Updated: Aug 19, 2022
Sat Nam, and Welcome In!
My mantra for this month is, "What am I resisting?" Whenever I begin to feel like I am in distress, whether it be over a conversation, a past decision, or perhaps a news story that is disheartening, I notice the thoughts and feelings, and I detach from them. This is not spiritual bypassing! it is simply changing my perspective... doing drone footage of the experience. What is it that I am actually resisting? Why am I feeling what I am feeling in particular? Am I angry? Sad? Am I having unhelpful thoughts? I do this because I know that it is not my environment that is causing me to suffer--it is my reaction to it. And while I don't have control over what others do, I do have some control over my reactions to things. (Suffering is what Buddha called all feelings of discontent.)
Here are some examples of the kinds of events that can cause us to come into resistance:
The car has been detailed recently, then coffee and donuts fall on the rugs.
Again, people mispronounce your name or ask you questions/confront you about your heritage, status, orientation, etc.
A family member threw away a dying plant that you had been trying to nurse back to heath.
The person in the huge black truck waited until the last possible moment to merge in front of you and then slammed on his brakes after merging.
The child flushed a wedding ring down the toilet.
A possession was stolen, or destroyed by fire, flood, etc.
The boss told you to come to work the day before/after a funeral for a close family member.
The yoga teacher used a phrase that made you feel "less than," such as "the full expression of the pose."
There has been a weight loss/gain, a relapse of an illness or addiction, or some other perceived personal failure.
You've recently received a diagnosis which will compromise your health and well-being, or that of a family member or close friend.
You're in the middle of a break-up/divorce/estrangement, or just beginning one, or just getting past one.
It is too expensive to live the way you've been living; adjustments will have to be made or you will have to incur (more) debt.
You have to move, and do not want to.
There is too much bad news in the Feed.
Someone has died and the loss is deeply felt.
Family/friendship is fractured and feels less than healthy when you visit.
Everyday we come into contact with people, events, thoughts and feelings that do not make us stronger, happier, or more peaceful. Most days the things are pretty mundane. Occasionally huge things happen, and we could be traumatized. What can be done?
We can make time to practice being strong, happy and peaceful. Meditation can help us achieve this. Meditation, once you know how and what to do, can be joyful and amazing, and you can do it anywhere, anytime, any way. So schedule time for meditation, either by taking a class, choosing a YouTube video, or JUST SIT.
We can become mindful of our present moment. There is always an opportunity to recognize that all we have is right now, and right now, we can choose to be fully present for the person, event, thought or feeling, and we can use what we practiced in meditation to help us out.
We can play stand-up comedian and laugh at our situation, knowing that it will pass and will be fodder for meditation, conversation and savoring at some future "now moment". It may be making us miserable now, but nothing is permanent.
Once we have done something differently, that is, once we have come out of the feeling of submersion, or of being controlled by the environment-- of the person, event, thought or feeling, we can then make some choices about what to do. As long as we hold on to what is essentially THE PAST--the anger, the disappointment, the sorrow, the pain, we will continue to suffer.
What we resist, persists, so stop coming into resistance to it. That's all. Just make a choice to stop resisting. It is what it is. Denying reality is not helpful, healthy, or SANE. Just because we all do it, deny the reality of the present moment to be the truth, doesn't mean it is sane. We are all insane to some degree! As long as our thoughts control us! The truth is what matters to a sane individual. Saying NO to the truth is a definition of delusional.
Once we stop resisting, what's next? Shall we act? Shall we sit down? Shall we make a mental note of what just happened and move on, like it is just so many sentences in the chapter of the day? Just, NEXT!
If we choose to act, we need to consider the consequences of our actions. What will be the result, beyond perhaps getting revenge, or getting the thing to stop happening, or whatever we choose to do to manipulate the environment. Is the fallout from what we will choose to do really worth it? Hurting someone, for instance, who has wronged you for a few minutes of your life, is it worth it? Is the energy and time you are going to spend, yelling at your child, or grumbling that you have to clean the car again, or call the insurance company, or write an angry letter to the yoga teacher, or chastise your mom...is it worth it?
In this way we find out who we are. How we show up in the world. We see our actions as choices with consequences. We take the consequences as mature adults because we chose them. In this way we evolve.
I hold space for meditation practice at 6:30 pm every Sunday night if it's not too blazingly hot upstairs. Any donation. Learn how to meditate, or just practice here.
How deeply asleep are we? When we find we are coming into resistance to WHAT IS all day long, we can be assured we are fully participating in the dream of the story of ME. There is no peace there.
Let's wake up and stop suffering so much.
Thanks for watching,