Workshop - Freedom
Freedom to: Responsibility (ability to respond) by being free to experience "what is" and consciously choose one's response.
Freedom from: Trying to escape blame or consequences of failure by struggle, resistance and conflict to deny responsibility.
From: The Place of Language in the Teachings
Most of us are very serious about our inner state of being. We have convinced ourselves that "what is" is not acceptable, and if we had:
- What I believe ought to be and
- That which I'm entitled to
Then everything would be fine.
Definition: "What is" -- Experiencing that which is going on at this moment.
From: The Place of Language in the Teachings
The only reason for us to be upset is if we have an "ideal" about a situation or an "ideal" for Person's behavior.
Definition: "Ideal" -- An imaginary thought of what should be.
The Place of Language in the Teachings
- We resist doing certain things (whatever they may be)
- We resist things being what they are
- We resist situations and consequently feel all torn up
Questions to ask to discover conflict are:
What should be VS, What is
What ought to be VS. What is
What has to be VS. What is
What must be VS. What is
The struggle to get from "what is" to what I believe should be, ought to be, must be, creates:
- Conflict (discord of action)
The more you fight such an inner feeling........the more you have it. If, however, you acknowledge that you're free to have such a feeling........you may be surprised at how quickly it goes away.
What you really experience is your inner state of being. The only inner state of being that comes along that's worthwhile is what you experience when you are free.
The statement "I'm free to experience whatever arises in my way today" is the source of all serenity, peace, happiness (or whatever word you want to use). Everything else is sensing -- such as traffic, temperature, each other, food, sleeping, shower -- which is all moment by moment.
You can be simply aware: I am a human being and therefore I am an experiencing being and I'm going to experience one thing -- my inner state of being.
"Your inner state is what you're experiencing now or any other time. Now you can be on the freeway and be all frustrated with traffic or you can be free for it to be tied up.............. and a few people here have traveled with me up the road to L.A. a few times and not-a-one has had a delay on the freeway 'cause I'm perfectly free to sit out there for three hours. (Lots of laughter from the audience) What are you laughing about, John? But you're not free to be frustrated. Now.............John takes frustration very seriously, to say the least. Is that right?"
From the Tuesday Night Talks
Newport Beach, CA ( 6-24-80 )
You could say to yourself: I have to have _______ in order to be happy. Now fill in the blank and see if what you've put there isn't some "ideal" that, in reality, is simply an illusion.
- Perhaps you don't know what happiness is unless you already have it.
- Perhaps you don't even know what your struggling for.
- Perhaps happiness comes in moments and isn't a permanent thing anyway.
- Perhaps happiness is when you like "what is".
You will find that "ideals" are things that someone else told you -- taught you somewhere along the way ( that always things should be different ). Things will never be different from what they are at the moment. It's always now -- what is -- nothing needs to be changed about it. If you're angry at the moment and you're free to be angry............it's gone in a second.
If you're feeling depressed (which is a pretty word for self-pity) at the moment, you could say:
I feel depressed.
I'm perfectly free to be depressed.
So what, who am I that I shouldn't feel
depressed once in a while.
(You might find it lasts a very short time when you see the joke and start laughing!)
You may feel anxious and then struggle to find a solution to change circumstances so you won't feel anxious anymore. (If you're free to be anxious, you start laughing in just a few minutes!)
Did you ever feel fearful?
Did you ever freely feel fearful?
(No! You fought it because somebody told you it was bad to feel afraid.)
(For some people fear is called adventure--look at mountain climbers. They do it freely!)
Have you ever felt frustrated?
So what, everyone who reads this has been frustrated--so join the human race.
You can be free to experience any state, no matter what it is. You're a grown person. Now.....you don't have to fall on the floor, roll up in a ball, stick your thumb in your mouth and wet just because something didn't go to suit you, do you?
Note: When I first began with these Teachings, I sometimes got "overloaded circuits" -- meaning too many challenges to deal with at one time. (I didn't take them one at a time, I piled them all up in a lump and wanted them all taken care of right now!) When I finally got a day off, I'd go and get in the bed and say "I'm going to stay here all day and be depressed". Sometimes I stayed in the bed feeling sorry for myself until the afternoon--more often than not, I thought of something I really wanted to do and was up and about and the depression was a thing of the past--I was vitally interested in some project and the accomplishment I would feel when it was done. I also didn't tell anyone about my little exercise at experiencing depression freely -- I prefer to deal with any lower inner states of being (I'm not in charge of) by myself rather than to impose them on others. They pass and everything turns out OK -- in spite of what I believe ought to be.
Your inner state is highly contagious -- everybody picks up your mood unless they're in charge of their own -- and that you can discount for most people. If you're in charge, you don't catch all those inner states from others -- just like you don't catch the flu if you've taken an effective vaccine.
We believe our inner state is due to some circumstance or some event that's going on, but it isn't. The only way we get upset by a situation or event is we had an "ideal" and the "what is" didn't quite fit it. So we react mechanically and find ourselves in a turmoil and then we're not free to sense what's going on out there.
It's all very temporary.
Stop for a moment and think that if all you could sense was pleasant sensations.......
you probably wouldn't survive the day.
You'd get a-hold of a hot skillet -- and not know it until you smelled the fresh meat cooking.
Can't you be free to experience or free to sense a little rejection or disapproval? It may hurt a bit, but if you're free to be rejected, it's funny how much it doesn't hurt.
When you feel sorry for yourself, the feeling produces an enzyme in hormone form called "doca". It is very addictive -- that's why people rarely get over self pity. It is available in injective form and it makes you want to lay down and when you lay down, you feel like you haven't laid down enough.
Now, sit back and listen to some quotes from Dr. Bob from one of the "Tuesday Night Talks" tapes -- "Freedom" recorded at Newport Beach, CA, 6-24-1980:
"Anybody who disapproves of me just has poor taste--surely I wouldn't let someone with poor taste affect me."
"We can be free to experience little resistances -- they're always a few resistences. Even roses have thorns on 'em, but that don't make us not like roses -- is that right?"
"I could get all bent out of shape--but I don't choose to."
"I don't care how things are -- you see, I don't let things determine my inner state, I'm gonna do that."
" 'What is' is the reality and I don't find anything wrong with It -- I like it! What's wrong with things as they are?