful rationale in place which explains each decision to pursue aggressive policies. There is no acknowledgement whatever of the losses of those who fall in battle except to call them heroes and remember them on Memorial Day.
Another source of this same service-to-self thinking is seen in corporations. Like the military, all credit is given upwards, eventually to the chief executives of the corporation. Like the military, extreme measures are considered to be acceptable in the pursuit of winning. The assassin hired to remove a dangerous competitor has no anger at the executive or scientist whom he kills for a price. The assassination is just a job. When an underworld corporation breaks a man’s legs for reneging on a gambling wager, it is not personal. It is “just business.” This de-personalization of people is at the heart of service-to-self thinking.
Many other non-lethal service-to-self actions by companies are seen in everyday life. Some companies have a policy, whether publicly acknowledged or not, of firing good, experienced people who are nearing retirement age in order to save the cost of their pensions and high salaries. They replace such people with younger and less experienced people whom they can hire for much less money and to whom they may not offer a pension at all.
Another example of corporate service-to-self thinking is found in those companies which have a policy of hiring only part-time clerical help. They do this so that they are not required by law to give them any benefits, thereby conserving the corporation’s profits for compensation to the top corporate executives.
As a direct consequence, the United States has a substantial number of working people who have no place to live and no health insurance, because no matter how many hours they work, or at how many jobs, they cannot make enough money to afford what many people take for granted—a roof over their heads and the ability to care for family members who become ill and need medical services. Perhaps the darkest of service-to-self thinking occurs when the military, the religious, and the corporate forces of a nation combine in various ways to get what they want. We are seeing the effects of the mixing of governmental and religious forces in many places in the world today. An example of this is when the preachers of large congregations tell their congregation to vote for a certain man or party. It is one thing to argue topical issues from Biblical texts and quite another to tell people how to vote, suggesting that it is a matter of faith. Indeed, our own country’s beginnings were rooted in the people’s desire to have freedom to believe and practice their faith without restrictions from the government.


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