* Pondering – Are we insane?

wishing things were different

In many ways we’re taught to be in a constant state of friction with, to be in battle with what is. We’re taught that the way to find happiness or peace is to always be trying to change what is, whether its changing your inner experience or trying to change the world around you.

When we operate from this viewpoint, it puts us in a sense of future, where real freedom or real peace can be found in some time other than now. This leads to our deep rooted belief that to find peace and freedom, we need to change our inner or outer environment.

To tell ourselves that it shouldn’t be the way it is, is a type of insanity … which destabilizes us. It’s  a kind of insanity to be constantly arguing with what is and thinking it should be different.

Adyashanti from Falling into Grace

Yet we are told this message and act it out every day. We become more “insane” as we reinforce it with striving to achieve new goals, and wanting things to be different.

Why?..

Because we want to be happy, right?

But the more we strive in this way, the more destabilized we become.

When we stop to pause in our middle ground, we intuitively know that external accomplishments and acquisitions will never bring us what we truly seek. Happiness and peace already lie within us.

I know that as I read Adyashanti’s words about being insane, there is an inner struggle.

My conditioned thinking mind says how this surely can’t be true, and my intuitive heart embraces it with open arms and a knowing loving smile.

happy smileI trust it isn’t the grin of a lunatic …

* Acceptance of the Unacceptable

“Acceptance of the unacceptable is the greatest source of grace in this world.”

Eckhart Tolle

 Isn’t it funny how certain quotes and wisdom show up just when we need it the most? I recall, not so long ago when I had a hard time accepting how things were. I had unexpected news that meant my vision for the future was no longer possible. What I thought was “for sure” became “no way”.

There was shock and uncertainty;  concerns about others; a sense of loss and sadness; a letting go of a future dream; and lots of turbulent emotions.  So much was out of my control and I really struggled because I couldn’t accept it. There was no grace here folks!

finding grace in life's lows

So, what is grace … and how do we find it when life serves us a curve ball or pulls the rug from under us? When we find ourselves in life’s lows?

I appreciate Adyashanti’s approach taken from “Falling into Grace”.

“Grace is something that comes to us when we somehow find ourselves completely available, when we become open hearted and open minded, and are willing to entertain the possibility that we may not know what we think we know.

In this gap of not knowing, in the suspension of any conclusion, a whole other element of life and reality can rush in. This is what I call grace. It’s that moment of “ah-ha” – a moment of recognition when we realize something that previously we never could quite imagine.

… Somehow the  difficult situations in our lives have a way of opening our hearts and minds the most. Its the challenging moments that often offer the greatest opportunities for growth and the transformation of consciousness.”

Finding grace and opening up to accept what is, comes when we fully embrace everything that is alive in us in that moment. 

Some people choose to divert their mind into positive thinking to counteract the negative feelings. I’m not a believer of this, as all feelings and emotions are a part of who we are as human beings. I spent a big chunk of my life looking for the positive and denying the negative … while the deepest part of me was aching. Embracing all part of ourselves is the key to our personal growth and evolution as spiritual beings.

Here are the steps I have uncovered from a variety of spiritual teachers and psychotherapists:

✳ Name what is happening. Be as factual as you can.

✳ What stories are you telling myself about this unacceptable moment?

✳ What are you feeling in your body. What emotions are coming up? Embrace your whole body experience.

✳ Make space for whatever comes up.

✳ Notice how the mind jumps in with judgments and negative thoughts. Make space for these too.

✳ Embrace everything that is alive in you. Let yourself feel.

✳ Notice if there is a part of you that wants the pain to go away – to fix it rather than accepting it.

✳ Embrace it all and let it in. This is a part of you.

✳ Let yourself become a vulnerable feeling being.

✳ Be open and fully alive to the experience.

✳ Breathe into it and allow the life energy to flow through you.

✳ And in this place of spaciousness and letting go, notice how grace appears.

Compassionate acceptance of the unknown.