A friend told me that she attended a retreat of a known “guru” and this guru explained that “Everything was predestined.” That was a major shock to some. My friend told me that one person was crying in disbelief.
Even though this explanation was only a mental idea, it was enough to trigger an emotional reaction. That explains our level of engagement with our minds and our need to find theoretical “truth” even though it may differ our own experience.
The “problem” of free will vs. predestination is a popular topic among thinkers and even regular folks. Movies are introducing this topic to the masses who strongly believed that they had “free will.”
Why is it that we cannot figure it out ourselves?
Mostly because we are stuck in a certain level of consciousness, the “I” who is separated from everything else. In separation we are unsure if destiny plays a part to mess up “our” plans or if we didn’t “think” things enough to come up with a better plan. Another “reason” is our high level of social conditioning. For most of us given 3 choices, the answer can only be one. “It is A or B or C.” That logic does not work in Life.
The consciousness of being an “I” a “ME,” separated from everything else does not see the relationships, the interconnections as a piece of a jigsaw puzzle has with every other piece. We cannot see that the purpose of a piece of a puzzle resides in belonging to the jigsaw puzzle.
The same is with a human being in relationship with the Universe, with Life.
Thus, the belief in “free will” supports that separation from the jigsaw puzzle. When someone comes from that consciousness, the belief and acceptance of free will is very important.
As a person moves to a different position in consciousness, that person will experience less of an “I.” That “ME” is no longer the most important, the center of the Universe. We will observe that we do not have control over many things in Life: our own birth, our own childhood, the conditioning that went through us and finally we will acknowledge randomness, serendipity, synchronicity, etc; observing how mysterious Life is. Then predestination is no longer a hard to swallow pill.
There is another stage of consciousness, that is when the “I”, the “Me” moves away.
If the “I” is like a closed door, we are no longer just the door itself but also the space when the door opens. That “nothingness” scares the hell out of most human beings. However, in being that space, we ARE everything as well: The space in the door, the door itself, the house, etc. for space is in them as well.
Therefore, we are Nothing, ONE (I,) and Everything all at the same time.
It is in that consciousness when the words predestination and free will are completely meaningless.
The jigsaw puzzle will be orderly completed only to be chaotically dispersed. Those are the forces of duality which allow for change. That is the nature of the Universe, whether we believe in free will or predestination.
A belief is just our attempt to label some experience. We need to contrast that something with its opposite to give life to our description, so others know what we are talking about. How can we speak about God without bringing the Devil? How can we speak of Night without Day? However, those apparent opposites are coming from the same phenomena.
In a nutshell, free will and predestination are exactly the same thing in Life. The conditioning of our minds will not allow us to see that for we are stuck in the description of words and our mind thrives in seeing opposites to grasp a mental understanding, which in Life is not “true” understanding.
Step outside of your mind, to see.
1.”I want to ask a question. If my destiny is already decided that I will fail in an exam. I pray to god to fulfill my wishes. I worshiped him …but I failed in the exam, because it was written in my destiny. I also worked hard to pass that exam..where I am wrong. Please help me…”
Thank you for your question.
Who is that “I” that you are referring to?
Is it your body? Is it your mind? Search for that “I” in all places first.
If you find it, then observe how “failing” or not failing in an exam will affect that “I.” Why is an exam so important for that “I”?
The “Office world” has priorities that are deep inside our minds. But, those priorities are only valid depending on what we decide the “I” to be.
Most will not go into this basic thing. Most will take it for granted that “I have to achieve to become better”. This is compliance with a dream which we believe to be the only “reality”. Whether you “have” (achieved) money, power, love, enlightenment, happiness and any other “good” label that you can imagine; observe if your Life is fulfilling for you, if you are enjoying it. Passing a test is not part of this. You can pass it or fail it, but fulfillment is not a consequence of that.
You “know” that destiny is already made. What is the reason to pray to a God then? Change in Life is done through DOING, but that is not done by someone’s ego. You studied “hard” and did not pass. The “I” was trying to get his agenda of “success” going. It did not happen. Someone else may not have studied as hard as you did; but he passed. Then we believe that “Life is not fair” when it doesn’t move according to our conditioned wishes.
The “I” feels “bad” when hearing about destiny being already made, but it may be that this “I” is just another creation of the mind, an illusion even though compelling, even though it appears “real”, it is an illusion.
Your destiny is woven together with others, with the Totality. We are together in this, although it appears that we are separate just because of our separate bodies and conditioned minds.
Please observe that the problem created by your mind is inferred in the words: “failed, work hard, and wrong.” Those words are creating hell in your mind. Failure does not exist in Life when there is a fixed destiny. Failure is an invention of the “office world.”
It is a game my dear. Don’t take it seriously. “You” are still alive, breathing. Passing an exam could give you more money, more “office world stuff,” to enhance the illusion of the “I.” That is not “bad”. But if you believe that game to be “real” rather than a game, then you are destined to suffer.
That is why, awareness is the key. Awareness is the help that you may be looking for.
2. “I am so appreciative of your rare sense. Krishnamurti (no followers please) comes to mind. The spiritual supermarket grows larger and more insipid daily. You are refreshing.”
Thank you for your kind and honest words. Some individuals have seen Alan Watts in these writings. Others, have seen Osho and yet others, Krishnamurti. We align with a particular writer because we understand their viewpoint as they put words to our own realizations. Many will try to put Ahnanda’s sharing into a bottle of a well known label: Ahnanda is Non-duality, Hinduism, Osho-ism, and any other “truth.”
Ahnanda does not share “truth” for that conveys falsehood as well. He shares his experiences and a different perspective. These perspectives may have encountered other writer’s paths, but at the end of the road, Ahnanda’s path is unique, just like everyone else’s.
Yes, the “spiritual supermarket” is filled with salesman offering “solutions” when there are no “problems”. Offering “Life changes” when Life is change by itself.
However, the spiritual supermarket has a role in Life. They give hope and inspire others to get out of their comfort zones, although with a “small/large fee” attached. For most that is part of the conditioning that “you get what you pay for”.
In Ahnanda’s experience, anything that has been of great value in his Life, has always been free of charge.
One of the most fascinating things to discover about the self, is that after all the layers of “personality” cover ups and the thinking, analytical ego driven mind, there is nothing there, but emptiness… that is the so called “soul.”
Non- God driven religions and God driven religions agree in one experience but using 2 different labels: Emptiness and Soul are 2 different labels meaning the same experience.
The soul is the empty canvas. Our personality is the painting in top of that canvas. Ego is the “painter.” That painting may change through different experiences, different life times; but the empty canvas, will remain a clean slate. Empty.
That is why, when someone says: “I want to go to heaven,” you may wonder who that “I” may be.
The “painter” is created through the perception of separation. The layer in between is the mind/ body perception. While many people are used to divide the body from the mind; actually one cannot exist without the other…
Whenever there is a “painter;” Life is suppressed, for there is already a theme, which will need to be enacted by that empty canvas. The “painter” wants his own paint disregarding timing, circumstances, settings, collective consciousness… the Totality.
You see, emptiness cannot have an “I.”
But when there is that “I” then suffering will be the outcome as the “I” becomes bigger and stronger, ready to fight; for the empty canvas is part of Life, the canvas belongs to Life and not the painter.
Therefore the mind inflates giving Life to that painter, the “I.” That mind has gathered many experiences, teachings, moral standards, etc. which will “materialize” as thoughts.
Then the “I” will build a concrete persona based on the current body and situation.That perception will be thoughts. To identify with those thoughts, is ego.
Truly, those thoughts are not “yours.” “You” are empty, but as long as there is a fight for presence, then there will be identification with the thoughts and the mind.
To fight for identity, to repress, to control… those are traits of an ego-mind.
Ego solidifies in that way. There is a body/mind and thoughts to give Life to that persona.
Thoughts are like clouds in a clear sky. When a cloud goes by your house, you call that cloud “mine.” “My cloud. “My” thought … even though the cloud will move and continue on, the mind will save a picture of it and will keep on identifying with the other clouds passing by.
“MY” country, “My” religion, “MY” husband, “My” baby, “MY” soul… those are only thoughts. Language is a layer which requires thinking. That language solidifies “ego” as well.
Identification with those thoughts/language will strengthen our ego-mind. That is why, “no-mind” is important.
The mind cannot deal with what is real in the “now,” but only with saved pictures and with vague ideas as to how that picture may look like in the “future.”
The more aware and conscious we become, then the distance to those thoughts increases and the identification with those thoughts will decrease.
We become a witness of the internal show of clouds passing by. It is not “My” show.
As we abandon the identity of the “painter,” then we become closer to the empty canvas, allowing for Life to place its colors, and then we become “that…”
“That” is when “you” die from that “I” and become the painting that you are meant to be, according to your destiny. That is the meaning of “going with the flow.” There is no “going with flow,” if there is an “I” directing the flow or believing that to yield to situations is to “go with the flow.”
Your destiny is not in your hands. You ARE your destiny.
We make our destiny? OR Is destiny already made?
Isn’t destiny “you”? Isn’t “you” destiny?
A mango was sitting on my countertop. It was still green.
Have you noticed how the mango changes to become a ripe mango even though away from the tree?
Is the mango at anytime separated from Life?
We see 2 different things: A mango and everything else… Life. Nevertheless as time goes by, as Life changes, then the mango will change.
Let us assume that the mango had “consciousness,” the mango has an “I.”
Wouldn’t it be silly if the mango said: “I want to make effort to become ripe” or “I want to be ripe now.”
What would happen if the mango had the ability to dream about the future?
“I see myself doing this….10 years from now.” There is nothing wrong with having a dream, but Life changes will shape that mango to become something… when we become obsessive about the “form” of the change, then we have a particular objective: “I want to be xyz” but the end result, destiny is meant to make the mango ripe. That could be through any experience: I could be a beggar, a millionaire, etc. The end result is to attain insight, to be a ripe mango, ready for other experiences which will bring growth.
Growth happens through different experiences in Life, it means further insight.
Human mentality is caught up with “change” in a way which does not acknowledge Life.
“I want to change the world.”
The world will change by itself. That “I” is part of it.
“I want to change myself.” That is the hardest trick to do. Could you grab your shadow?
Don’t you see that you are the mango sitting in my countertop? Change will happen “naturally,” it may not be what “you” expected, but believe me; it is exactly what is needed…it is the experience that will make further changes for you and for all.
Are you interested in finding the absolute truth?
Some like to exchange one word for another, they may call that “God.”
Your perception, my perception, their perceptions… all of them have their own truths and falsehoods.
Since there are different perceptions, what is the truth?
🙂 It is a matter of utility. Today your truth has utility, tomorrow it is mine.
What do you desire? His truth, her truth, their truth?
Look at your heart. Feel the direction of its beating, its pulsing…for if you pick right or left, it does not matter…still you will find your destiny… just like the mango sitting in my countertop.
The heart has the answers. The head can only think of questions. Is that my truth?
No…my truth has falsehood and my falsehood… truth. 🙂
To look outside is a way to look inside… but the thing is neither outside nor inside. There is no-thing.
As many individuals gather to celebrate the “new thought” that we are all One, we could wonder if that “new thought” is not just another fashion, something that will keep us busy into a new direction to follow, to believe and to teach “others.”
Destiny is already made. That is a simple but deep axiom of knowing that we are all ONE.
One in destiny. Sharing the experience of being in relationship in the space of Life.
It is in that game how the perception of individuality arrives: “I want to do this in Life. I want to teach others about love. I want to go to the moon when I grow up.”
Nothing wrong with that.
Because that perception of “I-ness” is all pervasive, we could assume that it is the truth, even though; it is just a perception.
That is how the search for meaning in Life arrives to our minds. That is how the search for something greater than ourselves becomes paranoia, as we seek for protection, comfort and love. Something that could take away our own sense of pettiness when we separate from what it seems to be hostile; the “other,” Life itself.
Fear is born and with that, all imaginable beliefs to “save” us from ourselves.
A seeker is born.
The journey is to go away from us just to come back.
Away from us, there are so many experiences to taste and enjoy.
Religions, Gods, Devils, Angels… all waiting for your unconditional love in exchange of “conditional” love, promises, etc.
The “office world” seeks believers as well. We could get busy in so many political directions, social inequalities and economic laws. Science is a good preacher, when all we know is thought, logic and reason.
Have you tried all of those avenues in your search for meaning?
Those are part of my experiences to expand my horizons, until there is no other way but to come back…
It is said that peace, happiness, joy and all happy dictionary words are “inside.”
I tell you, there is no “inside” as there is no “outside.”
But… there is an “I” making that division, there is a perception of “inside,” because there is a “Me.”
That “Me” changes, evolves, continues on; but our static minds will not allow for that to happen. It will fight to continue “status quo,” even though destiny has defined change as the way of Life.
Transformation is change, isn’t it?
The idea of “self-transformation” is misleading. Life transforms and so are we. We are One.
Dear seeker, once your journey takes you back into “Me,” then you are a step closer to find out who you may be. Allow for Life to peel the layers off that “Me.” The “I” cannot do that to itself.
What do you find?
Nothing? Eureka! The eye of the hurricane.
What is that made of?
Nothing… and because of that, there is everything.
You found Oneness.
Fulfillment is. 🙂
The family unity is the root feeding the experience of every leaf, every family member.
It is not just the feeling that we are “One,” but rather it goes back to our own roots and the relationship of those roots with the whole.
The family that we currently are in, is part of this conscious experience. There is a plan, which wasn’t planned. It is just the way it is.
Basically, every family member is there to “learn” from each other and to “work things out” in the development of every member. The stories may be different, the degree of relationship different, the level of intensity may vary, but each member brings in their own contribution to the family tree.
For the individual who is aware, that is a great opportunity to learn about himself.
Is there something, which you can see in your sibling or parents, which you do not like? ☺
You have that characteristic as well.
Is there a “virtue” which you like about a family member?
It is yours as well.
The degree of those characteristics may change; the stage in our life when that particular characteristic becomes visible to us may have different timing, but it is there, latent, ready to be expressed at some time.
Therefore, an easy way to learn about ourselves is in the relationship with our family members. There is no one else who could be able to bring the “best of us” and because of that, the “worst.”
A family has a Life span. Every member will bring unity with that whole just to separate at different times.
There is a time for dissolution of the family, just like everything else in Life. That time is misunderstood by most individuals influenced by collective beliefs.
For instance, Gabriela was a very famous woman. She married a popular man as well. It was a Cinderella story where eternal Love was promised. The couple had children. This family was the “great example” for others to follow. The belief of only one marriage in Life, which should last “forever,” is a common desirable belief worldwide.
This famous couple separated after a few years. That was painful for Gabriela and her now, ex-husband.
Gabriela’s sister was unknown to the public, but she married another unknown man and their marriage lasted “forever.”
Even though Gabriela re-married and was able to observe how much she had learned through the experiences of that previous marriage, she couldn’t help but to compare with the “lucky” destiny of her sister.
The social stigma of having a “failed marriage” was hunting her down, even though she was enjoying life. Gabriella felt like a failure to her children.
As most people age, their faces and body will show the pain and anguish of not fulfilling their ideas of a “perfect Life.”
Gabriella’s children may feel the discomfort and trauma of not being “normal.”
Some individuals may not know who their “biological parents” are.
What is their root, then?
The whole, the Universe. Those individuals are meant to learn about themselves as a reflection of the World.
Many cultures give a very special deference to the ancestors, the roots.
Every family has a particular characteristic, which could be perceived by others.
That particular characteristic may be the one to be aware of.
That is the gift if a virtue, or the material to create the gift…work in progress.
Our relationship with family members could bring us a sense of balance and closure in Life: Attachment while in unity will bring suffering when dissolution arrives. Detachment when it is the time for unity, will bring a wasted opportunity for knowing ourselves through the mirror of that relationship.
Timing is the most important aspect in any relationship.
When a person is going through an emotional healing experience; sooner or later, the family members will need to be involved in that healing.
A family is like the Rubik’s cube. If only one face of the cube is complete, there are 5 sides, which are “out of balance.” The whole cube is dependent on the completion of every face of the cube.
When the whole cube is displaying a solid color in each face, there is completeness, there has been healing.
If one a member of a family advances in consciousness, automatically everyone else in that family will move a step forward as well.
Because we are One.
Imagine that you find out that “consciousness changes all by itself.”
For most individuals even though “we” have experienced this in our lives, we are not aware of it, much less of the consequences of this finding.
Have you played with dolls? Have you ever believed in Santa Claus? But then one day… the behavior and the belief were gone all by itself.
Nothing to cry about. No drama.
But here we go into the “adult” world when we better be certain of our beliefs and behaviors for otherwise, we will lose our “prestige” or worse than that, go to hell forever… in the “afterlife.”
A dogmatic, rigid life begins and consciousness is unable to change because ego, the “I” will get a hold of something to believe or cling for self-preservation.
“I have the truth.” “This is the way it is, listen to me. You will be safe if you follow me.”
Can we pinpoint the difference between the un-attached way of a child’s mentality and the clingy, rigid ways of adulthood?
For god’s sake, what “method” did we use for that change? 🙂
How was it possible for our thoughts to change from “I wonder if my Gold fish knows who I am? into, Life is suffering and then you die….?”
What method did we use for that?
But yet, we “think” that we can “change our thoughts to change our behavior.”
Caught up in that thought, we have decided to divide our thoughts into “good,” positive thoughts and “bad” negative thoughts…
Wait a minute, I was thinking about eating an avocado.. Is that “good” or a “bad” thought?
That is how “neutral thoughts” were added into the mix.
Here a colorful “spiritual” example:
Are you thinking about sex?
That is bad.
Are you thinking about helping someone?
That is good.
Do no think about sex and think about helping others.
That is the method to be virtuous.
Interestingly enough, If we try not to think about sex, what will happen?
We will think about it.
To deny a particular thought means to preserve it. By denial, we accept it.
Isn’t that paradoxical?
That is why self-awareness, to observe, to be a witness, a detached observer, were labels used to express a particular state of consciousness which was located beyond the duality of acceptance through negation.
Many took those labels as the “method” to follow.
It is a not a method. It is a state of consciousness, which cannot be “obtained” by following a human activity, a method; but something that we will stumble upon, something that will happen when the moment is ripe for us.
Consciousness changes all by itself, we could embrace that change or we could deny it to cling to the past, the safe, the old.
We are never the same, but yet all of us are One.
How is that possible?
Because consciousness changes all by itself.
We “are” because we are conscious.
“- But… that is sad that I cannot control my consciousness!”
Who is that “I”?
How is Oneness possible when there is that “I”?
“-But… “I” have free will…”
Did you choose your parents? Your language? The settings of your childhood which determined lots of your experiences later in Life? Did you choose your DNA?
“- So… you are saying that “I” am predestined then…how sad!!
No. I am not saying either way. Just observe at that “I” which is always caught up in duality. That “I” is the victim of destiny, the one who wants to achieve, become “better,” accumulate things and be remembered when death arrives…. Or even better, to believe in a God that will preserve that “I” into a “better” place… Paradise.
The point is not to debate whether Paradise exists or not. That is a pointless belief.
What is important is to observe all the games that the “I” uses to preserve itself.
The “I” who wants to control its thoughts. The “I” who wants to control people. The “I” who wants to control destiny. The “I” who wants to control consciousness.
The “I” who divides itself into the “good I” and the “bad I.” The “I” who wants to conquer the “bad I” by rejecting those things considered “bad” and by supporting those things considered “good.”
Do we see the craziness?
“Spirituality” has offered many methods for centuries to conquer the “bad I.”
“Spirituality” has made the ”do not lead us into temptation” into a way of living, a way of inflicting self-pain for the sake of “obtaining good.”
Beliefs and more beliefs which cannot stand up in front of a experienced human being who is in balance with Life.
Body, mind, spirit, soul are One not many.
Living beings are One not many.
The Universe is One not many. It is the Uni-verse in the poetry of Life.
For some funny reason the “I” keeps separating, dividing, analyzing, finding many… Controlling, pursuing, becoming, fighting, getting, labeling, etc.
Is the problem within thoughts? Is the issue in our actions?
It is in being aware of that “I.” That is all.