• February 11, 2017

    The greatest difficulty I have is to attain continuity of effort. I have good days when I make efforts to work and then I have days when it all falls away and my life is just a succession of disconnected reactions to what is happening around me.

    Yes, this is so. There is value in this insight but also a danger. What is our understanding of continuity? What do you expect from yourself? Do you think that work on self can be like going to work at your job, where you show up and put in a full day for a day’s pay?

    For most of us, our job has been carefully constructed to ensure that we make continuous efforts. There are rewards and punishments. There is a job description. There is a supervisor to keep us on track not to mention the opinions and attitudes of our work mates. Our life is organized to keep us on the job.

    This is not the case for our work. None of the same conditioning applies. This work offers no extrinsic rewards. It is completely superfluous from the point of view of ordinary life. The world does not support it, does not need it and does not notice if we have succeeded or not.

    It follows, does it not, that we should not expect the same continuity of effort in our work? Because this work has a different nature, should it not also have another dimension of continuity?

    Two nights ago, our circle gathered for zikr. Do you remember how we began? There was, unmistakably, an experience of a most ancient space that opened to us. There were present certain feelings and sensations that comprised this experience. Did you not have the sense of having been in that space many, many times before? This is the dimension where the continuity of the work exists; not along the time line of life in the world, on the job, but in a vertical dimension which I can enter, where I have always been and where I am always welcome to enter again.

    You may think that this is a blatant contradiction, to say that this is a space ‘which I can enter, where I have always been and where I am always welcome to enter again.’ Logic says I am either there or I’m not. But in this dimension, both are possible. It is only a matter of where your attention is. In the zikr, your attention returns to the real. You remember. When you remember, you re-join your original being. The key to continuity is not the effort to work but rather the effort to remember. This is effort of another kind, for continuity of a higher order.

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