Friday, July 29, 2016

Everything Matters

A person has to do what they have to do.  It's easy to second-guess what another should have done -- or should do.  That's not the rightful province of any person -- to tell others what to do and how to live their lives.  Their primary and greatest responsibility is to live their own lives -- as best they can, and in doing so, set an example for the others -- as to what is possible.  That's the only way any problem has ever been solved.

There are countless people whose lives are a mess -- giving advice and telling everyone else how they ought to live their lives, rather than actualizing their own to the highest possibilities.  Countless people want increasing and infinitely more -- without ever making the most out of what they already have -- which is usually their greatest problem, so no matter how much they have, and want others to give them, they always need more.

But assuredly, that won't solve their problems -- because any more, will just be wasted, like everything else they've wasted.  And that first, is what are they making with their lives -- their body and their health?  Are they in their best condition they can make themselves -- or are they expecting the doctors to make them as well as they can be? -- or for that matter, any other person?  That is what is most overlooked in the discussion of contemporary problems.

Are you making the most of what you already have? -- and then it is meaningful to discuss, whether more is deserved, merited, and will do any good -- or merely be more resources laid to waste, as one has already proven they have done.  "More" is always the easy answer, but very seldom the real solution -- to most problems.  In most cases, the solution is "different" -- and not more of the same thing, that is already the problem. 

For that reason, one should not be fixated on one answer to everything -- but should entertain more different solutions -- than just the one panacea -- which they feel is the answer to everything, while never asking the right questions.  That is always the root of every problem -- that makes it irresolvable, and just gets hopelessly worse, no matter how much more resources, time and effort they give to doing it that way.

That is invariably the difference between success and failure -- and never simply, more and less.  That's what the countless failures need to know -- that the successful, are doing something different, and not simply more of what is failing them.  Only in that realization, is there the possibility and hope for a breakthrough -- to the other side, and freedom from the torment of constant failure, misery and disappointment.

It is not somebody else's fault; it is one's own lack of understanding -- everything.  Therefore, one must begin everything at the very beginning -- questioning all one knows, because it is one's assumptions and presumptions that are faulty, and not the conclusions assuming they are based on the proper understanding.  Assuming one knows absolutely nothing, is actually the quantum leap in understanding -- and not a waste of time the hasty, misguided and hopelessly lost assume it will be.

To begin every day with a fresh mind, is the great awakening of all wisdom -- and not coincidentally, the great teaching of every spiritual tradition.  "One must die to the old, to be born into the new."  To be refreshed and renewed in this way, is never to grow old.  It sounds like a tautology, or simple truth -- that is the most profound understanding in any life.  That is the root and basis of ever-renewing life -- and not simply old ideas, thoughts and words repeated yet again, as though nobody ever said them before.  In fact, everybody has repeated it before -- and that obviously hasn't worked, and so why not begin anew? -- as though one knew absolutely nothing -- and learns to find out.

So it is irrelevant and counterproductive to boast about what one already knows.  The real value, is the capacity to learn what one doesn't already know -- for that is the treasure, and not all the fool's gold, one simply wants more.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

A Better Place

Most people don't choose the place they live in but accept the place they find themselves in as the best of all possible worlds.  So they indulge themselves while on vacation -- as the place they would choose to be -- and not where they spend most of their life.  It just never occurs to them that they could.  Only a rare few find themselves where they really want to be -- as though such a thing were possible.

Yet that choice, has the greatest effect on all their other decisions and choices in life.  Many are simply not in the best environment for themselves.  It may be too hot, or too cold, too far from the ocean or mountains for them to feel at home -- in their best environment.  They may be remote and isolated -- and mystified why they feel that way.

And beyond that, is what they make of that environment -- to make it better, optimal as far as possible for themselves -- before eventually realizing they must move on to even better.  The quest always involves a journey.  It is never about just staying in one place all one's life -- thinking one day life will be different.  That is the reality of poverty -- that things never change from day to day, and year to year.  There are no passages in time and rites.  Everything stays the same.  There is no hope for different -- and better.

That may be the differentiating mark of those who stagnate, and those who grow -- not just by one parameter, but every facet of their lives so as to be immeasurable and unrecognizable from where they began.  Then change is very significant and meaningful -- and not just small modifications that don't amount to anything.  Real change changes everything -- and not just one thing.

So, many are unprepared for real change -- as much as they talk and hope about it -- but having no understanding of what it really is.  Real change even takes on a life of its own -- and for that reason, is eschewed by those who want to control it -- or feel they must be in control.  Instead, they will seek to suppress it.  And so the power of good things, is never allowed to happen -- to blossom in its own good time.  There is a season for everything -- but not before its time.

Lots of people want to be told what the truth is -- but very few are willing to find that out for themselves, and that is the real power and joy of it, and its value.  It is the finding out that separates the truth seekers from those who only pretend to know -- because somebody else told them so but they will never know how to find out the truth of any matter for themselves.  And that's what matters -- and not the countless many who say, "Tell us what is the truth, and we will repeat it -- as though we understand and thought of it ourselves."  "Tell us what is correct, and we will follow and chant it," and think themselves enlightened and wise beyond all the others.

They think they know all the answers -- but have not even begun to ask the right questions.  So how could they know anything worthwhile?  Because to ask the right (meaningful) question, is the beginning of understanding -- that no amount of simply knowing all the right answers can ever hope to achieve.  To such people, it doesn't matter what the question is -- they know their answer, regardless.

By asking the right questions, it is possible to discover the answer to any question, but if one only learns the right answers, they may never realize they know nothing worth knowing.

Friday, July 01, 2016

Freedom is the Celebration

Many are independent -- but very few are free.  Actually, most people in "retirement," are independent, but very few think they are free -- or act like it.  Freedom is the realization that everything is a choice -- born of decision and no longer the compulsion to do anything as they've always done it before, or even think that it could be any different.  

And that is the beauty of freedom -- to be what one imagines they could be -- not only in their minds but in the actuality -- which is reality.  That's how it comes about -- but not if one insists that only what one has always done before, is reality, and everything else merely wishful-thinking.  Each are equally plausible; it depends upon the commitment and investment in each reality.

If it works, then one should continue doing so -- but if it is not working, one must do something different -- and not just the same thing, hoping for a different result.  That won't change anything -- and what is needed is change.  Change makes all things possible -- because it produces a different result, even if at first, it is not exactly the desired result.  One knows then, whether one is closer or farther, to reaching their desired outcome -- rather than just the predictable same ol' thing.

And thus one learns one thing -- and then another -- but it is a different thing, and not merely confirming the futility and despair in thought and action.  Then one is a slave to tradition and convention -- and not free to find out what lies beyond.  It is the finding out -- for oneself that distinguishes the authentic from the pretension.  The pretentious have no idea what is real; they only pretend to know -- thinking that it is the same, but fails them in critical moments, when they absolutely have to know the difference. 

That is the freedom to find out the truth of the matter -- and not just repeat the truth somebody told them -- as though they thought of it themselves.  But such people have no idea how to think for themselves -- because they only know what they've been taught is the truth -- as though it is the same thing, which it seldom is.  To believe they are, is the reason for futility and despair -- without the hope of ever finding out.

That is why freedom is always a celebration -- of one's ability to find out the limits of their being and doing -- and not as the fearful think, that it is a freedom from those challenges.  The greatest gain, is the loss of that fear.  Then one becomes fearless -- and therefore free, but not before.