I am still alive … I can’t believe it’s this real
Breathe without the chains of time, the way we’re made to feel
Many paths are made for walking, only one inspires my feet
As I watch myself unravel, find my inner fire’s heat
What is right action, and if we are being the essence of right action, does that mean we are on the “right path”? Does this path have a destination somewhere, sometime in the future, or is it confined to the ever unfolding moment of now? Do the archives of our past have any say on where we stand in the present, or is their influence limited to what we choose, as we keep stepping forward? What is right action, and what makes it “right”?
Action is the decision we execute, be it thought, word or action, involving EVERY interaction we have with the totality of our reality. Action dictates the direction we are moving IN THE PRESENT. We all have the internal compass, it is that still small voice, conscience, gut feeling or intuition in which the Real Self KNOWS the right action, right thought, right perspective. It whispers our true north, the “right action” that is not tainted by fear, ego, pride, judgment or hate. It is the perspective of the authentic. Our true north keeps us on our right path.
Walking our path impeccably has many speeds; it can be in non action, consciously enjoying our experience. It can take a hard right, and require commitment witnessing pain, enduring pain, being inconvenienced and uncomfortable. Sometimes right action is unexpected and immediate, other times, time is a luxury where one can prepare themselves. It can be messy, get you screamed at, instant and brief, or drawn out. Right action may draw ridicule, or it may be exactly what everyone is thinking, but no one has the courage to act upon; but it’s always your choice, and always takes place in the present, with consciously choosing every thought, word or action.
If only that still small voice was the only singer in the opera house…
Most of the time it is but one voice in the chorus of our mind, but instead of harmony, these voices are screaming at the top of their lungs, being the loudest usually dictates our action. These are the voices of the ego, algorithms of the mind. The one purpose of all of these voices is self-preservation, preservation of their/our idea of self identity (this is who I am, what type of person I am, who others expect me to be).
This is the foundation of separation, in which the all-permeating connection between each one of us and absolutely everything else, THE ALL, is severed. This tremendous loss creates a void, a loss that we feel at a cellular level, creating the illusion of lack, which then becomes the driving force behind the majority of mankind. The lack of love, the lack of wealth, the lack of health, the lack of happiness etc etc… Now we are all alone in a big, bad (and a little bit scary) world. Love and supreme contentment are replaced with fear and a constant underlying anxiety.
Toltec philosophy calls these algorithms minote, the “1,000 voices”; cartoons depict them as the ‘lil devil on your shoulder. All this excess noise is smoke in the mirror, distorting and obscuring our true reflection of the Real self. Buddhism defines them as the endless stream of thought, one can either be suffering in the relentless river, each drop being a different thought, emotion, impulse, or one can be resting by the river’s side, with a one-pointed, quiet mind, observing the water as it passes, acknowledging each drop, but affected by none. Several accounts in the bible reference the Holy Spirit descending as a dove, an image of serenity. We have the power to create that serenity.
The mind is like a wild stallion, who has run untamed his entire life, without training and discipline it will take us all over the far away hills, over the river and through the woods. Hindu scriptures of the Bhagavad Gita speak of being “able to subdue senses & desires, and by such mastery is enabled to see beyond the personal self, and to become conscious of the Real Self which is one with the Real Self of all beings. He knoweth the Universal Life, and that from which the Universal Life proceeds. And so knowing and acting, he is not bound by the bonds of Action, but is free therefrom.” This is the place in which Right Action flows from, the authentic self, guiding our true north, keeping us on Right Path.
Our path doesn’t command our life, job, wardrobe, income or car, because those things aren’t who we are. It commands who we are… our actions, and at a deeper level, our unselfish love for ourselves as well as unselfish love for others. Give yourself completely. That doesn’t mean forsaking all our pleasures, or giving away all our belongings/savings. Be here now, the tip of the spear of power lies in the present. Be here now, don’t dwell on sorrow or regret from the past, don’t live in anxiety or fear of the future. Be here now, don’t dilute yourself, wasting this precious moment mentally killing time, judging, playing victim, playing imaginary stories. Be here now, SHOW UP, give yourself fully to those you love, to yourself, to a stranger. I promise, as your feet hit the dirt on your Right Path, your chest swells, you feel like you are made of fire. That is the reward of walking this path, complete connection, with yourself. Live bound like a slave to right action.
The race of men is bound because of action performed from motives of reward and gain; it hath become attached to its desired objects, and must toil on, bound, until freedom comes at last… Perform thy tasks for the sake of Duty to the Real Self alone, and for no other motive ~ Kristna