By Raphael Awen
For many, the traditional idea of achieving a quietened mind state in order to meditate is an all-too-tall order. The idea that you need to achieve near total quietness of your mind in order to experience ‘non-experience’ sounds really cool to some who identify with that kind of attainment, and may even well be real enough for those who have gone there, but I’d like to offer you another way.
I’d like to offer you a way that works for me that involves a ton less effort and self-discipline (and what for many has devolved into self-punishment).
Let me back up for a moment though and speak to what I feel is at root of the ‘quiet the mind’ approach to meditation. Essentially, it is this idea that the mind is bad. But It’s more than an idea. It’s the feelings within the idea that give it power over us. It leaves us focused on achieving a mastery over a wayward part of us through effort, control and ultimately domination. Thankfully, we are collectively and personally coming to the end of the age of ‘domination over self’ kind of pictures, which aren’t kind at all.
With this firmly entrenched feeling-based reality that the self is bad, we are left in a desperate gasping for the return of the breath of our own goodness. We will stop at nothing to somehow reconnect with our own deep worth in self-love. The human being I believe was born of worth, functions on worth, and exists in worth. Our journey in being human is about coming to felt (feeling based) terms with this worth inside of our own being. Worth is meant to be felt and experienced. Without a feeling coloured experience of our worth, that worth is of no value to us.
So then, what we have perceived as the mind´s resistance to meditation is actually the mind’s resistance to being labeled as bad, and being outside of our core goodness somehow. Of course our mind isn’t going to put up with being crapped on like that.
So how then did we get the picture that opposing some aspect of ourselves would yield a deeply valuable and maintainable connection with ourselves? I’ll tell you (in my own ‘near as I can tell’ way) where we got that picture. We got it from the ocean that we’ve collectively been swimming in up till now, that the self is renegade to essential goodness. Good news for us, it turns out that what the self is actually renegade to is instead this very idea (along with all the deeply held associated feelings) that the self is bad.
So if the self isn’t bad, as we’ve been deeply and subconsciously programmed to see it and feel it as…., then what? ‘Then what’ is that the self is already good, and you and I aren’t sentenced to any self improvement picture, but the only kind of legit improvement that remains is about now seeing ourselves as utterly un-improvable.
How cool is that? It leaves you with something to improve upon, while at the same time with the impossibility of that.
Do you feel yourself at this moment beginning to surrender into a mind and heart expanded place? Your mind is plenty busy with the feeling and the what-ifs of all this that I´m offering you, and your heart of self love is beginning to open. Your feeling some relief from the sub-conscious self punishment picture that plays on the screen of your heart. I’m juicing you with the overflow from my own heart as I’ve had a head start in bathing myself in this new reality.
The picture above is one of those ‘pictures within pictures’ called ´stereoscopic´ pictures. See for a moment how long it takes your eyes to see the picture within this picture.
I offer the analogy of the stereoscopic pictures as a way to feel into a new vision of reality that is emerging for us collectively and that is available to you personally to tie into. There is a picture of reality that is forming within your current picture of reality. It isn’t the one you’ve known up till now based in the unworthiness of the self and all of the associated realities that go along with that. That picture is the only one you’ve been able to see up till now. You can now however see the new picture by looking into your current one and as you do, seeking to open your eyes to a new reality, your heart eyes expand and are enabled to see what you didn’t know was there up till now, but actually was as a deeper and truer layer of reality.
Try holding some of this new emerging feeling inside of yourself as you set out to meditate and see what now emerges in you without the need to dominate a wayward mind.
Feel into your own innate goodness amidst all of the so called mind chatter you hear going on.
Raphael Awen is co-creator, facilitator and teacher of the SoulFullHeart Way Of Life.