As parents, we’ve all watched our young children sit and play like little happy campers. Quite honestly when you watch them, it appears that their play is nonsensical at times. They don't really appear to be doing much of anything, yet they appear to be perfectly content.
I remember being young and playing in my bedroom. When I was playing, I never felt like I was missing out on anything. I was just content playing. I was content in simply just being.
Oh my, how things have changed. Just the other day, I was working on a project that was set out in the garage. The garage where I live is not attached to the house and is a good little walk away from it. When I set out to head to the garage, I worked to be fully present and just allow myself to be.
Well, for the entire walk to the garage, all I could feel was tension in my body. There was no carefree experience of being. There was just a part of me that wanted to be anywhere else but where I was and doing what I was doing in the moment.
How did something that should be the most natural thing in the world for us, become so unnatural to us?
The truth is that over time, we have unknowingly given our attention to a wrong part of our self. By giving our constant attention to that wrong part, we have fed it our energy through that attention, and as such, it has become our God and guide. That part of us is divided and conflicted. When we live from it, we ARE divided, and we ARE conflicted. When we are divided and conflicted, it is impossible to simply be.
A conflicted nature has to have conflict to sustain itself. Doesn’t that make sense? It can’t simply be because conflict and division IS its nature.
Conflict doesn’t necessarily mean that I am fighting with another. Conflict can simply mean being caught up in thought’s dialogue (giving our attention to it) and whatever those thoughts may be spewing. Truthfully speaking, conflict always starts inwardly and manifests itself outwardly.
Have you noticed in your own life, how difficult it is to give your attention to one thing, whether it be to your 5-year old child who is trying to tell you something, or to simply sit and work on a project?
There is this constant inner push to place your attention everywhere else other than on where it should be placed in the moment. Check your email. Check social media. Hurry and get this thing done. Eat something. Move something that is out of place. Do anything but stay attentive to what is right before you. Quite fascinating it is to say the least.
This consciousness is deep in the muck of itself and it takes quite the effort to be attentive and not do what it is always trying to push us to do. The pressure is strong in its demand for us to remain conflicted.
However, no effort goes unrewarded. We can’t have an idea of an outcome or a gage on how we are doing. We need to just work to be as attentive as possible to ourselves in each and every moment. The more we place our attention on the present moment instead of the past conflicted nature, the more we will unlearn what has been unconsciously learned and patterned in ourselves.
There is pain in that unlearning. That pain is sometimes referred to as conscious suffering. We consciously suffer the unconscious parts of ourselves that were learned without our being attentive to them.
That is the road of undoing, of unlearning. As long as there is no change in the current level of our being, the personal history of mankind remains the same. It’s that simple really.
In our heart of hearts, we all wish to just be. Don’t you feel the beauty in that? Don’t you remember? Just being is truly living. Living from the conflicted nature is what has made life complicated.
Exercise for the Week: Spend some time with your child and just be with him or her. No agenda. Just be.
Image Courtesy of: Pixabay