Attaining our potential is a matter of allowing nature to take her course within us. I talked about going head-to head with ego in the previous post and to clarify how I reconcile “allowing” and “going head-to-head”, let me define some terms as they appear here. Taking responsibility to do what is best for ourselves requires work. I think we often equate work with force. But aligning with our higher selves is not so much a matter of force as it is allowing. Let us think of our lives like channels that are blocked by snags. Our responsibility is simply to remove the snags so that the water can flow freely. The water, in this scenario, is nature… or the life force. The life force is omnipresent and preeminent. It will always be flowing. Whether we let it reach us is up to us.
Removing these blocks may seem daunting, because it demands a drastic change in lifestyle: quit drinking, start eating healthy, finish projects we’ve started, cut parasitic people out of our lives, implement daily meditation practice, etc. But when we do these things, we get out of our own way and the problems dissolve on their own.
Unlike when we try to force something, in which case we are driving towards something using the old operating system, when we allow, we purify the operating system so that nature, which is already perfect, has the clear passage to manifest in our lives. We cannot forcefully manifest the opportunities nature bestows upon us when we allow her to transpire, because they are of a new order of value. They are what we are ready for (whether we want to admit it or not) and they are what we are naturally suited for (whether we know it or not.) So for example… in the spring of 2013 I was fixed on going down to Peru to do an Ayahuasca apprenticeship. All the odds were against me: I was going to choose this path over my family, my language, my culture, my country, and I was going to put myself in a very vulnerable position. And for the duration of time I was trying to force my way into that unlikely destiny, I was missing the opportunity of a Vipassana retreat, which was right in front of my face, and for which all the odds were stacked in my favor. Once I lay down my resolve to “expedite” the process of enlightenment by way of this extreme Ayahuasca, and resigned myself to meditation (which is a more naturally sound technique,) everything fell into place for me. I clung onto Ayahuasca initially for a craving of its potency, and for a fear of the work, patience, and time meditation required. But work, patience, and time are all qualities of nature. So to ultimately adopt them yielded unto me the very enlightenment I was trying to run towards but was unknowingly holding myself back from. Every decision I have made since my Vipassana meditation retreat based on the principals I learned there has given way to a bounty of blessings that inherently possess those same merits. So letting go of my compulsion toward Ayahuasca and allowing nature to take her course was the way by which I uncovered so many blessings.
Nature engenders balance … so if we are in a certain state of being, the opportunities that make themselves available to us will be of a qualitative and quantitative match to our vibrational frequency. It is impossible to attract opportunities, people, etc into our lives that are not of vibrational congruence. Therefore, we must make ourselves healthy so that we attract only healthy opportunities into our lives. It is impossible, for example, that we will find our ideal mate (a person that matches our “higher selves”) if we are still vibrating at a low frequency (working at a dead-end job, drinking too much, bad-mouthing others, devoting our attention to junk media, etc). So if we turn our back on such compulsive habits we make ourselves receptive to the influx of nature, with her fertile opportunities.
There are so many ways we resist nature and harbor unhealthiness that we aren’t even aware of. And all of these tendencies anchor us in a low vibration and attract only negative karma. A lot of these compulsive habits stem from cultural influence. I don’t believe our contemporary American culture promotes our divine potential. And like our dear friend Terence McKenna said, “Culture is not your friend.” Culture (which in the case of American culture might as well be called “business”) doesn’t have our best interest in mind. It doesn’t exist for our benefit… it exists for the convenience of culture. “We need to stop consuming our culture” Terrence also said. Because culture preys on our emotional reactivity. It prays on our fears and cravings. It is like a vampire that drains us of our life force the more we invest in it. So when we examine how we can change our lives to live in line with nature, we may be challenging a lot of cultural conventions.
When patience is the most intolerable concept to bear, when people with their air conditioning and two-car garages and indoor ski parks appear allergic to nature, when food with all of its processed-ness and dietary substitutes and artificial flavoring has lost its integrity, when we trade out our natural aesthetic for spray tans, boob jobs, and fruity perfumes, when sex as it’s presented in porn resembles the meat-packing industry rather than the incarnation of love, when we engorge our cattle with corn and steroids rather than grant it all the pasture its birthright obliges, when we then bleach their ecoli-infected beef for edibility and marketability rather than reform the maleficent technique, when we medicate
our children because they can’t keep their attention fixed on the sterile, unenchanting science curriculum rather than rethink the industrialized school system, when we file lawsuits against restaurants because our lips were scalded by the coffee rather than exercise common sense, when we worship symbols rather than enact what they symbolize, when we adhere to patriotism rather than remember that a human being that was born far away is as close a relative as one that was born near by, when we sign over the sovereignty of our own consciousness with anti-marijuana legislation, when we pay homage to the very institutions and industries that profit off our suffering, off our degradation, off our death, we commodify ourselves. We insult ourselves. We presume that we are less than divine. And in fact by doing so, enact a mere material existence. To take uppers or downers or behavioral meds or to get Botox is not self-love. It is anti-nature and therefore it is anti-us.
This is why I stress in this Responsibility Series the need to exercise mindfulness. Let us ask ourselves the critical questions that undermine culture. By being mindful, and taking the responsibility to abide by the truths we discover, we align with nature, and we empower ourselves. Nature is unfavorable to culture. It is bad for business… because if we are immersed in the wisdom of nature, we realize that we do not need anything we do not already have. Culture is disempowering to us. Culture’s success depends on the oppression of nature. But when we do this…when we oppress nature, we oppress ourselves. This is because we are not separate from nature.
The moral of this “responsibility series” as I have called it, is to become mindful. This means to observe one’s actions objectively rather than to react to them subjectively, so we can determine their nature. This way we can see the cause and effect of our actions upon ourselves. Once we do that, we can identify which actions do not serve us and we can consciously discontinue them. This takes responsibility, because what is best for us is often opposed to what feels good. But if we fight the warrior’s fight anyway, we can systematically navigate our way out of our personal Hells and reclaim our divinity. We can open up the kingdom of Heaven within ourselves.
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