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5 mindful "notes to self" for 2019!

As 2019 kicks off, yet another year is set into motion. Although it is functionally a calendarial reality, it does hold a deeper significance for many of us as a time to begin, plan, set expectations and make resolutions for the year ahead. Most often though, this hopeful undertaking will be focused on the outward challenges and goals that lie ahead. It may be in the form of new experiences, new changes or new improvements. Irrespective of whether it is a new diet, job, relationship, goal or a new country, it seems the reason it tends to take a hopeful tune is due to its resonance with a hope for the ‘new’ rather than the ‘new’ per say. Perhaps the reason for the hope of the ‘new’ rather the ‘new’ living from the word ‘go’ is that the source of this new hope is still the “old self”. ‘Old’ in the sense of unchanging, set in its beliefs and consistent in its projected image. And time and again, amidst the fireworks at the stroke of midnight, this “old self” pops the champagne and sings Auld Lang Syne, with a renewed drunken hope for something new. Perhaps it is no surprise then that more often than not, it proceeds to be doomed to repeat the old in a new way.;)

For the sake of inquiry, in being aware of this futility, what does someone do, one may ask? Is one bound to repeat this cycle year after year while wearing one’s enthusiasm down to the point in which one merely hopes to survive another year? Perhaps, if we allow ourselves, more than just relying on the hope to achieve the new resolutions and goals, the source which is the self behind all of this momentum, is what needs to be renewed. Better yet, what would one need to be mindful of, to live this coming year in a state of constant renewal? Here’s 5 that I have learned and continue to be mindful of as a priceless reminder for each start of the year;

Mindful Note to self 1: How you are, is not how you are supposed to be.

The first note begs of self-honesty. To admit the restlessness and noise one lives in as a reflection of an unnatural state that is immersed in imposed ideas, goals and borrowed knowledge. Hence, the mindfulness to detect the pretense that one is perfect and that pursuing and achieving the new resolutions will resolve the noise, is the first fallacy that one strives to resist. The lure of the collective value systems that serve to convince oneself that as long as one has a few dollars, a roof over one’s head and a partner or pet that won’t leave you as the defense of being A-OK, needs to be resisted too. This allows one to assume the responsibility for oneself over the actual, honest state of how one is.

Most importantly though, to know for oneself that one can be more than how one is, wakes one up to the right seeking. The seeking that moves from the truth of how one is, moment to moment, not in escaping but in self-remembrance.

Mindful note to self 2: Keeping the image in check.

The second note begs of allowing objectivity. To hold oneself beyond the notion of personal like or dislike, comfortable or uncomfortable, agreement or disagreement amongst other similar dualistic expressions. Most often, if we observe these notions, it is exercised to feed an image of who one is, which most often is separated from the fact of what-is. This splitting mechanism of this image ends up reducing any fact to one’s personal reality, therein predicating the pretense of how one is, is how one should be. To also be mindful of the obsession of “doing” as it serves the manipulation that defends and preserves the image. Instead, one consciously allows the challenges and demands of the new year to serve as golden opportunities to see oneself beyond the image. The “non-doing” action is one that allows and helps one posture oneself rightly in the face of new burdens, responsibilities and challenges. The resulting action is not one of “doing”, “stressing” or “forcing” rather, one of participation with what is happening. There may then arise the opportunity to discover a part of oneself beyond the assumed knowing in which the image is made out of.

Mindful note to self 3: Allow truth to seek you.

This note begs of unshaken vulnerability. This note holds oneself to embrace the opportunity to be proven wrong as it is the only way to allow the truth of what is right to slip in. The awareness one develops to let the truth or fact of a situation or oneself to be exposed not as a conclusion and condemnation of oneself or one’s reality but as a base of what needs to be transformed. As the saying goes, the truth shall set you free. The freedom to transform, being the key. The understanding that anything that needs to be defended comes from the fear of losing it. And if it can be lost, then it is not one’s to begin with. This note further reinforces the mindfulness from note 2 on the projection of the image. This note is also extremely liberating when one is faced with any notion of hurt, failure or disappointment as it exposes the false precondition one may have assumed as one’s subjective truth being the whole truth.

Mindful note to self 4: Embracing uncertainty and insecurity

This note begs of courageous innocence. To become mindful of the movement of escaping, quick fixes, hoping, imagining and fantasizing as it feeds the pretense that gives one a sense of security in assumed knowing which is yet again, the attributes of the image. This inevitably translates as a declaration against transformation. The key here is to recognize for oneself not to seek change which is destroying something to get something else, rather to embrace transformation which is about facing what is there as it is, and transforming it just like a lotus blooms from a pool of mud. Most cases of uncertainty and insecurity reflects the simple truth that one does not know. But in allowing that fact to hit home without escape, brings to light what is there to be known and one rises to that effortlessly. This innocence is what will awaken one to bow to and not fight or seek relief from the demands that exists in one’s life and subsequently allow the transformation needed to meet them absolutely towards true mastery.

Mindful note to self 5: Beyond reaction to creation

This last note begs of true humility. The understanding of how one’s consistency of reactions is what keeps one as the old, is critical with this note. We often claim we know someone and vice versa based on the constancy of reactions expressed. Habits are superficial examples of reactions. Beliefs, thoughts and emotions reflect deeper reactions at play. I am sure we have all heard ourselves or someone say how life seems boring or monotonous at times. Although life is never the same, our reactions to it may reduce it to keep us the same. This is the essence of self-centered activity and inevitably leads to one being limited and feeling stuck. The feeding of these reactions leads us to be reduced to sensation seekers. With this note, one accepts the fact that one is helpless to “do”. One can only hold oneself to remain available and alert to one’s life and to the reactions that limit one’s perception, prejudice and actions. Only when reactions are transcended and does not serve the primary sense of how one is, the boundaries of one’s limited logic can be cracked open and in its wake, creation becomes available. Then as the creator is, the creation comes to be. The creator being one who exists as a transforming, emerging entity and not a self-centered separated entity. A beautiful exercise I undertake to be mindful of this note is to always uphold a creation, demand, burden or responsibility that holds something more than just me. Not just being right for me, but also for the other and all too.

"Your power lies in your ability to be honest with yourself and the state of self-honesty is the beginning of meditation. - Dhyan Vimal"

Happy new year everyone!

Wed, 2 January 19 : 13:01 : Nirvan Samadhi

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