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No Specific Action Is Required
Marlon: Hi, Ram. It’s been thick with experiences that I would rather not be having. I have made concentrated efforts to find a job, but came up with nothing. So on this front I am more or less in resignation. My resources are nil and my enthusiasm is about the same. Maybe I’m afraid of the rejection or failing, but I also have no real desire for the world again. Well, maybe the more specific truth is that I would be quite content to “do the work” of my preferences, but I have no interest in competing by constantly selling myself for the privilege. And on doing the work – there is anxiety of doing it poorly. Homelessness is looming. Now, I know well enough that I am the illuminator of all of my experience, that it is all happening in me. The mere return of attention to this self-knowledge alters my experience immensely. The world is then made of Teflon – nothing can stick to it, for nothing can stick to me. It is just a beautiful appearance and it is not limited to desirable occurrences but to my being free of what is happening.
My story is just a story – in spite of being the source of a frustrating and disturbing experience. It remains a challenge for me, to not be anxious about being homeless, etc. And I’m trying to be more authentic with that experience when it’s here – otherwise I’m struggling with it. Ignoring it doesn’t seem like a valid solution. It seems life would be more pleasant with a change – and I haven’t seemed to be able to make the story different, because the story itself seems to be an invitation to address itself.
I can stop and see the world dissolve in my view, into me – and then I “need” to return to matters. Why do the matters persist to be difficult? Can a specific action be required?
Sorry for going on about my “psychology/karma” – but this is what’s happening and I would be interested in your response.
~ With love, Marlon
James: Hi, Marlon. You seem to hit the nail on the head when you say, “…the story seems to be an invitation to address itself.” In a nutshell, it is the story of someone who doesn’t understand the connection between awareness and the reflected self, the Marlon program. You can make a different story by creating a different story.
Resignation is not a particularly useful emotion and denial does not work. Your statement, “Why do matters persist to be difficult?,” implies that they should not be difficult, assuming, I suppose, that you are awareness. They are difficult because you did not keep your eye on the money-ball. You chased the spiritual thing and let the money thing slide. It is best to do both; do your work with the karma yoga attitude. This way the money comes in and your mind gets purified.
In reality the “why” doesn’t matter, Marlon. Things ARE difficult. They only become easy when you change your view of them. Evidently, you have not assimilated karma yoga, because that should take care of the story. The story is that life is not giving you what you want and it is frightening you. You have allowed the expectation that life should be easy to sap your self-confidence because you were successful once.
I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating. Life does not care what you know about yourself – as should be apparent by now – and it delivers results according to the actions – or not-actions – that you do. In your case you pursued moksa with your actions and you got an understanding of who really are, but you did not take care of the apparent you. If you pursue money, you get money. If you pursue awareness, you get awareness. Isvara gives according to the nature of your actions. The karma field is blind to moksa. Just knowing who you are does not change your karma. It should change the way you understand karma and the one for whom karma is an issue, i.e. Marlon.
But the solution you know very well. I like this statement of yours because it is true: “I know well enough that I am the illuminator of all of my experience, that it is all happening in me. The mere return of attention to this self-knowledge alters my experience immensely. The world is then made of Teflon – nothing can stick to it, for nothing can stick to me.”
This is the “view” I mentioned in the paragraph above.
In the end, the confusion boils down to who you understand yourself to be: awareness or the reflected self and the relationship between them. Marlon, the story, is you, meaning it is manufactured out of your awareness. But you are not Marlon. It is good to see that you understand that it is just a story. Nonetheless, you have to keep the Marlon story going till the day you die. I know it is a real bother, but that is the way it is. I like stories. I keep the Jim/Ram story going because I like Jim/Ram.
No, no specific action is required, Marlon. What is required is a change of mind. You need to find the upside in this situation and let that inspire you. With the kind of energy you are packing, nothing is going to work out properly.
There is nothing to say about awareness once you understand what it is. I hope Marlon doesn’t end up homeless, but if that is what Isvara has in mind it will have good consequences, no matter how it seems now.
~ Love, Ram