For a second now, imagine you could let go of everything that’s ever troubled you in the past and that the only attitude towards what has been and which now serves you is gratitude. Then imagine that there is absolutely nothing you need to worry about for the future and that the only thing your future depends upon is you being present here and now. Now notice the heavy giant load of things that just disappeared from your mind and understand how all that was making you blind to what you now perceive as you are being fully present in this specific moment. Notice how you are still alive and functioning though you are not chewing on the past as if it were non-disposable gum nor planning for the future as if your life depended on it. Notice that you’re still breathing, that your mind is clearing up and that your every little actions are becoming conscious and thus much more effective. Now see if you can discern the story that has conditioned you to escape this precious moment by trying to find false refuge in memories and expectations. Are you not very alive at the moment? What has led you to avoid this so much? And can you feel that whatever it is, it does not resonate with truth as you sit consciously in this now? Can you see that this moment is the source of all life and that this is where we need to be in order to survive harmoniously on this earth? Can you see?
Take a deep breath and imagine how all of your thoughts pour out through your exhalation. Picture yourself with a clear mind, no clutter, just harmony. Now let that harmony spread throughout your body, from head to toe. Then let the atoms of your body slowly part from each other and imagine how they dissolve into thin air. You are no longer you but what is left of you is only little scattered cells that have joined in with other particles of this world. One tiny part of you becomes a grain of sand on a beach by the Caribbean ocean, another part becomes a snowflake slowly falling towards the icy ground of the Antarctic and another becomes a distant star in a different galaxy that the old you didn’t even knew existed.
There are little bits of you scattered around the universe and you become aware of them all. You can feel everything from the breeze in the Sahara desert while the sun is setting to the earth cracking open where a volcano is about to erupt. You can feel everything at once, right in this moment. You can feel it all without disrupting the harmony because your mind has dispersed and can no longer interrupt by translating those feelings into language and codes of interpretation and judgment. You realize with this sensation that no matter what, everything is as it is and little by little this starts to amaze you. All those little parts that once were your body are now becoming aware of themselves and are beginning to understand the beauty in the simple fact that they exist in this whole system of particles. It’s as if all those particles now have gotten eyes of their own and yet they don’t ask any questions. All they can feel is gratitude. They feel gratitude because they cannot understand everything through reasoning but they can understand it simply through being. You recognize the sensation; it’s almost like love.
Now let all those particles join back together, build you back up and shift your attention to the wholeness of your body again. Let your body remember the journey of every single cell and every atom but acknowledge that they are in fact now part of you. What can they teach you? How are you different from them? Who are you?
I would like to make a quite controversial statement and claim that in the same way that the educational institution tends to educate children away from their spontaneous creativity, society as an institution educates us all away from knowing what our basic needs really are.
The capitalist systems survival rests on creating addictions as to ensure a steady monetary gain. It thus has to make consumers believe that we need more than we actually need, because how else would there be economical growth? What I’m saying is that with this capitalist system as the main institution of learning that it actually is, we are taught to stop reflecting upon what our actual basic needs are. We are taught to want more and to believe that we actually need more. Capitalism uses the things that we actually do feel a natural need for such as food, sex, clothes etc. and amplifies this need by exposing us to brainwashing continuous waves of advertisement that more or less unconsciously enter our minds and teaches us to want more.
With the amount of sex that we are exposed to in our daily lives from series, movies, commercials, magazines and so forth, how do we remember how much sex we really need? Acknowledging that sex is a basic human need, are we really meant to be as sexual as we are portrayed by the agencies that are trying to make money out of us? And with the amount of food choices, pictures of different foods everywhere we go, the ever-growing interest in cooking and so forth, how much food do we really need? Also acknowledging of course that food is a basic human need, are we really meant to focus that much of our attention on food for such a huge percentage of the day? And with the contradicting image of the ideal body, how do we ever avoid feeling guilty when we constantly exceed our needs and instead go far below them to a point that we become sick? How do we even remember what we really do need? Again with clothes or even anything that is being sold to us, with the constant flow of advertisement, how do we realize when we have too much?
The ways in which industries sell their products to us might seem subtle but in fact they only seem that way because we have internalized their values as our own values without even questioning them. We have been taught to forget about the own sense of ‘enough’ in order to be a good consumer in this society. Unconsciously we contribute to the survival and growth of the capitalist system believing somehow it is good yet it completely blinding to our needs as individuals and devastating to the majority of the worlds population and also of course to the environment. It creates a mass of non-thinkers, an institution in itself that regulates its subjects according to imagined needs created by the greedy for the sole purpose of making more than enough money. Sure, money has become a basic need to survive in this society but what is really money except the value we put into it? So how do we go back to knowing how much money we really need, without being psychologically attacked by the medias portrayal of an ideal life in wealth? How do we draw the line when we are taught that the line is never to be drawn?
Even if it seems like, as we become more and more secular and scientifically oriented, we are more likely to think for ourselves many of us fall into the trap and become part of a new mass even if this one is more selfish than many religious masses. We replace one institution by another and let ourselves be fed and convinced again and again. So how do we do?
We start questioning. We start unlearning. We start stripping ourselves from what we have taken on that does not initially belong to us. We listen to within instead of without. We learn to know ourselves first; before we get convinced that what the moneymakers want us to do is also what we want to do. There needs to be a silencing of the constant feed from outside so that the individual voices can start being heard even by the ones the voices come from. We need to find a sanctuary for us and only us where we don’t allow the feed to be internalized and fool us all.
Perhaps some meditation?