Awakening Exercise for Chapter 4: Using and Relinquishing Negativity
June 09, 2008
Recurring negative emotions do sometimes contain a message. Any changes that you make, whether they have to do with your work, your relationships or your surroundings, are ultimately only cosmetic unless they arise out of a change in your level of consciousness. When you reach a certain degree of presence, you won't need negativity anymore to tell you what is needed in your life situation. But as long as negativity is there, use it. Use it as a kind of signal that reminds you to be more present.
Whenever you feel negativity arising within you, whether caused by an external factor, a thought or even nothing in particular that you are aware of, look on it as a voice saying, "Attention. Here and now. Wake up. Get out of your mind. Be present."
Feel yourself becoming transparent, without the solidity of a material body. Now allow whatever you are reacting negatively to—the noise of the car alarm, the dog barking, the traffic jam—to pass right through you. It is no longer hitting a solid "wall" inside you.
Become like a deep lake. The outer situation of your life, whatever happens there is like the surface of the lake—sometimes calm, sometimes windy and rough. Deep down, however, the lake is always undisturbed. You are the whole lake, not just the surface. Practice being in touch with your own depth, which remains absolutely still.