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#3300 - Thursday, September 25, 2008 - Editor: Jerry Katz
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This is an excerpt from Embracing the Now: Finding Peace and Happiness In What Is, by Gina Lake.
I've only started reading this book, and will write a review when I'm finished. It is startlingly clear.
On the mainstream nondual spirituality front, Gina Lake is a contender for top author/top teacher honors, along with Eckhart Tolle. Both she and this book have what it takes.
I recommend reading the first few pages at Amazon.com. Read the first few pages and order at Amazon.com
Surrendering to the Now
Surrender is really just acceptance: You surrender to, or accept, the way things arethe way life is showing up right now. From the standpoint of the ego, surrender and acceptance seem so difficult. Thats because the ego doesnt want to accept life, and that will never change. You will never get the ego to accept life. Resistance to acceptance is the egos natural state. When you are identified with it, you feel resistance to life, but when you are not, you naturally accept life. When you get in touch with the real you, accepting life just happens.
During your day, you have many experiences of being surrendered to life as it is. You may not notice those moments because you move through them so smoothly and peacefully. The moments of resistance are the ones you notice because they make you feel like you have a problem. You are taken farther out of the now as you try to fix the problem by doing something to try to feel better, such as eating, fantasizing, shopping, watching TV, or other escapist activities.
Escapist activities are ones that cause us to become unconscious of our feelings, including our feelings of resistance to life. We cope with feelings and other aspects of life that we are resisting by avoiding the experience we are having and doing something that will distract us and hopefully give us some pleasure. We seek relief from the pain of resisting life by seeking pleasure. Thats how the ego copes with life. The irony is that the ego is what creates the resistance, and therefore the sufferingnot life. The egos solution to its own resistance is to seek pleasure. When you are identified with the ego, you are involved in this cycle of avoiding pain and seeking pleasure.
Thats one way of being in life, but theres another way. Surrender is the way out of this cycle. When you surrender to life as it is, you experience a simple joy and fullness thats much more satisfying than any pleasure you could experience. The simple joy of just being is complete enough. Nothing needs to be added or subtracted. The moment just flows into the next, without the need to change or fix anything about it.
Surrender allows you to experience life as it is unfolding, instead of experiencing your resistance to it. When you are identified with the ego, you arent experiencing life but, rather, your resistance to it. Youre actually missing the experience of the now because youre not in the now but in your thoughts about the nowand that is a very different experience.
Your thoughts about the now are never like being in the now, even when your thoughts are pleasant. Thoughts are just one aspect of the now, and if you ignore everything else that is coming out of the now, youll have a very narrowand dryexperience of life. Life cant be replaced by thoughts about it. The only way to really experience life is to say yes to itto surrender to what is going on right nowall of itnot just your thoughts about it. When you say no to it, you get caught up in the minds story about the moment and its resistance, and you suffer.
The way out of this suffering is to notice the egos resistance to life and ignore it. Every time that resistance arises, you notice it and then bring yourself back to the experience you are having right here and nowhow your body is feeling, what you are sensing, what you are being moved to do, and what intuitions are arising. You just stay here in the now. What you discover is that the now feels good and is rich and ever-changing. From the now, life is not experienced as a problem. The mind is the only thing that makes life into a problem.
Once you see that its possible to relegate the mind to the background and just enjoy the moment, you will choose to do that more and more. Surrendering to life is not hard at all. It happens simply and naturally when you stop paying attention to your minds version of life and start paying attention to life itself as it is coming out of the now. Theres something else to do besides think! And that is to noticeto be aware of what is happening now. Look, feel, listen, sense, and you will drop into the now.
Copyright © 2008 by
Embracing the Now: Finding Peace and Happiness In What Is, by Gina Lake.
Read the first few pages and order at Amazon.com
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