Open Mind

Life moves on, whether we act as cowards or heroes. Life has no other discipline to impose, if we would but realize it, than to accept life unquestioningly. Everything we shut our eyes to, everything we run away from, everything we deny, denigrate, despise, serves to defeat us in the end.  What seems nasty, painful, evil, can become a source of beauty, joy and strength, if faced with an open mind. Every moment is a golden one for him who has the vision to recognize it as such. -Henry Miller

We hear it all the time.  I talk about it in my classes almost every day- life’s biggest lessons are often learned because of and during the difficulties we face along our path.  I found this Henry Miller quote the other day when I was sorting through a collection of inspirations.  I needed something good to read and had gotten off the phone with a friend who was having a hard time with something. We have all been there, stuck in the horror of it all, unable to move, paralyzed by our emotions and feeling desperate that our situation will never change and that we will always be here.  Exhausted, repeating the same old patterns, unable to move forward with our lives. Caught in the same mindset, only if x, y and z happened then I would be happy!

Being stuck in a place of “if only,” gripping and trying to control our circumstances, is the source of the biggest suffering.  Our ego is often the culprit in telling us that we are bad, we don’t deserve, or I should have done better.  Oftentimes, we are not open to what the experience has to offer and we listen to our negative judgments of how things should have been.  We try to change the “wrong” person and make a terrible relationship right, berate ourselves for making mistakes that may have caused us to lose our fortune, down in the dumps because we lost a job and no one is hiring, grieving over the loss of a friendship- the list goes on.

On the other hand, maybe being in a relationship with the wrong person is preparing and showing you what it is you need and want.  Losing your fortune offered you the freedom to have space in your life to make a change. Losing your job made you realize that your job sucked and you needed to switch careers anyway. Losing the friendship allowed you to consider that the friendship might be over, but you learned that being around that person brought you down and made you feel pessimistic, rather than bringing out your optimistic qualities.

It is in our perspective and in our ability to keep an open mind that makes the difference in how we act, react or embrace any situation. When we approach life as a Debbie Downer, we are doomed to draw in negative things.  We approach life with an open mind and an open heart and, yes, we still face difficulties, but we are able to find the golden moments that become beautiful, joyous and build our inner strength. Life keeps on going- learning to roll with it is the key!

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