January 29, 2014

What’s the Difference Between Darkness & Light?

In the 1980s, I was facilitating leadership develop programs at a Fortune 100 company.

One day I was asked to make a presentation about the programs to a group of executives.

Imagine this: the meeting room was windowless.

The walls were covered with a dreary gray fabric. I was seated in a plastic chair on the perimeter of the room waiting for my turn to present. The executives sat in padded leather chairs around a wide conference table listening to the person I was to follow.

Then, suddenly— the room was plunged into darkness. Total darkness.

Here’s why:

The company had installed motion-sensitive lights in all the conference rooms to save money on utility bills. This meant that the lights would go off automatically whenever the room was empty.

So, what happened? The room wasn’t technically empty. But, movement had ceased to the degree that the sensors assumed nobody was in the room.

In a sense, no one was present, because there’s a huge difference between being present and being in the room.

Just as there’s a huge difference between conditional living and embodying your life purpose.

You can be really, really busy with a full schedule of activities and still be lifeless.

You can set goals, check off action items, follow the dictates of conditioning without being present. You and I could spend a lifetime without being present.

We could live our lives in the dark . . . if we don’t heed the Call.

The Call beckons you to realize, embody, and fulfill your life purpose. To enter, more deeply, more fully, more consistently your true life. But, here’s the thing—following the Call isn’t about being famous, winning an award, or filling your bank account to overflowing.

We’re all conditioned to seek fulfillment in cultural symbols.

We’ve been conditioned to seek safety, approval and control through cultural symbols.

To accumulate things like the car, the house, the body, the mate, the money . . . insert your symbol of choice.

You were taught, in so many different ways that If you accumulate enough of the right symbols – you’ll be fulfilled.

That’s called living in the dark.

You may or may not get those things. Either way, it isn’t the heart of the matter.

Getting things doesn’t turn on the light. And there’s a very good reason why.

Because, the light is already on.

The light of wisdom, creativity, bliss is already on. You don’t turn the light on—you turn towards it.

You attune to it, open to it, and allow it to live through you and as you more effortlessly.

In moments of darkness, when you feel lost, tangled up in doubts and fears it’s easy to get mesmerized by the darkness. To fixate on the confusion rather than turn towards the light. That’s the time when spiritual practice becomes so essential.

Spiritual practice builds your capacity to turn towards the light. And spiritual practice is more than formal meditation. It includes your whole life: relationship, work, health, money…everything in your life is integral to your spiritual practice.

By relating to everything—yes, everything —with an undefended heart, you build the psychological proclivity and the neurological strength that allows you to heed the Call—when it matters most.

There’s no need to stumble around in the dark. Not when the light is already on.

When you turn towards the light, your vision deepens.

This uncovers the sacred in the very conditions of your life. You find huge blessings that were previously veiled in the tangle of your conditioning.

You find your path.

Your path is not some generic spiritual idea.

It’s unique to you. Your path will lead you past the boundaries of what you know—beyond fantasy—into the unknown domain of deeper blessings.


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 Editor: Bryonie Wise

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