- Mental Health
Take Responsibility for Your Life
Money Doesn't Buy It
Somewhere on a dusty suburb alley of Rio de Janeiro a little soccer playing rascal is glowing with pride, because he has just scored another goal for his team. He may not remember when was the last time he had a decent meal, and those stolen apples certainly don't count; but his muscles are lean and strong, his eyes shiny, skin healthy and smooth. Coming from that empty gut is quite a happy laughter. He is impressed by himself, loving his simple life.
Half the globe up north, a rich man's kid is having another boring day, as he is sitting by the glittering swimming pool and texting his friend sitting right beside him. This impersonal form of communicating just fits his flat emotionality void of love and any passion since he is spending his childhood at the end of a receiving line, getting everything, not wishing for anything. That poker face is pale and sprinkled with pimples, and flab is hiding that leftover of muscles never used.
Life is DOING
That very spark of life in our body cells depends on our will to live, will to do whatever it may take. We even do our sleep - otherwise we wouldn't know when to terminate it in the morning. If someone just whispers our name we'll wake up, while we are bound to ignore those fire engine sirens from the road.
It takes a part of us constantly being on alert, constantly doing that "function of sleeping" with all that it involves, including renewal of the cells, healing, and recharging our batteries for the next day.
When I meditate, and I have been doing it for more than four decades, I know it's not a "passive state", but an active mobilizing of peace, by derailing that train of thoughts, by turning the volume down on that inner chatter, by willfully relaxing muscles, and seeking that divine presence of that unfathomable part of me that's blending with "everything". Indeed, even those seemingly most "passive" aspects of our being don't mean passivity.
So why not do our life consciously and responsibly?
Happy Doers, Unhappy Takers
Goodies of life in all forms may come our way, but unless we went after them and got them, they are not felt as winnings and blessings. By "doing" I don't mean what we routinely do for living and for a hobby, but all aspects of our intentional affecting our life and all persons included in it. It's what we do out of love, affection, passion, accepted challenges, and the way we bounce back on our feet before the referee has counted to ten in the arena of life.
Those unfortunate folks tormented by anxieties, worries, and depression are giving us an example of what "doing" is not. For, no matter how much you try to show your support, compassion, and even offer a helping hand, they won't get on their feet until they pull themselves by bootstraps and make that move, start doing whatever it takes.
Victim Syndrome - I
Whole nations are displaying either the gutsiness of doers or mousiness of takers, who don't really benefit much in a long run by all those donations, while having accepted that as their way of life - just like those whole generations in a same family of welfare recipients. Such nations have a sickness of victimhood in their mentality - coupled with greed of their rulers in whose interest it is to keep them in the state of dependence, to prevent a spirit of democracy to awaken.
However, before we start feeling sorry for them too much, we might as well recognize something similar, although in much more sophisticate form going on in so called democratic societies.
Victim Syndrome - II
Namely, governments are making sure that masses don't get spiritually strong by developing a sense of responsibility to their life, as that could inspire them to ask some very uncomfortable questions - also in ways that could be detrimental to the institution of government as being practiced.
So, all we are likely to hear is about our responsibility "to the country" (basically meaning obedience to the administration in power) - nothing about responsibility to ourselves. Those who have "given their lives for the country" are an excellent advertisement for that policy.
As the result of the joint effort of political, religious, medical, and media establishment, "we should just be happy for being protected from enemies (we the people who never created them), well informed (oftentimes with a bunch of lies), healed (by expensive chemicals and scalpel), and even booked for an afterlife (by you know whom).
To Have what You Like - Start Liking what You Have
My own inner and outer life started turning around when I decided to see all my experiencing as of my own make. The incredible sense of power over my life came out of realization how it made absolutely no sense to first create some useless mind constructs, and then waste time on bitching about my own creation as if that was something that had nothing to do with me but was attached to "bad luck" or something.
That's when I also got to that life-saving idea to start liking whatever I got, in my head, in my heart, in and on my body, and at the other side of the world. I saw how I was perpetuating a conflict of tendencies in myself, and that vicious cycle of conflict had to be broken.
So I started consciously liking all that, "warts and all", to stop putting fuel on the conflict, to find peace - because I intuitively knew that peace was the only basis for any other next step, if I was to evolve into something better than me-of -the-last-year. And I couldn't see any better use for my time left on this planet.
How Does It Work?
Liking what we have sounds like a full time job, and that's what it is at the beginning, until it becomes a part of our automatic nature - just like conflict used to be. We didn't need anything in particular to make us pissed off - we did it out of habit. "Here it is, I am all pissed off, and now let me see what I am going to pick to be pissed off about".
Hey folks, I know it's a kind of weird and hard to believe, but once we get into that "function mode" it doesn't matter what stressor we'll choose to feed it. On the reverse side, what do you think what made Bob Hope, or Robin Williams, or any other biggie in the field of humor so capable to improvise on the spot, without any rehearsals? They put themselves (with a trained ease) into that mode where everything can be seen as funny, and so it just came to them.
Liking what we have we trigger the same mechanism, and if we are to believe in "Happy go lucky", or all that law of attraction (actually based on it) - we soon start getting things in life that we can REALLY like. Metaphorically, you like the rain and clouds go away to cater to your "liking" - you hate the rain, and you get a downpour, to have something more to hate.
In this article I tried to make obvious the urgency of accepting responsibility for all of our experiencing - pretty much based upon my own experience and observation over the last seven decades, minus the time I spent blaming everyone and everything, which was quite short.
As you look around, and maybe even at the very fabric of your own "destiny" so far, you may easily come to the same conclusion - we are letting everyone and everything be credited or guilty for whatever has been happening to us. Well, I hope some of these shared thoughts might make that same difference for you as they made for me - and still do.