Being Perfection

Spirituality can easily be mistaken for perfectionism. In a flash the whole path is reduced down to a checklist, a host of ideals that I must become. This is where the suffering of the third level of spiritual materialism is really felt, as I deny everything about myself in the hope of becoming a thought, an idea about perfection. The spiritual life then seems to be laced with guilt and shame, since I can never measure up to the standards that I have imposed upon myself. At times it may seem that there is hope of fulfilling these standards, almost as if I have gotten over a hump, but in the end there is only failure. I have never been able to express the spiritual ideal. I have never been able to press out my ideas about myself.
I suppose this is because I cannot be reduced to an idea. The human being just isn’t that plain, that one-sided. I have more texture than that, more complexity. Every time I try to become an idea of who I should be, I oppress humanity on the most basic level, as I ignore the richness of the human condition. The shame and guilt, far from being a painful indication that I have once again fallen short, is in reality an inspiring reminder that I have sold myself short. The shame and guilt are in truth a function of natural intelligence, which is pointing out the fact that my legacy as a human being far surpasses the limitations of a static ideal. I am not a picture to be painted or a checklist to be completed. There is not some spiritual standard that I must meet or some discipline that I must adhere to in order to become fully human. I am fully human, so fully human that I cannot even accept that fact- I am that fact!
I am the space that accommodates guilt, hope, love, sorrow, anger, and compassion. I am the energy which begets thought. A far cry from the poverty mentality that suggests we must become spiritual or fully human, our inheritance as humans is one of being. There is nothing for us to become because we are being! We need not bother ourselves with earning freedom, achieving happiness, or learning how to live life. This only makes us a slave to our own ideals, which cause us to be unhappy, and transforms life into a huge problem in need of an ideal solution. All we need to do is nothing… Stop. Breathe. See. Listen. Feel. Taste. We are not alive; we are life! We are whole, complete, in need of no-thing-. We are perfection!

3 comments:

  1. Hmmmmm... I don't think that we should set ourselves up for failure. But then again, if you read the biography of every great hero and successful person, their path is beset by "failure". These experiences teach them lessons that never failing never will. These so called "failures" is what made them who they are today. Failures lead us to change our paths and find our true heart's purpose.
    In fact, a friend of mine gave me a book called "The Great Failures of the Very Successful." It is a great and inspiring read. One should wish for failure, not fear it.

    What our great leaders didn't do is lower their standards. Though human beings are capable of incredibly horrible things such as war and murder and rape. We are also capable of un-believable compassion and perseverance. Our standards should not be impossible to reach but we should have them. Changing my standards has truly changed my life personally. However, if you have given yourself unreachable standards, then you need to analyze them. Perhaps changing one standard from, I will be perfect, to I will be more playful and light hearted will help. After all, what is perfection anyway? We should be clear when we ask something of ourselves. Little changes in our standards like this make a huge difference, even though we might fall short sometimes. In time, you look back at who you were before and you'll see the difference.

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  2. First of all I would like to say thank you Rhea for reading this blog, and participating in the discussion group the other day...
    As for your comment, I would agree with you about failure. I think that failure is the most incredible teacher one could ever wish to meet, and in that respect it is not really failure at all. What we call failure is often nothing more than an invitation to get to know ourselves on a much deeper level.
    As to your remarks about standards, it isn't that I disagree with you on any particular point. I do not think that the blog entry suggested the "lowering of standards." I think our difference of opinion lies in the priority placed on standards. You seem to be suggesting that by establishing standards or goals and working towards their fruition we can become better or more content people. I am saying that the qualities we wish to cultivate are already present within us, and in fact serve as the inspiration for our goals or standards. For example, setting a goal to obtain a college degree is one way intelligence might seek to express itself, but the obtainment of that degree does not make me intelligent. Intelligence preceded the degree, in fact it was the expression of intelligence that made the obtainment of the degree possible. In this case a degree would be a manifestation of intelligence, perseverance, etc. So in conclusion I was simply saying that instead of trying to become intelligent, compassionate, or spiritual, stop- Get out of the way and allow these qualities which are already present within you to express themselves. I hope we can keep up this dialog!

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  3. oh yes, I agree 100%. We have to know that these qualities are already inside us. We merely have to allow ourselves to unleash them.

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