Do You Know Who You Really Are?

“To meet everything and everyone through stillness instead of mental noise is the greatest gift you can offer to the universe.” Eckhart Tolle

We are not free until we have discovered who we really are.

We are not touch with who we really are until we have broken out of the routine, monotonous conditioning of our overthinking and confines of our thoughts.

Thoughts in and of themselves are limiting — most of the time they become the mental noise that pervades the space in which we inhabit.

This constant mental noise distracts us from actually being present to life, present to ourselves and we live and walk in a trance, blinded to our own thinking mind that is constantly analyzing, judging, blaming, scheming, planning.

The filter of mental noise blocks us from this divine perceptivity, wisdom and creativity.

We are most “ourselves” when we exist beyond the realm of thought and in the realm of inner stillness, openness, and compassionate, unconditioned awareness.

Too often we identify with that which is not ourselves. How we perceive ourselves in the eyes of others and base our worth on whether they can provide some sort of affirmation. The most compelling substrate we use for this is money because money equals power in our culture.

We recognize who we really are when we stop identifying with our thoughts and step out of that mindspace of thinking and into that eternal presence and awareness that is love.

We forget and fail to live and miss out each day that we forgo to live with presence because we have too much to worry about in the future.

We tell ourselves that only when we have greater security and money, only then will we be able to be present. We tell ourselves that today just isn’t a good day and that we are too busy to take the time to be aware, to smile at another person, to open the door for someone.

Are you consumed by your thinking mind and does it control you? Or are you free of your thinking mind, do you life with thoughtless awareness, unburdened by the need to cling to an identity that is constantly seeking itself through the world?

Practice presence exercise:

What are some routine things that you do everyday that you can make into active meditations? Any activity can be an active meditation when we bring presence and awareness, a blank mind, to whatever we are doing.

The daily activities I enjoy bringing greater awareness to include driving, brushing my teeth, working out, washing dishes, and eating meals.

Instead of making presence a black or white duality in our life, we can gently and compassionately incorporate it into each of our daily activities until it becomes a habit we don’t even think about.

How to Embrace Uncertainty

“When nothing is sure, everything is possible.” – Margaret Atwood

There is a season for everything and every feeling, even times of sadness, aloneness, and instability.

The events in our lives that activate anxiety  and fear are those where we do not have control, those situations that are uncertain.

Could there be a divine purpose inherent in certain life situations which baffle us and are masked with uncertainty because the universe is trying to teach us something?

But what could it be saying?

Maybe it is telling us to embrace and to make peace with not knowing.

Why must we always have the answers to everything–why must we always know? Why is uncertainty so unsavory, so uncomfortable?

It is in times of uncertainty, particularly around events and situations regarding the future, that we have the opportunity to look deeply within ourselves and to reflect upon what could be muddling our sense of clarity and direction.

Perhaps there is a false fear that you are holding onto about your own worth that is demotivating you.

Fear and self-doubt are the ultimate energy vampires.

Bringing your own fears into the light can provide insight and help uncover the maladaptive beliefs that shape your world and sense of self.

There is no need to reject, deny or repress those thoughts. They dissolve on their own when we can bring the light of nonjudgmental awareness to them, and can see them from a third-party perspective, to see them without identifying with them.

Making peace with uncertainty is an opportunity to develop your childlike faith in a power greater than yourself, a life force that actually works in your favor if you know how to work with it.

It is a chance to surrender your will, your control, your need to know. Ultimately, it is the ultimate teacher of how to have peace and joy, of how to let go of the need to think in order to be okay.

Because we cannot have peace and joy if we are living within the confines of our own minds.

Enlightenment is getting outside of the box of our own minds, it is living in a state where there is no box, there is only being.

We create this box through our thinking because we are deeply afraid. Afraid of not having enough, of not being enough, of not doing enough.

We think because we live in the pretense that we will die if we do not protect ourselves through constant striving, doing, achieving and knowing.

The mind is in a constant state of doing. When we let go of the need to know our future and where we are headed, we also let go of ourselves, our identification with a sense of self that is based on thought.

Surrendering the future means surrendering to the now.

When we can let go and accept where we are, wherever we are, we may lose our certainty and sense of self that knows everything.

Instead, we gain the ability to let go. Letting go of the need for the future to fulfill us leaves us in the only place that can truly provide fulfillment, which is here now.

When you can accept where you are and let go of the need to be certain about everything, about the future–you are free.

Living in this state of presence is living in alignment with the energy of the universe that always works in your favor and is always perfect.

Instead of despising times of uncertainty, embrace them.

Because it is in these very times that you learn how to have faith and to trust in the perfection of the universe. It is how you grow and develop the capacity to connect with a power greater than yourself.

There are lessons in every single thing that we experience. What is the lesson in your uncertainty?

How to be Free

“Letting go gives us freedom, and freedom is the only condition for happiness.” – Thich Nhat Hanh

We hold onto our futures as though the answer to our happiness lies in them. We look towards our futures with the hopes that in them, we will find ourselves, and finally be everything we have wanted to be–more rich, more secure, more loved, more recognized.

We hold on, believing that the answer to happiness lies in a moment just a bit always away from now, when we have that relationship, that body, that house, that job, or retirement.

We live each day, looking away from where we are, to a moment that doesn’t actually exist, to an illusion of a time and place that is better than where we are.

It is as if we wear blinders over our eyes, and we refuse the present, not believing that where we are right now is enough.

But what if right now was enough? You may ask, how can right now be enough if I don’t have all that I want?

Because it is in the needing and the wanting of what you don’t have that actually separates you from being content, today, right now.

And it is in the letting go, the surrender, of the need and desire for anything in the future, that frees and liberates you to actually enjoy where you are right now.

There is something so scary about letting go of the desire for future, for things, for material wealth and accolade, because everyone else has these goals right? Perhaps our culture / society is blinded into believing these things are the meaning of happiness.

Because even when you have such and such, go whereabouts, and are so and so, you still have to face this moment.

No matter what you consume, materialistically, monetarily, with your eyes ears and mouth, you still are confronted with the stillness, the emptiness, the aloneness, the stark reality of this moment.

When you hold onto the future as your source of joy, you see this moment as merely a means to an end. When the moment because a stepping stone, your life becomes a myriad of stepping stones, leading to a future that never actually comes. And the joy that you thought was in the future becomes like a mirage–so close yet so far.

Surrender and dying to the self has many meanings, but I understand it to mean letting go of the need for anything in order to feel whole and complete. Why cut yourself off from completeness, wholeness, aliveness, life itself, when you can feel and be all that now? I’m not telling you to negate desire for things or anything for that matter. But watch out for desire. Because it has a tricky tendency of convincing us that we need more outside of ourselves in order to be fulfilled, in order to “make it” in the eyes of the world.

What happens when you let go of these contingencies, these wants and needs of the flesh? You are free to be here, fully, now, no matter what.

Not when you have this or that and not when you think you are this or that. When there is no more contingency on your awareness and your attention to be fully present to the moment, there is no more contingency to for happiness. You are free.
The very limits and conditions that you place for yourself and define as “happiness” becomes the very wall that blocks you from experiencing, from living. Who knows what the future holds, but all I know is that it feels good to be free of the need for anything to be happy. I can be happy, now, no matter what.

“Freedom is the oxygen of the soul.” – Moshie Dayan

3 Steps to Stop Worrying

“I’ve had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.” -Mark Twain

Worrying is not a bad thing, it is the mind’s natural way of dealing with uncertainty, fear, doubt and the unknown. It is the brain’s natural coping mechanism.

However, there is a much more peaceful way of living.

Because no one can ever predict and be certain of anything, because the future does not yet exist and uncertainty is the only thing in life that is really certain.

And if you really think about it, thinking repetitively about anything, whether it is in the past or the future, gets you nowhere but the here and now, ironically.

Here are some simple steps to stop ruminating and start being:

1). Nonjudgment

Don’t judge yourself for worrying–just notice your thoughts. When we take judgment away from the equation, compassion arises.

2.) Nonresistance

Don’t resist your thoughts. Instead of forcing your thoughts of anxiety to go away, just notice them. Notice them like the clouds in the sky, for that is all that thoughts ever are, just thoughts, not reality. When you notice your mind worrying, allow space consciousness and awareness to wrap around your thoughts. However, forcing yourself to stop worrying won’t work. Our minds don’t work well with force and/or punishment.

3). Notice the mind beneath the thoughts–the arising of compassion.

That mechanism beneath your own awareness of your thinking mind, that is the real you. When you connect with the deeper, inner spaciousness beneath the thinking mind, you have touched upon your true essence, which is presence–this moment itself.

The mind will always wander and have a “mind of it’s own.”

Worrying is your mind’s way of saying, “hey, i don’t know what to do about such and such in the future. Help!”

You can allow your mind’s toiling to be an issue that drives you mad, which for many people it does. Or, you can see it as an opening, an opportunity to delve deeper into what’s going on beneath your thinking.

Subconsciously, you may be resisting the moment because of some fears you are holding onto.

What are these fears? Why are you running from through excessive thinking?

Your mind is the messenger. Look deeper, look within for the message.