Do you sometimes find doubt difficult to overcome?
Quite frequently in the coaching I do, the question of doubt arises. Doubt in yourself, doubt in your work, relationships and spiritual path. Doubt in the benevolent redeeming hand of the universe. It seems that when you first realise the benevolent presence of a unifying energy, many believe, hope or expect "everything will turn out just fine, it'll all be as we want it to". And if it doesn't, when it doesn't turn out that way, all too frequently you're led back down the ladder of doubt toward the start point. So what's happening here? How do you break the cycle? The answer is 'flying on the wings of vulnerability'...
Staring wide eyed into the jaws of fear
During my existence, I've constantly challenged doubt and disbelief. It seems my soul is naturally configured to confront it - I believe all souls can find that direct confrontation. Why is it so important?
Doubt, disbelief and fear are what truly limit us. And so for me at least, there's been a constant exploration of it. If for example a choice has presented itself that stimulated some sense of anxiety, my soul has always seemed to steer me directly into the jaws of it; not because I didn't have the sense of fear initially - exactly because I WAS reacting internally in some way - being constrained by it, which my soul naturally yearned to work through. I realised early on, it is only fear that constrains and limits us: Fear of not being good enough, fear of not having the right solution, the right outcome. So if I felt the sense of fear, instead of turning away, I'd look it in the eyes and go right into the heart of it.
And earlier in my existence, before I'd overcome all sense of fear, it was similar with doubt. Even though I knew intrinsically in my heart that a benevolent presence was always there loving us unconditionally and leading us to ever greater freedom and expansion, I still wasn't completely trusting ALL THE TIME. It seemed as if doubt and belief were a double sided coin, sometimes landing in my favour, sometimes not.
Expectation: the killer of all true experience
It wasn't until I remembered the importance of vulnerability (especially in this often limiting physical world), that I truly began to trust at the deepest level, when doubt finally dissolved and the penny fully dropped. Just as with many awakened people, as we touch the beauty and infinite benevolence of Unity Consciousness, we just know that mountains can be moved to unveil truth. Nothing is too great or too small that can't be solved by tuning into this almighty power - it's an intrinsic knowing at the core of our being. So why then does it not always work out? What is the importance of vulnerability?
In a word, the key issue, the key problem is "expectation". Expectation is the killer of all true experience. When you feel the infinite flow of benevolent presence, there often comes with it a neediness or desire to shape it in some way. And when you find you can't shape it, the steadily growing bubble of belief suddenly bursts wide open again. For me I recall the bubble kept building and bursting until a realisation dawned...
- "True empowerment is not about intentionally manifesting confidence and building supreme belief that things will go your way. In fact it's the very opposite. It's the absolute acceptance of NOT KNOWING how things will work out which finally unlocks the door of doubt and disbelief."
It's in the NOT knowing where freedom lies
You're truly Walking the Path when you don't know what's coming next. When you don't know how you're going to perform. When you don't know if you'll find the right words. When you don't know if that pay-cheque will come or if there'll be dinner on the table tonight. The truth is, we can't know for certain because we don't have full control. For a while it may appear so, but at the highest level, we created the conditions of uncertainty. In a universe that is continually changing and reshaping, how can the outcome always be guaranteed?
I remember back to when I started leading spiritual seminars, getting used to standing in front of audiences where clearly there was a high degree of expectation - a requirement - that you perform (what a strange world this is!).
Here's an especially memorable experience of that:
- "I was sitting in front of the audience in Glastonbury Town Hall waiting for the intro film to finish. I was watching for the first words to drop into mind, a place to begin, a thread to pick up. Usually they came but this time nothing - nothing at all. As the credits to the film rolled, still nothing. As the silence and expectation of the audience grew louder in my awareness still nothing. As I stood up, still nothing. All the while I was watching my inner feelings, any arising tightness. Time ground to a halt. Suddenly, flashing before my eyes were key times before where I'd been nervous; where I'd wanted to say something and to get a message across; where I'd wanted people to appreciate me and my point of view.
The penny dropped. I realised how I'd previously constrained myself by all of those things. How I'd limited myself. How I'd judged myself. How I'd measured myself by something so small. What was wrong with how I was being? Even if nothing came? Even if I stood there in silence?
Time seemed to stretch right into eternity. Without need of outcome at all, any sense of fear disappeared, doubt disappeared, disbelief disappeared. I was infinitely vulnerable. As I opened my mouth to speak, I was stepping off the cliff edge into the abyss and I didn't know what, if anything would come next. But it simply didn't matter. All I knew was that whatever did come, was perfectly okay. In front of all those people, at the risk of making a fool of myself, I realised I'd rather express absolute authenticity - whatever it was."
The truth will set you free
And do you know what? The truth will always set you fee. Absolute faith and trust? I don't care who you are, there is no such thing. What there is instead, is the possibility of absolute vulnerability and awesome acceptance of that. When you can be absolutely vulnerable to life so that you're not sure what happens next, when you step off that cliff edge with absolute acceptance of the outcome, whatever it is, that's when you truly learn how to fly. It's not about knowing what's about to happen. It's not about always having the answer or always getting it right. It's having the courage just to be who you are at whatever apparent personal cost.
And here's the beauty of it, you don't have to be an accomplished person, a confident person, an empowered person, an obviously talented person. All you have to be is you, walking boldly into the jaws of life all the while allowing your truth to flow outwards from within, allowing your authentic expression to be good enough whatever that may be.
- "Come to the edge" he said,
"We can't, we are afraid" they said,
"Come to the edge"
"We can't, we will fall"
"Come to the edge"
and they came
and he pushed them
and they flew.
Indeed, the only way to truly fly in life, is to unfold our wings of absolute vulnerability.
(on behalf of Openhand)
(Publishers - please publish with links intact and the Openhand brief biog. Thankyou <3)
Openhand is a unique approach to spiritual evolution: integrating enlightened wisdom of spiritual masters through the ages, it is a way of tapping into the Benevolent Guiding Consciousness of the Universe and aligning with it in your life. It helps you unveil your True Self, remove karmic blockages and unfold your Divine Destiny. It leads to authentic, resilient and truly successful living.
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