I’ll just come right out and say it. I’ve been leading a double life.
One is the life of Chris…
It’s a life of goals, dreams, drama, money, position, status, comparison, possessions, people, appearance, to-do lists, accomplishments, paychecks, bills, taxes, lawyers, heartaches, conquests, let-downs, judgments, expectations, handshakes, stress, smiles, frills, frowns, flaws, fun and the occasional flat tire…
It’s a life of more… more more more and gimme some fucking more.
Better than you. Worse than you. What you have. What I don’t. What I want and how I’m gonna get it.
It’s a life both wonderful and tragic.
There are times in this life when everything just seems to go my way without even the slightest bit of effort… where everything is mine for the taking and the taking is EASY.
Ahhh… gotta love the good times.
HOWEVER… there are other times when this life clearly has it in for me and makes no bones about it.
Where it beats me down so bad I wonder how the heck I’m ever gonna make it out alive. When the steel-toed boots of the world keep kicking me in the side so hard I can feel my bones snap and taste the internal bleeding as I gasp for air. I think that last blow may have ruptured my spleen. Damn… not good.
In this life I can be both the man…. and a total piece of shit… in the same hour.
Some days I set the world on fire.
And some days the world itself grins at me in delight as it watches me burn.
That first life, the life of Chris, is the life of mind, world, and ego. Of me, you, and them. Of tomorrow and yesterday. Of then and there.
And then there’s my other life…
A life less tangible, but every bit as real. In fact, it’s even more real… it’s just harder to see. Because this is the life that actually does the seeing.
I can’t take a picture of it, share it in a YouTube video, or put it up on my Facebook wall.
But it’s always right here.
This is the life is where the heart lives.
It’s the life of here and now.
It’s a life of total peace and total perfection.
A life where nothing ever goes wrong. In fact, no “thing” even exists in this life except existence itself.
And all I gotta do to find this life is turn within.
These two parallel lives co-exist with each other on a daily basis.
The inner life and the outer life.
The outer life can be amazing, and a total fucking let down. Like I said, it’s pretty much hit or miss.
And while the outer life can be a fun place to hang out and do some cool stuff, I’ve found the inner life is a much better place to take off my coat, kick off my shoes and make myself at home.
The inner life is consistent and can be relied upon, especially when the outer life falls apart.
It’s a life of love, freedom, and understanding.
And no matter crazy the outside life gets, the inner life is always here.
Always here, always now… all it takes is recognizing it in the moment.
It’s been my experience that life is best lived with a foot in both worlds.
Easier said than done sometimes, but fortunately there are some simple ways to do this.
Some of the best ways are…
- Focusing on the present moment.
- Accepting the outer life 100% completely as it is. This one is HUGE. No matter what’s going on in the outer life, accepting it takes you directly to the inner life.
- Focusing on the Inner Being. The vast emptiness inside. The place beyond the mind, where Awareness lives. Not a place of thought, but the place that’s aware of the thoughts.
- Watching your thoughts
- Giving complete attention to any one of the 5 senses
- Completely immersing yourself in work you love
- Intense physical exercise
- Sports that force you into the moment – Surfing, extreme sports, etc.
- Art/Creative practices or hobbies
The outer life of people, places, things and situations can be awesome sometimes… and sometimes it can downright suck.
Part of its nature is for it to be different from how we want it to be. Sometimes it just doesn’t wanna see eye to eye with us. We want it to be one way, and it wants to be another.
Constantly trying to the control the outer life and arguing with it is a surefire path to misery. There’s no way to arrange it just right to where we can find happiness in it. The puzzle just doesn’t fit together that way. There will always be broken pieces, missing pieces, and extra pieces we don’t want.
But that’s how it’s designed.
It’s designed to frustrate the living shit out of us so we can seek happiness and fulfillment elsewhere.
It’s designed to beat us down so we can grow and evolve. It’s designed to break our fucking heart so we’ll cry out for something greater…. something greater than can be seen with the eyes, touched by the hand, put in a bank account, or placed on a trophy case.
The reason the outer life doesn’t always go our way is so that we’ll turn to the inner life… and maybe even to something much greater than just our “selves”… with our status, possessions, name and serial number.
And the turning in… well, it’s a beautiful fucking thing.
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