Freedom means realizing that everything and everybody gets to be exactly as they are.
How to get the most out of these Wisdom Quotes:
Put aside everything you think you already know.
Open your mind and heart to receive something new.
Take your time going through each point.
Return to any points that particularly touch you.
In the coming days, listen carefully to the wisdom within you.
1. Let Go of Your Desires
“Those who are free don’t want anything.
They don’t want anything from their mind, they don’t want anything from their emotions, they don’t want anything from anyone, and they don’t want anything from life.
They don’t want anything.
If you don’t want, all that’s left is an incredible sense of being free.”
~Adyashanti, The Impact of Awakening
Adyashanti presents us with a challenging view of freedom. In a world that is full of wanting, we are told that freedom lies on the other side of it.
How can you even begin to move beyond desire when you have spent your whole life chasing promises of fulfillment? It seems that everything around us is pulling and pushing us to want something more, to want something different.
Yet, if you are still for a moment, and honest with yourself, you will discover that what you really want is freedom from all desires. After all, isn't this what satisfaction and fulfillment really mean?
Consider the ideas and ideals you hold about life and be willing to relax them. Perhaps the feelings of struggle and lack you have become familiar with have served their purpose. It is insight that brings true transformation, and with it, freedom.
2. Give Up Chasing Impermanence
“That which comes and goes is not real; quit chasing it. It doesn't matter.
What haven't you lost? That is what‘s important. What always is? What is there in bliss and in misery?
Who you are is always present and is always the same.
That which doesn't come and go is real. That is where Freedom is found – nowhere else.”
~Adyashanti, The Impact of Awakening
What is meant by "real" here is permanence, that which is unchanging. To understand this, we must look beyond the world of form.
If you think about it, almost everything that we consider to be important is transient and fleeting.
What does Adyashanti mean by telling us to quit chasing these things and that they don't matter? What about our relationships, our work and our passions? Don't they matter?
What he is pointing to here is our deepest essence, the truth of who we are. We live in a world where humanity is so distracted by world events and personal thinking that we could easily live our entire lives without ever exploring the truth of who we are, at the deepest level. Yet this is what we must do if we are to find freedom.
3. Stop Arguing With Reality
“If you think that people should be nice to one another, then by all means be nice.
But when you project that belief onto the people and the world around you as if it were an objective reality, or worse still, as if it were their job to be nice to you, you put yourself at odds with what is, and suffering will surely follow.
When you argue with reality, reality always wins.
How many beliefs are you projecting onto the people and the world around you?
Notice any indignance which may arise with this question and thoughts such as: "But I have a right to expect people to be kind and treat me well. I'm not going to put up with being disrespected!"
Always come back to the value of noticing what arises within you. Every time you shift from reacting to noticing, you wake up from unconsciousness and are present as awareness.
What if you stopped bothering yourself about everything? What if you surrendered your resistance to reality and allowed things to be as they are, without taking them personally? You don't have to agree with or like the way things are (and there are situations when it makes perfect sense to seek change) but understand that it is your resistance to life that keeps you bound and at the mercy of your circumstances.
4. See That Freedom Is a Gift
“Freedom is the realization that everything and everybody gets to be exactly as they are.
Unless we’ve come to that point, unless we’ve seen that this is how reality sees things, then we’re actually withholding freedom from the world. We’re seeing it as a possession, and we’re only concerned with ourselves. How good I can feel? How free I can feel?
True freedom is a gift to everything and everybody.”
Have you been "withholding freedom from the world" by not allowing everyone to be as they are?
On the one hand, it seems normal to complain about people and situations and wish they could be different (after all, everybody's doing it), but here you have the opportunity to see something deeper.
"True freedom is a gift." Here's a perspective shift! Are you willing to give freedom to these people who you have wanted to change? Are you willing to drop old habits and give freedom to situations you haven't accepted? Will you allow them to be just as they are?
Notice the tendency to feel offended. This is not a call to stay in an unhealthy relationship or suffer in a job that feels out of alignment. This is a wake-up call to see that "true freedom is a gift to everything and everybody."
5. Surrender Your Demands
“As long as you perceive that anyone is holding you back, you have not taken full responsibility for your own liberation.
Liberation means that you stand free of making demands on others and on life to make you happy.
When you discover yourself to be nothing but Freedom, you stop setting up conditions and requirements that need to be satisfied in order for you to be happy.
It is in the absolute surrender of all conditions and requirements that Liberation is discovered to be who and what you are. Then the love and wisdom that flows out of you have a liberating effect on others.”
~Adyashanti, The Impact of Awakening
"When you discover yourself to be nothing but Freedom..." As we continue to go deeper into this subject of freedom, we find that it leads us back to ourselves. All roads ultimately bring us back to our true nature.
Freedom means taking full responsibility and not blaming anyone or anything, no longer being a victim of life.
Freedom means "you stand free of making demands on others and on life to make you happy." Stop for a moment and breathe this reality into you. FEEL the freedom of dropping demands you have been carrying around with you for years.
And if you feel you're not capable of "absolute surrender," simply allow yourself to soften and open. In the words of Eckhart Tolle, "Bring acceptance into your non-acceptance. Bring surrender into your non-surrender. Then see what happens."
6. Give the Whole World its Freedom
“The important thing is allowing the whole world to wake up. Part of allowing the whole world to wake up is recognizing that the whole world is free—everybody is free to be as they are.
Until the whole world is free to agree with you or disagree with you, until you have given the freedom to everyone to like you or not like you, to love you or hate you, to see things as you see them or to see things differently—until you have given the whole world its freedom—you’ll never have your freedom.”
~Adyashanti, The End of Your World
"The whole world is free." What does this mean? It means that you can give up trying to be in control of things that have always been beyond your control. What freedom this is! Go ahead and breathe a deep sigh of relief.
Ultimately, you are always free to embrace and experience the freedom that you are, if you first give that freedom to the whole world.
How do you do that?
Recognize that your desires keep you bound in a sense of lack.
Understand the futility of wanting anything to be permanent in an impermanent world.
Give up fighting with how life is showing up.
Be okay with everyone being the way they are.
Don't expect anything or anyone to make you happy. Rather, discover the happiness and freedom that you are in your essence when you're not being distracted by your mind-made identity.
This may seem like an unrealistic and difficult list, but it's actually much simpler and doable than you imagine. All the above points can be condensed into this one truth: Freedom is in your acceptance of this moment just the way it is. But don't take anyone's word for it. I invite you to find out for yourself if this is true.