This is a re-post from a 3-year-old article…
This article is a free adaptation from the French version: Où la Brume est Brume
Clinging to thoughts is a sticky habit, no doubt.
However, this is not the end of the story.
It is also out of habit that we tend to believe this clinging to thoughts is the source of the problem.
Every day, every hour, every minute, we have the opportunity to notice how uneven the fight is:
– on my left : the small being, doing everything he can, threads hours of meditation into his life, meters of book covers onto his shelves, meets prestigious personalities, and faces self disappointments one after the other.
-on my right, staring with an ever-confident eye, daring, audacious, duplicitous and hypocritical at will : Thoughts.
That is, we all agree, a guaranteed knockout.
Unless our small being, once it gets tackled, decides to roll over and slip under the ropes of the ring, just to see what’s going on over there.
The question is : how can we not be attached to our thoughts when they densify into the platform on which all of our daily experiences stand ?
The thick matter of our psychic life seems to fill everything with its stormy mud.
Clinging to our thoughts out of habit is a lack of familiarity to non-thoughts out of ignorance.
Imagine the backdrop of the early twentieth century : no TV, no mass media, little tourism… I’m placing my own persona in this past environment.
I have lived in Northern France for several decades now. Like most people surrounding me, I’m French.
I may have heard about people coming from another country, speaking a language different from mine.
I have never been directly confronted with this language, so everything I can read about it or everything people can tell me about it has no reality for me.
It simply does not ring any bell, as I have no point of reference.
At best, I’m remotely familiar with ‘what people can know about a foreign language’, I may even mumble a couple of usual sentences which might help shed light on me while in mundane cocktails.
Still, it will have absolutely nothing to do with the head-on encounter occurring if I met a native speaker coming from the other side of the border.
Before I meet such a person, my reference will be based on my mother tongue. I can’t even imagine there is another mode of expression than the one I have always used.
It is almost impossible for me to conceive I could speak this other language without ceasing to think or express my own feelings.
Out of ignorance, I’ll believe that all my psychic content would fall apart without this usual background.
It is however possible to move our observation up one notch, ahead of this chain of consequences.
It is the absence of faith that creates our attachment to thoughts.
Therefore, the root to consider is not attachment to thought, but attachment to the belief thoughts are all there is.
Three factors can explain this bias: fear, habit, or inability.
The impetus of faith offers the answer to these hampering factors.
Faith in what ?
Faith in the possibility to live, experience consciousness aside from this flow of thoughts. It is included by the width of our embrace.
(see I am a Family )
Faith is also a process that we need to feed, as long as we have not started to perceive the other shore.
In a boat, when we haven’t seen the emerging bank yet, there is nothing to let us know we are moving in the right direction. We try to keep the boat moving, that’s all.
As the shore arises, we know the rowing was well-oriented.
Then, little by little,
Or all of a sudden,
We stand on the bank
Looking back at the misty thoughts
Faith vanishes into serenity
And we see mist as mist
(This article is a free adaptation from the French version: Où la Brume est Brume)