Weekly Step 2: Let go

May 14, 2012

Really, just let go. Whatever it may be, however right you may be, and no matter how hurtful/bad/wrong/etc…

I read this sentence a few weeks ago and it struck a chord:
“Let go, let go, let go of me, little dog, and I will let go of you”.

Are there things you wish would transform or go away about yourself? So called demons or ego that pull you in directions you really don’t want to go?

Sometimes we feel like victims to these forces, but the truth is we are holding on to them and until we let go of them, until we empty our pockets, they will always be there. We are holding on to so much. For example, we want to let go of anger but when someone tries to hurt us, and we know we are right about it, anger is our ‘justified’ reaction to shield us. In order to let go of it we would have to face our pain and our feeling of vulnerability. That’s hard and we think it’s less painful than holding on to our anger/ grudge/ fill-in-the-blank. The question is: Is it?

This week- relax, breathe, and let go.. no matter what it is or what you think about it.

A phenomenal book to help you with this week’s step: ‘The Untethered Soul’ by Michael Singer.

He advises the following:
1. Observe, don’t participate.
2.Don’t feed the energy whirlpools.
3. Relax and release from the pull (the urge to go there). The moment you feel your energy or your mind shift: relax your shoulders and the area around your heart.
4. Open your heart in face if anything and everything. Let it flow through you.

One step at a time. This week, let it go.

Please, share your experience!

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How to climb a mountain? One step at a time.

This week, we will focus on looking within. As often as you can and at least every hour we will check-in with ourselves.

That’s it.
You can try….
How am I doing right now?
Where am I?

Not your mental head, not your emotions, just the I that is always there with you.

Often we are in ‘you’, ‘he’, ‘she’ land- ‘I can’t believe she said/did ___’. Now whenever you find your attention absorbed in thoughts and emotions about others, bring it back in. What about me?

This is ‘I’ week.
Find yourself and don’t let go.

I always found small goals to be more attractive in my mind than really big ones- regarding the personal growth sector. Run three miles every day or run three every day this week only… invariably I will be more committed to the shorter term commitment. It always feels less daunting and like I will get a prize or something at the end. Open-ended goals seem to lose their holding power in my mind.
In that spirit I have undertaken weekly goals for self-improvement. Many of these are simple and universal ideas from the great spiritual traditions. We read about them, agree with them, and then hope we’ve already got enough of them in practice and that’s where it usually ends.
Each Monday is the start of a new week.
This week has been “Silence and Introspection”. Like a little mantra whenever I feel the urge to chit chat or complain about something or argue my opinion or watch other people doing, thinking, acting (and even judging what I observe); I start reminding myself of my goal this week and allow it to soothe me back into shape.

It has been mostly very successful- even when I didn’t keep my mouth quiet, I was able to reflect later if it would have been better to have kept to myself or say what I did.

These are all about looking at ourselves in closer detail and with manageable steps for spiritual or call it human progress/purification.
The good news is we can return to any one week and try it again later if we really felt it was good for us. But keep the time frames short so they don’t get lost in the closet and stay fresh in our minds and consciousness.

Do you have any suggestions for a week?

Like a Bank Clerk

December 29, 2011

There is a wonderful Indian analogy and advice for yoga practitioners, indeed for all.

Be like a bank teller.

When the clerk receives two thousand dollars he does not get bloated with pride and ego. Nor does he cry when he hands out four thousand dollars to another client.
A bank teller remains equal tempered in his position, steady as things come and go. He doesn’t have sticky hands, clinging to the money.

We too should be steady as things (materials, relationships, money, health etc.) come and go in our lives, not clinging or repelling anything.

And by doing this, we will always be content with whatever comes and whatever may go realizing that our happiness does not depend on either of these two.

#Occupy The Self

November 20, 2011

Our ego is the the 1% and the heart is the suppressed 99%.

What is the use of tearing down Bank of America when we ourselves have similar corruptions in our own minds, greedy and deceiving not only our friends and families but even our very selves? What are our self interests and what is the ‘self’ in which these interests claim to serve?

Numerous examples are there….

Without any solid evidence we blame others and even prosecute them in our minds, words or actions. We ourselves don’t want to be wrong or to take responsibility. ‘Who took my _____?’ Then we discover later that actually we misplaced ____ ourselves. Often even after recognizing our error, we won’t apologize because of pride.

We’ll interrupt others speaking because our ego feels it is more important. Observe how the television, advertisements, etc. talk to us, not with us. There is generally a one-way communication channel with the 1%.

The 1% hungers without satisfaction for more. We receive gifts, food, shelter, money, clean air to breathe and earth to walk on without any gratitude or recognition. We feel we deserve what we get that is good. What we have is never enough- there is a new this or a latest that which we are craving and consuming. We too are trapped in the mindset of exponential growth syndrome, insatiable hunger. The corporations are no different, increasing bonuses and profits without any sight of satisfaction or a sense of what is enough.

We give gifts not from our hearts with humbleness, we give gifts because we want something in return. Corporations give us a token, discount, or a ‘sign up for a free ____’, so they snatch us and our wallets to spend spend spend. Where has generosity gone? Where is genuine customer care?

Though we may acknowledge the fuel-burning jets are contributing to global warming and all it’s implications, we still can’t restrain ourselves at the grocery store from buying those out-of-season specialties that have come from those very jets. Often we are completely deluding ourselves when we think we’re better than anyone else because we shop locally or organically. Look in your pantry. Who among us doesn’t consume sugar, chocolate, coffee, tea, and countless other luxury commodities which have now become to us ‘essential’ commodities.

What about our healthcare? Do we take care of our own health or contract it out to others? Are we serving the 99% when we push our bodies to stay up late for a t.v. show, to over-exert ourselves, to consume take-out and too-good-to-resist junk food? Are we taking care of our ‘subordinates’ health like our children when we don’t have time to make their food and serve them processed foods?

Sometimes we keep our selves misinformed under the guise that ‘ignorance is bliss’. We are afraid of the Truth and what changes that may imply. If we acknowledge certain things are simply not working for us, we will be obligated to change those things. So really, our ____ isn’t so bad. If we really look, we know. Of course we know but we choose to ignore or we control the ‘media’ input to ourselves. Likewise, if the corporations acknowledge even a fraction of the Truths about themselves and their actions, they would be forced to change.

 

Let’s not be hypocrites. Ought we to ‘fight the good fight’ on both frontiers? Let us redefine the world we want to inhabit by redefining ourselves and leading by example. Look with scrutiny at the truth of our own state. Leave no stone unturned. If everyone led this movement by example of the very principles which we are asking for from others, there certainly would be a shift and that shift would be within the hearts of the people. Why not take this outrage as a great opportunity to practice. Practice generosity. Practice Truthfulness. Practice non violence in your thoughts. Practice all the noble qualities.

Ghandi’s wise advice: “We need to be the change we wish to see in the world”.

Suffering as blessing

November 9, 2011

Imagine you are a rock in the slingshot. You are ready to strike, fly through the air like a weightless thing…when suddenly you seem to be moving backwards and backwards. ‘What is going on?’ Actually we should be going over there.
Suffering is our momentum to launch forward into the life we want to live; it is consciousness shining a spotlight. Actually, we are constantly doing, thinking, speaking and generally moving along in our lives. There may be a problem with the engine of our car but unless it shows any outward signs, smoking, noise-making, engine lights blinking, we keep moving along unaware of any problems though they exist. The same is true for our lives and our bodies. The more sensitive we are to the subtleties, the earlier we can catch the warning signs before we get stranded on the highway without a cell phone! If we are too busy and preoccupied we may not recognize the symptoms before they become painfully obvious. Sometimes we want to ignore the signs because we need to ‘get there’: do our job, feed our families, take care of everyone else’s needs and expectations of us before we take care of ourselves.
Suffering, though we feel like it is painful, is really only the recognition of a pain we’ve been feeling all along, of some discord beneath the surface of our consciousness. We should honor our pain, for without it how would we ever heal, change, grow…..

How else will we fly with open arms into happiness?

Enlightened World

March 18, 2009

Today, and for the next week, imagine the whole world is full of enlightened people- buddhas if you like…everyone except for you. Each person is your enlightened teacher and exists soley for your sake to help you awaken. Every encounter is a lesson or a challenge to guide you.

See what each teacher has to offer you. And most importantly take a moment to inwardly thank them for this.

*from ‘A Path With Heart’ by Jack Kornfield

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