When asked to share his secret to a happy life, renowned philosopher and spiritual leader, Jiddu Krishnamurti said “The secret is … that I don’t mind what happens.” It is the minding what happens to us personally that is at the core of our struggles, because by its very nature we are being led by ego. When we surrender ego, we have freedom to experience the silence, the peace that is inherent within us all, to be at one with nature, with others, with ourself – the very essence of happiness.
I used to mind what happened a lot. I wanted to be perfect; a perfect daughter, a perfect mother, and probably, a perfect wife too! If I was giving a speech or running a workshop I wanted it to go well, which meant everyone needing to value and enjoy it. Our happiness and peace of mind become tired up with our expectations and subsequent judgments of our performance, adding unnecessary pressure. From this perspective what happens matters. It even looks as though we can control what happens by working harder! Frankly, it’s exhausting and unhealthy.
A different perspective emerges with knowing that I am not my ego, which after all is just another term for my personal thinking focusing on the illusion of a self-identity (another layer of that onion). Its not that I don’t care – I actually care deeply in the sense of compassion, but I don’t mind because my happiness and inherent peace are unaffected by whatever happens by way of outcomes. Neither are yours. Judgements such as ‘good’ or ‘bad’ are attached to either the past or the future, in terms of the stories that we love to tell ourselves. They don’t exist outside of the stories, and if expectations and judgements only exist in stories, they can have no impact on the peace and happiness that is inherent within us all.
It only takes a shift in perspective to see beyond the limitations of our personal thinking to the source of our true nature. The intriguing question becomes “how do we have access to fresh, new thinking if the source of that wisdom is not within us?” When we know that the source is within us, we know that we have infinite resourcefulness to deal with whatever happens. Aren’t we seeing infinite resourcefulness in what is emerging out of Ukraine right now? Of course we are also witnessing the devastating effects of a rampaging ego.
Curious to explore this further then why don’t you read about it in my book, “More than you think”.
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