Sunday, June 9, 2013

Self-Help vs. Self-Liberation

Hold on a moment, what are you asking me to do?

You are asking me to be open and vulnerable?  You want me to expose my open wounds, to re-open those scars?

You want me to face my fears?  To acknowledge the things I would rather forget?  To dredge the depths of my pain and sorrow? 

I don't want to remember those that have had to leave me too early.  Nor do I care to relive those memories that haunt me to this very day. 

It is too scary.  Way to painful.  I am too tired, too busy to do this right now. 

But it is still there, right?

Even when we try to hide from it, it sneaks up on us.  If we fight to push it away, it keeps fighting back.  There doesn't seem to be any escape.

Everything that we have done to move on has failed.  Better to ignore it and hope it doesn't haunt our sleep.  But year after year, that date comes or we visit that place and we feel it looming over us.

How can we escape it?

The practice of self-help does not work, it only nourishes the ground. You need to rely on the path of self-liberation.

It rests on three principle aspects of the practice:
1.  Calm the coarse levels of your mind.
2.  Engender in that calm a sense of warmth, love and compassion.
3.  Rest in openness, your natural state of being.  

It will be painful.  Raw.  You will feel sensitive, embarrassed and inadequate.  You will feel hopeless.

And these are good signs.  This means that you are giving up your fixation.  Letting go of the ground you have been holding onto.

These are signs that you are becoming more open, more aware, that you are making progress.

As you move through the storm, through all the sheer winds and rain, you'll discover in its wake a calm, crisp freshness.  A natural openness and ease will ensue and your mind will be freed from its constraints. 

This is actually the most helpful thing you can do for yourself. 

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