Pain. Painful emotions bleed anxiety into a healthy heart and mind.
The toxic energy slowly poisons the body, taking over the soul and eventually destroying the life force energy.
Overcoming this dragon takes great mental clarity and focus. The journey into the dark night of the soul is not for the faint of heart.
And while most of us have to go through this painful life transition, how we think about our journey determines how we will come out on the other side.
THOUGHTS: GATEKEEPERS TO HAPPINESS
All the great masters have repeatedly reminded us to “guard our thoughts.”
And yet, we allow our minds to run free with fearful ones that take up precious time and space in our psyche.
We mask our pain with external trappings of the ego in hopes we can overcome the deep, routed sadness we feel within.
And while many of us run like hell from that which we fear, we tend to find that no matter what we do, we can’t seem to get away from it.
You may hide out during one storm but rest assured another one will be right behind it. That is because the only way out is through.
Learning to master your thoughts and how you think about your life will ultimately set you on the path to true happiness.
In my life, I found myself running from everything I feared until my world became a tomb; with that, my joy was gone, and I fell farther into the depths of despair.
I felt out of control all my life, starting from childhood when my parents dragged us through a violent divorce. There was nothing I could do to escape the pain, so I internalized everything, fearing that crying would somehow weaken me.
The idea that life was a safe place, a place of happiness and love, had been replaced with a new pattern of thought; life was a horrible place filled with tragedy, violence, and loss. These new neuro-pathways formed daily and would only get stronger as the traumas continued to feed them.
Deep into my battle with anxiety, I met a guru who changed my life. He was a short Indian Pundit who had come to the US to participate in a Homa Ceremony my father was throwing at his business.
During lunch, we struck up a conversation. I told him about my struggles and the seemingly never-ending difficulties, mainly concerning anxiety and panic. He smiled warmly before giving me his sage advice.
“You must guard your thoughts. They are the guardians of the gates of heaven and hell.”
I stared at him silently, taking in what he was telling me.
“You must engage daily with gratitude for being alive, not a disappointment at not having what you think you deserve or desire. This will change everything.”
“It can be hard to do when you have been programmed to think that everything will fall apart.”
He smiled sweetly and took a bite of his samosa.
“Then you must change the programming.”
At that moment, it clicked. I had been searching for answers outside myself for so long that I had never realized that the answer was within. I finally realized that while there would be storms along my path that were out of my control, what was in my control was how I reacted to them.
While we cannot change or alter traumatic events in our lives, we can certainly change our perspective on them. After all, our suffering depends not on what happens to us but on how we think about it.