By Will Harader, Galactic Free Press, May 26, 2015
This is something that seems universal to spiritual seekers, and a question I hear almost constantly, people want to know “How?” How do I connect with God? How do I connect with my Higher Self? How do I induce mystical experiences? How do I escape my suffering? How can I end corruption? How do I become free? These questions all share the same root, “How do I get what I want?” and of course it’s not just spiritual types asking this, but all of society. The How has become a kind of kind of common mantra, I wonder why…
Look at these two questions:
“How do I get what I want?”
“Why do I want this?”
With the first question, you’re almost always going to be looking outwards. You’re looking to the external world to provide not only an answer to your question, but also the object of your desire. And there’s always those willing to offer you a How, though they usually have some personal stake in it as well. You want to fix society? Some politician has the answer! You want something expensive? The bank will give you a loan! You want to get everything you desire? The latest spiritual self-help book will show you how for only $19.95!
Now look at the other question, not the How, but the Why. Why do I want this? With this question you can’t help but dig a little deeper. You’re forced to look within, to become introspective and examine your motivations. The How was just on the surface, but with the Why you start to look underneath to where all the Hows come from.
“How do I get someone to like me?”
“Why do I need their approval?”
One of those questions really gets to the heart of the matter. In fact, when the Why gets an answer, the How many disappear altogether.
“How do I find happiness?”
“Why am I unhappy?”
It’s easier to just keep asking how than to ask why, and it’s easy for people to keep making up answers for you. Understand though that questions are powerful things. Searching for answers can direct your whole life, so it’s very important that you’re asking the right questions. All your desires, which are the roots of your questions, stem from you not knowing yourself. So ultimately, there’s only one question, “Who am I?” and I recently posted a great quote from Osho about this. There’s another good question that goes along with it as well, “Who do I choose to be?”
Now I know people want a “how to” and I’ll give you the “how to” to end all Hows: Live Your Own Life. This may seem flippant, like some generic spiritual advice, but it’s really the greatest piece of advice anyone can give you. Very few people live their own lives, instead they live an imitation of someone else’s life. You measure yourself based upon how you compare to your parents, teachers, gurus, and other “role models”. Nobody can tell you how be yourself though, that’s not something anyone can teach you.
If you want to know how to reconnect with God, you’ll find the answer in “Who Am I?” Dig deep within yourself, keep peeling back layers, and look at the roots of your thoughts and emotions. Don’t just do it when it’s convenient and comfortable, do it when it’s the most difficult and painful too. It’s in those moments that you’re really getting to the root cause, and it’s in those moments that you have the greatest potential for healing.
Now when I say to live your own Life, begin with this Moment. Start from Here, and witness what unfolds. Where are your thoughts going? How are you feeling? What do you believe you have to do, and what would you like to do? Become Aware, intensely Aware of everything that makes up your Life. You will find that the path to true Freedom does not lie in the future, but in where your thoughts are going in this very Moment.
How should I live my life? This is a dangerous question, though it’s one you’ve been conditioned to ask. You will not become more like yourself through that question, instead you will create a kind of hell for yourself that comes from trying to be something you are not. The “How To Live Your Life” is not something set in stone, as religions would have to believe. The answer is up to discover, and not only discover but also create through you living your life with passion and awareness. It’s something that changes and flows naturally, preconceived ideas about how you should live your life are only going to hold you back.
How do I reach God? The question might as well be, how do I get to a place I never left? It’s not through building up, but through breaking down the world that you’ve built in your mind that those questions are answered. It’s already all there, within you, just waiting to be rediscovered. You chase after questions that you already have the answer to, and the way you approach the question actually pushes the answer further away.
For those that absolutely must be told how to live their lives, I’ll go ahead and do that now. For some this will seem like a joke, and you’re right, it is! For those that really understand Presence, it will seem like a very deep Truth, and it’s that as well. Here goes, how to live your Life:
Repeat as necessary.
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