Wanting Even That Which We Don’t Like

 I read something a week or so ago which pretty much stopped me in my tracks. It was one of those things, that, if true, would imply that perhaps my entire way of being may have been off for my entire life. The words have continued to both haunt and inspire me, so I thought this would be a good place to explore them. Here is the culprit:

“Freedom is wanting whatever the universe wants. When you are aligned with the universe, what you want and what is happening is the same thing.”    ~A.H. Almaas – “Facets of Unity”

In my perspective, freedom has meant being able to choose whatever I want and perhaps not being in a position where others can pick or choose for me. If the words quoted above are true, then freedom doesn’t mean having what you want, but perhaps being free of want altogether.

Is it possible? I think so, but it seems to require a complete trustingness, a full relaxation into accepting whatever is rather than being attached to however we might want things to be. I would venture to say that “what the universe wants” is quite simple – the universe wants whatever is actually happening, it wants no more and no less, nothing different than that which actually is.

Can I possibly want that – want simply whatever is? What if I don’t like that which is happening? I’m certainly not saying that one has to “like” everything. We don’t have to like a particular type of weather pattern, or soy-lait ice cream, or a way that someone is treating us. We can choose to not eat that ice cream and even stand up against perceived injustice, but wanting is another story. The only posture that doesn’t lead to frustration is when we allow ourselves to want whatever is happening. We may not like that it’s cold and rainy today, but we can want that simply because it is. Wanting something other than whatever is is simply folly.

There is a big difference between preference and attachment. As humans, it’s fine to have preferences. We are each unique manifestations who express in very individual ways. Attachment, however, leads to our not being content if things are not exactly as we would like them to be. When they are not as we would like them to be, we are not accepting them as they truly are, and frustration naturally ensues

This all makes sense (or perhaps it will after the 2nd or 3rd reading), but how do we apply it in our lives? Like most inner growth in life, I guess it’s just a matter of practice, of learning to recognize over and over that the discomforts which we experience derive from the distance between how we would like things to be and the way that they simply are. Can we accept things as they simply are? To me at least, it’s certainly a question worth attending to.

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