A very difficult part of our process is the recognition of how much pain we are in and how much we resist the pain we have or ever getting hurt again. Our inner contraction away, our not paying attention to when we’re hurt, our lack of recognition of the amount of pain we cause ourselves on a daily basis keeps us in a pain field, or in as Ekhart Tolle puts it, in the “pain body.”
How we tend to ourselves, how we attend our experience has a lot to do with healing the ruptures of our pain, ceasing to cause ourselves pain, and discovering life that can be fully naked vulnerable and open to the experience of pain in a way that transforms pain. During my years in hospice work, pain of all kinds was the primary focus of our work: physical, emotional, social, relational, psychological, mental and spiritual pain all get addressed, met with compassion, understanding, and treatment. What does it take to die in peace? What unmet unaddressed pain of past and present forecast into tomorrow needs finally to be gently met with loving kindness so we can let go, RIP: rest in peace? How can this help those of us living everyday?
To relax and rest, and even bask in and as our radiant natural perfection is the endpoint of spiritual endeavors. The ultimate non-doing of pure Being is our resting place our refuge our home and the source of our aliveness, activity and presence. “Abide as Such” Ramana would say. We discover that our True Nature, our innermost Being is innocent of pain. We being to understand that all experiences of pain return here and are embraced and absorbed until no memory of them exist at any level of our system. This allows the inner relaxation in which this innocence is found to be who we are in Truth.
What You Resist
Resistance is painful. When we allow ourselves to experience our resistance we discover its divisiveness which causes us pain. We begin to recognize subtleties of the many ways we say “no” to our experiences of all forms, even our saying “yes” is a no to something. Then we begin to see how “what you resist persists” works. We hold whatever “it” is to be real and true by saying a persistent no to it which then keeps it going. To find non-participation and freedom from this dilemma and our habituated reflexive reactions, we have to be subtly consciously present and willing to experience everything. This is extremely difficult to do if we have been abused, traumatized, hurt, abandoned, rejected, betrayed, exiled. It takes strength and courage to unravel the ways we are bound up in our pain.
The Wisdom of No Escape
Most of us turn to spirituality as a way to escape pain and suffering. We want an end to it, and we can have lovely spiritual experiences that are pain free spiritual highs. Then we get back to our daily life and here it is again. Before long, that spiritual experience fades and we are sad and disappointed that here again we are suffering. While beautiful spiritual experiences are helpful, our work is integrating This that is forever innocent of pain into our daily living. It takes an instant and lifetimes, practice, devotion and determination every day, every moment. It is the mature aspirant who discovers it’s time to call off the search and nakedly vulnerably be here in the moment, in experience as is and Meet ourselves in the living Heart of Truth, even when it seems utterly impossible.
Our Way to Innocence
Liberation Work, bringing what is ignorant, occluded and in pain to the Light of the pure Heart of Being is our way to innocence. We need the support of those also in the LightHearted way to remind us to be present, aware and to open in deeper to the soft underbelly. Our vulnerability is such a gift which allows us to be receptive to our Essence, the healing balm of our Presence, the embrace that receives everything back with open arms. We discover how to relax in the midst of our instinctual fear-based reactions into allowing rather than resist by fighting, running away or grasping and holding on for dear life.
We find the means to allow us to enter in to our experience. The skillful means of presencing and inquiry, of being supporting by the True Friend in those who can hold space and help us find the space within to allow the naturalness of our nature to unfold. We notice the warp and woof of experience without judgment, condemnation or agenda to change it. In allowing it to be what it is, it reveals itself and what is needed. We simply want to know what is real, whence it comes, what it consists of because we simply want to understand the workings of our system, of our being, to know ourselves in Truth. We recognize that by trying to turn ourselves into something different, into some idea and ideal of how we think we’re, they’re or it’s supposed to be for whatever reason we do a violence to ourselves, others, our experience–one that adds to our suffering and pain. To realize that who we are has no difficulty with any experience and to live as such comes from being real, telling the truth, being in our experience purely, nakedly, vulnerably, openly, non-separate. Here innocence is restored; pain is allowed and met in non-interference non-resistance but letting be, what our system has been longing for forever, formations return to the formless including the formation of pain. Gangaji says, “When you know how to suffer it isn’t suffering.”
Settle in, hunker down in to the moment and discover, right here and now, what is being experienced. Simply notice and allow within the direct experience of being simply aware exactly where you are as you are right now, let be and see.
You can share your experience in the comment section. Contact Anrael for support in direct experience, liberation work, and companionship of the True Friend.