Have you ever gotten frustrated by a traffic jam, particularly when you are in a hurry to get somewhere?
How about angered by something another person said?
Do you ever find yourself complaining at work – perhaps the boss isn’t a good leader or maybe your co-workers don’t pull their fair share?
Are you envious of someone else’s life?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then you are – like all the rest of us – resisting what is.
What is is a fact.
The traffic jam is there, whether we like it or not.
The other person uttered the insensitive comments.
The boss isn’t very good at motivating and inspiring others. And several of the co-workers are slackers.
That other person does have a large bank account and many worldly possessions.
Those are all facts.
Think about how silly – and how much of a waste of time and energy it is – to resist the facts.
As A Course in Miracles so powerfully points out, “No one can be angry at a fact. It is always an interpretation that gives rise to negative emotions.”
In other words, we take the facts and then interpret them based on our own biases – giving the facts meaning such as good or bad.
But the facts themselves contain no inherent goodness or badness.
The traffic jam isn’t bad. It just is.
The words spoken by the other person aren’t bad. They’re just words.
The boss’ poor leadership qualities aren’t bad. It’s just a fact of their current level of skill and self-awareness.
And so on.
As Eckhart Tolle writes:
What could be more futile, more insane than to create inner resistance to something that already is?
Yet consider how much of our life we spend doing just that – resisting what is.
If, instead, we can learn to accept what is as mere fact and realize that any negative reactions we have are purely an interpretation on our part – then we can begin the path toward peace.
That doesn’t mean that we don’t take action or respond in some way to a given situation. But when we can see everything as is – not as we expect or would like it to be – then our reaction can come from a place of calm non-resistance.
There is no anger, no judgment, no defense, and no attack. Simply a place of surrendering to what is. And from that place of inner peace will come whatever response is most helpful for the situation. And from such a position will come an amazing sense of joy.
Join me in Monday’s class where we’ll explore how often we actively resist what is and learn steps we can take toward a different, more peaceful way of experiencing life. I look forward to seeing you then.