Living the Awakened Life

With everyone being so busy these days, it’s easy to give in to a sense of pressure, stress and not having enough time to do what needs to be done. The internet brings so much more speed and complexity to our lives, jobs are increasingly fluid and changeable, relationships have their challenges and it’s very hard to have a place to rest anymore. The traditions that we relied on and carried us for centuries all seem to be disappearing.

A big part of what the awakened life is about is acknowledging the stretch and the struggle of these periods, and staying awake and breathing through them. By that I mean not letting yourself get caught up in just the doing-”checking one more thing off your list”, but in staying present for each of these activities.

That’s one step. Another step is letting this challenge be a teacher for you.

What do I mean by that?

It means being curious about what’s going on, learning how to not be reactive.
It means learning how to soften, to accept what’s going on and to forgive yourself for not doing it right.

One way to think about what’s happening with all these challenges we’re facing, is that the mental and emotional structures of our lives are being modified, upgraded or out and out destroyed. These structures – the ideas about who I think I am, who I think I’m supposed to be – are being transformed. If you insist on clinging to and keeping these patterns the way they’ve been, then there is going to be suffering. You’ll get sick, have a breakdown, or live with constant anxiety and stress.

But if you find the grace to surrender to these changes, and to let these structures transform, then you’re back at the center of your world again.

What’s really crucial is the movement from identifying with these structures to identifying with the space that underlies them. Our true nature is that space. Everything else is the impermanent expression of it. If we’re feeling the pain, it’s a sure sign that we’re overly attached to something that is not who we truly are. It doesn’t mean that we don’t keep working to find the money to feed our family, if that’s what’s needed, but it does mean that we pursue that task with the understanding that we are part of something greater, that itself wants us to succeed at that task.

I was with one of my mens groups the other night and most of the men were talking about difficulties and challenges in the realms of work, health and relationship.

At the end of the check-in I summarized that the silver lining about this is that, as more of these changes are made, the more some of these highly cherished jobs, belief systems or even relationships get peeled away, then what’s left is going to be closer to the essence of who we really are.

The trick then is to recognize this essence for the true jewel that it is and to let it come forth and shine in our lives. This essence is the place where we are one with each other.

This is the true answer to our problem. We can pretty up our situation all we want to, but until we see through the basic fallacy that this separate self is real, then we’re not going to find freedom. Spirit is not going to support us in clinging to these delusions of separateness anymore. The sooner we see the truth of our (interdependent) being, the quicker we’re going to find ourselves back in alignment with the power that is creating our lives. Once we find ourselves in that alignment, then our lives unfold in exactly the way they need to and we find what true happiness is!

This entry was posted on Sunday, November 21st, 2010 at 7:01 am and is filed under Blog. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


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