In this episode, Michael Meade returns to an old conception of life having three distinct layers. The first layer is the daily world that is typically the place of common courtesy, civil society and predictable patterns of weather and human behavior. The second layer is the place of abandonment and heartache, but also the territory that gives rise to racism, bigotry, misogyny and conspiracy theories. Thankfully, the third layer of life is the realm of underlying unity, the place of universal love and understanding, the surprising terrain of forgiveness and reconciliation and the sacred ground where nature and culture meet.

The bad news is that the second layer has now erupted into and often takes over the first layer of life. The good news is that the layer of underlying unity remains nearby and can be found in music and the arts and poetry like the ecstatic verses of Rumi and Hafiz that remind us that we all secretly participate in the divine intimacy of things.

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