By Akira Sieben (Originally published on Malibu Quietude)
Owning our thoughts and feelings stifles the spontaneity and harmony of our existence. Being ashamed of a thought or a feeling is like being ashamed of a heartbeat, or a breath. We don’t take ownership of our beating heart. We don’t pretend to possess our unconscious breaths. Our entire body is sustained by thousands of unconscious and uncontrolled patterns and processes. Our thoughts and feelings are no different—just because we are aware of them, doesn’t mean we are the source of their manifestation.
Meditation is a tool to expand awareness of the impersonal nature of our mental and emotional patterns. We close our eyes, and the thoughts flow. We cannot stop them. And though it appears we can influence them, this “influence” is just another pattern of thought—a ubiquitous one, often referred to in spiritual jargon as “the ego.”
Though the ego makes up your sense of self, it is not really who you are. The ego endlessly weaves an “identity” from thoughts and feelings, preferences and aversions, triumphs and failures. But everything the ego identifies with belongs to a source beyond it.
I like to imagine the Universe as made of pixie dust—little magical particles which comprise all of life. The stars are made of the same atoms that make our thoughts. The sun burns with the same energy that lights up our being with joy and sadness, love and anger. When we see the world as one big ocean of magical dust, we realize that our body is not separate, and our life is not really our own. There is a deep belonging and a true immortality in surrendering our body to the Universe. And there is a deeper Self to discover once we make this radical sacrifice.
Embrace the pixie dust! Use your quiet contemplation to remember that everything is magic! Your thoughts are woven of stardust. Your feelings burn with energy more ancient than the Sun. There is no separate “you.” There is no life and death. There is only Life! And it is sacred in every form it takes.
Use this time to remember your true nature, as the spectator of the Universe’s breathtaking performance. You are the Presence beneath your thoughts, the Awareness which envelops your feelings. You are the Formlessness beneath the ever-morphing forms. You are God’s witness, and Mother Nature’s eternal eyes.
Meditation is simply a tool for remembering the sacredness of our being, and the formlessness of our true essence. But there is no need to live in a constant state of contemplation. You are Present even when you are caught up in the commotion of daily life. You don’t have to force yourself to love life, because even your feelings of sadness and frustration are sacred expressions. The point is to know that ALL life is allowed, including our feelings of disallowance. You do not need to awaken. You have always been, and always will be, Awake.