There is so much to learn and relearn in life. There are so many great lessons to be learned from some of the world's greatest teachers that I am in awe every day when I read something I have read a hundred times before - and it still makes that powerful connection and forces itself through layers of stuff I have shielding my heart.
Here's one that makes a connection every time I read it. For a little background, I probably fit this mold of "overachiever" and "what I wear makes the man" thing, as well as a dozen other little character defects (dozen? Ha!)
Anyway, back to Buddha . . .
One of Buddha's greatest contributions to mankind is his teaching of; "desire creates suffering."
This confused me when I read it and I immediately discarded it as "rubbish." This is because I am a big believer in getting and getting is done through desire, willpower, and goal-setting.
How I am resolving the conflict I have with this is; It means that we need to accept where we are right now and enjoy what we already have.
This enables me to experience joy right now where I am and with what I have, rather waiting for it or thinking I will get something that will create the joy or happiness I believe I want or need. Or believing that if events or someone will just change, then I will have joy.
This is another one of those "detaching" things I am working on. My defect is the belief of; "If I just get this or achieve that, then I will be happy." This is a psychological shift - that if I get those new pair of shoes, this will create happiness. Except, as we all know, the new shoes we buy, does create a false or fleeting happiness. This is because eventually the new shoes become old shoes (at least they become "not new" about a week or two later).
And we identify with the shoes - briefly for our happiness. And we identify with the "getting" of things and believe if I just get this or that, I will be happy again or some more. So, a week later, I want something else, to give me this happiness or joy - albeit fleeing.
This is the "desire" I believe Buddha was trying to teach.
Life is not about getting. Wow. I cannot believe I wrote that. I am not even sure I can swallow that. Intellectually, I understand it. Emotionally, I am having a difficult time with it. My emotions are wired for getting and achieving.
And, as I write here, in this very moment, I am thinking this; If I don't get, what happens? If I believe life is getting, what if I don't get? Ouch! I get it! (Pun intended - I can never be too serious too long - another defect).
Now, how do I rewire myself? And just accept that . . .