As human beings, our core struggle is that we want things to be different than they actually are. Neurotic struggle is our continued effort to resist what is happening. We want to be happy; we don’t want pain; we want to feel good; we don’t want heartbreak.
By resisting what is happening we are distracted from feeling the deep grief that may arise from acknowledging reality. For example, we will cause distance in relationships, project our disturbance onto others, use denial, exercise, and food, all as distractions to soothe anxiety.
This resisting serves a purpose since we feel constrained by this body. It is a strategy we develop to keep us safe. We split our mind from our body. We will continue to operate at this unconscious level until we are ready to be kind to ourselves and accept our disturbance.
We consciously believe we want to work on our struggles but unconsciously we don’t really want to. We learn to suppress our disturbance which leads to ongoing anxiety. It gives us a sense of control but splits our mind from our body.
Most Western psychotherapy is oriented towards finding what was repressed, and bring it to conscious awareness so that we can feel more integrated. The reality is that most of what is unconscious will never be conscious, so this is therefore an unending process.
People look outside of themselves for the cause of a problem and a solution to the problem. In couples, each are blaming each other for their experience, feeling that the other should change so that they don’t feel so disturbed. Life would be so much better if you would be who I want you to be instead of who you are. This misses the opportunity to develop a capacity to deal with our own disturbance.
If we can stop to remember, we may realize that these disturbances we have are things we have probably lived with our entire lives. They may be triggered by our relationships, but the relationship isn’t the cause and therefore can’t be the solution.
When we are committed to the path of waking up we are then motivated to dig a little deeper. By investigating the feelings of disturbance that we experience, we gain a sense of personal power. We can dissolve the struggle in ourselves between what we want to feel and what we actually feel. Investigate the experience and see if it is actually a problem. Often people can see that their awareness is not disturbed no matter what circumstance arrises in their experience. Experiences pass through our awareness like clouds pass through the sky.
Feel everything. The more we chose what we want and don’t want to feel, the less we are able to fully feel anything. Have the courage and the curiosity to feel in general. Anytime we feel vulnerable we have to have real courage to open our heart.
Through meditation, we will ultimately recognize that all the information we need is inside us. Science is slow to catch up to spirituality, but is finally recognizing that the whole history of the universe could possibly be carried in our DNA (there are still vast swaths of genetic code whose purpose is unknown). The solutions to all our questions are found inside of us. We just have to practice looking.
I write about human behavior, meditation, body awareness, and a variety of other things that pique my interest.