When we're completely real in our living, we naturally give people around us an experiential realization, a lived sense, that there is much more to life than what we can see and feel on the surface.
It seems a contradiction. I assure you, it is not.
But wait! How is this possible? Doing less yet revealing more? How does that work?
It works because when we are choosing to live in this more transparent and vulnerable way we are aligning with how our human system is built to function.
Technology is actually a great analogy here. Ever had issues with your computer? You then you reboot it or load a new operating system and the issues go away. You are going from using an inefficient or ineffective operating system and to one that is optimally designed for the hardware.
It's makes a massive difference! And it's even more transformative than this analogy because unlike the rigid nature of the hardware of a computer, our system's hardware is malleable, adaptable based on how we use it.
Authenticity, living with sincerity and integrity taps us into an intelligence that precedes the conditioned personality that we are so used to experiencing and navigating our lives with. We live in a world where personality and self orientation (the separate me/mine identity as the central aspect of life) comes first, while presence and authentic ways of being, follow behind if they follow at all.
We have learned to live by covering up what is deeper and quieter, what is more real, with the noise of patterning and coping that helps us mitigate and insulate against the raw experience of life.
In a simple way, by dropping our personality as our primary tool for "succeeding" in life, we are being present and responsive to the reality of what is occurring. In a way this shift is the movement from subjective interpretation life to the direct and objective living of life. The opportunity in this is that our personality is no longer being used as a mechanism to control, manipulate or defend against life and those we share it with. It is this depth of presence that is at the root of the most positive kind of influence and inspiration we can have on our own life and on the lives of others.
It's a lot like a river that is meant to flow free in honest relationship with the pull of gravity that has been dammed, stopped up and controlled by the structure of personal preference and ego identity. The letting down of this dam can feel terrifying as it spells the end of everything we have built downstream of that dam. Everything in you and your life that has been built down river it threatened by the dam coming down and the river beginning to flow fully and naturally again.
It is not that we need to kill our personality. The whole sentiment that the ego is bad and wrong misses the point. It is not the ego or the personality that must be eradicated. It is simply the shifting of what we are using these resources for. Used to fulfill and feed self-interest cultivates a conditioned personality that is fundamentally at odds with the authentic unfolding of life resulting in inevitable stress, anxiety and animosity towards anything and everything that appears to cause this conflict.
It's not that we need to come up with some sophisticated plan or solution to "fix" all of this mess we have made. It's just that we can live in acceptance of the way things are and then contribute to that way from a place of openness, joy and love. It is really that simple. Not painless, but simple. Life is not meant to be controlled or forced. It is meant to grow naturally from the flow of the river.
Instead we have become self-oriented engineers of movements of our lives and, in so doing, have disconnected our way of being and living from the beautiful and wildly intelligence of life.
Just like the Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Quote, “Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.” We are able to adopt a way of living that is aligned with a deeper intelligence. Nothing is stopping us from doing this except our attachment to what being inauthentic does for us.
The coming back to a way more like that of nature is a transformational process, yes. And… it is also highly destructive. What has been built to keep things safe and comfortable has to come apart so something vastly more robust and resilient can take it's place. It is the cleaning out of all dishonesty and illusion and willingly receiving reality as is. What I’m talking about here is the practical aspect of what many sages have called enlightenment.
Spiritual teacher Adyashanti says it so well when speaking about enlightenment.
“Enlightenment is a destructive process. It has nothing to do with becoming better or being happier. Enlightenment is the crumbling away of untruth. It’s seeing through the facade of pretense. It’s the complete eradication of everything we imagined to be true.”
And, in the place of what is untrue, authentic life has room to arise, be expressed and manifest as the reality of our lives. Deeply honest and fundamentally fulfilling.
My invitation to you is a simple one that requires absolutely everything you are…
Give people the gift of what you really are, in place of the who you have learned to be. Be with life and the people in it in a way that has absolutely no pretense of preconception in it. Present, transparent, At first it will feel uncomfortable and you will feel as though you have less to offer those around you. In time you will discover that what feels like less is actually everything. It is you inviting others into what life is actually all about.
Instead of 'doing' life, in order to have a sense of being somebody and to accomplish something, people will learn how to fully 'be' in life, in a way that makes their doing an act of love and joy instead of some kind of quid pro quo or this for that operation. This transforms our behavior from a transactional mechanism into a pure and generous expression of being in life together. The very living of life is then a deeply creative and meaningful act instead of a self-centered attempt to get something out of what we are doing in life.
It's how we all lived as babies and young children. It's why joy and love came so easy to us then. Isn't it time we when back to this more essential way of being and living? It's what the world, in all its misguided self-centeredness is yearning for.
We've been over indulging in illusions and falsehoods and it has left us starving for real life. It’s what so much of our mental illness and insecurity is based on. Be more present and all of the fruits of life begin pouring in. Become real at all costs and you become an oasis in the desert for all of humanity.
Being the simple and honest truth of what we are instead of the loud and elaborate pageantry of personhood is the greatest example of 'less is more' that I know.
Dolphin Kasper is a Canadian born author and educator who's life's work is all about transforming relationships on the planet.