When we start becoming aware, we will notice that in whatever direction we place our beliefs, our ideals, Life will present the opposite.
For instance, Janet is supervising employees at work. She spoke to them about the value of having a consistent work ethic of showing up to work no matter what: If you feel ill, just take some medicine and show up! Those lines of “wisdom” are defining Janet now, whether she realizes it or not.
Next day one of her employees misses work because he is sick. He sends an email explaining how sick he feels. Janet felt that she needed to prove a point to defend her statement of “work ethics.”
She replied: “Did you take some medicine? What is the cause of that sickness? “ and then used that opportunity to throw some “words of wisdom” to the employee.
If Janet observes her feelings, she will find anger, a nagging sensation of being bothered by the incident; that is a clear sign that a “button” has been pushed in her.
When we are not aware, we will defend our ideal.
To defend a mental ideal, a belief is to blind ourselves to “what is.”
The mind works in that way. An ideal, a belief is made by our mind. That ideal will repeat in our heads as something to achieve. When we don’t, we may feel “bad” because of our “weakness.” That is how the mind takes control of our Life.
Many times I hear : “I had this little voice telling me what to do.” That little voice may be the mind and not a gut feeling, intuition which actually lacks “I.”
We could be dishonest by calling intuition what is coming from the mind.
The mind will only work through accepted pre-established patterns; what we have learned, it will repeat that. However, any set ideal, any holy moral statement is of no consequence to the way Life works.
For instance, according to Chuang Tzu (Taoist sage) “By ethical argument and moral principle the greatest crimes are eventually shown to have been necessary, and, in fact, a signal benefit to mankind.”
(*As translated by Thomas Merton)
Observe how the typical mind reacts towards Chuang Tzu’s statement.
“..SO… All the killing by Hitler was good and necessary… That is nonsense!!
” ..SO… I should be thankful to Ted Bundy… Stupid!!”
“..So… I can commit any crime and people should be thankful of me!”
In fact, that is not what Chuang Tzu is saying, but it could be easily misunderstood by those without the experience of how Life works, those who only know how human laws work.
And how Life works?
That my friend is something that you need to find out by your own experience, by being aware and not by following second hand teachings. That will happen, when you are ready.