It does not matter what we own, where we live or who we are with. It only matters knowing who we are and what our inner state is. Our ignorance of our true essential nature is our only real problem. Changing outer circumstances will affect little because we take our karma, our impressions, our misperceptions and our destiny with us. We live in ignorance or wisdom based upon our understanding of our essential nature. When we walk a spiritual path, we realize that bondage or freedom only lies within us. Supreme freedom, true liberation, only exists when we know our supreme, universal Self.
We become addicted to our belief that peace, joy, love, and freedom lie in the outside world. We are certain a new outcome will free us. We are positive that when all our endless desires are fulfilled, we will find happiness. But the outside world is ever-changing, morphing endlessly into something that, even if it satisfied for a moment, will never satisfy long term. The mind will search forever for that one place where true, lasting bliss abides – and that is only in the true Self.
Despite living with a core dissatisfaction arising from not finding what we desire in the outside world, we still believe it is there, outside. We work harder, desire more, make changes, find another and endlessly distract ourselves from the rising dissatisfaction. We experience pain because we beg for lasting happiness where it does not exist. We seek satisfaction in a land where there is none. We seek eternity in a world where everything is temporary. We seek permanent bliss in a fleeting pleasure. And yet, we hold fast to our belief our happiness is out there.
We are permanent bliss. We are eternal, universal consciousness. We do not need anything ‘other’ than who we always are. But we continue to look outside because we firmly identify as our body, thoughts and feelings. Knowing who we are by purifying our mind and expanding our inner state of awareness reveals that we are within God and God is within us. Our sense of individuality, separateness, differences, worthlessness and even the belief that we are the actor are all misperceptions. There is only God, universal consciousness. We are that absolute, eternal, bliss consciousness. This is our true Self, but we have forgotten this. To remember what we have forgotten is why we do our spiritual practices. This is how we find what we seek.