Wednesday, June 29, 2016

The Aimless Way

Most of us, most of the time, are more under the influence of our undigested past experience, as something to be avoided, rather than being related to the present opportunity.” (E. Graham Howe, The Druid of Harley Street)

Wu-wei means the aimless way in Chinese. Being without an agenda could be another expression for it. But can we be entirely agenda-less? Probably not. If someone comes and suddenly puts a plastic bag over our head, wouldn't we instinctively fight for air? Or doesn't our heart skip a beat when we get a call from the nurse telling us about yet another accident that our boy had at school today? What if the head of personnel comes by our office on an early on Monday morning with a concerned look on his face; wouldn't we wish he goes past our office and fires another colleague instead?

As long as we live we will always be bound to root for something. Spirituality can't change this fact of life. What we can do, however, we can progressively set ourselves free from the weight of the past. Like a spiral spinning outwards from a center of origin, year after year, we can become a bit more free. That's what life and a spiritual path is all about. The day when we attend our son's graduation ceremony from college, or the day our daughter gets married we feel a bit lighter. Or the day when we leave our job with a feeling of mission accomplished.

A spiritual path jump-starts our journey into freedom. Actually, we don't need to hurry, life is designed to set us free. But we can help accelerating the path into freedom when we awake to the aimless way. Wu-Wei is full of paradoxes: by being pulled towards life we in fact become more detached from it. Living in the holy NOW, we are made aimless, just as we get a laser-like focus when the opportunity abounds. When we love others we also learn to love ourselves more. Discover the aimless WAY and be free!

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