Spiritual greed makes us attached to peace. We are saying, “Unless I’m peaceful, I won’t be happy.” Did it ever occur to you that you could be happy in tension? Before enlightenment, I used to be depressed; after enlightenment, I continue to be depressed. You don’t make a goal out of relaxation and sensitivity. Have you ever heard of people who get tense trying to relax? If one is tense, one simply observes one’s tension. You will never understand yourself if you seek to change yourself. The harder you try to change yourself, the worse it gets. You are called upon to be aware. Let tension or the calmness take care of itself. Step by step, let whatever happens happen. Real change will come when it is brought about, not by your ego, but by reality. Awareness releases reality to change you.
God is love, so what is love? Love is sensitivity, love is consciousness. A loving heart is sensitive to the whole of life, to all persons; a loving heart doesn’t harden itself to any person or thing. Love entails clarity of perception, objectivity; there is nothing so clear-sighted as love. But the moment you become attached, then you’re blocking out so much of life. You’ve got eyes only for the object of your attachment; the heart has hardened. It can no longer see life as it is.
The only way to change is by changing your understanding. But what does it mean to understand? How do we go about it? Consider how we’re enslaved by various attachments; we’re striving to rearrange the world so that we can keep these attachments, because the world is a constant threat to them. How liberating it is not to depend emotionally on anything. If you could get one second’s experience of that, you’d be breaking through your prison and getting a glimpse of the sky. Someday, maybe, you will even fly.
Life is a banquet and the tragedy is that most people are starving to death. Why? We’ve been brainwashed into believing what isn't true. Wake up and see the truth. Heaven is here and now. Don’t suffer with the pain of the past; it happened when you were asleep. Wake up! Put on a new mind. Take on a new way of looking at things! Awakening is in direct proportion to the amount of truth you can take without running away. To do that, what you need most of all is the readiness to learn something new.
This podcast is about what it means to really begin to live and what blocks us from living fully. DeMello offers an exercise to unblock ourselves that is so simple that you might think it couldn't possibly produce a change in you that changes everything for you . . . but it does.
Society drugged us when we were kids. They didn’t bring us up on the healthy, wholesome nourishment of play and work and the pleasures of the senses, and as we grew older, the pleasures of the mind. Instead, they addicted us to a drug called “approval.” A drug called “success.” A drug called "money" and "reputation" and "making it to the top" and "never feeling good enough or having enough." As a result, we've lost our ability to love.
The trouble with most people is they’re busy trying to fix things in themselves that they really don’t understand. Stop fixing yourself. Don’t interfere. Don’t fix anything. Simply watch. Observe. You're OK. These things in you just need to be understood. If you understand them, they will change and you would finally see that all is well, within you and around you. This short practice is a simple way of discovering this.
De Mello talks about effortlessness in transformation change. He likens it to the image a sailboat. When a sailboat has a mighty wind in its sail, it glides along so effortlessly that the boatman has nothing to do but steer. He makes no effort; he doesn’t push the boat. That’s an image of what happens when change comes about through awareness, through understanding.
Can you imagine how liberating it is to never be disillusioned by people again, never be disappointed by anyone again? Imagine never feeling let down again. Never feeling rejected. If you want to wake up, if you want happiness and freedom, here it is: Drop your false ideas about people and see through people. If you see through yourself, you will see through everyone. Then you will love everyone. Otherwise you spend your life grappling with your wrong notions about others, with your illusions constantly crashing against reality.