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A conversation is recounted in the book # Shantaram  in which the character, Khaderbhai, says: “There is no such thing as believing in #G...

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Sunday, 1 September 2013

LIVE IN CONTENTMENT: YES, BUT HOW?

The other day I was listening on the radio to a woman from the Brahma Kumaris who suggested that the answer to an easier life was to live in contentment.  She said that contentment helps smooth Life's challenges and enables us to live our purpose more easily.  Cool, I thought, I don't disagree, but it would also have been helpful for her to have shared how exactly you do that.  

Contentment is probably something to which we all aspire, and yet we are not content when we are working too hard, not being paid enough, trying to make ends meet, the kids are playing up, our significant other is on a separate mission, there's crime all around, the Syrians are using weapons of mass destruction on each other, our politicians are corrupt, and, and...

The first question is: what is contentment?  It is a state of being happy and satisfied, according to the dictionary.  I would suggest adding the words: "...with things exactly as they are."

This seems to be the nub of the issue.  It doesn't help to be content only in fair weather, because when the storm clouds gather contentment gets blown away in the gusts.  It seems to me that the essence of contentment is to be content, come what may.

And what this takes is a deep and full acceptance of whatever Life delivers, just as it is.  The moment we demand that Life should be different from the way that it is, we cannot be content, as we are then subject to what my friend and teacher, Gavin Harrison, refers to as 'the tyranny of the shoulds'.

So the question is: what will it take for you to let go every demand that Life should be different and rather accept each exquisite moment, just the way that it is?

1 comment:

  1. WOW...what a challenge to my "thinking" indeed.

    Torn between...........

    my hunger for peace and contentment, in the restoring of my sense of KNOWING that life supports me, life is perfect just as it is and the expansive freedom that comes with that...

    and my judgement-based fear self that only sees what is wrong and what needs to be fixed, and that 'noble' mission i have signed up for... to be instrumental in mending, fixing, rescuing, educating. So, when i stop, really stop for that solid moment and truly feel...i get it that as long as I mend -something will need mending, as long as i fix - something ( or someone) will need fixing, as long as i chose to rescue there will be some cause/person/tree 'needing' my arrival on a white horse....and as long as I 'educate' ( ouch - thats an awkward display of ego) there will be those who dont 'know'.....and as long as i chose that there is a 'me' and 'them',I will find my discontent....in abundance.
    So the question is what do i now chose to do, how do i now chose to be...
    In truth there is only one of us.

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