Quench the thirst.
Extract the essence.
I just had an interesting revelation about now.
To respond to life means to respond to now.
This is what it means to take responsibility for my own life.
For some reason I always projected responsibility outwards to some point in the future.
This caused distress in my life, because it enforces constant worry about the future.
How will I take responsibility for my life?
What does this question actually mean?!
There is no right answer.
The moment to respond to life is now.
What can I do now?
Everything else is projection.
And by projecting some potential outcome into the future I’m giving away control.
And this is what I suffer from every so often….
For the past couple of days I’ve been pondering the question: “How am I in control of my life?”
The answer is: By being present! That’s it.
It is so simple. And it is such a relief….
I realized it on my walk this morning. I have neglected these walks, but this morning I understood how much it helps me to arrive.
If I don’t arrive I will never be able to take responsibility. The phrase “taking responsibility” is actually misleading, because I can’t take responsibility.
I can only respond to life. Now.
For about two weeks I’ve been trying to make sense of it: The Headless Buddha.
…It was one of those moments when I was caught up in a spiral of self-doubt and self-flaggelation, when I re-discovered my heart.
In despair I was challenging the youtube-oracle.
I discovered a talk on “The trance of unworthiness” by Tara Brach, a teacher I really value for her compassionate pursuit:
“We can only meet ourselves with compassion,” she concludes the human striving for liberation.
Finally, I’m swallowing the medicine.
Suddenly I’m placing one hand on my heart and one on my belly.
I’m holding myself.
This is when I understand:
My mind deteriorates my self-esteem.
My mind strangles myself with reproaches.
Meeting myself with compassion – that’s the least I can do!
It is that simple.
And so I am lying there on the couch. One hand on my heart and one on my belly. My eyes filled with tears of relief.
I breathe and I cry.
That’s all it takes.
I remember the teachings of yoga I had received.
I let my body do the work.
A couple of moments later: All anxiety vanished.
I find myself going for a short walk.
What happened next still blows my mind:
I’m walking slowly towards the nearby park, contemplating the Buddhist teachings of impermanence – “anicca, anicca, anicca…,” echoing in my head…
When I gaze towards the bushes, suddenly, I see a headless Buddha standing there right at the framing of the sidewalk!
It is one of those decorative candle bearers a lot of people have standing in their bathroom or on the wardrobe.
Its head is accurately positioned where the candle is supposed to shine.
Immediately the omnipresent quote: “If you meet the Buddha, kill him!,” comes to my mind.
What does this quote, apparently firstly stated by Linji Yixuan, signifies?
Back home I immediately start researching:
“Killing the buddha” asserts ‘to quiet all concepts’ – about Buddhism, spirituality and ‘the path’ in general.
It’s about finding the teacher within.
It implies the actualization of emptiness by self-observation and unbiased contemplation.
The next thing I read is the word Kenshō, which is widely translated as “seeing one’s true nature”. Accordingly to Wikipedia it is often used interchangeably with the word satori, which signifies ‘comprehension’ or ‘understanding’.
It is often being mistaken for ‘enlightenment’, but this is not what it is. It is one step on the path, one realization of the non-personal nature of our lives….
I remember the moment on the couch earlier. The moment of surrender that lifted a weight off my shoulder and my chest.
It was the moment when I finally understood that this body is solely a vessel. It’s a precious vessel, because it maneuvers me through my physical experience here on earth.
My mind keeps me in chains, while my body sets me free.
There is so much more to say about that! There are so many terminologies and symbolism to study, but for now that’s all I’m able to share here – my personal encounter with the headless Buddha.
There is SO MUCH moving right now. This “stream of consciousness” moved through me just now. So I decided to let it out:
There is a fundamental truth I understood on a different level: We are all the same. We all have the same life force. We are all walking through this life with the same intention: To move energy – no matter if we are aware of it or not.
At the end of the day everyone of us is crucial.
Everyone of us has a purpose – the purpose to just be.
Omg, this purpose is so simple that it literally blows my mind when I try to put it into words, because as soon as I am trying to phrase it, it sounds so pathetic – too simple to be true.
Bizarre and surreal to most human beings who ‘distant’ themselves from aliveness so far off.
Still there is truth no one can deny: We are transforming matter from one state to another. Our emotions are our fuel to transform that matter, because they dictate what we do – short term and in the long run…
There is no human better or worse. There is no one on a higher level. The guru is us – you, me.
There is STILL such a huuuge misconception around the word ‘guru’. There is soooo much resistance created by splitting ourselves apart. We split us apart until nothing is left.
As soon as we’d understand that we are all one, that absolutely no being, no plant, not a single atom on this planet is separate, we’d find peace….
How could we do that? By FEELING OUR FEELINGS fully. And by assisting each other to do the same – safely. Without being judged and without judgment of ourselves.
I know that this is a long way to go. So let’s better start NOW.
If we take the time to just be there for a moment, be present with what and who is.
If we take the time to hold a hand, to look another person in the eyes, to not look through them, THIS is when we are creating change…
“Productive Gratitude” – this is a phrase my mind came up with the other day when I expressed my gratitude towards my fellow “yoga-retreaters” I journeyed with at “The Journey Through The Chakras” by Refeel Yoga.
All of a sudden I felt this huuuuuge connection – to myself, to this group, to the ALL.
And as sudden as this sensation arrived I felt it FOR MY WORK, for any work that I am doing – even the work I don’t love. The daily work. The 9-5. The 24/7. Whatever it is. I felt grateful for it and I DID IT with thankfulness for being able to do it.
If I am expressing my gratitude with EVERY SINGLE ACTION I will inevitably change the world.
How is this possible?
Because I am BECOMING gratitude. And by becoming it I am acting from a place that is not defined by trans-action.
I am doing and I am moving on at the same time (this is a small reference to Tao Te Ching;)
It is NOT easy. Definitely not. It is hard. In order to become gratitude I have to become myself first.
A quest of a life-time – a quest I am forever grateful for.
And all of a sudden, there it is again.
The life vibrating through my veins.
The eternal force bringing me back home.
Creation itself is filling my lungs.
I am breathing clarity.
Inspiration is flooding my heart.
Ideas are sprouting like leaflets.
Compassion is unleashing my chest.
Haaaaaaaaaa……. There she is again. My friend, freedom.
Curiosity is rising inside of me. There is only clarity. There is nothing I can see. The appearances of life don’t matter beyond the realm of my mind.
I arrive in my body. And I do it with delight. I feel a sense of care for myself. There is a pure source of love within my heart and my breath is the key to that door that I had locked with distraction.
I feel compassion for my old self. I let the anger fade like the clouds in the sky on that stormy day. The wind is blowing away my resentment towards myself and the world. No doubt is blurring my sight as I allow time to pass. And this is what I do – sitting and waiting and entering that state of bliss with all of my being. That chamber of excitement – bright and colorful placed inside of me is bringing me to life.
At the bottom of my heart I can be at rest. There is only peace. There is nothing to run from and nothing to run for. Because everything is already achieved.
I am earth. No need to “earth” myself.
There is a common ground within myself. This is why I feel compassion for the entire planet and not only for the people who are close and dear to me.
Non-judgement is the true nature of my being if I allow my thoughts to drop like snowflakes on an icy winter-afternoon. Thoughts can be fun, but they can also cause a lot of turmoil.
All of a sudden I am able to tap into that powerful being that I am. And I knew it all along. I feel grateful that I am finally able to hold my own hand. I finally found my tools – within.
“Change doesn’t happen overnight.”
This truth revealed itself to me several times.
Sure, I can comprehend that intellectually.
But incorporating the patience to bear that truth – that’s a different story….
I AM IMPATIENT. With myself. With the world around me. With the people who are “waking up” right now in this world. I don’t want to be impatient. I want to have compassion.
How do I want to have patience with other people if I am my hardest judge?
“You should be more confident.”
“You should be somewhere else in your life.”
Yeah, I’m claiming myself to be empathetic. But when it comes to my own development I bounce my head against the walls of my own resistance. “Resistance to what?,” you might ask… My resistance to feel what really wants to be felt in the very moment.
Writing this down raises a smile on my face. Warmth is softening my chest. “Take it easy,” an internal voice whispers into my awareness.
“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I’ll try again tomorrow.”
Mary Anne Radmacher
Honestly, this quote moved me.
How much time do I give myself? To evolve, to learn, to remember, to integrate?
How many times do I rush into a decision?
How many times do I not listen to my exhaustion?
What this whole pandemic thing (call it whatever you please) teaches me is: PATIENCE. And I am so freakin’ grateful for this – even if it’s the hardest lesson I have yet to learn.
What I learnt over and over again from my past is that life does not follow a chronological timeline.
I can manifest. I can picture my brightest future. As soon as I take steps new challenges arise. New insecurities show up.
Surprise, surprise – the body is striking. The mind is rebelling.
And here you are: “Wait a minute? I have asked for this, why is it that hard?”
Because we grow in sections.
Friction is a companion on our journey.
Challenge will never leave us.
Challenge comes when we least expect it and, surely, when we most need it in order to make our own decisions.
They are here to test us.
When universe asks: “Are you serious?”
Do you go all in?
All in often times means not to push hard. It means to pull back. To take rest. To cry. To sleep. To recover. To re-cover what you have buried beneath new layers of life experience.
Something you considered as healed may re-inflames.
And then it is up to you to open your eyes to reality. Will you take the time to heal? Or will you distract yourself again and not move on?
The best advice I can give myself these days (as a fire sign) is: SLOW THE F*ck DOWN. Do you. Keep clear. Don’t overdo. Move along, but do it in your own pace (or slightly slower.)
Is there something you have overlooked in your enthusiasm?
Is your body asking for something else than your busy mind does deliver?
Is there anything at all that needs to be done right now?
Do you remember to breathe?
Breeeeeaaaathe through discomfort.
Move through hardships with grace.
Accept the challenge.
What’s the difference between ‘easing in’ and ‘letting go’?
I will keep rephrasing them. Renaming the unnamable. Reshaping the intangible – the power of manifestation.
What’s the difference between ‘easing in’ and ‘letting go’?
The difference is the feeling beyond those words.
Everything that requires action has the potential to cause resistance.
To ‘ease in’ represents ‘non-action’.
It is a principle in every martial art form and in a lot of (if not most) ancient teachings.
Do I have to elaborate this any further?
I don’t think so.
Happy new moon everyone.
Let it fade.
Let it die.
Let it be.
Let it fly.
Enjoy the moment for what it is.
Things change in an instant.
You can’t hold on to this.
Opportunities are endless, life is vast.
Time is fluctuating, so please human,
launch into the present and release the past.
This was supposed to be a threesome, but it turned out as a wholesome!? 😉
Here we go:
I’m experiencing mood-swings at the moment between gratitude for being alive – especially (!) in those turbulent times (chaos makes me move…) – and between heavy anxiety and doom mood that is nagging my energy.
Oftentimes I am easily irritable. Other times I start laughing for no reason – for minutes… To me it sounds manic, but the fact that I can phrase it seems to display a decent level of emotional intelligence. (Even though, to be really honest with you, I am not sure anymore how much of an advantage that is, but probably I will figure it out on the way;)
During the night I’m grinding my teeth, because my stirred-up mind is strenuously “sorting things out”. (Without telling me what it is actually doing?!)
When I wake up I still feel the cortisol and adrenaline levels in my cells….. F*ck…. I don’t know about you, but to me the energies right now feel INTENSE – and my physical body responds alike.
I find release during the morning walks or during my casual little meditation in the early sun facing the urban greenery in the park nearby.
Yes, these are my tools.
But I can’t silence my mind forever…
On a lot of days the black and the white of my thinking is narrowing my field of view like stone walls in a dungeon.
In those moments I feel trapped.
“Just make your thinking colorful,” I figured the other day. But HOW?
This question was roaming in the back of my head for days.
I tend to think black and white a lot. When I really think about it, my thinking generally appears to be more black than white.
Luckily, there are mornings like this morning today….
At 8 am I went to this little post shop café a few streets away. I have never been there – until yesterday, when I forgot my ID-card that I needed to pick up the small parcel I was awaiting.
I had to return this morning, so I combined it with my little walk. And what can I say? Some small incidents renewed my energy!
“Buenos dias,” I greeted this South American man accompanied by his son and his dog at the traffic light of an intersection. Surprised they asked me for my name. We continued speaking in german.
“We are going to join a soccer game now. You should enjoy the sun today, too.” – “I will,” I replied with honest happiness radiating from my heart – and probably from my face.
Our paths split, but I continued walking with a smile on my face. A few meters ahead I met another man waving at me from the doorstep of his bar. A bar most people just pass by while I was strolling delightfully; occasionally gazing the environment. There was enough time for another friendly encounter. This time it was just a smile.
A few meters further I entered the post shop to successfully pick up the parcel – another two big smiles of the guy behind the counter and the woman in front of the coffee-machine that served me a tasty “latte”.
I sat down in the fresh morning air, chatting with the man on the next table about this and that.
Do you know what? It made my day. This real-life connection to my surrounding. This appreciation of what is. This acceptance of where I am right now at this point in time.
“What if you were okay? What if you were where you are supposed to be at this point in time? What if you already are who you have desired to become for so long?”
These questions popped up in my head a couple of weeks earlier. They reappeared this morning.
I realized that I have colorful thoughts!
They are written in my notes. They are printed into my memory system. My head (and my notebook) is actually full of it. And I can create more of those thoughts just by acknowledging what is, just by witnessing my existence with all its appearances and by making the most of the tiniest moments….