Blog by Diane Donovan-Vaughn 11/24/2018

Do you ever just wallow in emptiness? Notice all the many distracting ways of dealing with feelings of separation and a general lack of satisfaction! The very avoidance tactics in use often increase feelings of loneliness and separation. At some point, an individual may just give in and wallow in self-pity and depression. Sadness and grief are different experiences. Sadness and grief are natural emotions of disappointment or of being triggered about losing someone or something or the illusion of losing love. When the mind gets involved, heaping negative thoughts upon sadness and grief, one can easily get sucked into the black hole of emptiness.

Observe the mind but in this case, minimize the curiosity because curiosity can be another way to stay separate from love. What is this curiosity about emptiness anyway if not another tactic the mind uses to dwell on negativity? Unfortunately, with a brain like mine, it seems to excel at kicking me when I am down and then taking out a microscope to inspect every teensy flaw it decides I have, using curiosity to dig and dig at the source of my so-called inadequacy. Spend too much time being distracted with curiosity and miss the life the soul is here to live!

The mind can just as easily use avoidance to maintain separation and negativity but it masquerades as fun. The mind often encourages medicating and escaping pain. It leads the chase of finding satisfaction anywhere but inside because after all inside seems to be where the pain actually lives. While eating, drinking, gambling, shopping, overworking, obsessing, exercising excessively, constantly self-improving and basically seeking an escape, one is simply avoiding emptiness, not ending it. When the mind is allowed to hate, nothing will ever be enough. When the mind is allowed to love, the desire to beat anyone into perfection will fade and the need to escape will no longer exist. Love will permeate life, flowing endlessly from the heart.

While observing the mind, be sure to notice a sentence the mind uses over and over to create emptiness, inadequacy, depression and hopelessness. It may seem like a mundane sentence such the one in my brain that said, “I just don’t want to be alone this summer.” These statements then trigger the fall into thinking despair and unending feelings of loneliness or the search for escape. Some other common statements are “why me” or “I can’t deal with this” or any statement that says “I am not enough.” Each mind is unique, having its ways of dealing with the illusion of separation but to the mind separation is a pervasive view of the human senses. An enlightened master sees oneness composed of love. Be a master.

Remember that emotions are like waves going in and out. Feel the good and bad emotions as they pass through. Surrender to the ocean of emotion, riding them as they come and go. Attaching to emotions or escaping emotions are leading to the emptiness. The desire to attain to love still implies it is somewhere else. Surrender to the moment and focusing on your true nature, reveals love

Surrender is the first step toward ending emptiness and attaining love. Surrender to the emotion. Surrender to the experiences in life. Quiet the mind and allow yourself to be in your experiences and emotions moment by moment. Put up a stop sign for the brain to stop commenting and commenting, distracting from the experiences of life. Notice that the mind fights being in the moment, having been allowed to roam here and there unfettered for a long time. Gently bring the mind to the moment and rest there.

Why are you empty anyway? The truth is that you are not empty. You are simply involved in a very convincing illusion of loneliness caused by a mass delusion of separation. Wallowing in emptiness or attempting to escape it reinforces the belief in separation. Surrender moment by moment and the truth emerges. Spend time dwelling in the heart, surrendering to the moment to expand consciousness. Nothing is ever needed to reconnect with who and what you really are. You are love and you are not alone. Be a master and remember the oneness.

Changing to the loving focus is difficult because it is easy to believe in some very convincing resentments and judgments. Returning to a focus of oneness is simply a change in belief from “us and them” to “I am everything.” To become whole, turn your focus toward the fact that love is all you are and love is all that exists. As a peacemaker, one of the hardest lessons to learn is to look into the world and see the Beloved everywhere. Sending love and goodwill, seeing the light and love in the so-called enemy is unblocking the connection to love. To stay lost in emptiness and separation, give out jealously, disappointment, resentment, and hate creating illusions of separation, loneliness and despair. Give out love and goodwill to reveal love and goodwill. You are never alone and never separate. Look out upon this grand illusion of separation and emptiness, feel the emotions and then remember the view is an illusion. Only love is real.

Today the daily meditation from Living a Life of Awareness – Meditations on the TOLTEC Path by Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. is titled “Recognizing What Matters” (page 17).

Ruiz said,
“The beautiful thing about realizing our own mortality is that it puts the relationship we have with others and ourselves into perspective. In this light, any resentment we may be carrying toward another or ourselves is a type of early death. It has often been said that holding onto resentment is like taking a poison pill and waiting for the other person to die.
“Don’t waste time letting a wedge come between you and those you care about when you have this present moment to share with one another. Forgiveness is the key to experiencing love and joy in the present moment.”

Ruiz practice: “With awareness, forgive yourself and others for any wrongdoings, real or perceived. In the big picture of life and death, does nay resentment you are holding onto really matter?”

Let’s practice for a moment:
Close your eyes and take deep connected breaths, in through the nose and out through the mouth. With each inhale, allow yourself to sink deeper into your true self, inside the center of your chest. With each exhale, release any tension and negative thoughts you may be having. Expand your consciousness to your whole body and pay special attention to any areas that are in pain or that are tense. Relax those areas sending love and goodwill to your body. Notice any beliefs you have of inadequacy, imperfection, loneliness or just not being enough. Relax while sending love and goodwill to your beliefs. Notice that love and goodwill dwell within you at all times. Any time you feel overwhelmed, empty, lonely, sick, unforgivable or unforgiving, remember to send love and goodwill. You are love. Breathe into the center of your being and remember.