My whole concept of God was founded upon avoiding surrender – knowing god meant that I could hold everyone else accountable to my standard of him and demand everyone’s surrender, except my own. But now I know God in a very different form, I don’t just know him, I feel him.
What I know about God is that he is the artist inspiring all of creation to burst forward and grow. I can see God through studying evolution, seeing the spawn of a cell grow into the colony of a civilization. When I feel God, it’s not really that I feel a palpable presence but rather a gut instinct, and this instinct helps me find my own growth and navigate through my blind spots.
The curse of thinking
But I didn’t get to feel this spirit leading the way until following many others and seeing for myself where they took me. Shadow thoughts, hidden resentments, I could feel little fears infiltrate my mind and gain volume as I ruminate on them. They echo:
“This is wrong, that is wrong, they are wrong”
These anxieties would run my life. They made me feel imprisoned in a cage whose walls were self-doubt. And the more I obsessed about breaking free of the prison, dreaming about a day when I would no longer feel crippled by the world, the more debilitating my impoverished state seemed.
I was weak and made weaker by pretending to be strong. Like a red giant star collapsing into itself. The moment I feel my thoughts spiral out of control, my immediate reaction is to grip tighter on the steering wheel, to maintain the illusion of calm and control..
And then I close my eyes and everything is gone. The trials I thought I had to undergo were burdens I made up, responsibilities which weren’t mine to own. I am not at the center of the world, I remind myself.
After having many of these battles with my subconscious, I can recognize the self-deception. When I find myself at the cockpit screaming MAYDAY, I know I must take a step back.
This act of “letting go” is surrender to the unknown. The confession of our own powerlessness to make things the way we want them. Once we pause our frantic efforts and consider whether we are out on a limb, that moment of lucidity offers you a chance to ask for help. All you must offer in return is willingness for the process of surrender to begin.
Feeling our way to peace
I don’t believe in a God, I believe in a body of laws at work around us. No, not around us — in us, through us — for we are the cells of that body! The universe is one collective nervous system and we are directed by the forces of that body to work in alignment with it.
When I speak of surrender, it is surrender to this bigger organism. It is to realize that time and time again, the winds of fate bring us what we need. The grass grows where it is planted, is it measured by how high it can grow? Surely not. But we can have faith that these laws will take shape in our life, to grow us in its own perfect time.
If the grass considers himself to be just grass, then it will die without water and sunlight – and must therefore steal them from the sky. But if he considers himself part of the land, the water and sunlight are already part of him.
We are blades of grass – but we forget we are also the earth, the wind, the water, and the sky. Remember that one day you will die and return to these things. We forget and that is our mortal weakness.
In this isolated state of existence, stealing happiness becomes our way of life. We are like addicts, going to any length to add to our stores of pleasure, fearing the day when they run out and we will have to face life on its own terms.
Peace as the portal to what we want
Surrender is the law of attraction working in reverse. For the state of “trying to get to satisfaction” that we continuously struggle with is itself attachment to the “struggling against” not the “completion of”.
We default into thinking of ourselves as grass and believe we are separate from the world, leaving us with the only alternative of trying to control it. But this thinking traps us in the material plane, locked into a never-ending cycle of action and struggle, banished from the fulfillment that comes by living as a spiritual being. The very act of using control as a means of power creates attachment to the means and repels the nirvanic state of being I am after.
But when we surrender our struggle, having faith that we will inherit the solution, our wish will be granted. It’s that simple. Translate this formula back in time, when the Old Testament pagan gods required a sacrifice for granting wishes. A sacrifice represents the spiritual aspect of the second law of thermodynamics: destroying something material creates something energetic/spiritual. When the Israelites sacrificed lambs to Yahweh, I imagine they were humbled at having to give up prized assets and therefore brought closer to God, relying on him even more for their strength. Following this example, we must sacrifice the things that we attach to for our strength, whether they be drugs, relationships, or behaviors. Relinquishing these things is symbolic of giving up our carnal pursuit of satisfaction, and by destroying them we identify more with the spiritual man.
Surrender is the only way out of the insanity of trying to own our lives. And as we saw with the grass, true life is much bigger than us. When we realize this, we claim many spiritual virtues that ultimately bring us more than what we were trying to get out of life through control.
Control is an illusion and we try to ignore the fact that it is desperate. We pursue the perfect life, the perfect wife, because we were deceived into believing these things will lead to fulfillment. This is mental slavery. If we play god, pretending to be the masters of fate, then we will fall from heaven like Lucifer, trying to chasing perfection and contain it inside of them. The fault of Lucifer, Voldemort and every other is not that they chased power but that they were too afraid to trust in a power greater than themselves.
Building in balance
The week I got arrested, things could have gone way worse. Yet, from the help of friends and strangers, I was gently carried through the eye of the storm. Through the broken refuge, which only my choices and misplaced self-confidence could be blamed for, I saw life rebuild itself in order to give me a second chance. It was like my addiction, which was a relationship, had blinded me to the chaos I was creating as I pursued fulfillment and I was being shown a different way to grow in alignment with god’s will.
I imagined myself building an imperfect tower, each block stacked haphazardly on stop of another, the whole thing leaning as I race to finish before it gives way. This is how unstable things felt trying to do them on my own. Once they finally collapsed, I saw coincidence miraculously work in my favor, as if restoring the world to balance again, the blocks stacking themselves to resume a stable foundation so I could pick up where I had left off. Now I could build in balance.
Something else about free will came to mind. We often don’t realize our obsessions while they are driving us. I felt like I didn’t have any choice other than to keep stacking. I could feel the foundation groaning, the feeling that what I was loading onto my plate was unsustainable, but pressed on without pausing for a moment to think, “was all this really necessary”?
It was only after the tower collapsed, the rock bottom reminding me of where my foundation was, that I could begin again with a choice. A choice to listen to what I thought was right or what I felt was right. They’re both important, but I guess it’s about finding that stable foundation, one foot firmly planted in each. Otherwise, we can get lost in one and float away, stacking our towers in outer space and forgetting the earth.
Pursuing Perspective – Manifest
- Chapter I – Purpose
- Chapter II – Wisdom
- Chapter III – Clarity