Saturday, May 11, 2013
Strengthening Openness and Awareness
As our presence strengthens, our awareness broadens and we begin to finally see people. For most of our lives we’ve not really seen anyone. We’ve been seeing our idea of those people. As we open up, we see ourselves in everyone we encounter. Everything anyone ever does is something we’re either capable of doing or have done ourselves, and probably numerous times.
The process of becoming truly present impacts those in our lives. Awareness creates oxygen for the mind, and that oxygen can be ignited so easily by lingering ignorance. And, maintaining our presence and awareness as that oxygen ignites can be very difficult.
We’re going to lose it every now and then. We’re not going to always respond with precision, with care. Being open and aware while being present is not just a switch, it’s an atmosphere that surrounds us and grows as we become more confident with our practice. This atmosphere doesn’t have boundaries or walls; it has openness, it has the light of awareness.
And, when we sit still, when we listen, that can become the target for those around us. We are, after all, remaining stationary and non-reactive in a moving and highly reactive world. We must be open to this happening. We must be open to our presence and our awareness becoming the target. It doesn’t have to harm us. We can do this.
Instead, it can help strengthen us. It can help to expose our sore soft spots, those issues we have yet to resolve within ourselves. We don’t have to continue to be reactive. We can understand that mostly what people are doing is displacing their pain and suffering, perpetuating their ignorance. This is understandable. We’ve been doing that our entire life. It’s completely understandable.
Now, we’re doing something different. We’re determined to be open to whatever arises. We’re determined to be present right here and right now. We’re determined to be aware of what’s going on, not reactive to it. We’re determined to listen to those in our lives, no matter what. And, everyone deserves to be listened to. We all deserve to be heard.
We will have moments where we lose our presence, where we shut down as opposed to open up. We can have patience for ourselves in those moments. We can have compassion for ourselves in those moments. We can even celebrate these moments. These are the best moments to work with. These are moments of exposure that allow us to ventilate the pain and suffering we continue to hold onto, that we’ve ignored for all this time.