Courage Is Waking Up

99% of our suffering comes from believing in our thoughts. And when we have lost our center, our Presence, we believe that our thoughts are the world. We call them the "future."

But since we were so wrong about the future in the past, it is delusional to continue believing in it. In fact, we have no idea what the future will bring because the future does not exist. An enlightened definition of insanity would be, "mistaking the world for your thoughts about it."

Have a bracing cup of green tea. Gather some wood and light a fire. Take a barefoot Winter walk at midnight in sparkling moon-grass. Slap yourself in the face by plunging your head into a cold forest stream. Or plunge into seva, service, to someone in need.

Instead of believing in your thoughts, believe in the warmth of your skin, the rhythm of your heartbeat, the touch of your hand, the grace of sensation. Use awareness to divinize your sensuality. Awareness is not thought. Awareness is the space that irradiates creation before a thought arises.

When we return to the empty ground of awareness, we become sane again. We gain courage. Courage is waking up from the dream of the future.

Only in the present moment are we response-able, because only in the present moment are we available. Pay attention to the person right beside you. This relationship is the politics that matters. If you are alone, pay attention to a flower.

As your Presence expands, become aware of your living relationship with the stars. Feel them tingle in your body. Your solitude is the hub of cosmic community, a vast wheel of Sangha whose center is wherever you are, whose circumference is infinite.

Let this breath deliver you from the chatter of your mind. Inhale: the universe pours love into your body. Hold this gift in your chest and cherish the Creator. Exhale, filling the galaxy with peace. This is a very profound form of action, free from re-action.

At this very moment you are deeply connected with everyone. There is no "else." The revolution is to breathe. The radical act is to be present.

Flower photo by Kristy Thompson

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