You have a primary one of these. It’ll be invisible to you because you’re blinded by your ego’s narrative justifications but it’ll be what most other people primarily know as your personality. We have those angry friends, or the passive ones, or the judgmental ones, or the make-peace ones and we’re one of those too. Won’t it be interesting for you to figure out which one you are?
That is the definition of a meditation. Use thought to take the thinker apart. If someone brings you a bald fact like; something broke, are you inclined to immediately want to ascribe blame? Do you immediately get angry? Do you immediately offer help? Do you apologise even if you had nothing to do with what went wrong? You’ll do all of these, but you’ll do one or two of them a lot. Those are your most common emotional conclusions. You’ll look at facts but you’re subconsciously heading toward a particularly family of negative energy conclusions.
This is why it is important to become conscious. Your brain should not be allowed to chew through the world all willy-nilly without someone guiding it. It doesn’t matter what happens you always have choices about how you react to anything so it makes sense that we would want to practice that sort of control. That means slowing down our processes.
We have to get off autopilot by forgetting our objective. We can’t have a destination we’re trying to force a conversation toward. That silent objective is our enemy. It is created in a false future by our ego. We need to be fully aware of the person we’re communicating with in the present moment. We need to hear what they say with no expectation and we have to simply let the information be, and trust that our real answer will emerge naturally. We must be patient for wisdom to become known to us.
You’ll have a personality. There’s nothing wrong with that. Bands need both lead singers and drummers. So don’t be afraid to be yourself, but be a conscious self. Be aware that your ego tilts towards particular types of thoughts. Some people are more afraid where others are more adventurous. Some are strict and some play fast and loose. Some are very serious and others are very humorous. Some are helpful others are selfish. And some of these people are us.
You’ll still get caught in ego and have reactions you regret, but as you get more distance between your true self and your automatic ego-responses you will find it easier to apologise for your ego. It’s almost as though it’s another person, like it’s your dumb twin that often does the wrong and selfish thing.
Egos think the world is about them, although they see those times as the world being “wrong.” Your higher self has no personal perspective at all and it’s that very open awareness that helps your soul divine the direction of your path through life. To struggle is to swim across or against the current. To soar is to float in the centre of the Tao, in the flow of not-being. Don’t let subconscious thought habits prevent you from experiencing the clarity of that reality. Find your primarily conclusion today, become conscious and be free of needless suffering.
Scott McPherson is an Edmonton-based writer, public speaker, and mindfulness facilitator who works with individuals, companies and non-profit organisations locally and around the world.
A serious childhood brain injury lead Scott to spend his entire life meditating on the concepts of thought, consciousness, reality and identity. It made others as strange to him as he was to them. When he realized people were confused by their own over-thinking, Scott began teaching others to understand reality. He is currently CBC Radio Active’s Wellness Columnist, as well as a writer, speaker and mindfulness instructor based in Edmonton, AB where he still finds it strange to write about himself in the third person.