Surrender — Can This Moment Be Anything Other Than What It Is, Now? Are You Expecting This Moment To Be Something Different, To Bring Something To Who You Are?
As alluded to in earlier posts, the greatest (only?) source of suffering is resistance to this moment. When you stop resisting what is, a situation can be a good or bad situation (can be something to remain in or change) but it is not a cause of mental pain. Ironically, the greatest pain sometimes causes satori -a short blast of awareness- when you realise the futility of resistance and choose to just yield to -instead of opposing- Life.
A somewhat tamer -but no less dysfunctional- type of resistance is the everyday looking out for something different. Essentially the same thing, just at a lesser entity.
Often nowadays, I catch myself expecting something out of life. Small things. But they create the flux of emotion that guide my day and strengthen the ego, the identification to my mind and the thoughts about what life “should be”. Those realisation are as good a moment as any to also surrender, to give in to life.
If you do surrender and remain aware, a realisation comes to you; the realisation this time seems to arise not from mind but from presence. It says: “No situation, no person, no event, nothing of this world can add anything to who you are. This is problematic only if your mind can trap you in the idea that you in fact are lacking and need things to now meet your expectations. On the other hand, the fact that nothing can add to who you are is freeing when you are present, connected to your true Self and let go of any expectation. Life then becomes not a struggle or a problem to resolve, just an experience to be enjoyed.”
A quick parenthesis: as I write this and for any reader (if there are any out there), I want to remind that this is short burst of experiences that I get from time to time. A big chunk of my life is still spent in the grip of ego, anxieties and worrying thoughts, embarrassment and guilt, plenty of expectations and unfulfilled desires… that’s just automatic habits I haven’t been able to kick. I just write because I don’t want to forget insights I get when awareness flows back in.
Back to our main subject. It can be shocking at first when you do let go of expectations and realise the intense harmony and joy that is ever present. It can’t really be said to come from life or your environment, nor can it be said to come from within you. It comes from the alignment of you and Life. And so you just flow, as one, part of a great whole but also feeling like that whole. If we wanted to make a grander argument, we could think of the beginning of the universe and remind ourselves that galaxies, the entirety of space, planets, humans, grass, bacterias all have the same source.
When there is a low-level of discontent in my life, I like to ask myself those questions: Can this moment be anything else than what it is? Am I expecting this moment to be something different, to bring something to who I am, or what I think I need to be?
The answer of course is an unequivocal “no”. Life doesn’t not need to and cannot bring anything of lasting value. And so the experiences you crave, the possessions you think will supplement your flawed person, the event you think will define who you are will just never achieve that thing you think they should. They will never bring you fulfillment and peace (not to say, of course, that they are not good to pursue or that they can’t be pleasant or preferred to a less optimal situation/person/event).
But the discontent really only comes from the mind’s activity thinking that you and life should be different -those expectations mentioned above. And so when you let go of expectations, mind activity quiets down, the present moment stops being a hurdle to get over, a means to an end, an enemy, and really just… is. And when the present moment is allowed to be, when your mental activity surrenders, a shift happen, from identification with the ego to realising you are awareness, just a silent witness.
Instead of feeling passive or dead, this state of total surrender, of simple observing, is the most fierce, alive and peaceful state you can be in. Surrender to what is (to how reality is anyway) is the only sane and functional way to be, anything else assumes what is should be something it is not, which is insane and lowers your ability to live.
Yielding to reality, not fighting it, is the only way to truly be whole. Anything else is running towards a mirage and away from the heaven you already are in.