We react, behave, think, do, according to what we believe we need and want. But how many of us are experiencing turmoil and unease, most of the time too?
The vast majority of us have certain beliefs and almost exclusively rely our mind for guidance in how we live our lives - but this is living unconsciously, spiritually speaking. Wow - that's a statement! What does it mean?
Well, until you have had a glimpse of something else, a different dimension that includes a strong intuitive sense of an inner knowing that one's mind is not all there is to you, so to speak, it will be impossible for words to convey the essence of an explanation. But we can point to understanding.
We base our decision making and response to all that we encounter in our daily lives on what we have become accustomed to believe. In other words, our knowledge and experience. So we relate everything to what has come before, to the past, our memories, everything that has happened to us, and this causes all kinds of trouble because when doing this we are closed to what is fresh and new in the moment. Another way of putting this is that we automatically go inside our heads for our response to the world. How limited is that! But it is the norm. In our heads then we have created this idea of knowledge, based on accumulated stuff, and we see this as our personality. As a result we take everything personally and reacted accordingly.
But if we take a look at this, how small a perspective is that!? And what about intuition or gut feeling that so often proves right, even if it does not make sense to our minds?
The more we look at all this the more we are examining our own previously unquestioned methods of behaviour. If we can have the humility to question how right this whole way of being really is, we make ourselves open to an alternative. This is the start. Once we realise that all thinking and emotion is happening within the space of who we are, we are becoming conscious of the reality we previously had never even been aware existed.
Once we realise that our previous 'normal' state, that almost everyone is still in, is as unconscious as we were, we stop being affected so much by everything that others do. We become able to see that until we come out of unconsciousness, we act according to a very limited mind-conditioned sense of self, that by definition is primarily self-supporting and therefore fundamentally selfish. Once we become conscious of this, we start to accept people as they are, and forgiveness happens naturally.
Whilst on the cross, it is written that Jesus said: “Forgive them, for they know not what they do”. My belief is that Jesus was a man who had come into this life already highly conscious and because of this had always known that most people really don’t know what they are doing and are led along by their self-interested, self-justifying thinking and emotions.
A deeply unconscious person can justify anything to themselves. Deeply unconscious people are responsible for all the atrocities of history. The more unconscious, the more selfish and potentially capable of behaviour that hurts others. The more conscious, the more accepting, aware and caring.
After waking out of unconsciousness, we don’t just sit back and allow bad things. But we do understand why they happen. And this opens the door to forgiveness because we realise that everything happens according to the level of consciousness of the people involved. We still have feelings, thoughts, emotions, but we ‘see’ them in a new way. We realise what they are, and they no longer take us over. We don’t get caught up in them and they don’t linger with us or become obsessive.
Difficult emotions are seen for what they are, and lose their strength, because we know where they come from - unconsciousness.
This waking out of unconsciousness is a huge leap. But paradoxically, it is no leap at all! The deeper and wider aspect of self has always been there but is obscured by the constant mind-stream and all the associated emotions.
Those who come to this understanding have often first experienced deeply painful life events which have driven them seek answers. They have gone inwards through meditation and other practices or have sought out spiritual knowledge through books and teachers.
Many of us seek to know ourselves using analysis and other techniques. But there is no end to thoughts and emotions and the psychological aspect of ourselves. The mind is infinitely deep, and the experiences of life are endlessly complex.
The answer, and the only way to become free from the mental and emotional suffering of life experiences, is to finally realise that we are not who we think we are! We are not our accumulated beliefs, memories, ideas. These are just energy patterns within our bodies. We are so much more than them!