Until you actually awaken to deeper levels of freedom, it’s inevitable that you will try to hold onto a story — some thought, belief, concept, or philosophy — which gives you the flavor and feeling of the freedom you seek. This is okay up to a point, but eventually it will become clear to you that even the words and philosophies, no matter how accurate or succinct they may be, have to be released.
One of the last public talks I attended with Jean Klein was in a church hall in Sausalito, California. There were fifty or sixty people in the room, waiting patiently for Jean to come in and take his seat at the front. When he arrived, he had to be helped to his chair. He seemed very old, thin, and frail, yet his gracious European bearing was still very much in evidence, and he was dressed as elegantly as ever.
He sat down with some difficulty and smiled at us. A beautiful, clear light emanated from his eyes. We sat in silence for a while, and then he began to speak. He talked of the need to see through the “person” so we could come to our real presence, our true being. There were some questions, and subsequent dialogue.
About half-way through the evening, a serious-looking young woman in a business suit raised her hand. When Jean acknowledged her, she stood up. She looked like a banker, or a stockbroker. “Dr. Klein,” she asked, “what is your philosophy of life?”
There was a long silence. Then Jean beamed one of those disarming smiles of his. “Madame, I have no philosophy … That is why I am a happy man.”
Laughter rippled throughout the room. The young woman smiled rather self-consciously, and then sat down.
For months after the exchange, I found myself thinking about Jean’s words. It was so simple. Forget the philosophies, the stories, the beliefs, the theories and just abide in the openness and freedom of our true nature. Then we really will be happy. We’ll live out of wholeness, with wisdom and compassion, and we’ll do what needs to be done — without fuss, without bother.
But if we hold onto a philosophy, a belief system, or an agenda of any kind, we create a barrier to the unfolding of something deeper, something more authentic, fresh, and alive. When our beliefs reinforce the idea of being a separate “self,” a lonely wave on the ocean of life, it is that separation that breeds feelings of isolation, insecurity, and fear.
But when we let go of all philosophies, all stories, and just be, happiness is ours.
~ Jim Dreaver, author of End Your Story, Begin Your Life.
~ Jim, originally from Auckland and now living in Los Angeles, is coming to Australia this month! He’ll be leading a workshop in Perth Fri. Nov 18 (free) Sat. Nov. 19 & Sun. Nov. 20. To book, see:
Jim’s Website or contact Pete on 08 9336 4737 or via: firstname.lastname@example.org