My Inner Divine Love Presence Knows what I need or desire before I do. It is constantly providing me with ideas, material goods, situations, and interactions to fulfill all my needs and desires. I relax and allow the Presence Within to supply me with everything I need.
It’s always good for me to remind myself to relax. I am sometimes a little hard on myself…I have some high expectations for myself…I make (un?)reasonable demands on myself…
If you have become at all familiar with Buddhism, you may know there is a regular thought that is often turned into a meditation in Buddhism. It goes something like this: I never know when I am going to die. It could be in a minute; it could be in an hour; it could be tomorrow…or it could be in 20 or 50 years, but I never know. Therefore, it is imperative for me to meditate on my own mortality and practice now. I must practice now, because I may not have the chance in a minute, an hour, or tomorrow. I must do what I can now. This meditation about death is also a path toward harmlessness, embracing “the now,” and accepting change (impermanence).
There is also a well-known Western quote that reflects this sentiment, “I expect to pass through this world but once. Any good, therefore, that I can do or any kindness I can show to any fellow-creature, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it for I shall not pass this way again.” (generally attributed to Stephan Grellet, but without source verification)
It’s these types of thoughts (without any specific ideological or dogmatic history) that drive me to be hard on myself, to expect more of myself, to demand of myself always to do better, to be a better person, to strive, to give, and to become more.
But then, there is the other side: Relax. Divine Love Presence Knows what you need, when you need it, and how your best possible good will show up in the world.
This theme is reflected in A Course in Miracles with these words: I need do nothing. In fact, as it goes, according to ACIM, if I try to do something, I am actually opposing God’s Will, countering the “all good” trying to show up in my life, attempting to usurp God’s plan with my little ego-driven wants.
These two “sides” often play in my mind. Most often, the first side dominates, so that I am most often hard on myself, and less often relaxed (or surrendered).
The thing is, I think both are “right.” I think I “must” strive, and I think I “must” surrender. And I do not Know the Truth. So I keep striving…and I keep striving to surrender…and sometimes when I am striving, that of itself is surrendering.
It sounds conflicted. It sounds contradictory. It sounds like a paradox, I know. Fortunately, I like the puzzles of paradox; they are kind of the catch-all of Enlightenment: The One and the many; unity in diversity; being and becoming; infinite and immediate; eternity and time; being in the world, but not of it. One cannot think about (or strive for) enlightenment without encountering such paradoxes. It can feel a little insane, though.
For me, the paradoxes, the apparent conflicts egg me on. There is resolution. There is Oneness. These things fit together, somehow, in a way I do not yet see, do not yet experience. So I work with both “sides” allowing them to draw me closer to the Truth, to Knowing the Oneness inherent in All (even in paradoxes).
Where am I today? …Somewhere in the middle. Doing this Journey is the striving; it is the practice. But while I practice, I surrender and relax.