Beliefnet
Letting Go with Guy Finley

When you start to feel the weight of thoughts and feelings pulling on you, you must work to come awake to their presence so that you aren’t drawn down into their world.

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Starting life over begins with bringing a conscious end to all lingering relationships you may have with old thoughts and feelings that want you to keep seeing your life through their eyes.

2 children holding hands on beach

Human beings are a unique creation in the cosmic scheme of things. Unlike the untold billions of other life forms teaming on the Earth — whose nature is an open and shut case — human nature is not fixed. What does this mean to you? Only everything!

The tiger, the horse, and the bird must express their nature. They have no real choice. And even though they may be free to choose which part of the jungle, or open range, in which they want to feed and roam, these animals have no choice as to the kind of world in which they must dwell.

The tiger can’t choose to live above the jungle floor any more than a shark can decide to soar through blue skies. The tiger, horse, bird, and shark must live where they do because of what they are. Try to see this deeply.

The tiger’s nature determines its life. And that life is a part of the jungle floor. They are inseparable. The tiger’s nature and its life level are one thing. The tiger’s life level determines the world it must inhabit. Its nature and life level are as fixed as its stripes.

But your nature is not fixed. This is spiritual fact. And now you must turn this powerful fact into your discovery and personal experience.

You do have the freedom to choose the kind of world you call your own. Why spend your life in a steamy jungle of roaring thoughts, or in a dark valley filled with sad and worried emotions when, by choosing higher, you can live happier? Your days can be as cool and relaxed as a clear mountain stream, if you decide that’s the life you want.

But, decide you must. What very few men and women ever come to realize, spiritually speaking, is that life is a ceaseless series of inner choices about where they want to live. And even though we may not fully understand the nature of these choices, or why they must be made, to not choose is to lose. Here’s why.

The complete range of life-level possibilities, from the conflict-filled jungle floor to the serene mountaintop, all exist right within your own uninvestigated nature. And to not choose the upward path through this life is to resign yourself to the laws of gravity — which always choose in favor of their own nature: down.

A mental picture will help bring some of these important invisible concepts into clearer view.

Imagine a huge mansion with unlimited floors. Now further envision that each floor in this mansion represents one life level out of all of the countless possibilities.  If it’s helpful, think of this mansion as representing your True Nature.

The level of each of the floors in our inner mansion determine the life choices available on it.

For instance, as long as you live in the basement of this mansion, you can’t choose to enjoy the unrestricted cool air and natural sunlight of the first floor resting just above it. Similarly, on the second floor you can’t choose to see the beauty and panorama of the view that only the fifth floor and higher can offer. And so on it goes, all the way to higher and higher floors.

Your life experiences are determined by which of these “floors” you dwell upon. This means that each floor represents a possible life level. But, while each of these inner levels and the natural events attracted to them may be fixed, you are not. Unlike the tiger that can’t leave the land of the tiger, you can leave any troubling part of your own present nature far behind you. Read on to discover one more amazing feature of your True Nature.

Picture a set of stairs that winds its way up and through this immense inner mansion. These steps start in the darkened basement and lead up until they go out of sight. Each step of the staircase is also a part of your True Nature, but none of them belongs to any one floor-level through which they pass.

This means you don’t have to remain on any level not of your choosing. You have the power to climb. You can change your life experiences by walking away from any of those unwanted worlds within you that create your unpleasant days. In this way, self-departure is the same as self-elevation. Your life is meant to be an upward journey.

Our lives are the experience (or the reflection) of whatever presence we may share… and this holds true for all of our moments. We are primarily, first and foremost, creatures of consciousness. What does this mean?

Our real — but still hidden — life is an expression and extension of eternal forces, even though we are presently well grounded in the sensual, physical life. As such, we remain bound in this realm’s limited and unconscious circle of relationships. But we need not remain unwilling captives of this lower order. We may choose higher.

Our as yet realized heritage is that we may choose, through higher self-awareness coupled with conscious discernment, what order of presence we wish to share, what presence we agree to allow within us. Think what this discovery means to us.

It is our choice whether to dwell within the temporary or the permanent — whether we run with the stream that pours itself into the desert and disappears, or dwell within the ocean that feeds all such passing pools. We are empowered to choose whether to give ourselves over to what hurts us, or to what heals us.

In short, we may practice the presence of those states of being that are, in themselves, the secret source of our suffering, or we may work to practice, consciously, the presence of what is inherently filled with Light — those elevated states associated with the Divine.

The key here is that everything depends upon our intention and where we place our attention — within how willing we are to be aware of the relationship between where our attention is, and what we are experiencing in the moment as a result of its placement.

The unattended mind, by the very nature of thought, dwells in one unseen relationship after another with whatever presence permeates this unconscious accord. In this order of inner condition, all kinds of sensations pour in, providing powerful stimulation, even as our possibility for Real Life pours out.

When we work to remember ourselves, to practice first the presence of the present moment (by being awake to all of its offerings), and therein to hold our attention upon what we know is Good, or Godly — in this same moment we share the presence of what is True, Light-filled, and Love-bestowing.