The mind is constantly experiencing things the way it already always experiences. Seldom does one get out from that already always state unless being challenged to do so. Even that, to come out from that box takes much coaxing and resistance. Is it the nature of the mind to stay status quo or that we have not been trained and encouraged to question and investigate life, and hence when being presented with situations, the only way out is to apply the already always method, either by complaining, blaming, resisting or fixing it?
Consider the minds of great teachers and masters. Are they simply different in the sense that they are special and given some extraordinary ability or vision to discern the Truth? Who gives? Or did they arrive at their own true space after much wise discernment through trials and errors of practice, without ignoring the fact that they too have somewhere at the beginning of the journey, been provoked to question themselves regarding life and its meaning? Look at the classic case of the Buddha. It was through questioning life that made him embark on the journey of the recluse and many years of further determined inquiries that finally led him to Truth. He questioned the many teachers of that time, not out of disobedient, but simply out of the thirst for truth which he knew he has not arrived at although well-known teachers of that time confirmed that he was already “there”. He questioned his own austerity practise when he was close to death’s door. He questioned conformity, which I would say was seen as a rebel of that time.
He inquired about the reason for the need to die and to be born. It perplexed him why people have to fall sick and get old. For mundane people like us such questions are irrelevant and even strange, simply because we take life for granted.
Look at another statement made by Yeshua – all are given but few choose to listen. We are all given the gift of coming into the Truth, but seldom do we take the step in seeking. And to seek is to mean to inquire – inquiring what is here more than just life. What is here more than just experience? What are experiences?
We have always been taught that we learn through crises and problems and we know for many an experience that seems to be true – growth only follows upon pain. Is it necessary to necessitate pain to learn and to grow? For me it is not the pain per se that invokes understanding but rather the questioning mind and the subsequent looking for the solution that brings about growth. Without questioning, seeking is impossible. Whenever we are faced with a task that takes a new way of resolving something, the first thing that always comes to mind is what is the best way of doing it – it starts with wise questioning. Even when we are faced with a stuck situation, to get out from it needs questioning.
Do we see that it is the questioning that invokes the mind to search for a solution? The Buddha too did the same – questioning life. In normal cases, we only question when there is a problem but seldom do so when things are in well condition – and the normal reply is why the need to disrupt the happiness that is already happening? In fact, we have no reason to question when life is good, when the mind is happy, when desire is intact. But what is really happiness? Is there truly happiness or simply attachment to feelings of pleasantness, which is to mean there is continuous avoidance of unpleasantness? Not that we are inviting sadism, but rather to acknowledge that life is an addictive process of needing to feel good, unconsciously chasing for that medieval feeling, so illusive and brief, just to feed that addiction which many seldom question; and in that process, hoard and manipulate situations, events and relationships just to have that.
Is that what life is all about – to be born, live and die in vain, to feel good? Or is there something deeper and profound to life that we are not questioning? The cue is in inquiring. Not simply any kind questioning or inquiring, but wise questioning – wise inquiry that is profitable to our well being, and also of others. But be forewarned, as the path is pretty uncomfortable, as each questioning lead us to seek inwards and that inevitably puts us in a position where we’d have to face our ancient pain and discomfort where we had all the while passed the bucket of responsibility to others when we were not willing face it ourselves. It is time to come home to ourselves, only when we start inquiring. Not once, not twice, not many but all the time until the Truth has finally arrived.
Until then, never be tricked by the mind to conclude that we are already “there” – until being tested again and again by situations, events or even, relationships – when we are no longer affected with pain or discomfort, but simply consistent in compassion and love in our perception. Let not our Truth be confirmed by others but rather through our own conviction and deep realization that we have finally arrived “home”. It is a personalized journey. Until then, every trigger is our gift for us to seek another inquiry, confirming in us that work is still in progress.