Listen closely because this could be what you have been waiting to hear your whole life! In this extraordinary podcast, Guy Finley talks about what a person must understand in order to find real freedom, shatter the illusion of limitation, and be at ease in any situation.
Question: I have tried to sit and go quiet to practice self-observation, but my thoughts scream at me that I should give up this worthless, unproductive practice!
Answer: Pay no attention to what your own thoughts and feelings are trying to tell you the whole time you’re sitting. Learn to watch and drop these dark inner voices. They don’t want you to succeed and there’s a good reason why. They can’t dwell in that silent world you wish to enter and that wishes to enter you.
So persist! You will prevail. For even as you struggle to stay aware of yourself in the present moment, that moment itself changes. And as it does, so do you.
Slowly, subtly at first, but eventually even beyond your mind’s protests, the distinction between your sense of self and your awareness of the present moment melts away. And as it does, a new, deeper sense of silence floods into you; filling your awareness with itself and, at the same time, with yet another awareness that the source of this supreme stillness is arising out of your own being. It washes everything out of its way. And so arrives a quiet mind.
Have you ever tried to make a change and then heard this voice in your head? “Why does it have to hurt?” Maybe some form of an addiction – drugs, alcohol, food – has begun to compromise not only your sanity and health but your relationships. Maybe you know that you are not doing the right thing with people, and you want to change, but it hurts too much. Are you involved with somebody and you know that you shouldn’t be involved with him or her? And even though you know you shouldn’t be involved, the thought of not being involved with them hurts?
Every time we reach a moment in life where it is necessary for us to recognize and then act upon change, to have some discipline… we think: “Why does it have to hurt?” Our attention shouldn’t be on the thought that says, “Why does it have to hurt?” Where our attention should be is on the fact that: “You know what? Being this way is hurting me!”
And when we honestly look at the evidence before us — that we haven’t changed because it’s just too painful for us — we can see that we have little by little let our life go… we’ve let go of the right ideals, the right hopes, the right feelings that we had when we were children. We realize we should be able to talk to anybody about anything. We should be able to get any kind of news, and take it with equanimity. We should be able to walk through storm or sunshine with the same bright nature… and yet we know we don’t.
It’s critical that instead of becoming someone who is learning to cope with the nature that’s decided it’s impossible to have that kind of life, we understand that if we want to become a different kind of human being, we are going to have to pay. How? We have to change.
Self-change hurts. Self-change is not easy. Self-change requires a new kind of suffering. But the beautiful thing about the change we’re talking about — and the way that it’s made possible — begins with understanding new truths… facts that most of us (and the world around us) do not want us to know, but that begin right in our own heart with us seeing evidentially the truth of our own life, by us having altogether new ways with which to look at ourselves that aren’t conditioned by the fear of seeing what we see.
We’re so afraid of looking at ourselves. We’re so afraid of seeing our own weaknesses. In this world today, we’re not supposed to have any weaknesses… but fear of a weakness is the biggest weakness there is.
Real change begins with the willingness to see and understand what is keeping us from change.
If our spiritual aim in life is authentic inner change, then we must know two facts. First, any measure of true self-change is the positive effect of one having paid the price to realize some new degree of self-wholeness… Which means, secondly, that any time we look outside of ourselves and find blame with others for putting us through painful changes, we are inwardly divided and must be headed in the wrong direction.