May you be you. May I be me. May we be us.
“Nobody lives, nobody dies. Nothingness lives, nothingness dies. You are not. Have a good laugh at this situation. You are not and you exist. You are not and you are. This is the cosmic joke.” ~ Osho
The genius Albert Einstein said, “Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”
How vocal is your inner critic? How much can you recognize his or her voice? How much can you choose to ignore it?
Are you judging yourself and others using absurd metrics?
We are conditioned to judge and we are constantly judging ourselves and others. Is this really useful?
I am radiant. You are radiant. Let our hearts shine and our voices sing. Let our words whisper of wisdom in our own ears and let ourselves be. Let go when it’s time to let go.
Here are four helpful ways to put our own brilliant radiance in its place. May they be of benefit!
1) Be spontaneous.
When was the last time you did something super random, fun, unplanned, and unexpected? Perhaps it’s been too long.
Be open to wild adventures, whatever that means for you. Listen to your intuition. What do you want to learn? Where do you want to explore? How can you push past boundaries and expand your consciousness?
Last October, I attended a fire-walking workshop. As the sun set over the mountain landscape, I gathered with a dozen strangers and listened to a woman with purple hair repeatedly encouraging everyone not to set up expectations in our minds, which, of course, we were all doing. Mine was, “There is no way I’m going to do it. I didn’t sign up for this!”
We strolled to the spot where a bonfire had been lit two hours prior. There was a carpet of orange and red burning coals, glowing and sparkling in the moonlight that looked magical and mean. I may have said to my friend, “There is no f***ing way I am walking on those.” I definitely said it to myself.
We chanted a Native American prayer: “Earth my body, water my blood, air my breath and fire my spirit!” Soon, a woman walked across the burning coals, and then another and another. I felt a strong urge, so I did it, too, three times. So exhilarating!
Perhaps walking across burning coals is an extreme example. We can find many ways to be spontaneous in daily life. Radically changing our diet or going on a juice fast for a week, taking dance classes or attending a workshop on something intriguing and unknown.
“We do not have to be ashamed of what we are. As sentient beings, we have wonderful backgrounds. These backgrounds may not be particularly enlightened or peaceful or intelligent. Nevertheless, we have soil good enough to cultivate; we can plant anything in it.” ~ Chögyam Trungpa
2) Accept reality.
One afternoon around the winter solstice in December, I took a boat home from the market town across the lake. I disembarked, paid the fare, thanked the driver. Suddenly, I lost my balance and fell backward off the pier into the lake. I was submerged, with all my baggage in tow. Thankfully, I did not hurt myself—only my ego. The boatmen kept asking if I was alright and helped me get my bags and self back onto the dock. “Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God,” I kept repeating, laughing and crying at the same time.
Ultimately, there is no choice but acceptance. So, the sooner we can accept, the better.
The reality was: I fell in the lake. That actually happened. Life will force us to swim, will wake us from our slumber when she wants to make her point.
Sometimes, it is not clear why we fall or fail, or struggle, until days or months or decades later. Eventually, it does become clear. Wait for it.
“Acceptance of what has happened is the first step to overcoming the consequences of any misfortune.” ~ William James
3) Cultivate a sense of humor.
The importance of laughter cannot be overstated. It is truly the best medicine. Spend time with people who make you laugh. Watch comedies. Laugh out loud. Cry laughing.
“…my approach towards life is utterly nonserious, playful because in my experience this is how the ego disappears. Watch when you laugh: where is the ego? Suddenly you have melted, suddenly you are liquid, no more solid, but flowing. You are not old, experienced, knowledgeable. Listen to this joke and try to find out whether the ego remains or not.
All Buddhas have laughed when they awaken. Their laughter is like a lion’s roar. They laugh, not at you, they laugh at the whole cosmic joke.” ~ Osho
4) Know thyself, love thyself.
I am ordinary and extraordinary, and so are you. Self-knowledge is the key to put radiance in its place, to know our strengths and weaknesses, to understand our core personality and remembering that we are ultimately all one and the same.
“Class is an aura of confidence that is being sure without being cocky. Class has nothing to do with money. Class never runs scared. It is self-discipline and self-knowledge. It’s the sure-footedness that comes with having proved you can meet life.” ~ Ann Landers
Be spontaneous. Accept reality, laugh, accept yourself, know yourself, take care of yourself, and love yourself.
Praise be the sky, the wind, the lake, the flame.
Author: Michelle Margaret Fajkus
Editor: Angel Lebailly
Copy & Social editor: Sara Kärpänen