I am increasingly convinced that the root of all unhappiness is the belief that our happiness depends on things and situation external to our intrinsic being. It is this belief that ceaselessly projects our fulfillment through some happening in an imagined future.
But the real kicker – the issue that can makes this so difficult to understand is that even our sense of ourselves is a thought that we project and is not our intrinsic being. Who we believe ourselves is, largely, just a complicated image built up over our many years through our conditioning, expectations, personal history, and all the rest that is not intrinsically ourselves.
Liberation means to live through and by the root, free of our self-image. We uncover that root by seeing our image and its attachment to hopes that undermine our moment-to-moment experience. When this ‘overlay’ is seen for what it is, the Treasure (see this post) is allowed to just be and shine.
If we look deeply, we will see our this image coupled with its universe of hopes (largely image-centered) that rules our psychological imagination. It’s everywhere and ever-present.
So every time you label any thought, understanding, action, judgment, behavior, or feeling as your own – experience it as just another external event. All of that belongs in the category of image. This is not to say that it isn’t real, it is, it’s just not your intrinsic self. In fact, thoughts, feelings, judgments, and all the rest are essential to everyday living – but they are all external happenings revolving around the Treasure that you are. The moment we reach out to them for fulfillment and see to push them away to allay our fears – then we are back in the world of clinging and fleeing from externals – we have lost touch with our treasure.
When this is truly seen then and only then everything changes.
The personal image is the great barrier. Get a feel for it. Watch it in action. See even your most personal sense of self as something external to your intrinsic being.
That is the portal to the Treasure.