Lessons learned in life

Recently, I have decided to write from a space where my mind, interferes as little as possible in the process. The intention is to be open to receiving whatever lessons the universe chooses for me to receive. After a long time of struggling and operating from the ego, I can finally feel the presence of grace sometimes. It all started with a sudden feeling of immense gratitude the day I felt sickest. But I am digressing here. Here are six important lessons, I have felt the universe impress hard on my heart and soul, these past few months. While each of them deserve a longer post in themselves, here is a cliff-notes version of them. As I write this, I feel immense gratitude to my teacher GD, all teachers on the path whose lessons came as timely reminders, the angels who made this happen and consciousness which guides me on.

  1. Living inward-out : Let life not be directed by outward influences but by what I truly feel inside. Listen to the self, the intuition and instincts. All everyone wants is to be truly loved unconditionally. So live with this feeling inside and remember this in all interactions. What energy emerges from you ? Love or fear? Anita Moorjani’s book ‘Dying to be Me’ is a brilliant book which emphasizes this.
  2. Devotion: In ways that I can’t describe, devotion is the one single thing that has always rescued me from my so-called-troubles. Be it something to do with work or life, what is devotion and how does it truly impact you? Some are devoted to work, some to money, some to family, some to life itself. If you examine devotion, it entails some form of surrender, to what you are doing and a trust that it will work out. And it did for me. Devotion reconnects you to what truly matters; in my case to GD, Sai Baba, Krishna, God/Consicousness/Universe. In fact there was a wonderful conversation around this that we had during a sunday session. It is available here. It is called the path to devotion.
  3. Drop to the heart: GD reminded us to do this recently and it has been helping so much! We live our lives dominated by what thoughts run in our heads.Everything we do is mental. But consciously moving our attention to our heart and shifting our energy there ( from the head), brings with it a big shift in how we relate to things around us. Things are seen as softer , there is lesser ego and judgement when we move our energy to the heart.
  4.  Be honest: The only people we are responsible for is ourselves. What I value is my truth and I have to acknowledge it. That quest will not always be spiritual (nothing spiritual about lusting after chocolate). But since we experience all through are senses, be honest about it being just that. Be honest about everything in your life, period.
  5. Learn to say NO: This should probably be first on the list for women. Since most of my life was about pleasing people, this has been hard. But seeing that most of my time is spent wanting family and friends to think, I am good is a colossal waste of my time on earth. So I listen inside and say no, when I want to. And there is nothing wrong with saying yes out of fear and then being honest with your no. Experience will make me better at this.
  6. Struggle is time for growth: Sigh, even after years I still forget this. But this time there has been a new insight! I always believed I had a pattern for anxiety. Now I know there is no pattern! If I believe in rest, I will believe in struggle and keep manifesting the two. So if I do manifest struggle, the deeper lesson is a movement onwards. It is a chance to see what weakness is being exposed and work on it.

 

Unfocus

Since last Sunday’s session with GD, my spiritual teacher, I have found a cue-word to re-connect with awareness and reset the mind. The word is Unfocus. At the session we spoke about how the things we view as pleasure are the very things that create our pain. Then we spoke about awareness and staying in the space of consciousness. But for me the highlight of the session, was a simple lesson from GD.

When we choose to intently focus on something we end up creating pain. When we are unfocused, the pain disappears.

This simple statement affected me profoundly.  Isn’t it true that only when we focus on people’s words or actions, then speculate about their intent, judge their emotions, make assumptions about their motives, that a conflict arises which then generates a pain response in our body and mind. But when you are unfocused none of this matters. Like the times you are truly happy, walking around with a smile and don’t even notice other people’s negativity.

Watching anything from a distance helps keep things unfocused. If someone sounds irritated, Unfocus; instead of choosing to feel they are irritated with you and responding with irritation or anger. When someone provokes you, Unfocus and you will find that you respond with words and not emotions.

We live our lives searching for some deeper meaning in all that we do. Do we even realize how much of our life is about focusing? We have been taught to focus on what we do, what we must do, so that is it done well. And when work, relationships or even hobbies are not focused on and something goes wrong there, we end up feeling pain. But the truth is that we are all here just playing out our dramas. Our minds and emotions add so much fuel to our imaginations that we begin to take ourselves and others too seriously, letting not just sparks fly but fires rage.

Being unfocused can produce better results. It has. I have written more, been more relaxed, fought less, laughed more and been happier in the past 3 days. Being unfocused seems to be be creating a life around me that is at ease with itself and hence more productive.  When I feel the anger well up, judgements take over or tiredness creep, all I need to remind myself is to unfocus. And I see the larger picture- everything is meaningless unless I choose to give it a particular meaning.