What Stops You From Making Needed Changes in Your Life?

Changes that we make which truly enhance the quality of our lives often only come after we have had enough of what we DON’T want. But this is tricky business because we usually find ways to divert ourselves from having enough with: sex, drugs, rock ‘n’ roll, facebook, sports, movies, TV, sleep, work, etc. So we pine for quality of life, but we rarely take the steps necessary to get there.
If we REALLY want to change our lives, we have to STOP diverting ourselves from the pain and anxiety of our lives. The diversion only supports the pain in the long run. And having enough gives us the energy and passion to make changes that help transform our lives into greater satisfaction, greater creativity, and a greater understanding of how to stop creating hell and start creating heaven! Love…

Subhan Schenker's photo.


Are we Entertaining ourselves to death?

Diversions and distractions seem to be a way of life for most of us, whether it is sex, drugs, rock and roll, movies, the internet, or whatever. We’re all trying to get away from the anxiety, worry, fear and tension that the mind produces on a moment-to-moment level.
So when does it become clear that this process of diversion doesn’t really work? Yes, it gives us moments of forgetting. But, how much of what we DON’T want do we have to get, before we can say, “Enough!” Isn’t it time to recognize that the increasing levels of “entertainment” we are bombarded with are there to camouflage the fact that we are just surviving the few years we have here?
Just wondering…

A Bold, Yet Obvious Statement about Our Lives…

I’d like to make a bold, yet obvious statement today:

We have all spent lifetimes running away.

From the pain, shock, shame, anger, sadness and more, we have been diverting ourselves and not effectively dealing with the real underlying issues of our pain.
The diversions are everywhere and universal: sex, drugs, rock and roll, the internet, movies and tv, reading, sleeping, etc.
Running away has been the main strategy for almost everyone, including me…and it is very understandable.
I feel tremendous compassion for the part of me that insists on running away.
To that part, it seems like it is the only option to a feeling of tremendous, overwhelming, unbearable pain and feeling lost.
I have discovered that it is only when I have had enough of what I don’t want, that I begin moving towards the REAL resolution to the pain…and that is to go inside and find out if what the mystics say is true – that there is a place within where there is no pain!
The difficulty is that I have to pass THROUGH pain to get there!!!
But thirty five years of moving inside tell me that the pain isn’t nearly as big as the mind says it is. And, the pain of running away is actually BIGGER!

It isn’t by accident that you and I have met here. It tells me that that this is your work too. And it is clear to me that wherever you and I are on the path of self-discovery, it is EXACTLY where we are supposed to be.
So in that understanding, we can relax a little…take a couple of deep breaths…and continue on…!
I am glad to be a part of a sangha (people on the path of discovery) here on facebook, where we can sit and connect and support one another through the challenges of life!

What is essential in life?

What is essential in life? According to the dictionary essential is something that is “absolutely necessary; indispensable.”

If I look at the body, what comes up are the obvious ones: food, water and sleep. These are essential for the body to stay alive. I also add touch as an essential, at least for me. But beyond those, is there anything else that is essential? Is there something essential for a deeper part of me? Here I shift to Osho’s definition of the word:

“The essential is a beautiful word, it comes from essence. The essential feeds your essence, hence it is called essential. The nonessential only decorates your surface; the nonessential remains on the circumference, it never reaches to the center of your being. Only the essential reaches to the center.”

“The essential [things] are against your mind. The mind is continuously afraid of allowing any truth to enter you. It finds a thousand and one ways to avoid the truth, because the truth is going to shatter it. It allows only that which is supportive. And because mind itself is rubbish, it collects rubbish, and very joyously.”

In preparing for facilitating the Awareness Intensive, I have been gathering quotes from Osho and, also inquiring within myself what is this essence within, and what is nonessential to it. If I am alert, I know that the mind makes many choices of things that are clearly nonessential. I call them distractions or diversions. They are very powerful and are constantly calling me! I am aware that there is an internal conflict, and at times, I can hear a small voice within telling me what is nonessential.

Again, I turn to Osho for guidance:

“[Y]our circumference is thick, it does not allow the essential to reach to the center; it hinders. It is a strategy of the mind, because if your being becomes more powerful, the mind loses its grip on you. There is a great conflict between the circumference and the center: who is going to dominate whom? The circumference is dominating. The circumference only allows that which nourishes it, and does not allow that which nourishes the essence — and everything has to pass through the circumference.”

“Scientists say that only two percent is allowed to reach to the core; ninety-eight percent is prevented from reaching. That’s why you have poor souls — rich minds and poor souls, knowledgeable minds but foolish souls. You don’t have wisdom. Unless you start doing something deliberately about it, this is going to remain so. Mind loves the nonessential; it is always hungry for gossip. Something utterly useless, and it listens so attentively.

“You will have to be very conscious, you will have to learn two things. One: the moment you see something nonessential is there, don’t pay any attention to it, bypass it. There is no need even to look at it, there is no need to read it.”

“Once you have started living in the essential, slowly slowly many things that you used to do before — going to the movies, reading the novels, seeing the TV, listening to the radio, gossiping with people — start disappearing. And the energy that is involved in them becomes available for the essential.”

“Beware of the nonessential.
Nobody can force you, if you are aware, to cling to the nonessential. And if you don’t cling to the nonessential, if you don’t gather the nonessential, passages will be available from the circumference to the center, and the essential can go in.”