In my most recent meditation practice with Headspace, I had a profound realisation that brought me to tears. I was causing my own misery and I didn’t even realise it.
This is what was shared in the session:
“As long as we are attached to the idea of this and that, we will always be limited in our experience of life.”
This made me tear up because it’s SO DAMN TRUE! We spend so much of our lives in a dual world. So much of our energy is spent looking at what others have - constantly comparing. Either that, or we are comparing our present moment to our past, or the future and how we are still falling short. Why?
Why is it that somehow even when we have the best of every thing, even when we have finally accomplished what we worked so hard for and have everything we ever wanted, we still feel that maybe there’s STILL something that’s missing. Why?
It takes us months, sometimes years or sadly for some of us, even a life time, to realise that we have wasted so much of our time doubting, comparing and obsessing about how others see us or what they have to say about us and our choices. Can you imagine? So much of your energy is wasted on being miserable even when you actually have everything you need!
Come to think of it, this is the biggest pandemic of our time - this constant comparison! Hyper-vigilantly looking elsewhere to validate what we have and to confirm that our present moment is good enough. Why is it that we have to look elsewhere to justify that what we have is already enough?? Why can’t we instead of that, look at our lives for what it is, instead of what it is in comparison to someone else or some other time in the past or future. If we are always gonna be stuck in this duality, how then will we ever be able to see and appreciate what is right in front of us?
I won’t say I have the answer to all this. I don’t. Like everyone else, I too am trying to figure things out. So I don’t have all the answers yet, BUT I know one thing for sure, and that’s the fact that I want to get out of my way already. I am committed to end my own suffering.
It’s so easy to blame others for your misery, because it's painful to finally accept that a lot of the times we block our own happiness. Somehow, we all have this flawed idea that us comparing and obsessing about others perception of us is not in our control. That somehow we just do it and we can’t seem to stop it. Wrong! Whether you realise it or not, it is in your control. In fact, you are the only one who can actually stop it! No one can ever do it for you.
You can consciously stop comparing yourself by being grateful for what YOU have, regardless of how others are doing. When you see someone doing better, be happy for them, pray that Allah (God) gives them even more. Did you know that when you pray for them and wish them well, then Allah will give you more too?
I will end this off by quoting a verse from the Quran that touched my heart.
Remember when He says,
“Do not turn your eyes covetously towards the embellishments of worldly life that We have bestowed upon various kinds of people to test them. But the clean provision bestowed upon you by your Lord is better and more enduring.” [20:31]
Trust and have faith in Allah. He is fair in His dealings. Know that He will never be unjust towards you and He provides you with what you need and is best for you! He is the one who knows what we need and what we don’t, so trust that whatever you have and wherever you are in life right now is exactly how He planned it to be. So, why be anxious when your life is being planned by the Best of Planners?