Peace

How To Know When You Can Finally Be At Peace

At The Airport What were you worried about yesterday? What about last month or last year?

As I woke up today with tingly feet and immediately began worrying about my them, I remembered that the day before I worried about a one-day teaching residency I’m going to have to travel extremely far for, to a part of Chicago that is as of yet completely unknown to me.   When I decided to allow the discomfort in my feet, and surrender to the present moment, my mind started thinking about finding a new apartment in September and how stressful that might be.

Sound familiar? When life is stressful the voice in the head tells us that after a certain point or after something happens we will finally be at peace.

Even though I think that I’ll be at peace after I figure out what is going on with my tingly feet, when that moment does come my mind will just as soon have an exorbitant amount of other things I’ll have to wait for until I can be at peace.

While the content of the thoughts we have differs, we all experience the same mechanics.  There is always a phantom future moment when the mind will agree to let you relax and enjoy life.  And that is exactly how that voice stays alive, in control of your attention.

Once I was able to become aware that unless I decided to be at peace now I’d never actually be at peace, I was able to choose peace now despite the circumstances.  The long standing thought mechanics in my mind still had a whole lifetime’s worth of energy to keep it going, so the worry thoughts popped up nevertheless.

Despite this mind mechanic momentum, to smile and allow yourself to relax even when your thoughts are still vying for your attention, is to take control of your life and your sanity.  In that moment you are present and the momentum gained from that glimpse of consciousness will only grow. Eventually the old thought mechanics will lose steam and peace will be all the remains inside and out.

Standard
Inspiration

The End Of Worry

By Peter SperoIt is so easy to become consumed with worry about other people.  I find myself worrying about the wellbeing of friends and loved ones, worrying about their habits, the path they are on, how their future will affect my future.  Have you ever experienced these thoughts about the people close to you?

When I have these thoughts of worry they seem incredibly important.  I am operating under the assumption that if I don’t solve that which I am worried about right now through my own thoughts I will end up worse off in the future, things will go terribly wrong.

Yet, the truth of the matter is that everything in life will come and go except for myself.  My being.  No matter what happens to those around me, what choices they make, or how they create their future, I will always be myself right here in this one moment called the now.  There is nothing that can add to or take away from the being that I am.  And my own future is determined by the state of my consciousness right now.

IMG_0671So instead of trying to solve the problems of everyone around me, I return to the only true place of power, the present moment.  When you find yourself trying to solve the problems of those around you, and begin to feel overwhelmed, or even start to dread the future, come back to your immediate experience.  Shrink the world to the small space you are currently occupying, the perceptions that you are taking in through your five senses, and the breath. 

This is real life.  This is what is actually happening.

The worries, while they seem so real and important, are no more than thoughts in the head.  Although they seem irrefutably valid, allow yourself to relinquish them, and come into the present.  All of the solutions you will ever need are contained right here in the present moment.  They will arise as needed.  The present moment carries you through life with ease and grace.  By allowing yourself to come back into the present, you are allowing life to work all situations for your good.  Being present is the true nature of trust.  Learn to trust the now, trust life, and all of your needs will be, and already are, met.

Standard
spirituality

“Worry never helps anyone” – Swami Satchidananda

 

 

For the final day of the “1 new thing a day challenge,” I went to the Chicago Air and Water Show for the first time.  This picture is courtesy of a fleet of skywriters.

For the final day of the “1 new thing a day challenge,” I went to the Chicago Air and Water Show for the first time. This picture is courtesy of a fleet of skywriters.

Human minds always have a “fall back.” The mind’s “fall back” is a pattern that it is used to, that has become habitual. For example, I would say that my mind’s “fall back” is worry. When something happens, whether it is an undesirable situation or an experience that cannot be understood, my mind will fall back into the worry pattern. It comes up with scenarios of increasingly disturbing outcomes.

Tonight my apartment buzzer rang and it was the UPS man. But when I got downstairs there was no package and no UPS man to be seen. Who had I buzzed into my apartment building? I did not have the answer to that question so my mind decided to fall back into its comfortable worry pattern. What is your mind’s “fall back?”

I took a nap, and realized I was still worried after I woke up. I then decided to ask the universe a question. Asking questions to God, the universe, the “field of potentiality” (as Pam Grout calls it), or whatever word you use, is a readily accessible life tool. I needed to know everything was okay. I asked, “Please give me a clear sign tonight, before I fall asleep, that everything is okay.” I proceeded to peruse ridiculously expensive couches on the internet, but still had my request in the background of my attention. A few hours later I checked my email per my usual routine. Right at the top of the list read the subject line, “Don’t Worry.” Inside was this message:

We worry over all kinds of things. If you can’t get the right nail polish color, you worry. Everything causes worry. You don’t have to have a crash in the stock market or some other financial crisis to make you miserable. Just one little pimple is enough to cause you to go into a tailspin—as if nobody has ever had it or it’s going to be there permanently. There seems to be so much stress in modern life: ‘I have to do this. I have to do that.’ Yes, you may have responsibilities, but the first and foremost responsibility is to take care of you. If you can’t take care of yourself, how can you take care of others? So, have faith and confidence: ‘I’m going to change the situation. I have the strength to face and overcome anything.’ Worry never helps anyone.

God bless you. Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti. (Swami Satchidananda)

The email was from the Satchidananda Ashram which sends out “Weekly Words of Wisdom.” This one arrived right on time. The feelings of worry were transmuted into peace; the sign I received was sufficient to break my rapt attention on a mind in the midst of a worry cycle.

What is your “fall back?” Next time you notice the mind reverting to its habitual thinking patterns try asking a question. You can even just ask for help. While no one knows how the questions will be answered, it will be interesting to watch and find out.

Standard