I challenge you to explore this question for yourself and at least entertain the possibility that problems are just memories. I promise that if you even just accept this partially and work with it as best you can the way it is outlined in this article, your life will radically transform for the better.
The reason that problems appear to persist through time is that whenever they are not here in this moment we look for them. We actually seek our problems. We filter our experience based on the belief that we have a particular problem and unconsciously censor out anything in our experience that does not support that belief, including the fact that it is not here now.
Think of a problem that you used to believe you had. I purposely phrased this question in the past tense. If you are having a hard time accepting it as from the past, allow yourself to include the last moment as part of the past. Most of us think of the past as at least yesterday, last year or years ago. For the sake of understanding what I am suggesting, please allow yourself to view the past as anything that is not happening at this moment.
Now, allow yourself to ask yourself this question: Could I allow myself to remember how I used to believe I had this problem? This shift in consciousness may make you laugh, it may make you tingle inside, or it may simply open the possibility in your awareness that yes, even this is just a memory.
Next ask yourself:Would I like to change that from the past?If the answer is yes, ask yourself: Could I let go of wanting to change that from the past?And let go as best you can. If the answer is no, Just go on to the next step.
The completion question in this series is to ask yourself: Could I let go of wanting to believe I have that problem again? And then do your best to let it go.
If there is still some clinging to the memory of the problem in this moment, then repeat the steps from the beginning until you can fully let go. As you work with this perspective more and more, you will find it easier and easier to let go of even what you used to believe were long- standing problems.
If you use this simple direct application of the Method, I promise you the results will surprise and delight you.
There are several hooks in most of us that may prevent us from being able to use this or any other helpful releasing perspective. Lets explore some of these hooks so that we can be free of them.
I suffer, therefore I am.
Strange as it may seem, this quote reflects the way most of us live our lives. We identify with our problems and the self-created suffering that we experience in relationship to believing we are the one with these problems. If you reflect on your problems you will discover that you have grown so attached to these patterns of thought and behavior that you will probably find it hard to imagine yourself without them. We cling to the artificial sense of security that comes from knowing what to expect, even if that expectation is not beneficial, rather than being open to the uncertainty that comes from letting go.
It does not have to be that way.
Think of a problem that you used to believe belonged to you, and ask yourself: Would I rather have the false sense of security that comes from knowing all about this problem or would I rather be free? If you would rather be free, you will find yourself spontaneously starting to let go of your attachment to having this problem and you will find yourself discovering natural solutions as opposed to justifying your having or being stuck with this problem.
But what will I talk about?
Most of us base a significant amount of our personal communications around seeking sympathy for our problems or commiserating with others about theirs. It is not that sharing your problems is detrimental. In fact, the freedom to share with others what is bothering you is often the first step in letting go and moving on. Also, being able to be there for our friends and partners when they are in emotional need is a sign of being a good friend.
Where we get stuck is when we continually share the same problem over and over again and there seems to be no relief. If you find yourself telling the same story more than once, check to see if you are seeking agreement or approval for the problem. If you are, ask yourself: Could I let go of wanting others to agree with me about my having this problem? or Could I let go of wanting approval for this problem?
It's mine, thats why.
Pride is a shifty emotion. We don't just feel proud of our accomplishments. One of the places that we can get really hooked into the memories that we used to believe were our problems is being subtly proud of having them. We subtly feel so special for having them. It may take the form of feeling proud of having prevailed even with the problem, having born it for so long or having a problem that is unique to just you.
Look at the problems that you used to believe you had and check to see if you feel that they make you special look for any pride. If there is any pride and you can honestly admit that to yourself and let it go, you will find that it will free you to just let go of the problem.
It's not wise to ask why.
Wanting to understand or figure out why or from where are problems arise can also be a major obstacle to letting them go. Would you rather understand your problems or just be free of them? If you would rather be free of them, I would highly recommend that you let go of wanting to figure them out. In order to figure out a problem we must leave the present moment the only place we can truly solve anything. Plus, we only need to understand a problem if we are planning to have it again or maintain it.
Look for the Freedom that is here and now.
No matter where your consciousness has gotten hooked in the past, in addition to releasing on it directly, develop the habit of looking for its opposite. Most of us have gotten very good at finding problems or finding limitation. We have gotten so good at this quest for limitation because of our habit of looking for our problems when they are not here.
The freedom that we are is always closer than our next thought. The reason we miss our inherent freedom is that we jump from thought to thought, from familiar perception to familiar perception, missing the freedom that is here and now.
Even when you are working on a particular problem, allow yourself to look for where the problem isn't. Look for how even your worst problem is not always with you now. If you start becoming aware of your basic nature of unbound freedom, you will find that this awareness will put all of your supposed problems into perspective and allow you to live this freedom now.
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