How can awakening to freedom solve every problem in your relationships, work, and life?
It is simple. The more awake and free you are, the more you live in the present””this very moment, here and now. You may not know what is going to happen five minutes or an hour from now””let alone tomorrow””but you always, always know what, if anything, is needed in this moment now.
From this place of being right here, now, you deal with whatever situation, problem, or challenge may be confronting you, meeting it calmly and confidently, with wisdom and love. Whether it is a relationship conflict, a work issue, a financial struggle, a health crisis, a natural disaster unfolding, or a terrorist act in the making, you draw upon all the creative powers at your disposal to address it.
What is needed to awaken to the inner freedom that is the birthright of every single human being? This is also simple, though not necessarily easy to put into practice. After all, the mental and emotional programming that has led you to believe you are “somebody,” this ego or “self” identity living inside you with its numerous “stories,” beliefs, hopes, and fears about what may or may not happen, is very deep-rooted. So it takes time””real world, clock-time””to become free.
This is the work of awakening: to see that the psychological and emotional “person” that you think and believe you are does not actually exist, other than as an idea, a fabrication, a “story” between your ears. And it is all about the “seeing;” there is nothing you have to actually “do” to wake up and become free.
You just have to see, again and again, that you are not your thoughts or stories””not even the “I,” “me,” and “my” thoughts you most personally identify with””because everything between your ears comes and goes. Yet you are the unchanging awareness which sees. You are always that which is ever-present, which is behind the coming and going of thoughts, feelings and sensations, experiences, and events and circumstances.
Your emotional triggers are the clues that will help you become free. After all, every emotional reaction””be it self-doubt, anxiety, worry, fear, guilt, resentment, anger, shame, blame, depression, or loneliness””arises from a “story” you tell yourself, and that you believe, whether conscious or unconscious. Examples are: “I can”™t do this,” “It”™s hopeless,” or “I just don”™t think I am worthy.” More unconscious stories usually arise from some long ago childhood experience of trauma, abandonment, betrayal, or mistrust.
A contraction in your physical energy””a catch in your breath, a tightness in your chest, a discontent, an anxious feeling in the pit of your stomach””is the giveaway, the tell-tale sign that you are caught up in, identifying with a thought or story. You must dive deep within yourself to find out what is really going on. Guidance from someone already awake and free””a person, a book, audio or video teaching””helps enormously with the “seeing.”
In the very act of thinking the thought, you are reinforcing this idea of being a “person,” this “I,” this “me” who is identified with its many “stories” of lack and fear, of expectation and disappointment, of gain and loss, of pleasure and suffering and who takes things personally. Who gets upset, offended, feels insulted, whose buttons are easily pushed, or is in some other way emotionally reactive.
You have to really look within at yourself, and ask: “How real is this ”˜me”™ I take myself to be?” And then breathe deeply, slowly, consciously, and be silent, fully present in this moment now””without thinking, without building on the lie by telling yourself some new “story”””and await the answer.
Do this, which my teacher called “waiting without waiting,” and you will find your answer. You will find it in silence. The “me” is not real at all! And yet you, as this aware, beautiful person behind the ever-changing contents of your mind are always here.
With this newly awakened awareness, your mind is much, much quieter because you are now free of “self” obsession, of the endless preoccupation with “me, myself, and my story.” You can then consciously use the power of thought, story, and intention to bring what you really need and want into your life””loving relationships, work that you enjoy, financial stability, optimal health, creative expression, and a whole lot more fun. Plus, you have a great, new “story” to share!
However, because you still have an ego, a mind, thoughts, and stories occasional “residues” of old ego patterns can arise from time-to-time””a flash of anger, a moment of anxiety, fear, or guilt””but these reactions are seen for what they are, and they quickly fall away.
The more awake and free you are, the more your basic emotional state is always one of ease, harmony, and flow. You literally are one with life””indeed, you feel yourself to be the universe itself, looking through your particular set of eyes, sensing and experiencing with your body, and feeling and responding with your heart.
You are truly open to life, unafraid to be your authentic self. You meet everyone”™s gaze in a warm, welcoming, and friendly way. And you rest in the certainty of knowing that you have the power to handle any situation, problem, or challenge before you””including any lessons you might have to learn””right here and now.