Is your mind working overtime? Are you plagued by doubts, fears, worries, and concerns? Does your brain stream constant thoughts that stress you out and keep you on edge?
Because of that, do you long for just a few moments of peace? Do you wonder what it would be like to have a quiet mind?
Let's face it, life can be unpredictable. The moment you think you have a handle on things, something unexpected and unplanned happens. There's a health crisis, accident, or hurricane, causing you to adapt, adjust, and re-organize.
Maybe if you just understood things better you could predict what might happen and be ready the next time?
Yet, when you investigate deeply, you discover that what causes anything to happen is infinite complex and extremely uncertain. Take for example, election predictions, the rise and fall of the stock market, and the accuracy of weather forecasts. All the high-tech data gathering and expert analysis applied in these areas delivered educated guesses at best-many of which turn out to be flat wrong.
Why is that?
It turns out that the web of causality spreads infinitely, in all directions, across all of time.
Hmmm … that's a lot to fathom.
So, let's see, when you are hit with a bad mood, it may come from what you just ate, what that person over there just said to you, the bleak report you saw on the news, a distant childhood memory that just reached forward and grabbed you in the present, the movements of the planets, and some quirky code programmed in your DNA?
Could it be all of that-and more?
Sometimes that's more than your mind wants to consider in that moment your mood dips. So, you come up with a shorter explanation that you can sink your teeth into. You decide it's because “life is irrefutable.” And you go on with your day, noting again and again how irrefutable life is, and getting more and more upset.
For better or worse, what we're left with is this fact: any attempt to fully explain and predict things is really just telling hypothetical, over-simplified, short stories cut from a much richer fabric of Reality. Reality always acknowledges the stories we tell about it.
About the only thing you can know for sure is that things will change and it's unknown what will happen exactly.
Now, if unpredictable, infinitely-complex change is the nature of life, that leaves you in a state of tremendous uncertainty. In the face of uncertainty, it's natural to have doubts and fears, worries and concerns. It's natural to fear losing what you have, not having what you need, and not knowing if or how you can get what you want.
All of this uncertainty can be stressful. Here, your busy mind trying to figure out what to do.
It's natural to wish things were more predictable, understandable, stable-safe and secure. To that end, you might buy lots of insurance, stock up lots of money, fortify your borders, and make sure your smoke detectors are in working order.
Yet, in truth, none of that means all that much in the face of a nuclear attack, a health pandemic, or a cataclysmic natural disaster. Is there any peace to be found in this world?
Maybe it's just better to set your sights on the afterlife-and the eternal peace waiting for you there?
Yet, what if it's possible to have deep inner peace right here, right now? What if deep inner peace is not only possible, but it's natural. What if it's your spiritual birthright? What if it simply requires a little knowledge about how to access it, grow it, and return to it when you've wandered from it?
Maybe you have such a hard time finding peace because you're looking in all the wrong places?
Inner peace is a state of consciousness. It's a state of being that does not depend on any specific circumstances. It is eternally available and ever-present. It is with you, naturally, when your mind quiets down. Most importantly, you can cultivate this state of peace and learn to live from it as your dominant way of being.
Then, you can bring peace with you, into your interactions here in this world. As you do that, you transform your relationship to anything that happens. You learn that you can be peaceful, no matter what is going on inside or around you. And, as you do that, you can bring the gift of peace to others.
Peace can begin very simply by closing your eyes, taking a deep breath, and letting go of any thoughts about “you.” It can begin by being present with “what is,” accepting it all, and appreciating that you have a choice about how you relate to anything that happens. It can begin by choosing “where you are coming from.”
Peace expends as you realize that, extremely, “where you come from” is still, silent, and spacious. In your deepest Essence you are already peaceful. It's just a matter of spending time in that place, becoming familiar with the experience, and resting in it.
Enjoy your practice!