I was talking with a coaching client the other day.
We were exploring a reactive pattern that has limited his creativity and joy in work and life. It’s trying to control things, people, events.
It’s something he learned as a child as a way of staying safe in a chaotic environment. The lesson “took” and decades later, he’s a master controller. Only now, he sees how this pattern is eroding what he truly wants to create. What to do?
First: don’t do anything.
Just be aware of the patterns. Notice all the patterns that arise when you try to “change yourself.” Discover, experientially how the conditioned self is not one thing.
The conditioned self is a network of interwoven and often contradictory patterns.
One pattern wants to say “Yes” to controlling (or the pattern of your choice) and another pattern wants to say “No.”
One pattern wants to eat the chocolate and another pattern objects.
The conditioned self is a tangle of contradictory patterns.
Each pattern is intent on fulfilling its own needs and goals. In many wisdom traditions, this contradictory condition is called the Inner War.
Your life can be a casualty the inner war.
Your happiness is the first and perpetual casualty. How can you stop the war and bring peace to the land?
You know what I’m going to say . . . meditate, meditate, mediate.
How does meditation bring peace and end the inner war?
As you meditate, you bring:
- Coherence to the brain
- Peace to the mind
These two qualities, one neurological and the other psychological, support and strengthen each other. Together they create the conditions that end the inner war. But ending the inner war isn’t the end of the awakening process. As peace comes to the land . . . a new question arises.
Who are you without your patterns?
Let this question resonate within your consciousness. Don’t answer too quickly. Allow the question itself to peel away the layers of conditioning; let it reveal it’s own ever-deepening answer.
Breathe this question.
And let it breathe you.
It’s not a question of controlling versus letting go. As you follow this question, all versus dissolves into uncontrived revelation. So . . .
Who are you without your conditioned patterns?
Share your wisdom in the comments below.
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