As Within; So Without
Happiness is where we start. It’s at the heart of us. It is what we are before we layer on all the trappings of hope for an acceptable outcome, expectation that the outcome won’t be acceptable, and resistance to what has come before, to what is, and what will be. Resistance is always to what is, even though it seems locked into patterns of past or future. It’s expended energy right now, right here in reaction to a thought that shares the moment with us or more accurately stated – an awareness of thought known by an awareness of sensations and perceptions that crafts the image of an us, arising in awareness of perceived time and space – all wrapped up in fear of what did, is or may unfold.
It is self-denial and self-negation in the form of self-protection, the ultimate joy avoidance scheme.
It plays out in our heads. It doesn’t seem quite right to use the word play because it usually doesn’t feel playful. It feels like a mind going round and round in the spin cycle of the washing machine, simple spinning, dotted with out of balance rough spots. Have you noticed it – that thought cruising for trouble, bruising the empty all-possible now, and seemingly oozing expectations that something will go wrong.
Where’s the choice in those thoughts? You’re standing at the bathroom counter, washing your face, and there it is – floating through – that won’t work out … the weather won’t hold … gosh it’s going to cost more than I was told … it always costs more – or some other equally nonsensical story.
It hasn’t happened yet. How would you know? That’s just your luck, your life? Hmmm … nothing ever changes … so it must be.
And then sure enough – it doesn’t work out. The guy doesn’t show up. The weather goes to slush and it ends up costing more. Did you create that with your thought? Not that powerful? Perhaps the thought was a prophecy of what was coming? Are you really that prescient? Just luck? Get thee to the nearest casino.
None of those questions matter when the bottle of red wine is all over the floor. It’s done. It happened. The question that does matter though is, “Could it have been different?”
Not this expression. What is, is what is. You can’t alter what is. The wine is already spilled. What is, is constantly altering itself though, as the expression of the expressionless continues to emerge, flow forth and return, as the infinity loop – the energetic exchange of Invisible and visible – courses, change is not only possible, but guaranteed. Significant change happens without as change happens within – not a forced change, a mantra of new thought, but the natural effect of living: of being, of demanding, of loving, of resisting. It spirals into expansion or contraction with each embodiment of love and fear.
Has life readied you? Are you cooked? Has your awareness undergone sufficient shift to usher in a different expression? Was this last thought, this last bruising of the one who needs, who wants, the last straw? If not, carry on, for carry on you will. Thought will out. I watched thoughts come and go for years before I finally understood that it didn’t have to be that way.
Life mirrors our inner exactly. It’s not that the world is our mirror so much as life can’t help itself. It must spin out what we feel, what we feel about others, ourselves and the world. We are the infinity loop. That’s why there are 8 billion worlds – each one is the mirror for that unique expression of the divine. I can be right next to you, experiencing the exact same event and while you are certain life is hell, I will be standing in heaven. As within, so without; as above, so below. If only we understood the true meaning of that. Life on this planet would change drastically.
This is the enlightened self-interest reason for doing the inner work – the reason we start along the spiritual path in the first place. We’ve been told that waking up is wondrous, magical, fabulous and it sounds like a great way to get shed of the pain and suffering. Along the way we find out that there are certain unfortunate (for the me) side effects, that getting a better life isn’t exactly what takes place 😉 but by then it’s too late, the slope too slippery, the whole too big, and it feels so right you can’t muster enough resistance to care.
Until we’ve been tenderized, put in the flame and flipped the center, we continue to torture ourselves over and over and over again. We are our own enemy – not a worst enemy – but the only one. We are playing the game of make-believe, pretending we are silly humans, limited and small. We cannot not play the game until the game ends of its own accord, and then, not much changes … everything changes. Heaven and earth collide combine coalesce consolidate. Lines lose their reality. The doer dances without a dance floor or partner. Bogus claims of ownership fall apart. What passed for reality is intimately known to be appearances in awareness; awareness the reality … and the band plays on, music filling the heart and soul, with no one to protest the choice of songs. All that’s left is to gloriously effortlessly miraculously dance.