We don’t have to push against nature to find joy. It wants to present itself to us on a path that requires the least effort.
Even after a harsh winter, when the ground is frozen and inanimate, the flowers do not struggle to blossom. They simply reach up and open their petals.
Much like how we can open ourselves up (easily, gracefully) to joy and peace, when we turn our awareness to the possibility of a perfect outcome. Instead of closing ourselves (painfully, rigidly) with fear and insecurity.
When we let go of the thoughts that keep us stuck, the direction of our lives will unfold for us with effortless ease.
It was a perfect day. Bright prisms of dew glittered like diamonds in the grass, although I knew that, as the day went on, they would be vaporized by the sun.
Vaporized by the sun! Wasn’t that what the universe had in store for all of us? There would come a day when the sun exploded like a red balloon, and everyone on earth would be reduced in less than a camera flash to carbon. Didn’t Genesis say as much? For dust thou art, and into dust shalt thou return. This was far more than full old theology: It was a precise scientific observation! Carbon was the Great Leveler – the Grim Reaper.
Diamonds were nothing more than carbon, but carbon in a crystal lattice that made it the hardest known material in nature. That was the way we all were headed. I was sure of it. We were destined to be diamonds.
How exciting it was to think that, long after the world had ended, whatever was left of our bodies would be transformed into a dazzling blizzard of diamond dust, blowing out towards eternity in the red glow of the dying sun.
When we get too close to the fire, we get burned. When we get burned, it hurts. When we feel pain, we recoil. We naturally pull away from what causes us pain and suffering.
Our brains are cool like that.
We learn from pain. We’ll keep ourselves away from the things that make us hurt. We’ll do anything it takes to keep ourselves safe, even if it means avoiding all the things that could hurt. This includes all things that maybe, possibly, potentially could bring on that burn again. Things that could end up bringing great joy, love and enlightenment – Our minds view them as far too risky, too close to the fire. No, we must stay as far away from the fire as possible. Further. Safer.
To what end?
Essentially, we could fail at everything we do, lose everyone we love, find ourselves rejected at every turn. Or, we couldn’t. The risk in avoiding the things that make us afraid is the opportunity cost of passing up a potentially perfect outcome instead. The more we face our fears and even experience losses, the less scary and painful they become. The more happiness we can find. Peace inside. Safer.