Experience is the fastest route to transformation. Words take time because it involves the stages of focusing, processing, reflecting, internalising and feeling, to transform. Value all your experiences as they teach you. However, don’t get hooked to any experience good or not-good. The so-called negative experiences are quite hard to let go of, as clinging to them give self an (illusory) sense of identity as: ‘This is who I am.’ (when identification gets blended with experience) or ‘this is my story’, (when identification is from victim or a survivor viewpoint) or ‘this is what makes me, me’ (glorifying or disparaging -my story-identity), etc.
As regards clinging to positive experiences, it is for the sake of rejuvenating or replenishing energy, to feel light and bright.
REMOVING THE DUST
So long as excessive attachment with either the positive or not-positive feelings is abstained from, life flows. The moment attachment is formed, mind (chitt), starts intense waverings; seen as mood swings, identity identifications, like-dislike vacillations etc and thus, emotions and actions/karma which follow, add more layers to life-experiences.
The layers of dust in the process, obscures the connecting path to our in-dwelling divinity. Experiences gathered directly, seen through one’s own eyes, or gathered by hearing from others, adds to the dust, if not directed appropriately. When senses start latching onto experiences seen or heard-it makes life a complex weave. Excessive latching to any experience implies hooking on to feelings attached to the experience.
The yogic philosophy states that in order to live a contended /balanced life (also karma-free) one ought to let go of attachments; whether these are of pleasure-giving nature (raag) or of aversion-arousing nature (dwesh). Aversion, which is attachment ultimately, albeit of negative nature, includes attachment to fear, fear related to death/loss.
The reason for not holding on to any experience is simple; experience changes its form; an experience goes on to become a memory and if attached intensely, goes on to create one’s belief (for example: ‘I am not wanted’- experiences of a few rejections leading to this belief.) If any experience-bonding is intense, the emotional energy of it starts governing one’s life as beliefs. Here’s more; experiences not merely transmute as memories and beliefs but transmigrates to a more subtle aspect; impressions, which governs subconscious thoughts, attitude, behaviour or predisposition/s, coming from the past lives. For example: I may not know the reason why I like or don’t like a particular place, or a particular trait in a person or behave a certain way, or possess some talent ‘naturally’, etc. These are impressions of the past (life) carried on to the present, stored in the psyche.
Intense bonding with any experience, negative or overly-positive, obscures the flow of life and ultimately, one’s soul growth. Excessive positive attachment is also an obstruction because one longs for repeat pleasure-experience (which is stagnancy) instead of moving forward. Positives give pleasure and negatives create aversion. In either case, attachment breaks the rhythm of life. Balance is warranted.
Therefore, let go of attachment, attachments with anger or resentment, hate, lust or greed, over-supportive nature or over-humble nature etc. This is done by disciplining the senses (choosing to direct physical senses towards balance) and by the discipline of daily meditation. Experiences are made by us- for us and for others through us.
How one chooses to deal with their past experiences (what happened), decides the future course of one’s life, this is a transformation process. New and better experiences can be created by overwriting the past ones; this is our hands and is a process done consciously.
Disclaimer: Urmila Rao is an emotional healer and a forgiveness teacher. All the ideas expressed herein are her own and not professional advice or medical prescription. Her email: email@example.com