It is the constancy of Being that makes it Being. It is the permanence of the condition that gives it its suchness.
In resolving a problem like sleeplessness, for instance, it is much like trying to ‘do’ something that is very natural. It is sometimes doing something that needs no solving or interference. Perhaps there is no need for sleep.
In the trying of sleeping example, we insert the element of ‘pushing’ which is counterproductive to falling asleep. Pushing often obliterates the naturalness that is indigenous to the state of effortless sleeping.
What often interferes with ‘good’ sleep is the mind. The body is always present and finds its way in the Now just fine. The mind, however, is fickle and is strengthened by not being in the Presence. This is often easily demonstrated in unrestful sleep.
Who controls the mind, the mind? Yes, when the mind is in control, sleep is a good illustration of the struggle of effortlessness and presence, not only for restful sleep, but for wakefulness in life itself.
When we can effortlessly resonate the universe in our moment with time, there is no need for control or other disguises like ‘pushing’. The entire cosmos itself does not operate on the need for control. At the same time everything is in perfect alignment from planets to stars, and our own harmony with our bodies and ourselves. Control is a concept that the mind puts out as necessary. When we ‘are’ everything, control is superfluous.
Our bodies themselves do not have an indigenous competitive monitor stating that the estimated 75 trillion cells need to get working together on this project called ‘little me’. The 3 pounds of brain matter are not any more important than the liver, or any other organ or process in the body.
There is a resonance with ‘The Reality’ called life itself. And that stuff in the body can get pretty complicated. At any second, there are 4 million cells that are regenerating their DNA. Do we need someone to control that? Do the DNA worry about it and try to force it?
In our own life the mind does wag the dog. Whether we sleep or awaken, we often try to do more than is practically necessary. We interfere with ourselves, often at a deep level. And ‘ourselves’ being the innate intelligence of life. We are the same intelligence that created the universe and sustains the universe.
WE need to wake up and go to sleep, effortlessly. We Are always. Resonate ‘that’, always. Effortlessly.
So, in the harmony of effortlessness, there is a presupposition called ‘choice’. That ‘choice’ is the option to be or not to be, in the sense of pushing or letting. Do we know that we choose? Do we believe that we choose every moment? If we are in control, do we need to be in control to be? What happens if we were to ‘let go’? Will everything just crash? Our mind thinks so.
Like sleeping, like awakening, the process is sublime. The overdoing is just too much. The answer is to ’not’ control and to ‘let’. If the universe of our bodies or of our galaxies can ‘be’, we certainly Are.
Wake up sleepy head. See the resonance that is You.
How can I test out of ‘my funk’? Can I graduate this hot mess?! What is it that I can do in a more direct, palpable way, that has more than a correlation, but is evidentiary, in changing my status?
In order to see where we are, it is absolutely necessary to determine the measurements we need to use. Measurements being, awareness and the tacit ‘knowing’ acknowledgement of where we are at this Moment.
After using the awareness that does not have anything added to it, we pursue the unequivocal assessment of where we are with our conditioning and patterns of long-standing behavior. Basically, clearly seeing where we are stuck. Superficial observation of the plagues that reduce our consciousness may not be enough. It is imperative to utilize the awareness to the degree that our investment is greater in the awareness than it is in the presumed reward of continuing a less skillful behavior. To just ‘think’ to do it, is not sufficient.
When there is the resultant feeling or sense, that a ‘separateness’ from this long-standing pain has occurred, perhaps for the first time in memory, then the shift to greater awareness has begun. The work of ‘seeing’ may gradually increase; again, depending on our moment-to-moment choices of either greater awareness or resumed subjugation to the vasana.
Attachment is the key that will determine the vastness and scope of the medium of awareness. Attachment can also ground us to the futility of patterns and conditioning that buttress our ‘stuckness’.
If and when we attach ourselves to awareness at greater than 50%, we create the ‘mo’ for freedom of movement in getting past the lack of momentum of profitable change in our life.
The above strategy is presumptuous in that it assumes we have moved from contemplation to preparation to action, on the change we desire. To get the initial movement on all this change thing, we need to evaluate whether we are even paying attention in the least. Or are we being dominated unmercifully by our addictions, brain chemistry, and brain circuitry? Is it that we just don’t care? Is it perhaps that we feel that we are good enough and satisfied enough, that we do not even see our lower standard of quiet desperation?
Looking at the numbers may help us cognitively see that perhaps we may not be at anywhere close to an optimal performance level of transacting this life. If we have not tested it out, then we are probably just playing a good game of stagnation and denial.
What percentage of the 86400 seconds in a 24 hour period of time are we really in the Moment (versus being in the false realities of past and present)? How many times have we smiled with authenticity? How many ‘beautiful’ moments have we given and received? Are we still fighting and resisting the universe? Or are most of our Moments in alignment with the universe? How many times have we seen our regular patterns come through and not react to them? How much acting versus reacting have we done in this time period or any time period?
These questions are only a top layer of what must be seen in some way, in order to transmute the mundane and welcome the profound. There is no tomorrow. It Is all Now.
The Four Noble Truths heralded by Bhudda centuries ago, are a good starting point for starting any path to higher consciousness. The first three Truths are universal and applicable to all beings. The 4th Truth is concerned with skillful method and practice. This Truth too has validity. However, it is not the only path up the mountain. Other paths, even undelineated ones, may have individual validity in achieving self-actualization.
The vehicle, or yana, that we use is the critical question. The consciousness of believing we are an ego locked up in a body that is separate from others, is pervasive. And this yana has proven its failure in our lives as well as untold billions of people. This vehicle has been sold to us as ’the’ vehicle we need to survive and thrive. It is hopelessly untenable for the journey of life. Yet we cling to it and cling from using it, both. We steadfastly refuse to let go.
We cling and we cling some more until we die. Alas, what a wasted life we led, in terms of what might have been. Did we terminate the vasanas that we were recycling daily for all of our lives? Did we give only with reward and concern for ourselves? Did we fear every moment that we would be found out concerning our insincerity, our selfishness, our inability to get past our little ideas? Did we fearlessly follow our real bliss without concern for consequence?
When we come from the separateness that is this vehicle, we cannot see the big picture of Self. Our mind focuses on ‘one’ area leaving everything else out of focus and unavailable.
We cling to the process the mind uses to process knowledge. Outward knowledge is selective to the broad experience of experience. When we think we are the mind, the thoughts, the ego, we have corrupted ourselves through imprisonment via process. The vehicle has hijacked us.
The 1st Noble Truth is that there is suffering. The 2nd Noble Truth is that there is a cause to suffering. The 3rd Noble Truth is understanding that there can be a ceasing of suffering. And the 4th Noble Truth concerns an alternative vehicle to use in order to cease the suffering.
So dump the old, tired, rundown, vehicle of quiet desperation and fear for a brand new way of doing things that has ancient bearings. The ceasing of suffering comes about relative to our attachment and cathecting to people, things, ideas, and processes.
Suffering is based on an insatiable thirst created by the distance we have from our True Self. This addiction, grasping, hoarding is based on the false idea of separateness. The separateness/suffering/ thirst is derivative of non-seeing. We do not have the complete picture because we are using the wrong process. We thirst to reduce our suffering while counterproductively keeping a tight grasp on an illusory incompetent idea of control. It is as if we need to dominate everything to have our way.
Our pushing,controlling, grasping energies only generate more separation. Actualization of this (gasp!) idea is “I am all alone. There is noone to help me.” When in fact this is an illusion. The nature of life and the universe is unity in the diversity. Realization of this, is that it Is Now, whether we ‘believe’ it or not. It is the permanent condition that is also our connection to our greater Self.
Anxiety will continue to persist if we continue to ’try’ rather than ‘see’ effortlessly. Nirvana is letting go. Clinging is the trap that catches us all the time.
Nishkamakarma is the concept/practice of not being attached to anything and giving all praises and benefits to the universe. Not holding, means not cathecting energy to come back to us. This in turn means that we can be in the world but ready to let go of any pleasures or suffering immediately without creating a narrative of how life was good or bad. Its our action not our reaction that counts. This would be the 3rd precept.
The final Truth is essentially acting skillfully versus unskillfully. This is summarily laid out in Buddhism as the 8 fold path. However, everyone’s path is very unique and may work better in another vehicle. The issue is movement with vidya or knowledge obtained from the understanding and actualization of the prior 3 precepts.
Are we heading off to “enlightenment”? Are we going some place better than where we are now? Do we know what this ‘place’ is? Do we even know where we are “now”?
So many questions so little time?! Is the amount of time so little because we are not making progress every moment? Are we struggling again? Or are we already there, Now?
How many moments have we squandered running around in circles?
Can we do something different this time, this Moment?
If we really see our treadmill existence as flawed in the sense that it does not fulfill our deeper connection to Ourselves, we must choose another stream of consciousness. But how so?
The trust we put in our daily grind of a plan of being is misplaced. We must see it. We must not continue to engage in it blithely going through our days. If it is flawed, why do we persist in enabling complacence?
Instead, the option of recognizing our pattern first is desirable, with the idea that now this pattern has finished and we are proceeding forward retooling our existence. Since our overworked pattern of habitual unconsciousness is ‘sticky’, we use the ‘stickiness’ to constantly remind ourselves of its futility.
Awareness, constant awareness, is the key to success. So when we settle ourselves and see that we are still treadmilling in the same place, we now understand that it means more now. It is now a siren for us to snap out of it and stream something different. This process may continue for a spell giving the amount of constancy we have given it. Upending it, we use caution so as not to ‘push’, creating the struggle, which will defeat us. The struggle is replaced with ‘seeing’ effortlessly.
“Seeing” is who we are. When we stop seeing we engage in the lesser vehicle of ego/mind. “Seeing” is our hero, our champion. It is truly us. Given the above, how do we stream something better? How do we find this thing when we don’t know WTF it is?
“Seeing” continues, especially in times of uncertainty and the unknown. Seeing is our most powerful tool. The reality Is that we are really already there Now. The Now puts us in the strongest position to accept the deep energy that is us, always. There is no place to go, there is nothing to do. Going and doing in this case are efforts that are misplaced. There is no pushing to something better. Pushing will push you away from the goal that is You.
The problem comes in ‘in letting go’. What do we let go to? We let go to uncertainty. But uncertainty is unstable, full of change and trepidation. Love the uncertainty. Yeah, and we can love fear too!?
Yes, In order to get to the stability of permanence and ‘knowing’, we must accept the ‘uncertainty’ factor of this transient life. It truly is transient despite our daily denials. The certainty that we have is knowing that we are already cooked beautifully. There is nothing to do that can add to the already ‘full’ me. We are at the plenum of fullness, Now. This is about as certain as we can get. Question is, do we Know ‘It’?
Instead of trying to make certainty out of the transience of our life, we would better place our energies into ‘seeing’ the certainty of who we really are, always.
This is the stream we can choose. It is a choice, but not really. Not really because it Is. When we choose the disconnected self, we choose the stream of unconsciousness and disconnection. This is where the choice comes in. When we ‘see’ more, we see that we do have a choice and that choice has already been made. Yes, and we have disconnected from it, much like a WIFI signal.
Get your WiFi on. It’s like bad reception. We can pretend that everything is alright. But having a clear signal (stream of consciousness) is the ticket to getting all the information that you can possibly get. Be The Moment. Stream that.
To change the pattern of our long-standing practices is usually an incremental and not typically a sudden shift. The rapid overnight kind of change is often not sustainable unless we fully understood the impact of the sledgehammer that hit us. How many people do you know that continue on the very degraded path they have just suffered on (post sledge hammer)? This is not to say that it can’t happen. It can, but this method, if we can call it that, is often harsh, catching us unprepared, i.e. the sledgehammer method.
However, large-scale events can result in long-standing change to our practices. We may have just been on the wrong path, but yet still on a valid attempt to grow spiritually and kaboom- new information/understanding transforms us forward. The quake of the event may have been required to shake the unstable foundations of our inadequate posturing to movement in this life. Many other possibilities can be listed from a big bang prompting.
The point being that, for our own selfish comfort, a reduced level of change to ‘moderate’, probably is more acceptable for most of us most of the time.
The “saddle point”, is not to rise up too much at one end and not to rise too low on the other end. Basically, the middle way.
In general, when we institute (often with great fanfare) a new diet, exercise, or discipline, we think short-term and ignore the process of ‘how much’ at the peril of losing all momentum for change. “Gung ho baby, let me at this new practice because I sure could use the results that come with all that jazz.” Enthusiasm is a beautiful energy but usually cannot be successfully sustained unless the practice is reinforcing the new practice.
Evaluation of whether this is the optimal way for us to incorporate change in a particular ‘way’, is paramount. Our research and reasons for making a change are just as important as the incorporation of the change. Without the legitimate convincing of self as to the concrete viability of the new practice, we will not abide in it without this motivation. Clearly, we must be committed to this idea and it must be done for ourselves and not for pleasing anyone else. Even to commit to a practice for someone you love, is dicey and historically fails in too many cases.
The new practice or change in patterning must be something that compels us deeply. Without the depth of commitment, it will generate to a flash in the pan. Ask, in a quiet moment, “Is this the change I am looking for at this particular time?” The answer is, when you Know you Know. Until then, steadily pursue the question vis-a-vis the form of energy we would like to pattern.
So often, if we are open to the Universe, the answer may come inimitably through another person, situation, opportunity, or positive affirmation of events. We are forewarned by our experience to be cued up for being aware of the various vehicles which may be used to assist us in our pursuit of Self. The Moment and our immersion in the Moment, is really a super-ready status. Seeing is optimized and our connection to the WI-Fi of Beingness is solid in signal.
Assuming the above, consistency and solvency in practice is critical. Practice, especially in times of duress or stress that will inevitably occur, is essential. This is when we continue, not drop, our ‘good’ practices. Only in a very minority of moments should we acquiesce to ‘skipping’.
The benefits are achieved through this constancy and the motivation and will to go on, shall be buttressed by the distinct advantages of the performance of practice versus the failure to practice. In other words, it will be easier to practice.
At the outset, the amount and selection of activity we commit to should be enough to make it interesting and not too much to make it impossible/difficult. This ratio and the practice activites will change over time to more or less, depending on health, stage of life, and other life variables. Adaptation is a part of it all.
40 years of daily practice can transpire with an upending of vasanas that have plagued us all of our lives (and possibly, then some). Establishing practices when we are younger is easier to do than at an older age.
More importantly, starting now and accomplishing steady sustainable practice is what we must do for Ourselves.