We’ll often come across insights that seem small and simple at first, but are packed with life-changing meaning upon closer examination. Here are some examples that have affected us profoundly in our journey through this reality.
There are two motivations: to fulfill desires and to escape suffering.
People are not inherently bad. Sometimes, they just seem bad because they are doing whatever it takes to fulfill these two motivating factors of life.
For most of us, we are simply using the basis of experience and upbringing to either achieve our desires or make sure we’re not uncomfortable.
Destructive behavior is mostly unconscious: while it is happening, one is scarcely aware that what one is doing harm.
We Shouldn’t Be Proud Of Our Beliefs.
Our beliefs are nothing but a rigid, unchanging perspective on something. Not only should one not be proud of these mindsets, one should seek to escape them.
This is because the more vehemently one believes, the less open one is to wisdom. Wisdom comes from questioning your ideas about things. We grow, and we learn. Hopefully, we also become wiser than we once were.
You Are Not Your Mind
This is a groundbreaking statement from The Power of Now, and is a phrase that tends to make us want to protest. After all, if we’re not our minds, then what are we exactly?
Life is comprised of our experiences, and our thoughts are just one aspect of this.
Think of it this way: if we can observe thoughts in the same way that we can observe things outside of us, then who is observing, exactly? The answer is the basis of all human spirituality.
To Live Is To Suffer…And We Are Really Good At Suffering.
It’s easy to believe that if you are suffering, you are doing something wrong. On the contrary, the experience of suffering is normal, and there is a very good evolutionary explanation. The survival of species depends on the feeling of discomfort (“I need to fix this”) combined with brief moments of adrenaline spike (“fight or flight…or die”). Our suffering, therefore, is a powerful survival mechanism. Once we have insight on this fact, we can become liberated from it.
Life Is A Series Of Moments.
We are often stressed out at the concept of our entire lives unfolding before us, and attempting to prepare for what may come.
When we attempt to solve our lives this way, we fail. Instead, we can deal with life’s only true challenge: this moment, right now. Anyone can resolve to do this.
Our Emotions Make Us Biased.
Emotions are not very reliable indicators of where we are in life. They are but a passing state, and can’t be trusted to measure anything so important as this. However, they are a good teacher, in that they can show us that which we have difficulty letting go.
High Quality Of Life Is How We Deal With Our Moments, Not What Moments We Have.
Lastly, we have an example of what true happiness actually is. Everyone has unpleasant situations in life. The mark of true wisdom and joy is willingly encountering these situations, just like we would in a pleasant situation. This way, we can never really suffer.