The Stories We Tell Ourselves.

Our lives, I believe, are made up of a series of stories. Starting from the moment we are born we are told stories. The story teller often believes that the stories are true, never really considering the possibility that they are all just stories. Stories handed down through the ages, but stories nonetheless.

I was working recently with a young man who felt he had unresolved anger issues, passed down from his father. How many of you believe you are dealing with your parents / ancestors issues that went unresolved during their lifetime?

What is an unresolved issue? A karmic charge? Something that appears to need ‘working out.’ Some Buddhist teachings would have us believe that such karmic charge needs to be worked out by a living person. Well, when you are no longer alive there can be no one to actually work out the charge, so charge appears to get passed on to the living. Whether that is through conditioning, genetics or just like charge attracts like!

Some Buddhist teaching also tells us that ‘everything is a product of the Mind.’ Hmm. So what is the ‘truth’ here. I can see the ‘truth’ in both of these comments, yet, as my own awareness changes / shifts, so does the ‘truth’. An interesting phenomena indeed. It seems then that any ‘truth’ is simply a reflection of our current understanding.

All the while we give energy to a story, that story appears, to our limited awareness, the be the ‘truth’. Then, according again to our awareness, we remain victims to that ‘truth’ which then implies something needs to be ‘done’ to ease our passage through life. So someone has to ‘do’ something, which generally means put more energy into the problem in an attempt to resolve it.

If we get stuck in that loop, our lives will be constantly seeking ways to resolve old issues. No matter where we think they came from. You can see this happening all around you. People are searching for something. That something could be more wealth, lots of workshops on how to attract more, they all fail, except perhaps for the person presenting the workshop. More health, more happiness, more love, more sex, drugs or rock-n-roll! More more, more, as if that is going to fix whatever problem ails us.

Yet what is this constant yearning for more really all about. For one it is a discontent with who you are now and what you have, now. If we take a moment to look behind the curtain, try to understand this from a different perspective we may be more than a little surprised.

So, lack may be a current perception, hence the apparent need for more. Where does the idea of lack come from? Insecurity could be a part of the issue here. For while we feel insecure, no matter the reason or how it manifests, we will always be searching for security. This search is often driven by a lack of awareness.

Yet, is it possible that the cause for our insecurity, the cause for our not being content with who we are and what we have is just another story?

A story that we, up to now, have believed totally in, so much so that out of this story a reality has arisen. That reality, the one we believe ourselves to be living in right now, is built on a story. A story that has nothing to do with ‘reality.’ However, we have given this story so much energy that it is now hard to differentiate fact from fiction. We have come to fully believe in the story. A story that needs constant attention so that we can manage our lives within the story. The only reason we are still caught in this loop is due to the amount of energy we have given to the story in the past, failing to recognise that no matter the perceived issue, it has all arisen from a story. We keep the story alive, we perpetuate the drama that appears to be our lives without any conscious thought.

We have no trouble reading fiction and recognising it as such, yet when we read a text book, something that pertains to a truth, we believe every word. Yet who wrote the text book? (Including the author of this article!) Did the person writing the text book develop their work based on a story?

If the Buddha’s words are ‘true’ in that everything is a product of the Mind, that means EVERYTHING, no exceptions. Fact, fiction, text book, story book, our lives, all aspects of that which we believe to be our lives must be included in that EVERYTHING. There can be no exceptions, yet we constantly make exceptions. Some parts of the world we can accept or believe to be true, other parts, that do not resonate with us as false, stories.

What is it that prompts us to accept some manifestations as reality and some as fiction? Who is discriminating? I suspect it is a personality that has been conditioned to believe and give value to some stories over other stories.

The more we wake up to this reality being based on old stories the more we see that while we still give energy to any one story that ‘reality’ will continue to manifest. It may take a lot of energy to keep your story alive, for a story believed in, especially an uncomfortable one, takes a lot more energy to manage it.

When we can truly see that our story of wanting more is based upon another story, which was based upon another story, and so it goes. We can slowly come out of the story, stop energising it and see that our reality changes almost immediately.

Some food for thought?