Thursday, November 2, 2017

What are you suffering?

Are you suffering worry? Are you suffering pain? Are you suffering trauma? Are you suffering stress? Some spiritual traditions suggest that to be human is to suffer. Well, to be human means we feel emotions and we have an active mind. And we want to be loved. And we want to be happy.
So consider this question…………If you didn’t think would you suffer? If you mind didn’t go round and round, would you suffer? If your mind didn’t come up with doubts and interpretations, would you suffer?
I am suggesting that your mind creates the suffering. If you didn’t think so much about whatever is going on or worrying you, then you wouldn’t suffer.  So you might then think: well I can control my mind with positive thinking and affirmations.
Trouble is, your willpower will only work for a while and then the other stuff will creep back in. Before changing your thinking to positive thoughts you need to face whatever is bugging you.
Recently I had something bugging me. It meant that I lost sleep for a few nights. My mind was going intensely, over and over the whole situation and the memories associated with it. A variety of emotions were being felt. And I did allow myself to feel them. I felt them in my body. Then I thought about them, and because our thoughts keep the emotion there, I felt them some more. Eventually though, I dropped through them into a place of stillness and from there clarity arose.  As in, what I needed to do. The important thing is to do what I sense is right for me. Not what someone else says to do, or what someone asks me to do, or what my mind suggests I could do, but what is right from my deepest truth.
Here’s my formula to escape suffering.
1.      1.  Let emotions be felt as they arise. If we feel them in the body without the thoughts about why they are there, then they dissolve.
2.       2. Acceptance of how you feel about the situation. Acceptance about your own feelings allows your body to relax. In this relaxing, solutions and possibilities will arise. If you are tense you close off to ways to change the situation.
3.       3. If you have past trauma, and you are aware that it’s affecting you, seek a safe helper to guide you to feel and release the internal trauma.
4.       4. Exercise self care. Think (give your mind a job to do!) about the food you eat, the exercise you do, comfort, rest, fresh air, the company you enjoy.  If you don’t value yourself enough to take care of yourself, then this is the issue that needs attending to.
5.       5. Don’t believe everything your mind tells you. Be light with your thoughts.
6.       6. Live in the moment. Feel emotions, concentrate on the task you are doing, be present to the person you are having a conversation with. If you need to plan the future, then attend to the task of planning for the future, in this moment.

Remember, inside you are a person of value. You are someone worth respecting, so respect yourself first and then others will respect you.

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