Courage – Taking Your Stance in the Universe

Hey Everyone! Robert here!

Spiritual awakening and living in your own unique sense of conscious authenticity is not for the faint of heart – it requires an immense amount of courage. I’ve discussed the need for a warrior’s spirit in the book and past blog posts. I’ve talked at length about the courage needed in order to overcome your own ego, to still the mind, to be yourself, and to live in a sense of freedom. But today, I’m referring to an even deeper sense of courage, a degree of courage that’s unthinkable to most and unbelievable to some.

When I say “courage” in this article today, I’m not referring to the average, run-of-the-mill, bravery it takes to face common daily challenges personal growth practices. I’m talking about the ability to stand strong in the world while walking your own path, to take your stance in the universe while resisting all distractions from who you really are, and truly living authentically with a deep sense of freedom – even when that means giving up the acceptance of everyone around you and facing their disapproval head on.

We’re living in a time, at least in the US, where society is twisting everything, turning it inside-out and forcefully, even violently, insisting that everyone conforms to their ways. It’s becoming dangerous to stand alone against the herd. They want to trample those who don’t fit in. Those with viewpoints that differ from the herd’s; such as being fit and living healthy, consciously deciding not to have children in an overpopulated and unstable world, not giving into the mind-numbing distractions of television and the internet, and holding your own sense of self without the need for ego-stimulating beliefs, are all being viciously attacked as society applies pressure in order to force free spirits to conform. This form of awakened consciousness threatens the herd, it makes them uncomfortable, it causes them to see their falseness, and they don’t like any of it. They don’t like it because they don’t want to have to change or take responsibility for themselves – and they surely don’t like it when you do.

Society likes to create a norm based on the control of the herd. In order to be accepted, you’re required to live according to the rules they dictate. Otherwise, you cannot be one of them, you will no longer fit in, and no one will like you. You will be viewed as bad or weird. In order to be accepted, one must hold the beliefs they deem acceptable in order to continue existing in their sleep-like trance. You must surrender your own thoughts and feelings and mindlessly accept theirs while convincing yourself that those are your original thoughts anyway. You must fully give yourself to the distractions they deem acceptable. This way you can feel as though you fit in and have something in common with everyone else, that you’re accepted by them. You must surrender any sense of personal empowerment and authenticity to remain accepted. Society goes to great lengths to condition you for this from the very beginning by telling you that you’re a bad person, you should be ashamed of who you are, and need to be more like them in order to be good. To follow them, without question. Society tells you that if you accept your Self as you truly are, that you’ll be rejected by everyone else. Living as a member of the herd results in living a false existence where you become increasingly more phony and more disconnected from anything real, with each passing day.

In order to be accepted by society as a respectable member of its culture, you must reject your authentic Self. You must repress, surrender, and destroy the very being you were meant to be and surrender to the comfortably numb existence that they demonstrate to well. You must ignore the feelings in your heart and the guiding voice of your own essence. You must become stuck in your head and live as a slave to your own ego. You must willingly give in to all the senseless distractions that society places before themselves in order to continue living a mindless, ego-obsessed existence. This is a shallow, empty life of purposeless hypocrisy that take you farther and farther away from your own authentic reality.

Most people just blindly follow the herd without ever having a thought to the contrary enter their mind. They mindlessly accept what they’re told on the sleep walking notion of faith and act in the way they see everyone else acting so as to fit in and not be singled out. The nail that sticks up the farthest gets hit hardest by the hammer, right? Or burned at the stake, or stoned to death, or banished, etc. It’s human nature to take the easy way out, the path of least resistance, the road most travelled, letting others do the thinking for them. But that doesn’t make it right. It does, however, explain why there are so few extraordinary people in the world when the human race as a whole is overflowing with potential. Today, there are very, very few real leaders in the world and it’s now that we desperately need them.

Are you courageous enough to be yourself no matter what? Are you willing to face the disapproval of others and even danger in order to hold what you know to be right in your heart? Are you sure? Are you ready to remain steadfast in your own essence when the cultural norm insists that you act as a mindless, ego-driven, belief-stricken, clone of the herd? Can you hold strong in your sense of knowing that you’re worthy of your independence and individuality when everyone around you is telling you that you’re not? Can you remain true to yourself by being yourself even when society does their damnedest to convince you to be someone else and threatens to ostracize you? Are you willing to take your stance in the world to set your essence free instead of for attention to feed the ego?Do you have the courage to accept yourself as your Self when everyone else around you refuses to accept you? Are you willing to accept yourself no matter what may come of you? This is when a deeper sense of courage is needed, because this can be a very difficult dilemma to find yourself facing. This is the point where most people weaken and cower, as they go running back into the safety of the delusion created by society.

Just imagine the incredible courage required to face the fear of standing alone, separating yourself from the herd in order to live freely in your own authenticity of essence when nearly every single person you know in life is insisting it’s wrong. Consider the strength it must take to hold your stance and remain filled with joy when you’re being condemned or losing respectability. Think about that for a moment and ponder the courage necessary. Do you have what it takes to stay true to yourself or would you fold under the intense pressure of the opinions of others? Do you have the courage it takes to take your stance in the world and hold it as your own sense of truth – no matter what may come? Understand the amount of courage it takes to reject the beliefs forced upon you by society in order to know your own truth. Fathom the inner strength required to resist the social pressures placed upon you to conform to the norm.

Do you truly have what it takes to live your own authentic, awakened life? This is the courage necessary for true spiritual growth, for the ultimate freedom of the essence, to take your stance in the universe as the being you came here to be and to live authentically. One cannot know what it is to be awakened until they exercise this degree of courage. Take your stance in the universe and hold it with a sense of inner knowing. Know who you are and what your purpose is. Reclaim your individuality and hold on tightly to what you know in your heart to be the truth, your truth – it’s a rare and precious gift. This is the path to intense happiness because it’s only on this path that you can take responsibility for yourself and through this sense of responsibility you can become completely free. This type of freedom is where authenticity resides and only a free and authentic individual can grow through the layers of consciousness to reach the heights of an awakened being.

Freedom – Are You as Free as You Think?

Hey Everyone! Robert here!

Human beings naturally crave happiness and love, this is a well-known fact, right? But, have you realized that you also have a deep down yearning for something else? That would be – Freedom. People desire a sense of freedom. It’s in our nature to be free. Even the most kind and peaceful of people will fight to the death to remain free.

There are many types of freedom. Financial freedom is an obvious, yet important sense of freedom because it allows you to experience the world and feel secure. You aren’t forced to live hand to mouth in a manner that sends you into survival mode every time an auto repair needs to be done or your student loan payment needs to be made. Other obvious types of freedom include being free of physical restraints, and having liberty from oppression and slavery, and the freedom to express yourself. But, it’s not these obvious types of freedom I care to discuss in this article. I would like to awaken you to a deeper sense of freedom. Freedom that you long for deep inside, even if you aren’t consciously aware of it – yet. Freedom that requires you to break free from the non-physical restraints that are holding you back in life.

From a spiritual perspective, the freedom I’m referring to is not an external sense involving metal chains, iron bars, concrete walls, or being hopelessly in debt from borrowing money to live on without a means to repay it, or even government handouts that keep you oppressed and dependent. I’m referring to an internal, independent, awakened sense of freedom. This is where true freedom is found. Most people live a life of slavery and oppression and don’t even realize it. The majority of those people don’t have the slightest inclination that they have willingly accepted this fate, placing themselves in the chains and throwing away the key without any knowledge of the consequences for their actions. This sense of spiritual freedom is not a right, you are not entitled to it, it’s not something you can take from someone else, nor make them give to you; it’s a responsibility. It’s the highest form of responsibility to your self. Here are 5 forms of true freedom.

Freedom from Ego. The ego is known as the “false master” for good reason. When the ego is allowed to dominate the mind, it gladly rules your entire life. Is it not slavery to have “something else” control your every thought, emotion, word and action? As you know, your thoughts and emotions create and influence the world around you. Your thoughts are not your own when the ego is in charge. That never-ending noise in your head is the voice of the ego and it has effectively drowned out the gentle voice of your true Self. Therefore, the world around you which is created by thought, has been created for you by the ego. How can that be the world you desired? It’s not the world you would consciously create for yourself, is it? Yet, you’re continuously forced to live in a world that your ego desires and you have absolutely no exit strategy. You are forced to speak and act as a mindless puppet of your ego, as it tugs upon your strings and moves your mouth with its hand placed firmly up your…. well, you get the idea. How much clearer does it need to be – your ego is certainly not your amigo. You end up serving the egoic mind as your master and it’s a false master. Nothing good can come of that. It’s a master completely undeserving of your divinity and loyalty.

For those who are unawakened, they remain in the egoic sleep state throughout their entire lives, serving and bowing to the ego without ever even realizing they are enslaved. They believe that their ego is who they are, yet they have no idea who they truly are. This type of egoic slavery is wide-spread and sweeping across the planet like a notorious, viral wave. True freedom comes through awakening, through mindfulness, through taking measures to observe and expose the ego, and then to overcome it. Upon achieving success, you begin to reclaim control of your mind and awaken the heart-mind which allows you to hear your true voice which reside in your heart center. That of your Higher Self. Your vibration rises as your eyes open wider to see the world for yourself. To be free of ego is to experience the true freedom of Self. This sense of freedom allows you to know your Self and live from your heart. Where there is ego, there is the absence of one’s true Self. They cannot co-exist.

Freedom from Mind. The mind is a maximum security prison for many. This prison was constructed with bricks made of worry, anxiety, incessant chatter, over activity, false beliefs, and the inescapable need for information. This is a virtual prison linked to the egoic mind, yet it seems incredibly and painfully real to those being restrained within its cold walls. While this may be an extension of the egoic state of mind as discussed above, I feel it deserves separate recognition because of how common this sort of suffering has become. I see good people suffering from this mental affliction on a daily basis and it’s heartbreaking. To bring the mind to stillness and eventually to a state of No-Mind is one of the highest forms of freedom that a non-physical spirit in physical human form can experience. No-Mind is the means by which one can escape this mental prison that never truly existed in the first place. No-Mind allows you to simply be. Upon achieving No-Mind, these virtual walls instantly fall from existence and all that remains is what is. Nothing more, nothing less. Welcome to freedom!

Freedom from the Past and Future. Being in the Here and Now, the present moment is freedom. When we’re restrained by the past or possessed by the future; we have lost our sense of true freedom and with it our Self. This freedom can only be experienced in the present moment. How many people are enslaved by their own inability to let go of the past? Obsessed with the need to heal something that doesn’t need healing, it merely needs you to let go of it. It’s only difficult when your ego makes it so. The egoic mind keeps you clinging to the need for closure and healing when it’s completely inconsequential – just let it go. How many more are controlled and paralyzed by fear and uncertainty of the future? Does it truly make any sense to fear what doesn’t exist? When you experience the moment of the Here and Now, you know freedom. You taste it, your breathe it in, you live it for yourself. You feel as though you can breathe unrestricted for the first time. You slip the bonds of the past and future to run free in the expansiveness of the present moment. This is why the present is considered to be a gift. It’s the gift of freedom.

Freedom from Beliefs. Beliefs fortify the mental prison. The very nature of a belief creates a closed-minded reinforcement for the ego. The more adamantly one clings to their beliefs, the harder the heavy mental iron bars slam shut and the thicker their prison walls become. That sort of thing will drive a person insane. Beliefs are nothing more than mental constructs, usually put in place by someone else with their own agenda. More often than you may care to realize, your beliefs are actually not your own at all, they never were. Our own beliefs can only be formed from actual direct experience. The awakened mind however, living silently in the moment without ego, has no need for beliefs. They are seen as unnecessary tools used by the ego to feel safe and in control. To become free of beliefs is to unchain yourself from the theories of others and actually experience the truth of life for yourself. When you experience the adventure of life without the confinement of beliefs, you will taste the sweetness of truth and the manner in which your adventure was meant to be experienced. You will know the freedom of thinking, feeling, speaking and acting for yourself, and this will come from your heart.

Freedom from Disempowerment. Freedom cannot be discussed with authenticity. Authenticity IS freedom. This is one of the most important aspects of freedom and indeed, the very core of what it represents. Developing a state of personal authenticity offers a tremendous and powerful sense of freedom on every level. When we act from awakened authenticity, we are expressing our sense of freedom as our true Self. This authenticity comes from being your own person without the influences, demands, opinions, or expectations of others. When we break free of the shackles associated with social and cultural expectations and accepted norms used to fit in and stand lock-kneed among the herd; we get to walk our own path and to feel a sense of who we truly are. I’m not referring to the entitled attitude of “I’ll do what I want, if they don’t like it they don’t have to look.” This is nothing more than the immature ego. Truly awakened authenticity carries with it a higher sense of responsibility. This responsibility is not to another, but to one’s Higher Self. It’s beyond the laws of man or the opinions of others; this is divine law and a sense of truth that you know is right from within.

Authenticity is lost or stolen in a myriad of ways. It’s surrendered to others when we haven’t yet established our own sense of identity. It’s taken by others who instruct us on what beliefs we should hold and what we should accept as truth; when we fail to experience them for ourselves. It’s stripped away slowly but surely as we accept role upon role in life. We keep piling on ourselves until we are so buried under the weight of all these roles that we can’t possibly be aware of ourselves any longer. This is a typical response of someone who is not living their life path or purpose. Burying one’s Self in this way is symbolic of creating spiritual suicide because they are too fearful to make important life changes. It’s not unlike burying your head in the sand. Each newly adopted life-role pulls us further from who we are and who we were meant to be, lowering our vibration during the process of losing our identity. Think about all the roles you play in life… child, grandchild, brother, sister, cousin, uncle, aunt, pet owner, parent, employee, hobbyist, spouse, teacher, friend, citizen, home owner, employer, committee member, and so on and so on and so on. As the list grows ever longer, so too does the path back to finding your Self. Living your life the way you think others want you to live is absurd, yet many people continue to surrender their personal power and live according to the views of their parents, spouses, or societal expectations. I know because I was trapped in this situation for many years due to my own lack of authenticity. I can sympathize. Its suffocating, it will strangle the life from you before you know it. How is it not self-induced slavery when we allow others to make our decisions and dictate our lives?

Awakened authenticity requires a strong independent stance in the world. It focuses on stepping away from allowing others to control you and learning how to be guided by your own Higher Self, your inner light. You step away from the need for acceptance and validation of others and you live from a perspective that is right for you. You think completely for your Self and hold an unconditionally opened mind and heart. This degree of authenticity takes place when you live in complete harmony with your Higher Self and you no longer have the need to mindlessly follow the herd or be consumed with socially accepted distractions. When you taste the powerful sense of freedom given through authenticity you’ll have the courage to take your individual stance in the world and invoke action to bring about the world you wish to experience. You will then live life on your terms, having your own unique adventure while naturally serving the greater good of all humanity, nature, and the universe. You came into this world to know this sort of freedom, to fully experience this soul-expanding adventure, so my only question is… are you?