Sometimes you have to make a choice and to be able to discern that which gives you true fulfillment and joy from that which gives you only a momentary experience that leaves you haunting for more.
It takes a certain maturity and wisdom to start appreciating and tangibly feeling the value and treasure of peace.
Obviously we start out in life driven by the desire to succeed, to make experiences, to gather comforts and taste pleasures. It
Photos by Martin Ecker Photography
is in a way natural and it gives a reflection of happiness. But it can also happen that we may go astray in our pursue and fixation on something which really doesn’t give us true value. Because as nice as any experience can be it is also passing and momentary and often it doesn’t satisfy us for long but makes us soon restless for more.
Like this we can fall in that vicious circle of seeking and never really finding. We get accustomed to look for more, for new and start to miss what is already here, who we really are in this moment and the deeper peace which is available.
And like this we get further away from our true Self. We start to forget … our oneness, our nature, our light. They become like a distant echo from a dream and we become alienated from our own being. We start to truly believe that all there is in life is this circle of gaining and loosing, and seeking, and running to get something somewhere else, sometime else.
That in the east they call maya or illusion. It might sound a bit harsh word but what is meant by it is that for a while we might be under the illusion that all that glitters that we try to get and seek has something big and valuable in it but in reality we never really get it, we only strive for it never truly to reach it. Because when you reach one thing you start running after another and there is never really a stop point.
In the east they have another word too that’s the opposite of maya – awakening. What it means? It means suddenly realizing the futility of this play and waking up from this dream of chasing things which you never reach. And when you wake up you see that all you ever need is already here and that in fact the happiness is your true nature that is always available when you don’t project it somewhere else. And you start to see the real value of peace, of yourself, of being here.
And at some point when we are wise we come to this choice – to keep chasing the wind or to open our eyes and heart to that which is here and that which is truly beautiful and valuable and find lasting peace and happiness.
Every moment we make that choice.
It is in our daily experience that life is constantly changing – situations change, people change, our moods, thoughts, ideas, surroundings – everything changes. Nothing has ever stayed constantly the same, everything is in a flux.
Today you enjoy spending time with someone, after a while you might not remember them anymore.
You have a beautiful and fancy dress today but next season it is already out of fashion.
You have your breakfast in the morning and by the time you get to work you don’t remember anything about it.
Everything is moving, changing shape, this is the nature of things. Everything in the phenomenal world is in motion – it comes into existence, undergoes a transformation and then goes out of existence again. This is the very fact of our experience.
Has anything come and stayed, without moving, without changing? I don’t think so.
The most important key to a happy and fulfilled life is understanding the momentary nature of all that appears.
This is the very foundation of all ancient wisdom and knowledge. The Buddha himself was mainly pointing to the fact that the source of our suffering and unhappiness is not understanding life and clinging to things which are by nature changeful.
And this wisdom and knowledge is timeless, true and valid until today.
Whenever we hold on too tightly to things which are momentary and impermanent we are bound to be disappointed and frustrated at one point. Trying to fix and make eternal that which is by nature temporary and changeful is a sure way for suffering because it is simply not possible.
The key lies in discovering our true Self and nature and understanding, appreciating and enjoying things in their momentary appearance without clinging or trying to hold them beyond their time and natural course.
photos by Anang Dadhich & Unsplash
The truth is that there is something which is unchanging and constant but it is not part of the phenomenal appearances.
It is the core of our Being, it is our true Self, but not the imagined self made up of stories, ideas, memories, fears and desires, but our pure Being which is always present, distanceless and available. But we simply haven’t looked at ourselves and life more deeply because we have been to busy chasing momentary things which are bound to pass and leave us ultimately unsatisfied and frustrated.
When you realize that everything is changing but there is something in you which does not change and that this something is your own true Self, the source of joy itself you don’t need to cling anymore to small things on the outside because you have found your real treasure within.
And that’s the essence of the ancient wisdom and knowledge of our Self and nature and the source of happiness and peace itself.