The most subtle addiction

It was a busy day with several calls for service. In dealing with people it is clear that addiction to thought drives their feelings, emotions and behavior.

I see so much desperation. Even in so-called “normal” people. All are engaged, in varying degrees, of numbing themselves from the pain of separation with all kinds of distraction. Alcohol, drugs, food, work, objects, status, relationships etc. But none are so subtle and pervasive as addiction to thoughts.

So few understand that they have a choice to observe thoughts and choose to engage or ignore.

They talk so much and say so little, mired in stories of who-did-what-to-whom.

I watch from a space that says little and offers much and has no story or history.

Occasionally I need to use a commanding voice. Even then it comes from “that space” and leaves no imprint on it.

My words cannot penetrate their thick cloud of “story”… thought after thought after thought…

Presence and compassion are the best bet.

Another shift tomorrow.

2 thoughts on “The most subtle addiction

  1. Hi Walt,

    Great post. I love the line “I watch from a space that says little and offers much and has no story or history.” Very beautiful. Simply very beautiful (as I read that again). I love the real, raw and honest way you write. It takes me straight to awareness and I thank you for that.

    Also, you say “My words cannot penetrate their thick cloud of “story”. Is that what you see or the separate self sees? I often find when I deal with people with a strong sense of separation, it triggers my ego almost like an automated response. Such a well-worn path! Of course, you would probably in most cases be dealing with people that are in some kind of distress, so you would probably see them at their most fearful, angry, or just plain high on whatever! For this, you have my admiration because for sure it would be a moment to moment test for me. You are right at the front end!

    We don’t know their history or their upbringing and how they are where they are. Having personally been so “unaware” most of my life and simply riding the wave of the sea of my extensive programming I can understand their actions but of course not condone them, especially when it harms others or the environment.

    Rupert says we should love all beings and I guess in our daily lives we have to recognise the true being in every person. I think in most people there is fear which expresses itself in many ways.

    I love reading about individuals who live the teachings in “real” life. Thank you for the uplifting post and all you do for your community. I’m sure your presence will affect all that experience it.

    1. I re-read that again too Zach and recognize the writing comes from that space. I’m grateful for that.
      This is my take on what I wrote yesterday and how I “show up” at calls:
      People (a convenient way to refer to apparent others) wield their stories as absolute truth. In their mind, their view of “how things are”, is absolute. As a result, words are not heard and actions not seen because their view of the apparent outer world *must* match their story. Anything suggesting a different reality is met with opposition in some form.
      Our stories we tell ourselves have been constructed over decades and played on an endless loop – we brainwash ourselves.
      So what I see, standing before an apparent other, is exactly what I am – consciousness expressing itself in one of it’s countless manifestations, seeing the world from a different perspective and filtering what it sees through it’s story (biases, prejudices, preferences, likes, dislikes, desires, wants, aversions, attractions etc.).
      I can’t deny that I have a story also and certainly ego flares up at times. The difference is that through grace or “?”, I have come to recognize that I am not my story or it’s resulting thoughts/feelings/emotions.
      This does not mean that I never become “Walter” anymore. However the identity is far less strong and continues to reside in it’s rightful place.
      I think in terms of frequency, duration and power.
      As my position becomes more and more clear and I am vigilant and forbear the temptation to be pulled in, the mind’s influence comes less frequently, stays for a shorter duration and wields less power.
      Knowing this and “being at the front end” as you aptly put it gives me an opportunity to “be the teaching” which I guess is a way of leading by example.
      I am with you Zach, I was unaware for most of my life and therefore MUST have compassion for those who are stuck in their mind. Imagine if I came across a person with a broken leg and told them what it feels like to have two good legs, give them a few minutes and expect them to walk! It’s absurd. And so when I approach others who are stuck I must meet them where they are at. Often I think of Swami Vivekananda’s words and I paraphrase: If only you knew what you truly are…
      Thank-you Zach for your input and for discussing these matters. I have a deep appreciation for your sharing – you inspire me to write and clarify my position.
      I also must thank those apparent others for the challenges they bring and the opportunity to deepen spiritually.

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