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“I shall show you how the Dhamma [teaching] is similar to a raft, being for the purpose of crossing over, not for the purpose of grasping…” - Teachings of the Buddha
We all come across systems or teachings in our lives that REALLY shake things up for us, often times in a really positive way. Maybe we find a new method of food preparation or a new way to move our bodies or a new breathing or journaling technique. It lights us up! We are IN. We start practicing it, pouring over books about it, joining blogs and groups for it. And it FEELS really good...for a time.
At some point in the journey, it may not feel so good. And we may write it off as “lack of motivation” or “just being tired”, feeling “spread too thin”, having an “off day”. And that may be all that it is. And then maybe we continue to feel “off”, because maybe we are taking the positive experience we remember having with it and creating the expectation that it will ALWAYS BE THAT WAY. That what we needed at ONE POINT IN TIME must also be what we need NOW, even if that is not the case, even though we feel energetically in a very different place. And, as we’ve probably all experienced, there’s a frustration that comes when expectations aren’t met (even subconscious ones!).
There’s also a great deal of joy and possibility that comes from meeting the moment EXACTLY where we are at, if we can open to it and be fully present with it. And if we can release the grips of the mind saying that one certain way is the “good” or “better” way (because it’s safe, familiar...you know the story). In this, I am not saying that setting a long-term goal and seeing it through isn’t a beneficial practice; it absolutely can be. Visions carried out over time are at the foundation of many of the wonderful luxuries we enjoy today, and we can learn a great deal about our tendencies in PROCESS. What I do believe I need to remember, the message that I am sharing with you, is the necessity of BALANCE in seeing something through with how it feels on a soul/intuitive level.
Is it still serving the intention I set out with?
Do I know what that intention is/was?
Has the intention shifted?
Might I benefit from shifting the approach to working toward that intention?
Is there another way to see this?
These are the piercing questions that take us to the heart of Yes/No fairly quickly (if the mind doesn’t get in the way and convince us otherwise!). And it is in this space beneath the mind that we can tune into the visceral response created in our systems by considering each option.
Which creates more space?
Which one feels like relief?
Which options does the mind try to convince a “yes” to while the body contracts and irritation arises?
WHAT DO YOU ACTUALLY WANT IN THIS MOMENT?
(What would you choose if there was no mind to say “right” or “wrong”?)
And then guess what? You don’t HAVE to change anything! You can continue to take the same actions, regardless of what came forward. But most likely you’ve touched in with your Heart Wisdom, with your Truth, and your desires have become more clear. Honoring them takes practice. Ease into it. Give it a try.
Perhaps it is time to let go.
To try something new.
The raft has served you.
Now approach the New Shore.
You’re not lost.
You’re not in DOUBT.
YOU. ARE. FREE.