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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Life, or expectations?

Life. It's just one thing after another. How many times have you heard someone, perhaps yourself, say that? Life is not something that happens to you, you are an active participant. In fact, life is easy, we make it hard. And how do we do that? By our perceptions of what life is, or more importantly, what we think it is supposed to be. Life is just that.... life. Look at the general concept of life, the one that nature has down to a science. Something is given life. It lives. It grows. It is, and then, it dies. People look to the fires in the Florida Everglades, and become sad. The truth is, it is an incredible rejuvenation process that is provided by nature. Those fires caused by massive storms and lightning strikes that form over the Everglades have been happening since long before we were here to observe them, and yet, the Everglades remain. It will continue the process of life.

So, am I saying that life is just being born, and waiting it out until we die? No, of course not. Life is living! And I can tell you what it is not. It is not material possessions, a job, money, a gorgeous spouse, vacationing in Europe every year, kids, a dog, or a white picket fence. Those are things that we have come to believe make a life, when in fact, they have nothing to do with it. They do not make anything. Even if we have all those things, we will not be happy unless we are happy inside ourselves. Money comes and goes, spouses do to in this age, and there's a very good chance that you will outlive your car. But people put so much importance on those things as if that's what makes a "life". We are filled with expectations that society and ego have created for us. It is simply a dream that someone else dreamt for us, and is not real. When the expectations we have falter, we feel pain and dis-comfort. When we can't get the house, or lose the house, we grow uncomfortable within ourselves. I read an article about a financial planner who lost everything when the economy failed. His quote was "I'm only happy when I'm making money". What a sad way to live! His entire "life" is based on money. If he has it, life is good. Without it, life is meaningless. I'm sure after the collapse of the economy he was questioning "How could this happen to me?" The statement of the victim and ego. He based his life on a possession, and when that left, he was decimated. I wonder how his personal relationships were handled when he was without his money, his happiness.

It's not a bad thing to set goals, as long as we have no emotional connection to those goals should they not come to fruition. But we cannot attach ourselves to material possessions in the hopes that those things will create a life. Life is within us. It IS us. We are life. When we truly live, we find we do not need those things that you've expected to have such as the house and the kids. Life flows from within us. What we do with ourselves create our lives. I've always said the meaning of life is knowledge, and helping others. It is simple. We create our lives, and when you free ourselves from desire, you will find a peace like you have never known. Does it sound too simple? Well, it is. We make it hard.


Anonymous said...

“Those who restrain desire, do so because theirs is weak enough to be restrained.”

The Garden said...

Welcome back Anonymous. You're an interesting reader. You obviously don't agree with what is written in here, yet you come back and read the writings. You insist on judging the material, showing the full strength of your ego, yet hide behind the mask of anonymity. It's very easy to judge from the shadows, when you don't need to show yourself to take accountability for your actions. Yet something in here is still bringing you back to read. So, you are either A) interested in the teachings, perhaps trying to grow out of your egocentric center, or B) the only way you are happy is by judging others and telling them what you feel is unacceptable. That's strickly ego. You feel you are "right", and those that share other opinions are "wrong".

If you are interested in the teachings, feel fre to contact me, and we can work on releasing your ego, and maybe find some peace within yourself. If you are just interested in telling everyone how wrong they are, then feel free to move on.

As to your actual comment, you have a choice. You can either be locked in to worldly desires and materialism, or you can free yourself from it, and realize that no happiness or peace comes from either of those. The weak are the ones who only find happiness in possessions, and the strong are the ones who realize there is something more in this life than that.

Anonymous said...

my friend i have not attacked you in anything i have written. i have simply questioned some of your ideas. i know this goes aginst your teachings of "dont ask why" but there would be no growth if we didnt question things as they are and or were. im sorry you feel offended that i dont accept you as the authority of insight. i dont feel i am passing any sort of judgement simply because i question what you say. i do question things its just the way im wired. if there were no questions how could there ever be an answer? it works this way "no questions = no answers." are you familiar with the socratic method? again, it is just another question. if you are not familiar with it i would hope that question would lead you to understanding what the socratic method is. that is if you have any room left for growth yourself.

im not going to acknowledge your attacks on my ego as that has more to do with you than it does me.

as much as you want to deny the material world like it or not it is here and youre in it. yup, we are eternal beings with parts of us working outside of time and space. i dont mean to ruffle your feathers but the material and ego are not bad. the problem comes when the material rules you and you dont rule it. when the material becomes part of your identity is where inner problems will manifest. there is a peace that can be found in this world and it 100% requires material.

DESIRE moves EVERYTHING, even in the spiritual realm

Anonymous said...

wont post it will ya =)

The Garden said...

Actually, not only have you attacked me, but millions who believe that pain comes from desire. You state that you are only questioning my ideas, yet I have not seen a question in your responses yet. You told me that Buddha is only a teacher, then you told me that ego has about as much depth as persona. Then you told me that if I were projecting love, I'd have it, then told me to cleanse my own soul prior to baptizing others, and ended your first post with telling me if I change, then we can laugh instead of me killing you. You followed that response with a one sentence rebuttal of people who believe that pain comes from desire are weak, or more specifically, their personal desire is weak. You've screamed out that I am wrong, and you are right, and have done all of this under the guise of anonymity. There has not been a question anywhere in there. Questions are a doorway into knowledge. If you would have actually asked one, maybe you would have seen or received a comparison in which you could relate. I know you don't see what is written in your words, but it is simply a matter of rebuttal against something you don't believe in, which you believe is somehow raising questions, but again, there have been no questions. Even when you mention the socratic method, you state that you hope the question would lead me to understanding what the socratic method is. Why is it so important to you for me to see your side of everything? As I said before, it is ok not to agree with what I believe, as it is ok for me to not believe in what you believe. As for your first post about shadow archtypes, I have studied up on that, along with many other things, some of which make sense to me, and some of which don't work for me. I choose to write from what is inside of me, and apparently that is much different than what you believe in.

I am simply putting ideas out there of what has helped me and others. It is not right, nor is it wrong, it just "is". If people come here and find some sort of peace or solace in what I have written, that's wonderful. If it doesn't agree with them, that's wonderful too. But the difference between you and I is, is that I am not going to a site with information I don't believe in, and trying to prove how what I believe in is correct. If I went and read your blog, and didn't agree with what you wrote, I would just smile, appreciate the time you took to put the information out there, and leave peacefully. You seem intent on trying to "prove" your point of view here, which is, like it or not, the byproduct of ego. Including your last comment of "You're not going to post this, are you". (Continued)

The Garden said...

I choose to live my life on the fundamental principles of Buddhism, and I have also incorporated many other things into my life. If you choose not to do that, that is beautiful. Differences are one of the things that make this world so beautiful. If we were all the same, what kind of world would that be? I am very open to keeping posts open without moderation, but while you don't see that you are indeed attacking things that people believe in, in hopes to show me the way, I have to also protect my readers and visitors to be able to keep them from feeling attacked if they happen to believe the information that is here.

This information is here. It is available for everyone. If it helps you in some way, great. If not, that's great too. Not one thing works for all people, and I respect that very much. I am not forcing anyone to do or consider anything. I am writing down what I feel is a productive way, based on Buddhist teachings, to grow from within, as I did myself. It is not THE way, it is just A way. And if it agrees with your sense and reason, then take it and run with it, and if it doesn't, then go find what does, because it is important to find something that makes sense to you. While you believe that the world is material and that desire moves everything, I do not. But while you are telling that to me as fact, I am simply offering up an idea to ponder. As you told me "the way it is" in your comment, I am not telling someone "This is the way it is", I am simply saying "These are some of the possibilities that exist". To each their own, my friend, just be more conscious of your delivery.

Anonymous said...

you seem to be emotionally involved for someone who has an inner peace and detachment from the physical wolrld?

The Garden said...

I have a great passion for life, and I write with passion. If you believe that to be an emotional attachment to you, or your views, you are mistaken. However, since it is obvious that you have a personal agenda here, I believe your issues with me would be best served via email. Feel free to write to me from your email and let me know what you're feeling, and we can discuss it further if you wish.

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