Thursday, November 15, 2012

Self-Condemnation Epidemic Facing Us

When we begin to understand the powers of mind, we stop feeling sorry for ourselves. There are far too many of us wallowing in our own self-condemnation. The world seems to have defeated us or turned us into helpless victims of our own beliefs.

There is a quote in Seeds from the Ashes that says, "Who is responsible for changing the way someone thinks, acts, works, and lives?"

And when we think about this question for a few minutes, it doesn't take long to realize "..that each individual, regardless of his or her state of affairs, is responsible for changing the way he or she thinks and lives."

Regardless of how many times we hear that we are personally responsible for the conditions in our lives, many of us find that it's too difficult for us to accept this responsibility. We continue to blame outside sources for being responsible for the decisions we make.

In other words, our environment, parents, racism, poverty, and so forth are the culprits.  For example, we are alcoholics or drug addicts because of the way our parents treated us. Or we believe we are uneducated, unemployed, or misinformed about politics, government, economics, and religion because of limited opportunities available to us.

Many of us use this heuristic methodology to remain in a perpetual state of self-condemnation and victimization. We seek solutions for our problems by blaming others for the way we feel about ourselves. And the more we condemn ourselves, the more power we give to others to maintain their power over us. 

It is time for some of us to stop kidding ourselves and open our minds to clearly see what's happening in our lives. This process begins with our awareness that we cannot find power in another person, because our power comes from within our minds.

When we search for power in others, we become victims of Hero worshipping, which contributes to self-condemnation. Whenever we worship the accomplishment of others, we denigrate our own accomplishments.

In many instances, we trick ourselves into believing we are proud of what others have accomplished. Yet, at the deeper level of our awareness, we wish we could have made these accomplishments. And by wishing and hoping, we remain on a desultory path with our enlightenment work.

There are only so many ways to talk about enlightenment. And most of us have heard them all. So it is no longer about talk, but doing the work. Some of us like to talk too much about problems and illusory solutions. We find enjoyment in dancing with the illusions like drunks slurring on  bar stools.

Let's wake-up our minds  to become curious about what is unknown. The time for waking up the mind begins with our feeling the sharp points of the pain in our lives. In other words, we feel our suffering and our fears about it.

Meanwhile, with intense suffering comes feelings of liberation. We want to rid ourselves of suffering, but we don't believe we have the power to do so. Some of us seek a Messiah to do the work for us. And while we rationalize that this power is in us, our minds, we search for it within the illusions.

Now is the time to recognize that we are the Messiah for our lives. In other words, we must liberate our minds from the darkness created by the illusions.

It's important to know that we must do the work ourselves. We cannot continue to wait, when we have been endowed with all the power we need to free our minds from the illusions. The paradise we seek is found in our own minds.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Beyond the Fears of Failure

It's not difficult to fail. Most of us at one time or another in our lives have felt the sting of failure. It's a pain that we feel for a long time.

When we think about failure, we understand that failure is not preplanned. In other words, we don't consciously plan to create situations that cause us to fail.

Whenever we plan for something, we do so with expectations of accomplishing our goals. We create goals to make us feel good about ourselves. And we feel good when we achieve them, and not so good when we don't.

 Nevertheless, many of us never achieve the success we planned for, or in many instances, dreamt. And whenever we don't achieve our dreams, we question our abilities to make it in life. These questions or doubts are responsible for our failures.

Let's face it, most of us feel badly whenever we fail to accomplish our goals. We want so very much to feel noticed by others because of our accomplishments.

Unfortunately, our need for recognition only plunges us deeper into the abyss of failure. The more we try to keep up or compete with others, the more failures we create in our lives. Sometimes we create failures and believe they are successes.

Some of us have never done much in this world to even be noticed by people outside of our families and friends. Our obituaries highlight our mediocrity or, in the case of most of us, our failures.

It's unfortunate, but most of our failures exist because of our reluctance to examine our beliefs and values. We are afraid of what's in our minds. We don't want to face the beliefs and values responsible for our mediocrity. 

While we eschew beliefs of mediocrity or anonymity, most of our beliefs and values produce these results in our lives. And when we realize our minds are adrift in a sea of mediocrity, we become afraid of ourselves. We don't like what we see.

A little clarity goes a long way in assisting us with understanding our relationship with mediocrity and anonymity. And whether we like it or not, while we travel unnoticed on invisible vessels of failure, we must not allow ourselves to drown in the sea of life.

Similarly, we must be willing to admit to ourselves that deep inside of us is a burning desire to be great, successful, even powerful icons for others to aspire. And this unfulfilled desire is greater than  the vacuous platitudes coming from those whom we expect to say them.

At the core of our being, we want people to know we're alive, and proud of who we are. And we want them to know we're greater than their judgments of us.

Nevertheless, most of us must change our attitudes or the way we think about ourselves. We must stop condemning ourselves for our perceived mistakes or failures.

Unfortunately, whenever we condemn ourselves for not measuring up to others' expectations of us, we cripple our minds with illusions of failure. In other words, we condemn ourselves for being ourselves.

Yet with a little clarity, we can clearly understand that success and failure are judgments we use to define our actions, and compare ourselves to others.   We must remain mindful that enlightened minds cannot comprehend failure.

Powers of mind or enlightenment is nothing more than seeing ourselves without the distortions coming from our beliefs and values. And without the distortions, we can clearly see ourselves with the power to overcome our beliefs and values.

Meanwhile, regardless of our present conditions -- unemployment, poverty, obesity, addiction, avarice, insatiable cupidity, so forth -- we are successful whenever we accept ourselves as such. The mind games begin and end in our individual minds.

The mind has the power to go beyond what we have been taught by others.