How true am I able to be to the Essence within that I Am? Not to the personality and all its learned brain tracks, but to the me that was, is and always will be? Knowing this ‘me’ is a lifetime challenge, and is vital in the journey to freedom from any kind of addiction, be it alcohol, smoking, food and fat, drugs, TV bingeing, overwork, stress, busy work, internet surfing, and on and on. For many of us an addiction serves the purpose of distraction; distraction from fears and feelings we don’t want to acknowledge or feel. My biggest distraction has been compulsive overeating and the resultant overweight, though I have certainly used a variety of other distractions from time to time.
‘”Know Thyself’ was written on the forecourt of the Temple of Apollo at Delphi. Legend tells that the seven sages of ancient Greece – philosophers, statesmen and law-givers who laid the foundation for western culture – gathered in Delphi to inscribe ‘know thyself’ at the entry to its sacred oracle. The adage subsequently became a touch-stone for western philosophers and extended its reach as the influence of Greek philosophy expanded”. (http://thyselfknow.com)
We cannot know ourselves when mind is running the show, when brain tracks are active and dominating awareness. We are then running on automatic. In order to know ourselves we first have to become aware of our thinking and recognize we are in automatic mode. We need to stop and listen to the flow of thinking – stop the mind, stop the endless flow of thought, and then simply stop, if for no more than a few seconds. Breathe deeply – once at least – three times if possible. This mind is more powerful than we can know, whether it is running on learned brain tracks or whether it is immersed in Presence and being a channel for Life Itself.
Stop, Look, Listen
When I stop, I become conscious. Try it – stop now – in this moment. What do you hear? What do you see? What are you feeling emotionally, in your body, in your stomach, in your heart, in your head? What is mind saying? Breathe. Listen. Then simply stop thinking. Just for a minute. Let yourself just BE. Be present. In Presence.
In the middle of compulsion, it feels almost impossible to stop and become conscious, to empty the mind. But until we do, we will not ever find the place of knowing ourselves – our true selves. We know only too well the mind self that rules our lives, but the true self lies below the surface and the deeper we go into this self, the more authentic we become.
I had intended (or mind had intended) to cook a breakfast of ham and eggs. But a couple of bites of ham as I was gathering the ingredients, told me I didn’t really want a large breakfast after all. So I grabbed a cup of coffee and headed back to bed and my computer. Now as I write this, and am aware of my body, mind and essence, I realize I was never hungry to begin with. My spirit is flying free – because I am now in touch with the deeper essence of my Self and I can now be authentic.
Streaming from Source
My goal is to be in this place BEFORE I eat anything – before I do or say anything. This is very challenging to the mind in the moment of frustration – but I also understand that creating new habits is entirely possible and a matter of time, commitment, and perseverance. And DESIRE. Perhaps a deeper question is how much do I DESIRE to become the authentic me I know I can be; to operate from a place of Presence and to know Life as it expresses fully through me? How WILLING am I to commit to the process knowing that in order to make change I must become uncomfortable as I release old ways of thinking and being. I have to move outside my comfort zone and into the unknown, which at some level I know to be far superior, but which mind fights furiously.
Being authentic also evokes a need for trust; trust in the process of letting go of mind, and trust that being in an authentic place is truly safe for me. It is mind that doubts and fears. Who am I without those doubts and fears? One moment at a time, I will discover the answer to that question.