"All conflict is a waste of energy." ~J. Krishnamurti
"If you are distressed by any external circumstance, the suffering is not due to the thing itself, but to your mind's interpretation of it, which you have the power to change at any moment." ~Marcus Aurelius
Today we are on the brink, not of one war, but billions of wars. Our minds are so addicted to conflict that a single word, a campaign slogan, a TV image or a Tweet, could set off an explosion. The truth is, our mind love conflict. But if we truly want to end it, we can.
We can handle our pain without turning it into suffering. We can handle our fear without turning it into anger. We can handle our past without turning it into a story.
How? Feel the conflict in the body, before it becomes a thought. Feel it as energy in the present moment, without a past or future. Feel it as pure sensation, without labeling or judging it.
Feel anxiety as a sensation in the body, grief as a sensation in the body, fear as a sensation in the body, happiness as a sensation in the body, God as a sensation in the body.
Bathe the body in crystalline thought-free awareness. This body, not this mind, is the alchemist's laboratory.
Follow the conflict as sensation, right down to the spark of a dissolving photon, then beyond form, to the liberated space within the photon. Become boundless even in your flesh.
This liberated space is what the body is actually made of, whether contracting into pain or expanding into pleasure. It is pure awareness.
Both flesh and spirit are formed of ananda, the only difference being their density. This energy, which has no origin or purpose, no beginning or destination, is just a self-celebrating explosion of wonder.
We could meet here, and dance.
But see how the mind loves conflict! The mind feeds on conflict, thirsts for conflict, generates conflict through words, images, beliefs. 99.9% of humanity's conflict begins in the mind. Then we project this conflict into the world and say, "See, it comes from out there!"
Our ego derives its identity from conflict, the way a dog derives pleasure from chewing on a dry bone, until it can taste the blood from its own gums.
But when we honestly grow tired of this conflict, we can dissolve it as sensation in the body. We don't need to label the conflict as a belief, an image, or a political slogan in the mind, then project it onto our beautiful vulnerable earth.
But again the question: do we really want to end the conflict, or is our sense of identity nourished by it?
Where is your conflict right now? Look around you, wherever you are? Is the conflict to the left or the right? Is it above you or beneath you? Is it on the TV? The Twitter-feed?
Now close your eyes and feel this conflict inside your body. Can you not taste it in your nerves? Is this not where the sense of conflict is actually arising?
Taste the conflict as energy, without a label or belief. Do you really need to link the sensation to an image in the mind? Do you really need to create a story around it, with a past and future?
Perhaps repeating the story is just the ego's way of sustaining the conflict it loves to chew on. And what happens when this becomes a group story, a tribal story, the story of a whole nation? Does it not feed war?
Now, what happens when you de-link the sensation from the mental image? What happens when you dissolve the story and simply feel the conflict in your body, at the present moment?
In the observation of sensation without thought, is the dissolution of conflict.
This practice is the beginning of peace-making. But minds that love conflict will find ten million arguments against it...
So just start over again.
Observe this mind arguing with itself.
Breathe gently and observe.
Is the observer the argument observed?
Is the observer not free from the argument?
Observing the argument, feel the underlying sensation in the body.
Let go of images and words for the conflict: rest as nameless sensation.