Spirituality is more often or not suffocating. Now, especially in the West, there is this unspoken expectation that we live in an UP world: a world filled with UP thinking, UP emotions, UP attitudes, UP actions, UP ideas, UP behaviors that supposedly lead to more and more, UP results. Where may I ask is there room for the appearance of contraction, and the so-called DOWN of life? You know, things like negative thoughts, negative feelings, negative emotions, perceptions, associations, and so-called negative memories?
As awareness, it can be seen there is no UP or DOWN – there is only “what is”; then the mind shows up with its additional contribution of editorial insight and judgment based on “what’s happening”. Any “path” that is not radically inclusive of ALL thoughts, feelings, emotions, perceptions, associations, or memories, is not a path that engages the fullness of what is; it’s a path stuck in dualistic rut called reality.
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy being surrounded by people who are innocently “positive”, and have an open-minded outlook to life. It’s especially magical to be in the presence of those who have intimately embraced the humanity of both the UP and the DOWN of life. Just don’t try to push your positive thinking crap down my throat, especially if it is hidden under the cloak of so-called spirituality. It’s a denial of “what is” and is a confused dismissal of the truth that “everything is Consciousness – nothing exists outside of Consciousness” – including the so-called DOWN of life.
The divinity of life appears AS the co-existence of all opposites; the UP would not be UP – if it weren’t for the DOWN. If we’re really interested in reducing the so-called suffering we experience, we cannot bi-pass the “down” by pretending it does not exist. It’s only in the seeing of the DOWN for what it is, that we can truly recognize and appreciate the UP; ultimately, it can be seen there is no UP and there is no DOWN.
The UP and the DOWN are post experience, editorial judgments applied by mind. To break the hypnosis of dualistic perception, it may require sitting with “what is” until [you] can clearly see “what is”. To be clear, this is not an exercise in acceptance or allowing, although those words might be useful; it’s an invitation to stay as the silent, unconditional, space of awareness, while the context of the so-called UP and DOWN unfolds.
Come back home to the direct experience of here/now. Instead of pretending to be something by forcing yourself to think or say something that is not true; instead of reaching for particular thoughts and thinking that might be socially acceptable – reach for awareness. Instead of grasping for notions, understanding and concepts that are based on the colour of UP and DOWN – settle in awareness; let attention rest AS awareness and be [free] of the neurosis of thinking that creates the UP and DOWN of life…