A few months following my initial awakening, I had a profound realization. At the time, I was in the middle of an intense period of being thrown back and forth between non-dual awareness and ordinary, dualistic mode of perceiving, when I discovered something important when it comes to dealing with life stuff.
Usually, when I’d just been reverted back to ordinary perception, I’d get this huge knot of anxiety, right in the gut. And on this particular day, it seemed especially fierce – a tight, white-hot contraction of searing emotional pain, originating from a deep fear that I’d never return to wholeness again; and from being pretty pissed off, since I couldn’t help but blame myself for having fucking lost my enlightenment – again.
And my usual method of getting into that superfocused state didn’t work either.
So, I sat there feeling sad for myself, trapped in split-mind, nursing my sorry ball of anxiety, when I suddenly remembered what all the masters had kept saying over and over.
They’d say that you should try to ‘accept’ whatever’s coming up in the moment, good or bad. Only I never quite understood what that actually meant. What does it really mean to ‘accept’ what’s happening? To allow whatever’s coming up – to not resist anything?
Well, I didn’t even know where to begin. But then, as I sat there, came an interesting idea. Instead of trying to ‘accept’ this anxiety, what if I could bring myself to wanting it? For some reason, I thought about them masochists. Supposedly, they like pain. They actually want pain. For them, pain is a good thing.
What if I could take the particular sensations that make up that painful knot in my stomach, and begin to want them, similarly to how I ‘want’ to lay down in a comfortable bed when tired, or how I just ‘want’ a ice cream cone on a hot summer day? Then, there wouldn’t be any need to try to ‘accept’ the anxiety – for nobody ever had any problem ‘accepting’ things that they actually want in life.
But how do you decide to want something? Something that you don’t really like? I began to think about what goes into that particular feeling of wanting.
Turns out that the felt sense of desire is something very visceral. It’s actually rooted in the body. Sure, it’s part attitude – but it also manifests as specific bodily sensations, particularily in the chest and gut area.
So I thought, what if I could somehow summon these sensations, and then direct them at the anxiety? I mean, if all that goes into wanting, is a little attutide and some sensations, then it should be possible to produce it on demand!
And I discovered that you can pretty easily bring those sensations forth merely by imagining something you desire. Think about ice cream, or anything else that you’d want, then isolate the specific sensations of want-ness, wherever you find them.
If you then focus on them, they actually become amplified and start to take up more space and presence in your field of experience. And here’s the thing: When you hold that want-ness in your attention like that, you can actually direct it anywhere you want. Take that sense of wanting and direct it towards any vicious sensation, such as a knot of anxiety in the gut – and lo and behold, you now magically want that anxiety.
And that’s precisely what I did.
And as I launched the want-ness right into the center of that massive bolt of anxiety, I immediately felt it loose its power, and I no longer wanted to get rid of it.
I was totally fine with it.
More than that, I actually wanted it. I was in harmony with it.
The resistance towards the anxiety had vanished, and I simply held it lightly and effortlessly in the space of my being, as I did all other parts of manifest reality in that moment.
And then I noticed that, with the resistance gone, the ball slowly started to fade away.
I sat there and I watched it go.
And then, when the last remnant flicked out of reality and there was only peace left, I noticed that everything had shifted back to wholeness again.