What is this thing call “feeling”? “To feel” is to experience what is been perceived. Imagine what life is when there is no such a thing as feeling? I guessed the word that comes to many is meaningless. Thus we equate feeling as having a meaning. No feeling = no meaning. But that is an interpretation of feeling, not exactly feeling as feeling. If I enjoy muscle building work, the discomfort feeling deriving from each moment of weight-lifting can be meaningful. I feel great about it. But to another, weight-lifting can be a torturous experience – an unpleasant feeling – more so if he is doing it reluctantly, and thus he will see the experience as meaningless. But that is not what feeling is, except our idea about it. In reality there is no such a thing call pleasant or unpleasant feeling except the idea we put into what we are experiencing. It is like a pot of soup – what I put in is the taste I get.
If I have a wrong idea that no one should be better than me in a certain field, that idea brings about a “feeling of jealousy” when I think someone is better than me. My wrong idea is the cause of the jealousy, not what is out there. If I have a wrong idea that if I give the best to you, and you should return the best to me, I will be devastated and experience betrayal (feeling betrayed) if it turned otherwise. If I have an idea slim is good, I will see fat as wrong. My feelings is determined by my ideas. Ideas make my feeling pleasant and unpleasant. Ideas without feeling is just another perception, another thought. And yet do not underestimate ideas – it is an invisible prison that limits my potentialities. It is also the cause of suffering and freedom.
What is wrong and right in ideas? I will never know until I experience distress and dis-ease. Both can be triggered by resistance or holding on. Faith talk about doing good but good can come from right or wrong ideas. If I do good out of fear, out of obligation, the end result of that act is always dis-ease, for what is wrong in the beginning will be wrong all the way, until it is been rectified through recognition. Marching for peace is an example. A good act to many, but the idea behind the act is confrontation and frustration, not to mention expectation.
In truth, happiness is unreal, so is happy or unhappy feeling. Happiness or unhappiness is just a result of what idea(s) I have. Wrong ideas can bring happiness and so is right ideas. There is nothing noble about happiness. If right and wrong ideas can determined happiness, then seeking happiness is detrimental to my spiritual journey. But if I were to view happiness and unhappiness as part of my creation of ideas, then that is spiritual, for it brings about wisdom in undoing what is unprofitable.
To many, life is about chasing after happiness. Happiness is found in money, in property, in relationship – how can that be true? I can have anything in the world and yet unhappy, so long as my ideas are wrong. I can be seeking independency but if my idea is motivated from anger of my past, my independency is futile as I am never complete no matter how independent I am. I am pursuing a losing battle.
Everything I want from this world, I need to investigate my idea. Once ideas are recognize, peace is always present. All the meaning I give to the world is the meaning I give to myself. I am playing my own game. There is no other player in the field.
What is feeling for? Your ability to experience your ideas :)