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Feeling a sense of dissatisfaction, unease, or anxiety is often due to the narratives we create. These stories stem from our inability to stay present,…

The Narrative We Create: Understanding Why We Suffer

Feeling a sense of dissatisfaction, unease, or anxiety is often due to the narratives we create. These stories stem from our inability to stay present, causing us to continuously seek other moments, preventing us from acknowledging and appreciating the present moment. This restlessness can escalate into fear and panic, trapping us in our thoughts and creating a complete absence of presence.

The concept of awakening, as embodied by the phrase “I am Buddha”, signifies a transition of identity. It implies deriving our sense of self not from the continuous narratives our mind churns out — which often revolve around external factors and egoic identifiers — but from being aware of our thoughts and emotions.

The power to step out of this stream of thinking and to become cognizant of our thought patterns is the beginning of true awakening. Recognizing that the present moment is all there is, and that the past and future hold no real existence, is a crucial part of this process.

It’s important to understand that it’s not the situations that upset us, but the thoughts we create around them that lead to our unhappiness. The mind, contrary to popular belief, often doesn’t solve problems in life, but rather creates them.

One effective method to enter a state of presence is to become aware of our breathing. This simple act of mindfulness can help us perceive without judgment and allow things to be as they are.

So, what’s left of us when we’re not thinking? In the absence of thought, without our names, ages, physical bodies, and stories, we can find a sense of presence and being. It’s within this state that we can feel liberated from our ego and experience brief moments of oneness and freedom from the self.

This feeling of liberation and presence was something I truly understood when I enrolled in a Vipassana 10-day silent retreat. The idea of having an overactive mind was not known to me before I sat in silence for those 10 days. The real challenge arose when I had to have a complete detox from the digital & the outside world.

The stillness brought with it a wave of anxiousness and restlessness of the mind. It was during the 100 hours of meditation that the road really hit the rumble. The stories, projections, and the untamed monkey mind became overwhelming. But it was through this experience that I truly understood the power of presence and the narratives we create.

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