What has disappeared now, is a kind of despair: ‘There’s nothing to hold on to, no direction.’
Ch: And now that you’re sitting here? Is there any direction now?
Ch: Is there something to hold on to?
Ch: What is present now?
There is a lightness. When I look at you, there is lightness, openness, space.
Ch: You’re looking at me but something is taking place in your own body. What is it, where have you arrived, where are you coming home to?
I’m dropping down. Yes, I’m more present in my body, in my heart.
Ch: See if you can take in that feeling that you’re now experiencing. Oh wow! That feeling is not coming up just because I’m here. I’m not magically putting something into your system. It’s already there within you! So it was already there when you weren’t sitting here yet. It doesn’t just pop into your body.
So when I wasn’t sitting here yet…
Ch: …it was just a little harder to connect with the feeling. That’s it!!
Yes, the feeling is overshadowed by all kinds of thoughts.
Ch: So the attention goes more to the thoughts and stories going round in your head, than to what you register in your body now. And whenever there is real danger, the system will automatically switch to saving one’s skin and get into action.
Sitting here and talking about it helps you realize that his lightness, this openness and this space have been present all the time! That realization you may remember next time, and then apply it!
We keep practicing directing our attention and we will continue to need each other. It’s not true that there is no direction or something to hold on to. It’s just that it still appears to be difficult to direct the attention to something that always has been resting IN you and AS you. Now, here!
I’m sure you know those moments that you really crave for something. A cookie, a beer, chocolate or whatever. If you really pay attention and you’re able to resist that temptation, then you will find that this craving will not last for even 10 minutes. Then it’s gone and your attention is free again. That observation is incredibly valuable! Just try it out.
If you manage to ‘bear’ the temptation without reacting to it, the craving will suddenly disappear as well. It’s gone and my experience is that I will feel deeply relaxed and happy.
I wonder how I can apply this or how I can stay with it instead of moving away from it.
Ch: This is the beginning, you’re talking about it, you’re experiencing it now, directly, in your body. Now that you have a new story, you can become curious and investigate what happens if you don’t do anything when you’re feeling desperate, without direction or anything to hold on to!
When I woke up this morning I felt so incredibly tired. I often feel like that. I’m almost too tired to speak and find myself thinking: how can I go through my day in this way?
Ch: How do you relate to that tiredness?
I just don’t know how to deal with it. There’s a huge resistance to it.
Ch: Exactly (laughs), and that’s precisely the problem. You don’t need to ‘deal with it’. You’re feeling it, you don’t like it and then you start thinking about it: How do I get rid of this!
But if you don’t know how to deal with it, you also have the option to become curious. ‘Jeez, I’m so tired, what could be the matter? I’m curious to see how it will go today? What would be most helpful to me at this moment?’
I think it’s horrible. I don’t want to feel like that at all.
Ch: It’s precisely that battle that makes you so tired.
What has helped me to get myself out of this mindfuck (and still does) is that for many years I would again and again take a deep breath and ask myself: ‘What is NOW the problem?’
Then an answer pops up and after another deep breath you ask yourself again: ‘And where is the problem in that NOW?!’ And after each answer you ask again: ‘And what is the problem in that NOW?’
If you do this a couple of times, you begin to notice that something has shifted. Probably similar to what you noticed when you came over to sit here. You land in the present moment and the worries disappear. You have come home IN yourself, instead of disappearing in the stream of your thoughts! Then you’re able to notice that there is also lightness, openness and space present.