When you align yourself with the reality of life you reach inner freedom very naturally. The simple reasoning is that there is no difference between you and life, because you are the same life-energy; life-energy is the only presence here, what’s called in spiritual teachings as the “I am that I am” or “All there is” or “The One Being” or “Non-duality”. If you understand the reality of life-energy, and stop opposing this reality within you, you naturally find inner freedom, and soon enough would be able to release your past accumulation of imbalance (in the form of emotional/mental momentum of resistance) and come to a place of inner wholeness. Inner freedom is a pre-requisite to coming to a place of inner wholeness. “Wholeness” is simply a term I use to define, and point to, the balanced/stable/natural state of life-energy, which you come to when you let go of being in “resistance” to the reality of life.
The core reality/truth of life-energy is that it is made up of two natures – light and dark. Try as hard as you will you cannot change this nature about life (in you or outside you) simply because this is its intrinsic nature, the way it is. All forms of imbalances, delusions, negativity or unnecessary psychological issues are created purely due to a resistance towards aligning with this truth of life-energy – either resisting the light nature, or resisting the dark nature. It’s very easy to find inner freedom when you stop resisting the integration of light and dark components in you – the practice of the state of allowing is all it takes for this integration to happen in any being, and though I am referring to this as a practice it’s actually the natural way of being, it’s just that it needs to be inculcated as a practice for a while until the old pattern/conditioning of living in resistance is dissolved.
Value of Awareness practices
Meditations in the form of watching the thoughts (mindfulness), chanting (focus on a word), focusing on the breath, staying in the present as practice of alertness, etc are useful techniques to develop the power of awareness in you, or rather the power of alertness, where you consciously stay out of the mind. These practices are only needed temporarily, in some people, who severely lack the capacity for awareness, which causes them to be lost in the mind all the time, like a state of “sleep walking” – these practice can help in getting your consciousness to wake up from being totally lost in the mind during your waking hours. In this post – the practice of relaxed awareness – I talk about how to connect with your space of being and thus free your awareness from being totally anchored in the mind. Through this meditation/practice you can develop a stability in your awareness.
If you have a decent amount of awareness, you don’t really need these practices – in any case, I would suggest that a month of such meditations is all that’s required for any average human to gain a decent amount of awareness, anything more than that just becomes another addiction, another crutch, another habit in your being. Having some stability in your awareness is of help when you start practicing the state of allowing – that’s the only reason I would even suggest that you do any one of these meditations (like the practice of relaxed awareness) for a month before getting into the practice of “allowing”; several people already have a good amount of awareness towards their mind and in such cases these meditations are not really needed (unless you want to do it for fun).
The practice of “allowing” is not a meditation, because you don’t “meditate” on anything specifically, you don’t try to control your awareness in any way. Any form of control will cause you to make “preferences” where you try to suppress either the dark nature, or light nature, component in you out of the fear of facing it. The reason why the state of allowing naturally brings an inner balance is because the core of this practice is for “you” to let go of trying to control what arises – since it’s “you” that’s in imbalance to start with, any form of control, from you, will also stem from this imbalance and hence would prevent a balance from setting in. This part of “you” is also called the “ego”, however it’s not about dissolving the ego, rather it’s about balancing the ego – the ego is simply the sense of “I”, that’s present in any aware stream of life-energy, you cannot do away with it. Of course, this is how I, personally, define ego and balance, some other teachers may have their own way of defining it – as long as you understand their context its fine. The last thing you want is to have some deluded imagination about the term “ego” and go around in circles due to this confusion.
State of allowing is not just a practice
The state of allowing will seamlessly integrate your light and dark nature, it’s inevitable, just as it’s inevitable for a rubber band to come back to its natural state when you let go of the force of stretching it. However, though this process starts as a practice that you do for a few minutes, it soon starts pervading into your life, in that your external reality starts syncing up with this process. Sometimes, external events are required for you to unearth some suppressed emotions, or for sub-conscious resistances, in the form of thoughts/beliefs, to be brought to the light of awareness, so that it can be “allowed” to integrate, and thus be balanced out.
This is not simply a practice that you do for a few minutes and be done with, it actually becomes an invitation to allow your life-force to bring a balance to your inner and external reality, and this movement of balance becomes very active, very alive and all-pervading, as it unfolds. The process, once it gets activated, seeks to remove all forms of resistance/imbalances in you, and there are no compromises, no convenient hide-outs – it just does not rest until every shred of your imbalance gets restored to balance. Of course, well-being is dominant during this process, even though, for a while, it may seem like your reality goes through an “over-haul”, internally and externally, as required for a balance to set in.
Resistance to the state of allowing
Since the core movement of bringing a state of balance is to integrate your light & dark nature, and core-opposition to this balance is your “resistance” (which I also refer to as ego-force, since it’s the force generated by the delusion/resistance in you towards reality of life) what you notice is that as this process gains hold it’s target is to break-down this ego-based resistance so that it can go ahead with a seamless integration. If you offer less resistance, you wouldn’t have to be subjected to any real “fierce grace” by this process. The below are the usual resistances offered by the ego-force.
– Trying to cling to the “high” states, and resisting the presence of low-states (like sadness, depression, anxiety) as they arise as a natural requirement for integration
– Trying to control the mind’s thinking; for example, forcing the mind to think “positive” instead of allowing the thoughts of any nature (dark/light) to arise
– Constantly reacting to the mind’s thoughts instead of letting them arise without buying into them
– Constantly focusing on an “imbalance” (inside or outside), or negative reality, or making it into an “identity”, thus not allowing a balance to set in due to the resistance of this focus
Basically, the problem is not with the presence of imbalance, rather the problem is with the “amount” of imbalance which gets accumulated as a result of continued resistance – it’s only when an imbalance goes beyond a threshold that it becomes a source of real suffering. In the state of inner wholeness, there is a natural cycle of balance, where an imbalance arises and is restored to balance without any resistance or struggle; the dark and light nature are constantly balancing out each other, to maintain a movement – this movement is what we call “aliveness” of life. For example, even in the state of wholeness, you will have dark nature components in the form of questions/learning, growth-requirements, doubts, confusion, challenges etc (you don’t get to some “static” state of nothingness or some “dead space”), but there is no resistance in your being and hence this dark nature is balanced out by the light nature of answers, solutions, clarity etc – this interplay of dark and light nature will be eternal in you, because that’s the nature of life-energy. The deal is to allow this seamless interplay between the dark and light nature components in you, instead of being in resistance to this natural movement.
Momentum of imbalance is the problem
In order to explain the effect of “momentum of imbalance”, for better understanding, consider the below categories
Light nature – love, joy, peace
Dark nature – hatred, fear, agitation
The moment you say you want light nature over dark nature (or vice-versa), you move into an imbalance. For example, if you want a static peace all the time, you will become resistant to agitation, and thus become resistant to a natural movement in you as life-energy. This resistance will cause the momentum of “agitation” to keep building up, due to its suppression, and this momentum will then translate into a high amount of imbalance which starts creating internal suffering – it also starts creating imbalanced manifestations in your external reality as a reflection of this inner imbalance. If you were not in opposition to the normal movement of agitation that arises in you, cyclically, now and then, it would naturally get balanced out into peace and thus there would be no “build up”, or accumulation, of the energy of agitation. Another example is the opposition to the presence of fear – if your tendency is to keep avoiding the feeling of fear, and try to suppress it through “positive thinking”, or some distraction in the form of indulgence in joy, you will keep building up the momentum of fear in you, which would eventually manifest in some form that you can no longer avoid (for example, obsessive thoughts of fear that start coming up out of the blue).
It’s quite ironical that “enlightenment” is sold as some means of reaching a state of static joy, which by itself is the most unenlightened imagination to hold. Enlightenment simply means having the right/accurate understanding about the reality of life, which directly translates to aligning with dark and light nature of life. Psychological suffering is simply the result of having resistance to this reality of life. The state free of psychological suffering does not translate to a state of pure light nature, rather it’s a state that’s free towards allowing the dark nature along with the light nature.
If you notice, it’s the imbalance in a certain “nature” (light/dark) that leads to problems – when the nature goes into high intensity due to over-identification or suppression. In the “base” state a certain dark/light nature is not a problem. Below are the examples of how a certain nature varies in experience, and moves into imbalance, as it increases in intensity.
Love – Liking/Caring < Attraction < Attachment < Addiction < Obsession
Joy – Enjoyment < Enthusiasm < Over-Excitement < Greed < Recklessness
Peace – Stable < Calm < Passive < Dull < Stupor
Hatred – Dislike < Sadness < Frustration < Anger < Aggression
Fear – Concern < Worry < Anxiety/Nervousness < Panic < Horror
Agitation – Dissatisfaction < Discontent < Restless < Edgy < Frenzied
As you can see, in their lowest/base state of intensity the light/dark nature components are not a problem. As the intensity increases, owing to over-indulgence, over-identification, or suppression, the component starts becoming problematic and imbalanced. When this imbalance is sustained over a long period of time there is an accumulation, or momentum, that starts building up, in your being, that’s no longer “comfortable” in feeling – for example, the feeling of anxiety is far less comfortable than the feeling of concern; but anxiety as a feeling is only possible when fear has gained a momentum in you. In a state of wholeness you don’t feel fear at any uncomfortable intensity, fear stays in its base intensity.
A conscious release of accumulated momentum
Depending on how much imbalance you’ve created in a certain dark/light nature component, in your being, you will have to go through a “release” phase of facing that feeling, in accumulated intensity, until it’s released. For example, if the momentum of fear in you has built up to the level of panic, due to your unconscious suppression, or over-identification, you will need to face the “feeling” of panic during the state of allowing (without trying to escape it or suppress it) until its momentum starts coming down due to the release that happens as a result of the “conscious allowing” – there really is no short cut to this process, only a conscious allowing dissolves the pattern of resistance present in your mind that caused the imbalance in the first place.
As soon as a certain nature (light/dark) goes beyond the 3rd base, of intensity, it starts creating strong resistance in your being towards a natural movement of balance. You feel the sense of freedom, in your being, diminishing more and more as the imbalance starts building up and you start feeling like a prisoner to a certain dark/light nature. Inner freedom starts with developing the ability to start “dis-identifying” with patterns of resistance (in the form of over-indulgence or suppression) towards the dark/light nature component that has gone into an imbalance in you, thus allowing it to come to a state of balance within you. One has to be careful in recognizing that even the state of “freedom” can take you to a place of imbalance (fore example, it’s possible that the sense of power, that comes with inner freedom, can blind you towards opposing your value-system) – in this context, freedom is a light nature which needs to be balanced with the dark nature of wisdom. This alignment with conscious balance is what brings you to inner wholeness, where the cycle of balance goes into auto-mode.