Observe the Life of a public “famous” person, a “star.” Without a doubt, he has experienced ups and downs in his lifetime.
Beauty, fame, power, health, joy and wealth had different intensities throughout his life. There is no point in time where everything was all there, unchanged as if he had “arrived.”
There is no point in time where a person is the “same” all the way until death arrives. This is a fact.
A what point in Life, that person was “improving”? It just depends on what someone looks at. Some examples of “improving”:
Did he settle with one partner rather than many? Did she take up yoga and meditation as part of her life style? Did he sell 1 million copies of his best seller book? Was she inducted in the rich and famous hall of fame? Are those singular things “improvement”? It is relative. Life is bigger than any single improvement.
Life cannot be compartmentalized, cut in pieces, but we do it in our minds, so “improvement” happens as an ideal to strive for.
That ideal will create in turn the duality of “success and failure.” We are sold on that one. The fiction of success is as real as failure.
Observe the artificiality of all. That is how we live Life, believing that our mental creations, ideals are Life.
In Life, the word “improvement” does not exist. It is not needed as Life has its own movements, as shared before; the full range of experiences entails to go through the 2 sides of a duality.
How does it “work”?
Observe any “positive” virtues or qualities in your favorite actress. The potential for the “negative” opposites is there as well. As a matter of fact, it will be experienced by that person at different times of her current existence or it was in another Life experience , or it will be in the future.
The full range of experiences needs to be experienced. BEING all of those.
That is how we have a variety of people in the world, experiencing a piece of the diversity of the ranges of experiences.
Our conditioning is ready to label and judge their experiences as “good or bad.” It does not matter. Our morality is worth diddly-squat in the way Life moves.
That is why it was shared that enjoyment of the experience is important. That quality of enjoyment is how we “become better.” (Those are not the most accurate words to use, but for the sake of being understood or misunderstood.)
That quality of enjoyment does not depend on what we have, what we earn, where we are in society or how we behave in society.
It all depends on how AWARE we are.
Greater conditioning, means less capacity for enjoyment.
Because we have learned all those sacred “go getter” keywords that we would like to “achieve” in Life to “make it worthwhile,” to find a “purpose.”
That is garbage.
Enjoy Life. Be open to the diversity of it. Expect the unexpected without judgment, without trying to “make sense.”
It is that sense the one that has been conditioned.
Live today, die tomorrow. No big deal. Have you enjoyed the ride?
Yes? Then there will be fulfillment. Nothing is missing.
If we try to “practice” any of the above, we will be fakes for we will try to “accomplish” that thing which looks good for ME… I’ve got to have it! (back into the conditioning of society.)
That “practice” could be made into a religion or some “system” to “help people” and to help MY pocket…but it is completely artificial.
BEING changes through AWARENESS. Give yourself an ample space of solitude to observe the movie of Life. It is in that observation how we learn from the actors of Life and enjoy their unique parts. The plot will keep on changing, but as long as we OBSERVE it without judgment, we will enjoy it… and improve by DOING nothing. 🙂
Because our society is living in the mind, we tend to hide our emotions as dust is hidden under a carpet.
To promote that humans are “rational” beings may be a lie. In the “office” world we may act rational but not in “real Life.”
For instance, we may know that death will arrive sooner or later. If a son dies before the father, we may label that as “untimely” or “premature.” Our minds have an expected pattern. If the father dies before the son, even though the pattern has been respected, even though the son knows the father will die first; when the day comes for the father to depart, the son may break down emotionally.
Where is the “rationality” then? Isn’t death natural? The solution may be in taking refuge in the “future.”
A religion may talk about the “future.” “Now” does not matter. The “future” is important. Many things could happen to a person “now” but forget about it. This behavior closes the capacity to feel. It is the perfect scenario to put up the “tough” face despite living with a melting heart.
In the opposite side, a “self-help book” may acknowledge our emotional side. “It is OK to express how you feel,” nevertheless; the trauma created is unexplored.
If a child is aware that his father has passed away, we could tell him: “God has called your daddy.” Frustration and anger may develop in that child for that idea of God, but our belief may be that we are helping him to deal with his pain.
We are incapable of explaining that death is as natural as living and death can arrive to anyone at any time. Because “you” are here now, “you” will not be. Simple, rational.
Give him a hug with empathy, allowing him to feel support. That is compassion when it is no rehearsed.
As everything in Life, every experience will go away, and we will move on, we will evolve… unless we decide to keep that experience as a trauma.
That is my recent discovery about Life: Be there emotionally, allow the inner child to express, but at the same time, be there rationally, allowing the inner parent to hold the child. Both archetypes are inside us.
One more thing: The only time that matters is the “now.”
The past or the future are for the mind. To be in the “now” means to be “out of the mind.” For that, we may embrace “what is” without looking for explanations or pretty beliefs to cover things up…. We may express our feelings and compassion “now,” in that way; rationality embraces emotionality and both together may heal and integrate into the Totality. As individuals we can only see biased fragments of the Totality, that distortion creates the trauma of the “I.”
Thus, integration into the Totality is how the “I” is healed, for it means to see the Ocean rather than segmenting it and focusing only on a drop of it.
In Life there are many experiences. Those experiences run through all the different “shades of colors” that we could imagine. To be experienced in Life means to have gone through all of them. It is through that experience how insight develops. All of those colors are “good” for to experience one means to naturally go into another.
Any person that we see at this point, is representing a particular color at this time. He may think that “his” color is the “truth,” but that color will need to change to keep on experiencing Life.
“Look at Robert… what a humble guy, he is!”
Believe me, he was a proud individual at one point in time through his different experiences in Life OR he will be a proud, ego centered guy.
That is what I mean when I say “shades of colors in Life.”
Religious minded people may not use the terms “shades of colors.” They will use: “Good and Bad.”
What is in between that “Good and Bad”?
“Normal.” The mob.
The ones who are neither saints nor sinners.
That labeling has done so much harm in our society for centuries.
Life = Shades of colors to experience, that is all.
If we understood the above analogy, we could see clearly that consciousness will change by itself as the shades of colors change through experiencing Life.
No one could be truly “good” without having experienced being “bad.”
Do we see that?
That is how a “saint” will look at anyone knowing that a particular shade of color at a particular time is not the “rainbow” of a person, but to appreciate the rainbow means to be able to perceives its capacity to display all colors.
That is the beauty of the rainbow.
On the other hand, for most people: “Red is good, Indigo is bad. Blue is immoral. Yellow is saintly.”
Without that experience, all we have left is to follow a particular “moral code” to make us believe that we are “being good.”
That is the dissonance between “being” and “doing.”
That is how external actions or protocols will trap the consciousness of an individual.
“If I don’t do these things, my peers/family/society/love ones/God/ etc./ will think low of me.”
That is when consciousness is secluded to live under a box, a cubicle with no windows or doors for the sake of “acting good.”
Experiences are not “good or bad.” Just different shades, different colors to feed our consciousness with material to be assimilated, processed and then changed into a new outlook in Life.
Anything that happens, any experience is meant to be “raw material” for further processing.
Knowing all of the above, how is it possible to believe that a method, a religious path or a philosophy or someone could change the consciousness of an individual?
But… a saint came up out of this religious path!
The particular experience of being in a particular religious path was the catalyst to bring the accumulated raw material from many life times, into fruition, but that does not mean that everyone is already at the same level of experiences or that everyone must do the same as this “saint” to become a “saint.” It does not mean that this particular religious path or method is “the method” for the “whole world.”
It does not work that way, because every single individual is living a particular “shade of color” which will need to transform by itself and not by the compulsion of following a method.
To go deeply into the above, not as a mental exercise or as an intellectual debate but by looking at our own life experiences, means to liberate ourselves from the cage of searching for a savior or “salvation.”
There is none. It was never needed.
That is why, Ananda only repeats endlessly: Enjoy your current experience.
It will change, but if you learn to enjoy them… then you will be enjoying Life as “it is” and that in itself is the catalyst for greater amplitude of mind, amplitude of consciousness; for enjoyment is about appreciation and as mentioned before, the way to expand our consciousness is through appreciation of the experiences brought to us by Life itself.
See the rainbow of every individual, not just the color being presented at one time. It is in that way how our lives could be a rainbow to be appreciated by the ones who are only aware of being just a color in Life.
This world is like a huge school. We are learning to live life, but at the same time; we are remembering who we are, what it is inside us, in other words; unfolding our unique capacity through life experiences. This is explained in some religions with the label of “numberwise.”
In fact, in this huge school, we have different levels of students: We have the ones from pre-school, we have 1st graders, 4th graders, 5th graders, high school and college students; the interesting thing to realize is that there is no “graduation,” no “6 figure job waiting for us at the end of the road;” this life of learning in itself and experiencing the experience is what makes life so precious and unparalleled. To appreciate life for just being in it, is the fuel that we need to learn to smile from the heart.
Different experiences and different expressions.
Therefore, the concept of “arriving,” or “achieving,” or “mastering,” all of that… are just concepts learned in our educational system. We have been “brainwashed” with those concepts so there is a path for us to follow to become part of the “economical growth of our nation.” Part of the statistics, the GDP per capita 🙂
In life, there is no such a thing as “a final destination.” It is a continuous, a flow. There is an “intelligence” which assures a re-cycle of our experiences just as the cycle of water in Nature.
Therefore, when someone feels that their ideas, their dogma, their religion is the “best;” the only “one,” the “truth,” that person is obviously not seeing the different kind of students of life. When a person merely rejects other ideas without appreciation, to blindly defend his own perspectives, that person is repressing himself for there is no openness in his vision.
Without that openness, there could only be fanaticism left. A fanatic has never “arrived” to anything “spiritual.” A “4th grader” cannot understand the things learned at College level. Nevertheless, life is the best teacher; and that person will either “open up” or “die,” that is the choice for those who are unable to see other things beside the wall in front of them and the closed-door of that room which is their own made up “golden” jail.
Spirituality is one. It is our understanding which differs. According to those understandings, you have different teachers for the different grade levels of the students. Thus, there cannot be such a thing as the “best teaching,” but rather everything goes around our understanding, which is not intellectual understanding by any means, but the understanding brought to us through insight; or through something known as “catharsis.”
That understanding happens when the right environment is around us; that is when there is silence, tranquility, harmony and love in our beings.