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Radical Happiness Blog

Get Into the Flow

How to heal the world (and yourself)? Get into the flow. Do what Life moves you to do. Get in alignment with how life is already moving through you. That is what the flow is—how life is already moving. Life—this life force and consciousness that we are—is moving in everyone. It is moving us to do and speak, create, learn, use our intelligence, discover, and just be. How is it moving you now? Apparently, you are moved to read this. Then what? You don’t know until you do. That’s one of the things that’s fun about being in the flow. It is spontaneous and surprising—and that’s fun and exciting, unless you listen to the egoic mind, which is the fear and doubt-producing machinery we are endowed with as humans. This aspect of mind—the voice in our head—is our challenge, the dragon we are meant to slay or, rather, see through in order to be free and happy.

There is a natural and spontaneous quality to our Being that is experienced as responding to life in an uncomplicated (by thought) way. When we are aligned with our Being and in the flow, the intellect is used when it is needed, but the egoic mind—that noisy voice in our head—is seen for what it is: an ineffectual and hollow voice, a voice without wisdom. Meanwhile, we move naturally and wisely in the world. What most interferes with experiencing our natural state and this natural movement of being in the flow are thoughts about what “I” should do, what others think or will think about “me,” what “I” did in the past, and what “I” believe “I” need to do in the future. Each of us has an ongoing story we tell about ourselves. This story is revealed through our “I” thoughts and by the things we tell others about ourselves. The story is created by these “I” thoughts, but this story is a mental overlay on life, while life is happening simply and naturally through us and through everyone else.

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Choosing by Deciding

When we make a choice, sometimes it’s spontaneous and not thought about, like when we jump out of bed in the morning. At other times, the options are laid out, examined, and decided on. These are two different experiences of choosing: One just happens, and one is a decision.

A decision is the result of making up our mind (an interesting turn of phrase). To the ego, questions feel like problems that need to be solved by making a decision. There’s a feeling of needing to make a decision, and almost any decision will do. To the ego, making a decision is important because that ends the discomfort of not knowing. You make up your mind. You make it up!

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Evil Is the Absence of Love

If evil were behind life, this would be a sad world, indeed. As bad as it can get here, there are probably few people that feel that evil is what is behind this world. Certainly few want evil to be behind this world, and that’s a good sign. Something in us wants and gravitates toward goodness, not evil. Negativity tugs at us and even grabs hold of us at times, but something else continually pulls us toward the opposite, toward love.

Just as darkness is the absence of light, evil is the absence of love. Evil isn’t a reality itself but the result of the absence of contact with Reality, with what is true—love. Evil is the result of being divorced from our true nature, being very, very divorced, so divorced that someone might not even believe in love because he or she has so much fear and so much difficulty feeling love. Such deep separation is a frightening and lost place.

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A Lifestyle for Awakening

The lifestyle of most Americans isn't conducive to awakening, either to becoming awake or staying awake. It's designed to attain the ego's goals: money, power, status, comfort, pleasure, beauty, possessions, and security. Our American culture gives lip service to other values, such as love, kindness, and togetherness, but the ego's values come first.

In our culture, we see what the ego wants as necessary. We don't think we will survive or be happy unless we achieve a certain level of power, comfort, security, and material wellbeing. The sense of needing such things is very deeply ingrained, so much so that we often don't question our devotion to these goals. If we do question these values, we run into opposition and fears from others, who sincerely believe we won't be happy or survive without putting the ego's values first.

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How Childhood Experiences Damage Trust

We all have an ego that naturally distrusts life, but some people’s egoic minds are more negative and distrusting than others. For them, trust is an issue that deeply colors their existence and often limits their potential for happiness. This distrust has usually been caused by childhood experiences. Emotional, sexual, and physical abuse and neglect are the most obvious circumstances that undermine trust. But a number of other things can also affect a child’s trust in himself or herself, others, and life, such as a difficult birth, a traumatic injury, illness, surgery, a family crisis, a divorce, the death of or a serious injury to a parent, poverty, or even an unstable or a busy household or inconsistencies in parenting.

When we are growing up, we draw conclusions, some conscious and some unconscious, about ourselves, others, and life that affect how we see and respond to the world thereafter. Difficult experiences in childhood usually result in negative and limiting conclusions, while good experiences and nurturing parents results in confidence, good self-esteem, and trust in ourselves, others, and life.

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