You can always love what you want in Life. But how do you learn to accept and love what you don’t want and have to still deal with in Life?
A young man we know has been having a rough time at his job. In the last six months that a new boss has taken over the business division that he works in, our friend has lost all interest in going to work. We met him last week over coffee when he was on his fourth spell of ‘medical leave’ in as many months. “I just hate going to office. I am trying desperately to get myself a new job. But nothing’s working out. I don’t know how one can make peace with situations in Life that we don’t want but still end up getting,” he asked.
I took a long sip of my favorite Americano he had ordered for me. And I replied: “Your very Life has been given to you without your asking, without your wanting it. Haven’t you been born and aren’t you alive despite that? The very same way you have to accept and love whatever comes to you, you have to learn to live with and deal with whatever you get.”
Our young friend wasn’t entirely convinced. I explained further.
You are never going to always get what you want in Life. A stupid boss, a spouse who cannot relate to you, a serious health setback, a perfectly strategized business incurring losses, a loved one’s death – anything can happen. Now, when everything is going the way you want it to, it sure is possible to love what you want in Life. But how can you love what you don’t want? For instance, how can you love death? How can you love a grave illness? How can you love betrayal in a relationship or a financial loss? How can you love sorrow, fear and anxiety? To love what you get in Life, you have to understand Life deeply.
Well, just remember this: your Life is just not in your control! You have been created without your knowledge. Without your asking to be born. Your creation has been a magical event. But you have not known it. You have been created as an embodiment of the Universal Energy. But you hardly see yourself that way. That’s because the labels of your name, your religion, your education, your economic strata in society, your profession, your income, and many more such labels, have been stuck on you. These labels are the cause of all your desires. Each of your wants is a consequence of your having to live up to the reputation of the label that dominates your Life at a particular time or moment. For example, in reality, you don’t need many of the things that you buy and possess in Life – like a swanky car, a large apartment in a premium neighborhood, expensive jewellery, a club membership and such. But you have them around or desire them because you have a social standing to maintain. Society has packaged you in such a manner that you are socially acceptable. So you are no longer you, you are what society wants you to be. Who you truly are has been buried deep below several layers of those labels or masks. Beneath all those layers is the non-wanting, non-desirous, accepting you. When you peel off those layers and get to the real you, you will realize that Life’s best lived by loving what comes your way, by accepting whatever is given and by flowing with whatever happens. This does not mean resignation and inaction. This means acting on a current reality without resisting or hating it. When you act this way, you act calmly, with equanimity, and over time, you do get the results that are working for.
Wanting your Life to be one way or the other is what causes unhappiness. On the other hand, wanting whatever you get leads you to being peaceful, to being happy! The truth is that you never caused your Life. And you can never control it. When you internalize this truth, you will discover that it changes the way you look at Life – from wanting Life to be different to learning to love what is! You will then find the way to live fully, to be happy despite your circumstances!