When we’re young, everything is new. Children are open to everything and that is why we protect them from some of the scarier realities of our planet. But adults at some point and on some level are able to handle scary news headlines (more on that in my podcast on “How to Accept What Is When There Is Real Danger and Evil in the World?”). We grownups know the way the world works and so we become sure and confident, but also closed off and too serious.
So, can we learn from our tiny teachers how to see the world with fresh eyes? Can we reclaim the awe and wonder of childhood without losing our wits and faculties? And can we recognize that adulthood is not the final phase in our evolution of consciousness, but rather a stepping stone to a higher consciousness that incorporates the curiosity of our youth with the wisdom from our experience?
The great news is that yes we can. Our bodies are far more advanced than our minds can conceive. If we had to remember to make our heart beat, to make our lungs breathe, or to make our digestive tract work in just the right sequence, we’d all be dead. And yet, our bodies do all these things with no effort or thought. There is a wisdom within us beyond all mental activity. And yet, we think we must be rigid and certain in order to survive this world. We subconsciously think we must be in a state of constant stress and worry in order to be safe. We all have this subtle fear of death affecting our every decision. I talk in detail about this on YouTube.
Luckily for us, our bodies are much smarter than us. Our survival skills are so good, we can all relax. We can let go of fears and keep our wisdom. We can relax and still be alert. We can take in the beauty of this world while letting go of all the labels and concepts we’ve acquired over the years. And we can recognize the ultimate truth which is that we can’t really be certain of anything. No one knows what tomorrow will hold. An asteroid could strike, or we could win the lottery. But then again, even winning the lottery can bring with it more stress, problems and conflict. In my recent podcast, I talk about how we can possess money without being possessed by it.
There are many things we can do to see the world beyond labels and concepts. For some, meditation is the practice of relaxing while remaining alert, and over time it becomes second nature. Some people find visualizing themselves exploring an alien world helps them see the world with curiosity and fresh eyes. Other people find a trip in nature helps them regain an appreciation for simplicity. While still others embrace a digital detox, either once a week or for a couple hours everyday. One, some, or all of these techniques can be powerful practices for freeing us from the dopamine-tolerance we’ve developed over our lifetime.
Always Remember That:
Things that happen are only good or bad depending on how each subject sees the situation. Things may be desirable or undesirable, but the action itself is neither good nor bad. There is no objective quality of “good” or “bad” to our experiences.
There is so much happening in each moment and we get to choose what we focus on and how we see it. Choosing may be harder or easier depending on the person and the situation, but we can always develop our focus, deepen our awareness, and nurture our ability to see the positive. We can choose to learn and accept, or we can futilely resist and fight reality. Here I go into more depth on how we can slow down the chaos in our mind and consciously choose our thoughts and reactions.
No matter where you are or what you’re doing, just remember how miraculous it is that the atoms from billions of dying stars gave birth to you, this planet, and everything on it. Everything is a miracle. All we have to do is remember.
PS: Many people wonder if there is a downside to meditation. You might have heard stories or read articles about people having side effects like panic attacks or people withdrawing from their lives. Rumors of people becoming addicted to meditation have even been reported. So, I would like to once and for all address each one of these in my blog, “Is There Such a Thing as Too Much Meditation?”
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