As we look at the world around us, we may struggle to find hope about how change is possible. We turn on the news and what greets us is one disaster after another, from war, tyranny, disease to pollution – while many horrors happening are not even being reported on, as they do not fit into any prevailing narrative. Perhaps much like the world, our own lives are also in disarray, as we find ourselves bogged down by our own pain and confusion again and again.
But if we look outside and observe a tree, breathe the fresh air or find ourselves staring calmly into the sky, the world seems without problems, without issues, without demands. What is this magic, what is this miracle to see the world as without fault, even in the midst of turmoil? It is like a flashlight cutting through the darkness, not only temporarily lighting up the room, but also dissolving the very shadows with its own light. If we drop our mental and emotional chatter for a moment and just simply remain as we are, we can find respite from any problems, if only for a short while.
Is it better then to simply remain ignorant of the fog around and within us, interpenetrating our human-made society, even if it is not impacting us in this very moment? Is it better to ignore worldly and even personal problems, to simply walk on the Earth and stare at the sky for the rest of our days?
No. It is important to face our challenges, both personal and global. If we do not they will sooner or later come knocking on our door and pointing their guns in our face. Ignorance is never bliss in the long term. But we cannot really face our challenges if we cannot touch that which is free of problems. There is always a sense of stillness, of peace and presence in every moment. If we focus on where we are, without labeling it, we can experience it, albeit briefly. We can observe not only nature, but everything around us, in a manner that is wordless and thoughtless, as well as just witnessing the space and listening to the silence. It is often in the smallest and most inconsequential things that this stillness is most felt, for there is no mental or emotional content associated with them.
Without having access to this dimension, we cannot really do much. We cannot face our problems effectively and we cannot find creative solutions for problems that we face in our own lives, or indeed find ways to improve the mess that our world has become.
There is good in the world that will always be greater than any shadow. The darkness is simply a lack of light and with it, understanding. If we do not face our shadows we are inherently giving them power, believing they have a reality that dwarfs our own presence and power. This is not so. Neither individual, nor collective challenges, be as gruesome as they may, are ever beyond our reach to resolve. If it feels too difficult, it is simply because we are trapped within the story and have no bird’s eye view of it. We have cut ourselves off from the creative potential of presence and thus spin in circles endlessly. Sometimes we manage to unhook by magic or seeming chance, while in other cases the issue may seem so deep that it follows us for the rest of our lives. Yet if we are tired of the suffering, we can choose to unhook willingly, albeit losing the identity of a suffering self that we have become so accustomed to.
It is the simple things that create the biggest change. Being aware of the stillness and peace, wherever we are, is simple, yet it can yield profound changes, because we are accessing a dimension where problems do not exist. From there creative solutions can be found, emotions and pain can be faced and dissolved, forgiveness and love for oneself and others can be found, joy and peace become possible. It is our mission to bring that peace into everyday life, to integrate it from a dimension we have seemingly forgotten, despite its simple accessibility. To let it become like water washing away the dirt, like a fire burning up everything in its wake.
Whenever you feel overwhelmed with your own problems or that of the world, know that solutions are possible. Access that which is timeless within you and without you. Become present and still and simply observe the world without labels. Look at a tree and do not think about it. You will feel a sense of stillness and peace. Emotions and thoughts will come, many times painful, but now you can embrace them and observe them, until they dissipate, or indeed simply choose to let them go. Creative solutions will arise and you will know how to serve yourself and the world in an optimal manner.
It is highly recommended to face one’s emotional pain, allowing it to surface in a peaceful and safe environment if possible (perhaps during a meditation session), but it is also crucial to be aware of the peace and stillness, for that is the light that helps dispel the darkness more quickly.
At the heart of peace and resolution simplicity will always remain. It is merely the job of complexity to help integrate inherent truth into every aspect of manifestation. But without understanding the root, as simply being, no true diverse tree of understanding can grow.
Once the oasis of stillness is seen, it will gradually expand and slowly interpenetrate your life. It is then that one needs to let the water creep into every area of life, purifying the stream of our consciousness and laying the foundations for a new way of being.