Spirituality, Repression and Control
Without “living” fully the path which we have chosen, there will be unavoidably misunderstandings. Spirituality is usually taught by a religion, a Guru, even God; in the way religions understand it as well as its followers. Someone who we deem to be more “elevated” than us. We want to become like “them.”
To live fully a path is to be immersed into it so we can understand practically the “why’s and why not’s.”
Without that full understanding, we will reject everything from the outside, that is; we will repress and control. Paradoxically, that which seems to come from the outside is nothing else but the “inside” manifested.
Let us take the example of the word “control.” We need to “control” our mind, we say. That sounds “good” proper, but impractical. Who is controlling who? Are we splitting our personality in 2 people? That is the mind (which we usually think as “bad”) and the “good guy” that is the one who has “moral teachings” in his head. However, most of us when we hear that our teacher or guru or God mentions that we need to “control” our mind; that is exactly the way “we do it.” We split ourselves; we separate ourselves and create conflict.
Was the teaching wrong? No. Our understanding, our interpretation is flawed. How could a teacher would be able to express “mastery of the mind” without giving the idea that our mind is “alright” as it is?
The word “control” will be used, BUT our understanding of it is based on our experiences of that word “control.”
To “master the mind” is not to identify with it, that is to be a “detached observer.” However, that word “detached observer” becomes a larger problem when the word “detachment” is improperly understood without an experience. We use the dictionary and that is part of the problem.
Most are happy just “moralizing” the self with commandments, rules and regulations and “following” those without the experience of the “why.”
Let me use another example. Let us talk about celibacy.
Celibacy is a problem for most. It is probably one of the biggest issues that any “normal” human being will “react to” if told to become celibate.
The intelligent question is to ask: why?
Without an in depth experience of it, we will only say: “because it is “bad,” it is lustful, our guide has told us to do that.”
With the experience of it, we can recognize that there is no other way to know about lust and anger in the self and how intricate that could be unless we take away “the candy from the little child.”
Then, the little child will scream, the little child will look for ways to get that candy: He will dream about it, He will make up stuff in his own mind to get it, he will play “moral” with others, even though, inside is burning like fire…
That is what is called repression.
When we repress, we have not “conquered.” Repression is not meant to be with us throughout our lives unless we want to get an emotional disease but.. the good news is that we will be known by others as “ moral” or “strong,” …until we “explode” and “indulge in that vice” to catch up for all the years of being repressed.
Ladies and gentleman, the above is to “follow” without understanding.
When we start our spiritual path by “repressing” or “controlling” something that seemed “natural” to us, it is not meant to be so we can “escape” the world and live isolated; but it is meant to be so we can study the self.
Please be aware that “Maya,” the “devil” and all his friends are in us. They are not entities “outside us.” The outside are just “triggers” to show us what we have inside.
Obviously, “morality” will not help there. That is the origin of people living a “double standard” life: That is, “you” should do it because it is good for “you,” but I can get away with not following it. Dishonesty.
Once we have learned in our own skin how “sex lust” appears and what it does to us and we have stopped “indulging in it” because of following honestly a “code of conduct,” then we are ready for the next step; that is “to practice what we preach” practically. Those are the so called “tests in life.”
There has to be inner transformation to succeed and “get out” of repression. To be able to live “free” and not to have “fear” that I will be falling from the path of celibacy.
The issue is that most “seekers” will stay in repression until it is no longer manageable or live in denial, guilt and fear for the rest of their lives but well regarded for his “morality.”
That is the most important aspect “self-transformation” of lustful energies into “good wishes and pure feelings from the heart” hasn’t manifested yet.
Those individuals are still living into the “moral” standard: “You must be celibate” rather than, “I have transformed sex lust.”
A third step once we are sure of “having conquered,” that means, “mastered” a particular vice, is “openness to life.” Without being open to life and the experiences that life could bring, there is no “next step.” Everything is movement. That initial repression and control needs to be transformed into acceptance and easiness. No one can change your ways, when they are truly yours and you acknowledge their value in your life, your own disciplines, if you would (which will allow you to live life fully;) but anyone can “tempt” someone when that inner understanding is not there. Then, we will look for a “escape goat” to rationalize our lack of inner understanding.
Spirituality is to go beyond repression and control. It is to be free. Freedom.
With that freedom, we can know love…. This is why it is a “numberwise” path.
Profound and thought-provoking post.
If externally imposed morality leads to double -standards and dishonesty/ hypocrisy ( and I agree with that fully) then how do flawed humans that we are discriminate right from wrong? Inner compass is not auto-calibrated in all, hence transformation needs some cardinal points- true North- to align righteously?