Posted by: shawnjohnston | June 25, 2007

The Power of Choosing

Breaking out of the hold of your ego, or the Demiurge as per Gnostic mythos, can be excruciatingly difficult. Sometimes you’re aware of taking a step or two forward, but often you are NOT aware of taking the subsequent step or two backwards. His hold is insidious and subtle. And there’s nothing worse than someone acting in what they perceive as spiritually noble ways but are obliviously within the control of their own ego again. The spiritual progress of self-exploration is the most difficult, most exacting, most draining activity you will ever undertake, and you will most certainly fail more often than you succeed. Sorry if that bursts any bubbles.

As Gandhi tells us, “What you do may seem insignificant, but it’s important that you do it.” As difficult and failure-ridden as it is, self-exploration and conscious growth is the most important thing you’ll ever do. It has been said that the flight of a butterfly from a flower in Japan will have some effect (however imperceptible) on the weather in California which will in turn have some effect on the pattern of the smoke rising from the burning incense in your living room. We are not separate entities walking through an independent reality. What we are is a field of energy wrapped in the totality of our environment, one dependent on the other. It is more akin to a child in it’s mother’s womb than pieces moving across as sterile and organized board game of life.

With that in mind, every mindful act of true consciousness, every thought that yearns for spiritual liberation, every time we choose the blue pill again, we affect that interconnected reality for the betterment of all. We do this not for approval or acclaim, nor even for personal satisfaction. When we choose to remain awake, no matter how painful and disappointing that can be at times simply because despite the increased anguish and resistance we meet on this path the colours of a sunset are now imbued a magic you forgot existed and the sound of a child’s laughter has the power to open your heart to possibilities and dreams you had long ago forgotten and relegated to the dustbin of the past. Because even the act of choosing has a power all it’s own and in the moment of that choosing we glimpse the truth that this and this alone is why we were created in the first place.

But it is. So. Hard.

The act of remaining conscious and mindful at all times, in all moments is at times impossible. Everyday I try and everyday I fail. But in the moments that I do succeed I learn a little more, I grow a little stronger, and the next day I fail a little less. Every morning I rise, light the candles on my altar and breathe. I seek my centre and the whispers I find there. And in those moments I find the strength to get up and face another day of giggles and screams, approvals and scorn, epiphanies and darkness. I have my talismans though and my dreams, dusted off and wiped clean though a little worse for wear. Blue eyes sparkling with mirth, a warm body in the night, and giggles that resound within the corridors of my spirit.

Today I choose. And tomorrow. And every day after that.


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