The unenlightened man keeps a tight hold on himself because he is afraid of losing himself; he can trust neither circumstances nor his own human nature; he is terrified of being genuine, of accepting himself as he is and tries to deceive himself into the belief that he is as he wishes to be. But these are the wishes, the desires that bind him, and it was such desires as these that the Buddha described as the cause of human misery.
People imagine that letting themselves go would have disastrous results; trusting neither circumstances nor themselves, which together make up life, they are forever interfering and trying to make their own souls and the world conform with preconceived patterns. This interference is simply the attempt of the ego to dominate life. But when you see that all such attempts are fruitless and when you relax the fear-born resistance to life in yourself and around you which is called egoism, you realize the freedom of union with Brahman. In fact you have always had this freedom.
Alan Watts — Become What You Are (p. 83)
Freeing myself from my ego, and learning to let go of controlling everything around me, has been a slow and arduous process that continues to this day. Thankfully, I can say I’m much better now than I was in the past. My consistent deliberate desire to live with awareness of my ego has proven beneficial. Instead of denying my ego as a forbidden or “sinful” part of myself, I now find amusement at all the clever ways it tries to hook me with its claws, and I accept the lessons it may be trying to teach me.
I don’t consider myself enlightened and I know I still have a lot to learn, but I wholeheartedly trust in life’s circumstances and in myself. I thoroughly long to be genuine and accept myself for who I am. I also try to accept others for who they are—some days I’m more successful than others.
Today, I will attempt to be more aware of how my ego loves to control circumstances and I’ll relax the fear-born resistance to life.
Have a blessed day.
Peace and Love,