Updated: Apr 12, 2022
So we live this life with ups and downs. We have joy and happiness, and then there is the suffering and pain that comes along for the ride.
So how do we live a more peaceful, authentic and fulfilling life?
Most of us are taught to toughen up, work hard and put on a nice face for everyone around us. We are unofficially trained to put on a mask so we can get on with life, be successful and be positive. Our parents, friends, families and communities often focus on being strong and not letting the pain overcome us; to fight and overcome! There is nothing nefarious in this approach, however there is a much better way to live life.
We can life a much more congruent and stress-free life if we take a different approach.
We have a body - It takes in the world around us through the five senses.
We have a heart - It expresses a symphony of emotions and we also feel these in our body.
We have a mind - It has two types of thoughts, unconscious and conscious. Most of them are unconscious but we are also able to focus and create conscious thoughts.
So what does "Feeling Unconditionally" have to do with all of this?
Well, imagine your heart has hands. We are usually doing one of two things in life; using these imaginary hands of the heart to 1) grasp at a feeling that we like or 2) push away a feeling that we don't like.
This approach does have value as it allows us to survive and keep going through life. However this way of interacting with our heart has huge consequences. It traps unprocessed emotions in the body (samskaras) which is the cause for most emotional and mental suffering. It also puts us in a constant state of fear and desire to control everything which is exhausting and never ends.
So what if we use these heart hands in a different way. What if we just keep them open. We stop chasing feelings we want and we stop pushing away feeling we don't want.
When a nice feeling comes, we enjoy it completely and have gratitude for it. When it leaves we let it go and thank it for having gifted us with it's presence.
When a painful feeling comes up we:
Immediately ignore the mental story that arises
Ignore blaming the person or thing that triggered the feeling
Identify the feeling (e.g. What emotion am I feeling right now?)
Locate the feeling in the body
Feel the feeling unconditionally
Rinse and repeat
If we can develop this practice here are the benefits we can achieve:
Integrate and release chronic uncomfortable feelings
Reduce or even eliminate "our buttons" (samskaras, triggers, traumas)
Create more harmony and congruency between our inner world and the world around us
Improve our mental health, emotional health and physical health
Enhance our spiritual and/or religious health
Enjoy being alone
Enjoy our relationships more
Create more peace, flow and fulfillment in everything we do
Increase our natural authenticity in life
Be free from the fear of any uncomfortable feeling/emotion/state
This is what it means to feel unconditionally. This is what can be achieved.