‘I’m not OK.’ ‘This isn’t OK.’ ‘I have to change.’ ‘This has to change.’ ‘I can’t bear how I feel.’ ‘This experience is awful.’
Ever had any of those thoughts?
If so, you and me both, and perhaps seven billion others…
In the moment of that thought there is a deluge of evidence as to why that thought is justified.
And it seems very bleak and hopeless indeed. It seems this self has to somehow find the way to change itself or its state of mind or its experience or the world.
And that can’t happen.
Because in the moment of that thought that is all there is. An idea of self and of reality created in that moment. And the thought ‘this has to change’ only makes that thought created reality seem all the more real.
It’s exhausting, this ‘thought trying to change thought’ business. There is no end to it. No solution. We can find temporary relief of course. Anything that silences thought momentarily will do – alcohol, drugs, shopping, work, food, exercise, cutting, gaming, sex, scrolling…
But that is only superficial. Nothing has actually changed in that. There has been no shift in the understanding of the nature of belief, of the transient thought-created self, of what is real and not real.
Suffering can be taken as proof that what is being thought or believed in that moment is reality and that it is without question, the ‘reality’ which is causing the misery. So to get rid of the suffering we must get rid of whatever is causing it.
This book suggests that that is a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of suffering. And that this misunderstanding is the origin of all confusion and delusion.
Suffering, or in other words, resistance to what is, is the sign of confusion. It is the sign of something being believed that is not true. It is the sign that in that moment we appear to be something other than the life, awareness, peace, infinite possibility and love we really are.
To try to get rid of the suffering without understanding the cause of it (ie the confusion about who we are) is like sitting in a fire and taking pain killers to mask the pain. There will never be enough pain killers.
All of life is flow and movement. Except an idea that what is being experienced is somehow fixed and objective and must be resisted. That is a completely illusory position. At odds with its dynamic, energetic, vibrating source. It is stagnant. Unmoving. Unreal. No wonder it feels unnatural.
Resistance to what is would be like a flower curling in on itself because it should look different or a storm believing it was too angry or a summer sky hating itself for not being as exciting as the storm. That would be ridiculous, wouldn’t it…?
Arrival, transformation and release. That’s the design. There is the flow in – oxygen, water, food, ideas, thoughts, information, words, sights, sounds. And in the living, creative space of mind and body, they are uniquely transformed. An unmatchable convertor. The idea of self is just one of those creations, a form even more temporary and ephemeral than the exhale.
Health realisation, the end of suffering is the falling away of this apparent fixed self and the inevitable resistance to what is and, as this happens, the clearer and clearer unveiling of the flow of life that we really are.