How to live more consciously and successfully is the conundrum of the day. Living with conscious awareness of what you’re doing, thinking, and feeling isn’t easy. But it is definitely worth the effort. If you’ve stuck with your commitment to developing this skill for a period of time, you will probably agree – despite the frequent sense of frustration and annoying personal assessment that you’re still not doing it very well.
One of the major issues too often overlooked in this quest for greater mindfulness, calm, and presence is learning how to deal with the predicament of being both human and divine. (Please take the term ‘divine’ and give it your own meaning. I’m using it as a reference to the larger mysterious whole that we all seem to arise out of and return to.)
Now, why do I call this a predicament? Let me share an excerpt on just this topic from my book Unflappable: 6 Steps To Staying Happy, Centered, & Peaceful No Matter What.
“On the one hand, we’re born, play, work, love, grieve and exist in a human body with frailties and irritations, sensations, and passion. On the other hand, we have questions about what happens before birth and after death. Are we more than our human existence? What happens when we step from daily struggles to experience a bigger picture?
Because life is bigger than our ability to grasp it, try as we might, we often rely on beliefs to soothe our existential questions. Still, the mystery of it all – and the question of our place in it – never really goes away.
Happiness in Two Dimensions
To understand the irritations of being human, you need to realize that there is one basic unfulfilled desire at the heart of human discontent: the desire to have life be the way you want it to be. (Your sense of…) discontent rests in wanting things to be what they’re not.
Yet . . . wanting things to be what they’re not, motivates our dreams. If you don’t put your energies into making your dreams come true, you feel unfulfilled and dissatisfied. Whether it’s baking a tasty cake, throwing a party for your partner, writing a new song, making the world go green, or inventing the next technological leap, this desire marks us as human. So how can dreaming for things to be different than they are now be a problem?
At the human level, discontent drives our dreams. Picture yourself as a dream machine designed by Divine Decree to dream. In fact, you cannot not dream.
Happiness for the human dimension is actualizing your dreams;
bringing what isn’t yet real into reality.
From the spiritual perspective, you’re a child of a mysterious force (use your own language here that fits you), perfect as you are, and resting in Buddha Nature, Christ Consciousness, or Love and Oneness. In effect, the essence of you is ultimately divine and perfect as is. No change needed, and no dreams desired.
Happiness for the divine dimension is enjoying the present, “being here now,”
and going with the flow.
How can you be here now and run after your dreams? The answer is learning how to manage paradox. Then you’ll stop trying to get rid of that unpleasant “inner tug-of-war” by chasing the dimension that’s “right” (usually divine) and avoiding the dimension that’s “wrong” (usually human). You discover your inner tug-of-war has a vital role to play; then you’re free to be present to the moment while you’re also pursuing your dreams.”
Discontent rests in wanting things to be what they’re not.
Being both human and divine generates some confusing and paradoxical guidelines. You’ve heard them all but may not realize how they influence the way you live, make decisions, and try to resolve your dilemmas.
- Human Self Keep moving and go after what you want.
- Divine Self Stay still and be grateful for what is.
- Human Self Focus on the future and expect to get what you want.
- Divine Self Focus on the present and let things be as they are.
- Human Self Heal your wounds from the past.
- Divine Self You are perfect as you are.
Without the wisdom of your discontent to manage these paradoxical directions, your unconscious mind has to decide which guideline is the right one to follow—since you logically can’t do two contradictory actions at the same time. It will move you toward the one it thinks is right and away from the one it thinks is wrong. Here it is again! Setting up what you like against what you dis-like.
Check It Out for Yourself (Living with the Dilemma)
Take a minute right now and ask yourself which of the above guidelines your unconscious mind is trying to follow. How will you know? Simply check out what you think and feel. Do you believe one is right and the other wrong? Does one dimension seem irrelevant to your happiness? Do you find yourself desperately trying to move back and forth between the two without any reliable way to decide which to choose? Do you find yourself second-guessing your decisions time and again?
Remember, don’t judge. This is just an investigation. Be lovingly ruthless. No one else needs to know what you find. It’s just between you and the lamp post.”
How to live more consciously seems to be an ongoing question. You learn something new. A door you didn’t know was there opens. And then the desire for how to live more consciously arises again. Why? Because conscious living & leadership tastes so sweet, feels so satisfying, looks so beautiful, and sounds so inspiring.
Please revisit me in a few days for Part II of this inquiry into how to live more consciously. There is happy news! And a solution to managing this dilemma of being both human and divine. If you’re both, having them be in alignment answers the question of how to live more consciously. And it’s the wisdom of your biology and the wisdom of your discontent that makes that possible.
More to come.
Meanwhile, if you’d like to chat, just CLICK HERE to schedule a 30-minute complimentary call with me at a time convenient for you.