One of the most extraordinary things that you may notice when you look at a real spiritual master, guru or, yogi, is that they do not seem to experience any stress. You may also conclude that they arrive at this state through meditation, as well as fasting, prayer, or some other such disciplines.
This is just partly true. Such spiritual practices can undoubtedly contribute to stress reduction, but their ultimate effect is to support the maintenance of one key thought that spiritual masters hold in their minds with unfailing certainty.
In a true state of presence, it is not possible to feel stress. It is simply impossible. That is just because stress is predicated on our seeing the world as dualistic. In a state of presence when we are embodying a perception of singularity. The apperception of the world as a whole, as unified, is truth unmasked.
From a perception of unity, there is no past or future; there is just now. Human experience is only ever experienced through the now, past experiences were just ever experienced in the now, and the same is going to hold for our future adventures. Having the experience of presence will also help us to get a glimpse that time itself is a fabrication, a ‘program’ which allows our deliberately limited minds to have a particularly lush, as well as exciting kind of experience in the physical world.
First, let’s get back to our everyday time-bound consciousness. For those of you that earnestly seek to dissolve your stress, as well as are open and willing to let go of anything that your mind is clinging to achieve it, we will try to explain the only key through.
The experience of stress is also the experience of the tension or dissonance between two things: how your world is at any moment, and how you think it should be. You also create stress by carrying in your mind an image of how something in the now – yourself and other people too, the presence or absence of things, the weather – is not ok as it is. That also puts you into a self-created adversarial relationship with the only point of contact which you have with life.
Luckily, your emotions alert you to this crazy confabulation, by making you aware of internal discomfort that you label as stress. This stress is nothing more than just an urgent signal from your higher intelligence to return to the present. But, in a stress situation, how can you possibly return to presence?
Use your awareness of your stress as a trigger to follow yourself with this one key thought: everything is just perfect as it is. It is just like having your Zen master around any time you descend into stress, asking you the well-worn koan, “What, at this moment, is lacking?”
It works, trust us.
But, it will only work to the extent that you are willing to let go of the past and future too, along with all your judgments, as well as grievances, ‘shoulds,’ hopes and fears that arise out of dualistic perception. If you are willing and able to genuinely hold this one key thought as ultimate truth, above every other beliefs and opinion, you are going to start feeling it work.
If you have some doubts about this one key thought representing ultimate truth, permit us to provide the spiritual context we work within which the statement makes some perfect sense.
A common thread which is at the heart of all great spiritual traditions is that we are all immortal souls that currently have a ‘human’ experience. We have chosen the circumstances of this life experience on our own to facilitate the revolution of our soul. So, whenever you feel stress, you can see it as the universe prodding you to take an evolutionary step. That evolutionary step is to see the perfection in everything, if just for a moment at first. If you’re game, these brief moments of clarity will add up quickly to a more permanent step up.
For example, let’s say that you are stuck in traffic, and you realize that you will be late for a meeting. Maybe it is even your ‘fault,’ as you left late or did not check your GPS. If you are feeling stressed about it, realize that it is because things are not how your mind thinks that they should be. Your brain believes that you should be at the meeting on time – to get some significant information, maybe, or because your reputation as a reliable person is at stake, and you are going to be judged by other people at the meeting in a way that may affect your future success.
Now, you can continue being stressed at that moment, or you can also take all that very reasonable blather of ‘oughts’ and ‘shoulds,’ roll it up in a ball and then drop it into your faux-ashtray. You will have the ability to do this if you reach for presence if you remind yourself that there is just the present moment, and in the present moment, you can choose to experience stress or peace.
If you choose to be fully present, you accept the present moment exactly as it is, realizes that there is nothing that you can do at that moment to remedy the so-called problem, as well as take the evolutionary step of seeing everything as perfect in this so-called stressful moment. Now, there is no problem, and you are going to deal with the “problem” when it arises.
Then, you will start feeling some relief, as well as gain confidence that if you maintain a presence through your arrival to the office, your late entry into the meeting, as well as your conversations afterward, the ‘problem’ is never going to arise and you will breeze through the whole experience. Also, you are going to be ‘ok’ with no matter what happens.
FEAR: If I go into presence I will lose my mind.
This will maybe happen, but only in a good way. Seriously, presence is not losing one’s mind, but it is aligning one’s mind correctly, with the timeless ‘true mind’ playing the role of master and the time-bound ‘false mind’ playing the role of servant, permitting the real mind to the interface as it pleases with the time-governed physical world.
FEAR: If I go into presence I will stop trying to make my life better.
This will happen, maybe. After all, what is better than presence, where everything is perfect? But, there is more to it. You can be surprised to hear that a state of presence does not thwart action, but it only prevents a reaction, as well as fear-based, ego-sponsored drives to alleviate doubt, fear, insecurity, stress. In a state of presence, the true mind will decide on an action, the best action for the situation, which is usually then carried out in perfect flow with the environment.
FEAR: It’s too hard to do, and I’ll ultimately fail.
Failure is something impossible. Patience, though, is required. The evolution of consciousness may look like waves rising and falling on the shore, but the high water marks accumulate, as well as evenly produce a stable higher state of awareness.
Remembering, as well as forgetting presence is natural, but with persistence, it is recognized more often, maintained for a more extended period, and eventually becomes a part of your regular and base perception. With this as your base perception, it is quite possible for you to experience a life free of stress.