The Union Path Podcast - A practical spiritual podcast about truth, awareness, and walking the path of unity.
The Union Path Podcast
"Allowing Life To Come to Us"
This expression I've heard a bunch of times, usually in the sports context, with the idea of letting the game come to you. Usually it's used in the context of describing a certain player, and describing a certain ease, a certain comfort, a certain naturalness, a certain fit, a certain flow. that they play the game with, that you can watch this person and you can see how they're not in a hurry, they're not rushed, they're not just this bunched up ball of nerves, there's a calmness, there's a peace, there's a confidence, there's a knowing that comes along naturally with the way that they play.
I think it's really interesting to look at this. way of being. Look at these set of tendencies and to realize that there's a lot of value in living this way of having an approach to life that really does amount to letting the game of life come to you. It's going to be so easy to learn the habits of trying too hard.
It can be so easy to learn the habits of doing too much. It can be so easy to just try and try and try and seek and seek and seek. And just be constantly trying to make things happen, but be doing so with an energy that's really more frantic, that's really much more about anxiety, that's actually really more about doubt and fear than confidence and knowing that a lot of times we can gauge our level of insecurity by comparing it to our level of striving.
By just how much we're trying, by just how much we're trying to do, by just how much we're trying to make things happen, a lot of times when we're doing too much, when we're doing a whole lot of this, this betrays our own insecurity. This exhibits our own doubt. Because if we knew that what we were striving for would actually happen, we wouldn't really have to try that hard.
If we knew that it was a foregone conclusion, that we were going to get where we wanted to go, that we were going to achieve what we wanted to achieve, that we were going to live the life that we actually wanted to live, then we really wouldn't have to try that hard, because it's already done. There'd be nothing to do, there'd be nothing to create.
In fact, if we had this sort of certainty... On some level, we believe that too much effort would actually amount to us just getting in our own way. To just preventing things from happening. Kind of like the idea of, you know, planting a seed hoping that it grows into a flower. There's a big part of that process that amounts to us just leaving the seed alone.
Sure, we need to create and cultivate the environment for that seed to grow, but our constant fussing with it, our constant analysis of it, our constant measurement of it, our constant fretting and worry and stress and anxiety is only going to be detrimental. It's only going to get in the way. At the very least, it's not going to do any good.
At the very least, it's not going to help the flower grow one bit. A flower really grows on its own, assuming the environment is right. Well, for our lives, for the things that we want in our lives, it's my belief anyway that this works the same way. That our trying and trying and trying and trying really just exposes our own doubt, our own fear, our own insecurity, our own anxiety, that we're not going to get what we want.
That either it's not possible, or that we don't deserve it, or at the very least it's highly unlikely. That the only way to get what we actually want is to work as hard as we possibly can. The only way to get what we actually want is to do everything we can possibly think of. Be perfect. To act perfectly.
To do perfectly, to be perfect. I just, I really don't believe life works that way. I don't really believe life is really that complicated. Maybe I'm a bit simple, but one of my core tenets of life is that we're supposed to experience what we're supposed to experience. That we don't come into life out of alignment, needing to realign ourselves, needing to align with life.
That we don't come into life wrong. That we don't come into life flawed and broken. That there is an order, there is a symmetry, there is a path, and we're meant to walk. There are things we are meant to experience, there are things we are meant to be, and how and when we get there is completely up to us.
That's the beauty of life, free will, freedom undergirds everything. We always get to choose. We always get to choose what we do and what we don't do. We always get to choose our own values. We always get to choose what we strive after. We always get to choose what matters to us. And thus we always get to choose what we pursue and in our choices of pursuits.
This is where we really design our life. This is where our life is made. This is where our life experience comes from. Through the pursuit of what we choose to pursue. Through the striving after of what we choose matters. So it can be kind of a difficult realization to have, but it's one of the most liberating free ones we can possibly have.
But we actually have far more control. We have far more domain. We have far more say. We have far more sway. over our own lives than we think we do. It'd be so easy to think that we're put upon by circumstance. It can be so easy to think that we can't possibly do x and y because z is true. That we're to this, we're not enough that.
We were born in the wrong time, in the wrong place, the wrong context. We don't have the right skills, we don't have the right background, we don't have the right social circle, we don't have the right resources. But really, at its core, these arguments is fear talking. And this fear actually comes from a benevolent place.
This fear comes from the place of trying to help us to avoid pain. Because whatever these arguments are, one thing they expose is that these things are actually really important to us. That we have these dreams, we have these big ideas, and we tuck ourselves out of them or we convince ourselves that they're not possible in order to spare ourselves pain.
We convince ourselves that our dreams are unlikely to save ourselves the heartbreak of failure. So it can be really easy to over prioritize fear, it can also be really easy to sort of demonize fear. Fear is useful. At the very least, a lot of times, fear can tell us when there are stakes. Fear can tell us when something matters.
Fear can tell us when something is actually important. Fear can tell us when something actually means something to us, because otherwise, why would we be afraid? Especially if we really get underneath our fear and find that we're really afraid of is having our heart broken. Well, then that tells us That our heart wants something.
That tells us that there's desire inside of us. That tells us there's something meaningful that we want to encounter, that we want to experience, that we want to live. And that's really useful information because these are the things that are worthwhile to pursue. That the advice of follow your heart, follow your bliss.
Feed your passions. This can all be really useful advice. This can all be really handy information. This can all be really useful, but obviously no piece of advice. It's complete. It's only a partial bit of the story. It's something we actually have to interpret, that we actually have to integrate, and that's our job.
That's what we have to do. That's what we get to do. That's a big part of crafting our own life, is choosing what advice we listen to, what guidance we listen to, what we follow and what we don't. We do and what we don't do. But if we find ourselves striving too much, we find ourselves doing too much. If we find ourselves endlessly trying and trying and trying and seeking and seeking and seeking, kind of like the Terminator, constantly scanning our environment for our target, looking at every possible thing that happens to us as a potential solution, as a potential fit for what we're looking for, that kind of maniacal focus isn't really that enjoyable to live through.
I'm pretty safe to make the argument that Being maniacal, being a maniac about anything, isn't really that enjoyable to live through, isn't really a state that we should aspire to. Because at the very least, this isn't cooperative, this isn't working with life, this doesn't have a sense of being imbued in it, it's really far more about doing, and in my experience anyway that leads to a life out of balance.
Too much looking, too much seeking, too much trying, too much doing, just leads to an imbalance, an imbalance of effort. Because in order to live the kind of life that we want to live, we have to live a life of doing and non doing, of doing and allowing, of force and yielding, of action and inaction. So if we find ourselves doing too much, if we find ourselves striving too much, it's important to look underneath all this.
Phrenetic activity. And first ask ourselves the very simple question, does this even work? Or at the very least, does this work with a level of efficiency that's sustainable? Now sure, I might achieve what I aim to achieve, but I have to put in 100 hour weeks in order to do it? Is that really worth it to me?
Or am I just building a circumstance where I'm just trying to do as much as I possibly can so I can do as little as possible later? And then ask ourselves the question, does that even work? Is that even real? That our life is lived through the doing. Only a small part of our life is lived through the achievement of our doing, through the reward of our doing.
We might as well pick things to do that we actually want to do. We might as well pick things to do that we actually enjoy. And that if what we really want, if what we're really striving after, is a sense of peace, a sense of calm, a sense of nourishment, a sense of joy that we don't actually like. The maniacal pace that we've been holding ourselves to.
And the first way to rectify this is to stop living this way. Stop choosing to do things in this way. Because it's kind of a funny fallacy. We'll be able to achieve the opposite in life by persisting long enough that if we suffer long enough, we'll be able to achieve joy. And of course, suffering is a natural part of life and joy is a natural part of life.
I don't think there is linked. There's a lot of people who think they are. I don't think they're as linked as a lot of people tell us they are. So if we do find ourselves striving a little too much, if we do find ourselves trying a little bit too hard, if we do find ourselves trying to make things happen, trying to seek and seek and seek and find and find and find, then it's worthwhile to try something different.
What would it be to allow the game to come to us? What would it be to act as if I was confident now? To act as if I knew I couldn't fail now? To act as if there's nothing actually to be afraid of? Now, what would it be to renegotiate with the way I live my life, and stop searching, stop seeking, and allow things to find me.
Allow life to come to me. Allow the things that I want to come to me. Of course, this is a balance. Some amount of seeking, some amount of trying, some amount of doing, of course, is necessary. We're not all just trying to find a way to sit in a chair and conjure whatever we wish in the palm of our hand. But just because we're not looking for a completely passive yielding life doesn't mean we're looking for a life completely imbued and invested and devoted to action and force either.
That sometimes we have to try to find the answer and sometimes the answer comes to us. Sometimes we have to try to make things happen and sometimes things just happen. So obviously it's about being balanced, it's about living a life that we actually want to live. But more than that, it's about developing the consciousness and the confidence and the faith that we can have what we want.
Because again, a lot of our striving, a lot of our trying, a lot of our doing simply shows that we don't really believe that these things are possible for us. We don't really believe that we deserve them. We don't really believe we can have them without putting in some sort of superhuman Herculean effort first, without going way above and beyond, without trying as hard as we possibly can, not only to get these things, but then to hold them.
And in my way of thinking, living a life running in the red. The maximum effort, the maximum exertion all the time just to attempt to hold on to things that I want is kind of missing the point. Isn't really that enjoyable. At the very least, I can't really even enjoy the things that I have because I'm running so hard.
I'm running so fast. I'm doing so much all the time, but again, at least for me, anyway, when I'm running this hard, when I'm doing this much, it's usually fed out of insecurity. It's usually fed out of fear. I'm trying to capture and make things happen as quickly as possible instead of just letting things unfold.
I'm reacting to every fear or thought that I have about how I can make something happen or prevent something bad from happening instead of responding to the flow of life. So it's a useful exercise. If we've been doing too much trying, if we've been doing too much seeking. To just stop, to just pause, see what happens if we just let life come to us, see how much better we feel if we let the game of life come to us.
If you go into life with a sense of confidence, with a sense of faith, with a sense of knowing that we're exactly where we need to be, that we're doing exactly what we need to do, and that the next thing, whatever it is, will be obvious when it comes along. We don't have to try to guess early. Life isn't trying to trick us.
We also don't need to destroy all the potential competition for what we want either. What we want is for us, just as much as we are for what we want. If something is truly a fit for us, if something is truly ours, no one else can take it away. And fortunately, the inverse is true as well. As painful as it can be, It truly does serve us that the things that aren't for us will go away.
We won't be able to hold them. And truly that serves us truly. That is a benefit to us. Truly. This is a good thing. So if we know what we want, if we're clear, if we have a vision for what we want, it's a worthwhile thing to just. Try. Abide. Have the knowing and know the knowing is enough and that when it's time to do something it will be obvious.
But in the meantime, we're gonna let life come to us. We're gonna let this appear on its own timing. We're gonna allow life to deliver to us what we've asked for until proven otherwise. Until there's something obvious that we need to do. And if we don't know what we want, And if we're striving around and we're throwing everything we possibly can against the wall and trying on every idea we can possibly think of, then maybe we can relax that a little bit too and just let that emerge.
Let it come up on its own. Stop trying to answer these questions as fast as we possibly can. Just dwell in possibility for a minute. Because the beauty of not having an answer to a question is that all opportunities are on the table. But that's the time of greatest possibility. There's a part of us that can get really uncomfortable.
With unanswered questions, I can really bristle against the unknown, but we don't have to find the state inherently comfortable. We don't have to find the state inherently scary. We don't have to try to lock everything down just to make the insecure part of us feel better. We can breathe. We can stay open, and we can know that the answer, when it appears, will be obvious.
And that in the meantime, we can live our life. We can continue to flow with life. We can continue to do what we're inspired to do. We can continue to do what we think is right. We can continue to gather new information as it comes along. We can continue to change our mind if we want to. We can change our focus.
We can change our goals. That's the beauty of not being locked into any particular idea, is that all options are on the table. We don't have to go right or left. We don't have to choose A, B, or C. We can keep our options open. This is the time of our maximum freedom, because we can entertain maximum possibility.
And we can narrow this down whenever we wish. We can choose whenever we wish. But there is a value, sometimes, in delaying choosing. There is a value in staying open. There is a value of allowing ourselves to have our choices refined, to really be able to choose intentionally. I'm not just grasping after the first potential possibility, and instead let our choices Mature.
Let our preferences emerge. Stop being in such a rush, stop being in such a hurry to define everything and then frantically try to make it happen. Let life come to us. Let what we want come to us. Let what to do come to us. Work to be one with existence, one with the flow of life. Stop feeling like we have to be in this adversarial relationship.
With what's happening all the time, not feel like life is this zero sum competitive exercise all the time. Just move with it. Move with it in confidence, in faith, in calmness, in peace. Because ultimately, if this is the life we want to live, a life imbued with joy and peace, connection and love, richness and a passion, then we need to let ourselves emerge.
All those states are direct reflections of us expressing who and what we really are. The things in life that would give us these feelings are the things that truly fit us, truly are for us, truly are us. These things can't be forced, they can't be manufactured. We have to allow, we have to yield, we have to go with.
This is much more of a partnership, a cooperation than a competition. Oftentimes this is much more about allowing than forcing things to happen and requiring things to only happen a certain way. Enforcing things to conform and comport with our ideas of how things should be and instead moving with life, moving with what is.
Experiencing what comes along and making choices about what we want to engage with and what we don't, what we want to do and what we don't, to guide our way. Because again, this is always our choice. This is our greatest freedom. We get to choose what we do and what we don't do. We get to choose what we value and what we don't value.
We get to choose the meaning we derive from what happens to us. We get to choose our responses. We get to choose our reactions. This is where all of our freedom lies in our own free will and free will runs underneath and through everything that truly is to our great fortune. That truly is a gift. So if we're not used to it, if this isn't something we've developed yet, this ability to let life come to us, let the game come to us, and this is a worthwhile pursuit to At the very least, this is a worthwhile experiment.
What would happen if I surrendered? What would happen if I let go? What would happen if I didn't believe that I was in this to the death cage match with life and actually looked at life a little bit more cooperatively? That maybe everything isn't out to get me. Maybe everyone isn't out to undermine me.
Maybe I'm not just trying to be the king of rat mountain. No offense to rats. And actually just live. Actually just be. Actually just have trust and faith and confidence. That we're exactly where we need to be, nothing is out of order, nothing has gone wrong, and we get to choose what we do next. We've gathered all the information we've gathered, we've gathered all the wisdom we've gathered, we've gathered all the experience that we've gathered, and we get to choose what we do with it.
We get to choose our next step, and sometimes, perhaps oftentimes, we can be best served. By allowing our steps come to us, allowing life to come to us, allow life to tell us what it's trying to tell us. Allow life to deliver to us what it's trying to deliver to us and stop getting in its way. Stop doing too much.
Stop jumping too early. Stop filling our life full of frantic activity, taking up the space for life to actually deliver something to us. To assume an attitude of confidence. To assume an attitude of trust. To assume an attitude of faith. Just for the very reason that it feels better. And also, the fact that our lack of confidence and lack of faith really doesn't help us either.
Sure, we may do a lot, but what do we actually get done? How is that actually leading to an enjoyable life? And if we're doing all that we possibly can... in order to somehow override or disprove our own security and lack of confidence or fear. What if we just decided to do that now? What if we just decided to have faith now?
What if we just decided to have confidence now? What if we just decided to listen to our fear, know that it's telling us what matters to us, what's actually important, and then move forward with our fear rather than striving to constantly avoid it. What would happen if we moved with life? What if we allowed life to be life, to be what it is, and just move with it?
Walk through life, day after day, moving with it, and then internally allow life, allow the game of life. To come to us.