The mind and our conditioning tell us that we should never suffer, feel pain, or have difficulties; that the perfect life is problem-free, and this becomes our belief and pursuit. Many religious people think and are taught that if they find God, all their problems will go away, and the spiritual seeker often believes that enlightenment will free them from all of life’s complications.
Is this your experience? Can you tell me that this is true, that you have escaped the challenges of life through these pursuits? Following this concept of freedom, when presented by the mind, will only keep you trapped in an endless quest. You will always feel that you are getting closer to your desired destination, why it’s just one more step, the mind will say. Yet somehow, you never seem to arrive.
If we want to be free, then we must awaken from the mind’s blinding influence. We must be willing to take a step back from what it is saying for a moment because real freedom comes when we allow all of life to flow through us. We cannot continue to follow the false narrative that the mind presents, where there should be no pain or suffering at all.
We must allow and feel whatever arises, to embrace and experience it. Being mindful when resistance appears, because whatever flows will go, be transmuted, or transcended. Whatever we resist will get stuck and persists.
Take a step back, become the observer of your thoughts, and watch how the mind frequently influences your life. Then let your unrest awaken you to the present moment and your True-Self. Let feelings and facts destroy the imagined storytelling of the mind and be open to receiving grace and the guidance of your True-Self that is always available to everyone.
Do you mold your religious/spiritual teachings around your life to self-satisfy your egoic actions? This can be seen today by many who put their political party and personal interests over their religious ideology.
Or do you embody your religion/spiritual teaching and put it first, by questioning your words and actions and always correcting course when errors are seen?
You can see these two very different ways of living playing out around the world, which will manifest two very different outcomes. This observation is not new; they can both be seen by looking back through history at how men and women have treated their fellow human beings, the planet, and themselves.
If you observe your thoughts, you will find they lay the foundation for your unhappiness. The mind creates a story through them about your circumstances and your life that you come to believe. Once belief sets in, dissatisfaction will arise.
Let fact destroy the fiction of this story, and it will disappear. Watch as your mind comes up with justifications and creates another narrative to keep you trapped in this seemingly endless cycle, a habit that has become so ingrained in your life that it goes completely unnoticed. Without awareness, it will continue to bring discomfort to your life and physical body. You have every ability to stop this cycle of self-abuse and wake up to your True-Self.
What you are is revealed when you let go of what you are not. You are no longer the seeker, but you remember who you are in truth.
“What we are looking for is what is looking.” ― St. Francis of Assisi
Therefore, you do not need more knowledge, rituals, or some other practice. It is discovered through the recognition of your conditioning, misguided beliefs, and habituated thinking. By using one of your greatest gifts, awareness, you can begin to uncover your True-Self or real nature through direct experience.
Of course, you can continue to follow your thoughts and the mind, which will keep you trapped in a never-ending journey. They will always confirm that what you seek is just around the next corner. Yes, you will make some progress this way. However, you may have already noticed that you are not getting very far. Ask yourself this question and see where it leads: how much time do you need to become timeless?
“If you only use your intellect and let your mind and emotions rule your world, then you will surely suffer.”