Have you ever been in the midst of that very personal sense of peace called, "sitting in front of the TV with a nice pizza"? Then the phone rings, or a neighbor drops by, and . . . boom! Your slice of heaven is replaced with simmering resentment toward the person or event seen as disturbing it.
Negative states such as these, born of nothing other than conflict-filled, comparative thinking, steal into us to squander our peace a hundred times a day. And as surprising as it may be to learn, the more “personal” is our peace, the more punishment we are likely to attract from it!
It is not the real “I” in us that latches onto these thoughts. It is the thief of peace! It is our unconscious nature that cannot live without the familiar sense of self that it forms each time it examines and evaluates the images it can sink its mental teeth into. And one reason why negative states sneak in so easily to steal our peace is that we have been conditioned to believe in their right to punish us.
We do not have to yield ourselves to such meaningless states, nor live the life of the sorry self that revels in them. But emancipation will take a special effort on our part. If we feel that we have lost peace, we must look to see where it is that we unknowingly, in error, gave it away or set it down by identifying with disruptive dark thoughts and conflicted feelings.
Within each of us, in our hearts and in our minds, lives a special kind of light. In truth, it is everywhere. But, instead of seeing the beautiful stillness – the source of that which reveals the movement of passing thoughts and feelings – we grab onto each thought that passes through it. So the first step into stillness is to watch for, and then catch the thief in the act. What does this mean? The next time something dark or disturbing tries to steal into you to wreck your contentment, do not consent to be drawn into its seemingly important considerations. Instead of sinking into this yawning abyss, rather than running after something to resolve that rift, better to remember this truth: the peace you long for also longs for you. Then, whatever you must do, find your way to it!
As you become aware of the backdrop of stillness within you, watch your own thoughts and feelings trying to drag you into the noisy world of their worry and fear. If you will go silent before them, they have no choice but to enter into the silence with you. This is how you turn the table on these thieves of peace. They cannot live with you in the light of higher self-awareness. You can work at this exercise anytime you remember it. Try it now.
This article is excerpted from Let Go and Live in the Now, by Guy Finley
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