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Exploring Consciousness with Martine Batchelor – Contact (phassa)

Why We Practice: Reclaiming Authority, Ending Dissatisfaction, and Engaging Wholeheartedly

So many people today are asking themselves: “How can I make an impact in a time of such adversity?”  “How can I contribute to positive change in our world?” “How can I stay rooted in presence and well-being during such tumultuous times?”

I find it important to remember that “It’s not what we do, it’s how we do it.” Practice asks us always to be aware of the lens through which we are perceiving the world, and to know the value of finding our center first, before we engage.

As we practice meeting our world from center or presence, we cultivate three essential qualities: Curiosity, Openness, and a Willingness to be with What Is. If we look deeply at the impact of these qualities in a world where judgment, positionality, projection, comparison, and dissatisfaction are popular habits, we recognize the deeper impact of practice.

Presence itself is enough. To have a practice and affirm the authority of the heart is a subversive act.

Practice requires fierce investigation. It asks us to address the habit of turning to the mind of separation for information and guidance rather than turning to the heart. Attending within, we might find ourselves caught in a distorted belief, and we can question this and tune in to our undistorted experience  In turning to the heart, we see all the ways we’ve projected authority outside of ourselves, onto other people or onto the thinking mind, and we learn to listen and act from a deeper place.

Practice asks us to investigate the habit of dissatisfaction, and to question the duality of abundance verses “there is not enough.” Only when we question this duality can we find freedom – in the place of true sufficiency.

Practice invites us to go beyond the self-referencing bubble of  “me and my little world” and even beyond “my awakening.” It allows us to awaken through our wholehearted engagement in ordinary life itself and to do so every day.

During an age of so much fear, dissatisfaction, and reactivity, let us remember why we practice, and the profound impact that practice can have in our world.