"Life is simple. Everything happens for you, not to you. Everything happens at exactly the right moment, neither too soon nor too late. You don't have to like it.... It's just easier if you do."
~ Byron Katie
Life will continue to happen around us and within us, whether we participate actively or not. The debate on free will rears its head here as we have a choice in the ways in which we participate in life. The only constant in life is that nothing is constant, or as Heraclitus (one of the Greek philosophers) eloquently puts it: "Change is the only constant in life." The oxymoronic nature of this reminds us that we are surrounded by dichotomy in life. We are often pointed in a direction we don't much like, guided to practice the one thing we can battle our entire lives, acceptance. It is because of this denial and rebellion towards acceptance that we suffer. We stubbornly continue on, strangling life under the grip of our neurotic control, breaking ourselves into pieces in the process; and yet, in this coming undone life insists on offering us the choice to accept the beautiful gift of peace, surrender.
"Our suffering comes from our attachment to people and things, our repeated attempts to find something lasting where there is nothing lasting to be found."
~ Philip Martin
Are we not living in absolute insanity? Isn't the social construct in which we choose to structure our entire lives built around the intangible and unrealistic hope that we will one day be "safe" from the ever-changing perils of this world? Why do we chase stability? When there is none to be had. Please do not get me wrong and twist my words to justify staying in an unhealthily unstable relationship, or use this as a justification or excuse to give up on searching for the truth you so desperately seek. The truth is out there, and by out there I totally mean solely within yourself, so please, keep searching. I am merely suggesting that we may be searching for the wrong thing in entirely all the wrong places.
If life is a beautiful display of uncertainty, then why do we refuse to accept and surrender to the cascading improvisation? Why are we so fanatically determined to control it in all it's simple complexity? Why must we manipulate it to our liking? Is it not our attachment to outcomes we determined to be "valuable" that keeps us locked in our neuroses? Maniacal and grasping for any sense of control and power over our own lives. Society told us to value stability, to value a predictable and transfixed future. We were trained to think that all of life revolves around us, that we'll be "safe" as long as we don't break pattern and venture too far from the herd.
Ironically, it is this flawed and illogical perception that we can control everything that keeps us trapped in this insanity; confined to our own ordinary existence. It is the embrace of ultimate surrender, facing ourselves and removing the mask of character, that liberates us from the confines of our biological plane of bone and blood. It is in accepting that we ultimately have no direct sovereignty over the world and those in it that we are given real power in our lives. Creativity and choice offer us the power to choose how we act and react in the situations life presents us.
"Life is not a problem to be solved, but a reality to be experienced."
~ Soren Kierkegaard
It is in the act of tapping in to the flow of life that we find our freedom. Letting each and every experience, regardless of whether we perceive them to be "good" or "bad," (as this will be dictated as we prescribe judgment according to our conditioned perceptions), pass through us, moment by moment, fully felt and fully released. It is how we see life and how we experience its vastness and wondrous instability that ultimately gives us this opportunity to become newly transfixed with its awe-inspiring-splendor, and suddenly, our existence becomes anything but ordinary.
"I am responsible. Although I may not be able to prevent the worst from happening, I am responsible for my attitude toward the inevitable misfortunes that darken life. Bad things do happen; how I respond to them defines my character and the quality of my life. I can choose to sit in perpetual sadness, immobilized by the gravity of my loss, or I can choose to rise from the pain and treasure the most precious gift I have - life itself."
~ Walter Anderson
The power of choice is one of our greatest treasures. We can never control what happens to us, but we can control how we choose to perceive all that we encounter on the many walks of life. In The Transtheoretical Model of behavioral change practiced in health and wellness coaching and psychology, there is an emphasis placed on a client's locus of control (internal vs. external). A client with an internal locus of control believes that they can influence events and their outcomes, while clients with an external locus of control blame everything on forces outside of themselves. There have been numerous studies paying particular attention to the correlation between resiliency in life and locus of control; it should be no surprise that there is a high correlation between the incidence of resiliency and an exaggerated internal locus of control coinciding. I will also note that if we so choose, we have the ability to intentionally alter the way in which we naturally present ourselves in life and the perceptions we give attention to, thus giving us the opportunity to change our locus of control.
All of this leads me to beg the question: God doesn't protect us from the lessons that we need to learn, so why do people try to? The universe doesn't spend eternity toying with us, maybe the things that are presenting themselves to you in your life are there for a reason. Could they have something to teach you? If they did, what would the lesson be? Whether we're practicing codependence by trying to save others from learning their own lessons, or simply trying to take the "easy" road in our own lives by playing the victim (which - spoiler alert - winds up being the much more challenging and destructive road in the long run) this isn't doing anybody any favors, including yourself. Life isn't using all of its ever-expanding intelligent consciousness to do things to you, it's like Byron Katie says, everything happens as it is meant to..."You don't have to like it.... It's just easier if you do." So I will leave you with this my friends - Why not seek comfortability in your instability? And let adaptation be your constant.
"Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?"
~ Mary Oliver
Lots of Love,