We tend to think that life is this or that. We are always trying to figure it all out. Somehow we think that if we just knew what it is, we could relax and feel safe. The fact is that life is constantly changing. Even our perceptions of who we are are constantly being challenged by life’s ever changing force. We can never really know life until we let go of thinking and determining what life is. As soon as we have life in a box, it is gone from us. The minute a man or woman says ” I am like this” or “I am like that” they put themselves to sleep. Life will not stop however and sooner or later we will be awakened by its awesome power and beauty.
We have forgotten why we are here. We have forgotten that we are here to learn and to grow, to experience all that life has to offer. We are now running away from the very thing that we created purposely to expand our wisdom. We forget that we made this pact with our soul to come into this world of opposites to taste life fully and know all that there is to know on this plane. We are confused by our own creation and want to deny what we have made.
Many of us try to put ourselves to sleep. We are deathly afraid of life and its changes and we just want it to go away. We will take drugs, go to movies, make love, eat, read a book or get lost in our work. Though one can say that certain types of escapes are better than others, in the long run, they are all escapes from the moment, from the uncertainty that life is. No one is better than another. If you are a drug addict and I am a sex addict, we are the same. Even though some would say that addiction to drugs is far more harmful, we are both using something to distract us from looking at our life the way it really is.
The only cure for addiction is to face the cause of it squarely with all of its ugliness and shame. All addictions are rooted in avoidance of some part of ourselves. We want to throw away all responsibility and just give up. But no matter what, we don’t want to feel what we are feeling, or see what we are being or doing. That is the purpose of all escapes.
But life is a mysterious force that we instinctively know holds many wonderful things for us. Only when we have made an incredible commitment to avoid life altogether do we become hopelessly addicted to something. Even in that situation, even when we feel helpless and powerless, the truth is that we are the ones that made the decision to create that sort of life in the first place. We had good reasons to die to our lives. We were doing the very best that we could in that moment and we were trying an experiment to see if it would make us feel better. It is an experience that we are all entitled to if that is what we want to try. Once tried, after a period of time, we inevitably realize what great suffering accompanies having an addiction and we decide to let go of it. We feel the breath of life still in our chests and we know somewhere inside that we have the power to change our lives and that we are the ones who created our life the way it is. The lamp of love and life is still burning, even in the worst drug addict.
So then we begin changing our life. Now we have to face all the energy that went into creating our addictions. Now we are fighting with old parts or our self, our past. Now, we are beginning to let go of all the support systems and relationships that supported our life as an addict. It is a day by day process. It happens in little decisions made each day at key moments in our life. We set our sights and our will on a new life, all the while facing the pain of letting go of our past and all that is connected with it. Our past often returns to tempt us back. Often the things that we struggled so hard to achieve in our past way of life come right in front of us and offer themselves to us. Now we can have them if we want, without any effort. But inside we know that to accept those things from the past would be taking a step backwards and we are now unwilling to double back. Now our mind is set on the new day that is dawning in front of us. We are beginning to see little bits of light each day, little signs that we are doing the right thing, signs that tell us that happiness and true fulfillment is ahead of us. As we pray, we receive the guidance we need to make the next step. It is the most scary and the most exhilarating thing we have ever done. We are letting go of our past and actually creating a new destiny for ourselves. We can now truly KNOW what it means to have our power.
Gradually, as time passes, we begin to watch our beliefs about life changing. We start to believe in love, goodness, prosperity and abundance. We begin seeing the world as a different place. It is now a place governed and ruled by a loving divine hand, not an evil place that is always trying to get us down as in the past. We also begin to see our own goodness. We begin to see that it is perfectly okay to be who we are. Even more than that, we begin to realize that we are really wonderful and unique. We begin to discover a goodness inside that runs much deeper than anything else that we had ever discovered before.
In this new world that we are living we attract a new destiny, complete with new people, new experiences. There is more truth, more love, and more prosperity than we ever imagined. At one point, we realize “I will never have to worry about money again in my whole life”. This represents a step in the ladder. One hurdle has been crossed. It was an important one and there are more to come. DHARMA, ARTHA, KAMA, MOKSHA. We are witnessing the unfolding of spiritual evolution as taught in the ancient texts. Artha is the WEALTH that comes once we began practicing Dharma. Dharma is the code of truth and right livelihood. It means honesty and dedication to service to others in one’s work. It means making a commitment to helping others. Kama follows Artha and means fulfillment of all of one’s worldly desires. That is what lies ahead – complete fulfillment and satisfaction on the earthly plane. Moksha is the liberation from the cycle of birth and death. We finally leave this Earth plane for good. Not because we are so pure and spiritual but because the world no longer holds any of the fascination that it did for us. We have drank the cup of life on earth and are filled up. Now we long for something more and our desire and longing draws us to other planes of existence.
We have at this stage completed one grand cycle of experience. Now, in this new place, we long for more advanced lessons of being. We have experienced all the myriad of possibilities that life on mother Earth has to offer and now are evolving into new experiences of a more subtle and profound nature. Each new place of discovery is just as exciting as every level that we passed through on Earth. But now, we are experiencing much greater power and responsibility. We are drawing ourselves into power in orders of magnitude beyond anything we have ever imagined in our earthly experience. We are connected in a more far reaching way with the universe and are acquainted with new and beautiful beings. Life is a beautiful evolution that is always beckoning us on to a new place. After all, aren’t we humans? Aren’t we those beings that thirst for new experiences, who are never satisfied with things as they are? Life for us will always be a new road, a new place, a new climate, and a new feeling. We are the cosmic gypsies. Do we think that our quest for experience will end on this Earth plane? We already see ourselves thrusting out into space. Don’t we see that this yearning for exploration of the unknown will also inevitably lead us the exploration of our own inner mysteries? The true final frontier is that which lies between our ears and in the depths of our hearts. That is where our true destiny is. Yes, as a race we will be seen traversing the galaxies in the inventions of the next century. But the real progress will be that of exploration and making maps of consciousness. Without having a foothold within ourselves, we will not be able to cope with what we will learn in our explorations of the outer realms of the galaxies.
Love of the self is the highest love and the highest accomplishment. It exalts us to the highest degree and makes magic of our common lives. Magic resides in the hearts of the meek and the unhurried. Love conquers all and lifts us up to the place from which we can never fall or be cast out. Everything in this world will pass away. But love will remain forever. And it will be remembered at the end of our life above all else that we did or accomplished. It is acts of love that are the markers of progress in our lives. Love is the great teacher and leads us to do things that we would have never thought of in our normal consciousness. It is truly the light that leads us up the stairway to heaven.