States of Wonder: Mindfulness 5

States of Wonder!

5. The Art of Non-Striving

“Try Harder!”
“Do Better!”
“Be the Best that you can Be!”

These words or various variations of this sentiment have been told to people all over the world any number of times.
Actually, if we look closely, every advertisement, magazine and commercial is telling us to aim higher than where we are right now.

The problem is, is that where we are right now is where we are right now.
And where we are right now is the most authentic we can be.
Not understanding that you are where you are, right now, means that you don’t understand that right now, you’re the most authentic you can ever be, because, you are right here, now.

You can’t do anything more right now than what you are doing right now.

Ohhh, what a tongue twister/mind bender all that is!

Non-striving can be a difficult concept to understand, particularly if you’re trying to understand it.
See, the most effective way to achieve your goals is to actually back off from trying and instead start to focus on carefully seeing and accepting things as they are, moment to moment, with patience and practice, a movement towards your goals will naturally occur by itself.

In meditation, you have one goal.
To be your authentic self.

Ironically, you are already your most authentic self.

By observing and being aware of one’s self, not trying to control or get in your own way, by just accepting that you are who you are at this moment and that every moment just leads to another, change is the only constant, you allow the world around you to reflect and change just as you do when you become aware of who you are, right now.

Non-striving isn’t non-doing. It’s just non-pushing.
Non-persisting, full trust that with a mindful eye and Heart that you will gently sail towards your destination just by looking upon the shore.

How can you learn to do this?

Through your discipline of meditation.
Not your persistence of meditation, but just in the act of meditating.
Nothing more. Nothing less.

I like to think that movie “Kon Tiki” is a perfect example of non-striving.
Just sitting on a boat, not fixing it, not trying to direct or even propel, just sitting and trusting that the currents will take you where you believe you can go.
All but the Captain were non-believers, they wanted to push, they tried to control, they all got stressed and sick. They didn’t Believe. But the Captain, he just looked upon the shore and gently sailed towards it. In faith.

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