• November 10, 2018

    Am I free to proceed with my wishes and obligations? Or am I limited and constrained at every turn, leaving me frustrated and unfulfilled?

    Of course nothing ever proceeds according to plan. Success depends upon the ability to manoeuvre. The glorious sensation of being unimpeded comes not mostly from external circumstances but more so from a lack of internal resistance and dissent.

    When I cannot proceed with my intentions, I need to see and think differently, without criticism and distress. But what I tend to do is re-enforce or create obstacles which are mostly in the software of my thinking and habitual reactions rather than in the circumstances themselves. Why? Observing the sensations in me will tell the tale. Am I looking for excuses to quit and fail; wanting sympathy; hoping to draw attention to myself; indulging in the mechanical pleasure of emotional reactions; enjoying the momentary excitement of agitation? These behaviours almost always serve a narrative…a story about me and an image I hold of myself.

    Unwinding the narrative opens up space, providing the room to manoeuvre.

    Can I see the limiting mechanisms objectively, not judging, blaming or defending? If so, perhaps I can learn to step lightly around obstacles and move with the possibilities revealed to me in the present.

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  • November 3, 2018

    There is immense satisfaction in using only what is needed. There is immense pleasure in having just enough. Indulgence is always weakening to the will. Underneath the enjoyment of excess, conscience saps my strength and opens the door to further error.

    The sacrifice of excess strengthens will. Of course I am referring to my agreement to accept limits for myself, not ones imposed upon me or forced upon others.

    How is sufficiency practiced? First you must discern what is needed, not what is wanted. Sufficiency is saying no to what is not required, saying no to what does not serve a purpose. This form of denial does not inflict pain, rather it conserves attention, energy and an open heart. Self-denial which causes pain to oneself is a distortion. Therefore, as I have said, the exercise of sufficiency is a pleasure, as all virtues inherently are.

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