It Doesn’t Have To Be This Way

For those of us born into families and environments where there were not many options presented in terms of what we could become, every day living scenarios that seem simple to others, can present challenges. If you were taught that every day is a struggle the entire time that you were growing up, transcending that idea is an every day process. The catch is that sometimes the process of mentally transcending the struggle takes half the day and winds up making the rest of the day into a struggle. But everyone has their own versions of struggle and every day is a process of forgiveness, most notably of oneself.

For those of us who were born into the kinds of environments described above, find gratitude for those who raised you. Find gratitude that they kept a roof over your head and food in your belly. More importantly, find gratitude that they didn’t expect much out of you. They did so because they didn’t expect much out of themselves and because their parents didn’t expect much out of themselves and so on. The energy required to forgive and transcend this low expectational generational struggle; to know that you can be something that they could not even ever dream of, is the same resource of energy you can tap into to become just that. Many people never even dig that deep.

And once again, my favorite quote:

“The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.”

~Kahlil Gibran

Forgiveness. Forgiveness is everything. The greatest leaders of our time had one thing in common, one thing that made them glow like the sun, one thing that made people flock to them, one quality that stood out above the rest.

Forgiveness.

When people came around them, they felt forgiven. Forgiven for everything that they had ever held themselves accountable for their entire lives.

You see, we are all walking around beating ourselves up. Most of us aren’t even aware of it. It’s on such a subtle level. Shame and guilt hide in the darkest of corners. They are what keep us from acheiving our highest potential, from stepping into our fully self-actualized selves.

Somewhere along the way in some way or other, most of us are taught to fear judgment from others. We are shamed by the rest of the world, by our families, by our friends, by a world that says, “Stay in line, follow the rules, play it safe.” Subtly and under the guise of “just want to make sure you’re safe, etc,” we are taught to obey, not to rock the boat – to the total detriment of our own growth as humans individually and collectively.

If you want to do something different, it requires energy to change your everyday paradigm, requires a bit of a ‘fuck you’ attitude and yet, total forgiveness of yourself and everyone around you. It is a constant process that must be practiced every day like exercise.

Unfortunately, the way the world is currently structured, most of us do not have the time because we are too busy working to stay alive and our workplaces generally do not help us to foster a sense of self, a sense of purpose. In fact, the average modern workplace does nothing but encourage us to conform even more, to stay in line, to compete and to live in fear of losing our false sense of control each and every day.

We have created a culture of robots and assholes.

It does not have to be this way…

Things. Material things. Most of us have been taught that our lives are meaningless if we don’t have nice things. The classic definition of “success” generally refers to material success. Our entire culture is based around materialism and consumerism. Buy this and you’ll feel better. Buy this and you’ll be cool like these people. Advertisers even use our own innate fear to get us to buy more things. Do you feel crappy? Are you scared of (fill in the blank)? Do you know that such and such things can cause (fill in the blank with random illness or disease)?

Well don’t worry! Help is here. Buy this thing from us and all your fears will magically disappear. Get an insurance policy to protect you from everyone and everything. Ensure all bases are covered and avoid judgement and risk.

Here’s the thing though, it’s all a lie.

Only the realization that there really is nothing to fear but fear itself will quell the fear that we all contain.

We are antelopes out on the prairie. We are children who have touched our hands to the stove. Our brains are equipped to remember negative experiences more than positive to keep us out of danger because we are still animals after all. Even though we have no natural predators in the modern world, save from each other, our brains are still constantly on the look out for dangers and even more so if our fight or flight has been set off a few too many times. Anxiety is like a switch that, once flipped, can be challenging to turn back off.

So we attempt to keep it at bay by trying to control every detail of our environment so as to protect ourselves from our own fear not realizing that in reality, there’s actually very little we need to be afraid of. Despite the media’s portrayal to the contrary, crime rates have not gone up that much if at all in the last 50 years and yet we are a culture obsessed with the shadow side, with criminals, with death. With fear. We are products of a system that systematically instills fear in us from the day that we are born.

So many of us are lost in dull fear, mostly unaware but filling up our days with ways to escape it. We put bigger locks on our doors, don’t speak our minds, don’t do anything out of the ordinary, don’t talk to strangers, and/or numb ourselves with alcohol, prescriptives, weed, food, etc.
Fear has become our modus operandi and like lobsters in a boiling pot, we’ve not even noticed.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

Total freedom is within our grasp.
It is time that we turn this around.
We are birds in a cage. We are flesh and bone covered energy afraid of ourselves and each other.
We are too much talk and not enough do.

Our brains are constantly chattering like two-year-old children who want attention. But just like the momentary thought that imagines driving off the side of the bridge, flying peacefully into the heavens – the thought that we know better than to listen to – we do not have to be seduced by every thought. They say we have 50,000 to 70,000 thoughts every day and most of them are not important.

Silence the chattering. Take a deep breath. Listen to your heart.

Wake up.
Let go.

Let go of all notions that we are separate. Let go of all ideas of what you are supposed to do, what you are not supposed to do, say, or be.

You are a limitless being and nothing less. You are God experiencing itself through the speck of the cosmos that is your human form in this lifetime.

Take the “you” that you’ve been taught to be and take it all apart. Know that is okay to risk. It is okay to get hurt. It is part of what we’re here for.

To learn.

We’ve been so conditioned that even the simplest things like taking your shoes off and squishing your toes in the grass like a child and skipping across the rocks down by the river have become strange things to see adults doing. We have become so removed from the nature that is a part of us that it is unappreciated, filled with chemicals, and disappearing by the minute.

We need recess, time to play, time to connect, time to remember why we are REALLY here.

So what do we do?

It starts with each one of us individually.

A simple change in consciousness.

Sounds easy, right?

Your personal universe is only as easy or as hard as you make it, as big or as small as you perceive it to be.

This world is ours to create together.

One person at a time, we can begin to help each other wake up and start moving forward in a positive direction…Away from all this fake “reality” and into something more genuine, more real, more honest.

Start by standing up. Don’t be afraid to say what you’re feeling.

We all know that things need to change. Most of us are just fumbling around trying to figure out how and in the interim we give up or get too busy just trying to keep our own lives together.

Let go.

You don’t have to BE anything. You don’t have to impress anyone. You may owe people but that doesn’t mean they own you.

Money itself means nothing. The only meaning it has is what we ascribe to it. It’s not even worth the paper it’s printed on anymore. It is only numbers in a computer. Sometimes they’re higher, sometimes they’re lower, and you are no better than anyone else if you have more or less of it.

Status.

It is everything in our society. But it means nothing.

It is all pretend.

Your status, wealth, education, race, age, sexual preference, etc., mean absolutely nothing; make you no less or no better of a human than anyone else. Period.

We do need to label things. Our brains are equipped to label so as to make better sense out of incoming information. If we didn’t have a system for classifications based on previous experiences, our brains would be like a giant messy room with papers detailing thoughts and people strewn everywhere. We need to know where to put things in the file cabinets upstairs, that’s true.

The problem is that most of us have taken it a step too far. Crossing the line from classifying to assuming to expecting to judging is purely a reflection of insecurity from within, a reflection of fear, and a lack of having forgiven oneself. We need to go inward, really go inward and dig deep to forgive ourselves and those around us.
Every.
Day.
Because here’s the thing:

We are not separate. We are all one organism. The illusion that we are separate is what keeps us fighting.

The days of competition and conflict are over. We are entering the “now age” of community and cooperation.

It starts one person at a time. Change the way you think and you will watch your life change in ways you never dreamed. Start by knowing that each person you encounter is a reflection of yourself. We are not here to make money, raise a family, and die as so many of us have been led to believe. While those things may be a useful part of our journey, that is not our purpose as human beings.

We are here to help each other discover our own true nature through the beauty of experience, of existence.

We are here to live. Not to drudge ourselves thru each day self-medicating and just trying to ‘get thru it.’ Merely existing. That is NOT what life Is about.

Each one of us has a purpose.

Look inward. If someone or something makes you uncomfortable, go inward and figure out what it is you’re seeing in that person or situation that you don’t like or are afraid of  within YOURSELF.  Know that you don’t have to keep hanging onto it. It’s just dragging you down. Process it, come to terms with it, learn to love it, and let it go. All notions of this or that, us or them, right or wrong, black-and-white, god and devil, heaven and hell – they just keep us in conflict.

Let it all go.

Transcend the dualisms.

It’s ALL MADE UP and you don’t have to believe it. You don’t HAVE to do anything in the eyes of the universe so why not just focus on doing things that bring joy to you and others?

Pure joy.

When was the last time you really felt pure joy? When was the last time something moved you to tears? When was the last time you felt inspired? Had a good belly laugh?

These are the moments that make up our lives. This is what counts. Not material status. Not any kind of ranking or worth or judgement or gossip or anything else that keeps us feeling separate.

Think about it. Find your truth and start walking and talking it. Don’t worry about what people will think.

Just.Be.Love.

Love isn’t cheezy. Not this kind of love. This is love from within. Like a lightning bug.
You can produce your own. 🙂

Fall in love with the whole universe and spend your life singing its praises, doing your best to thank it every single day.

Lots of us already are. To live and breathe your own personal truth is the highest form of praise to the universe. To be true to oneself is what you are here to do.

Go inward. Find your truth. Let go. Surrender. Forgive.

And there you will find love. True love. The deepest kind of love. The love of self in it’s purist form. Freedom lives there. Absolute freedom. Absolute bliss. Absolute peace.

Stop looking outside of yourself for happiness and love. It can only be found within.
Don’t let anything or anyone distract you. Don’t let anyone tell you that you’re supposed to be doing something different. Take five minutes right now to yourself.

Start by taking a deep breath…

Connect. Don’t just read these words. Feel them. Tune out the voices in your head and listen. There is a faint and beautiful calling within. You can hear echoes of it in the breeze, in the birds chirping, in the keys of the piano in a beautiful song, on the petal of a flower, on the rush of the water over the rocks. It is your heart. Tune in. Listen to it always. It contains the source code of the infinite. It has all the answers to every question in the universe.

What does it want?

It wants love. Turn it around. Face itself. Wrap your arms around any hurt and pain you’ve been hanging onto and tell it that everything’s going to be ok. That it has always been ok and always will be.

You are ok. You are enough. We all are. Believe it. Feel it. Know it and OWN it.

Stop taking less than you deserve.

Put your love and truth into everything you do.

Meet everyone with forgiveness and compassion. Help them to find a way to forgiveness within themselves. Help them to let go.

We all have pain but it doesn’t have to define us. Stop complaining and start appreciating.

Realize how lucky you are to be here in this human body at this time. Don’t waste it sitting around in front of a box half asleep, self-medicating, watching other people live their lives.

LIVE.

You don’t need TV or drugs or a lover or cookies. You don’t need anything.
True love lives inside. Tap in.

Figure out what you want and be creative. Don’t make it $1 million dollars. That won’t get you there because it’s not about the money. It’s never about the money. Don’t confuse the horse for the cart.

It’s about experience. It’s about freedom.

Now think again.
What do you want?

Maybe not just for you. Maybe for the whole world. No desire is too big in the eyes of the universe. Be specific. Stay in the heart space. Focus on it with pure intention. Be strong and firm. Stand tall in your light. Don’t let anyone try to pull you out of it. Don’t let anyone tell you that you are weird or different or that you don’t fit in. We are all God’s children as they say.

God isn’t some external force outside of us. It is within. We are just a tiny part of something much larger, something well beyond our comprehension and slowly but surely, one by one, we are waking up to this knowing.

We’ve had amnesia for too long. The slumber is over. It is time to evolve.

Like a frog trying to explain to a tadpole what life will be like when it grows up, we are facing an unknown future and most of us have been taught that the unknown is something to be afraid of. But we must have faith as we learn to step into our truths and live our lives the way we were truly meant to.

Wake up to the experience. Move into a space of love. Be gentle with yourself. Be open. Be strong but soft. Forgiving and helping, not enabling and bending. Help others find their own way and respect that it may be different from yours.

Live and breathe joy. People will be interested.
You are allowed to be joyful.
You deserve the best.
Everyone does.

Forgive and love. Your self.

Start there. It may hurt a little at first. It might feel a little awkward but stay with it. The pay off is nothing short of enlightenment.

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