A Long and Winding Road to Understanding
“Where do you get the time for all your creative endeavors ? Or the energy? Do you ever sleep?”
People have been asking me such questions for some time now, and I must admit to some reluctance about answering them, because it's not a simple answer. For that matter, I'm just suspicious enough about myself to wonder if I'm not just talking nonsense.
I want to first note I’ve been trying to explain this for a number of years. In fact a lot of this foundation was laid in 2004 when I first released an audio set, Seeing True – The Way of Spirit, through my private publishing company. That material has now been released commercially in 2016 by Ozark Mountain Publishing.
That said, let me try to explain.
There is only energy, or spiritual energy if you prefer. All matter and all action are nothing but expressions of energy. Furthermore, there is an infinite quantity of energy in the creation, and movement seems to be its nature.
Quantum mechanics has determined that all energy is subtly affected by all the rest of the energy. It’s all connected through some pretty strange physics, which I’ve come to think of as responsiveness. So infinite variations of energy are constantly in motion and partly influenced by all the rest of the energy and movement.
The question then is, how is that energy being used by, and through us?
The first use of that energy is by our unconscious selves, for example bodily functioning and innate survival. The second use is based on our sensory perception, which is observable though not necessarily controllable. I’m referring to the energy needed to step out of the way of an oncoming vehicle, or to attend to a crying baby, or for the many things that seem to require our attention and effort.
But what happens when through spiritual or psychological development, some of these actions and behaviors become more conscious to us? Or when we deliberately devote energies to meditation or mindfulness? What happens when awareness increases?
Interestingly enough, the Big Book from Alcoholics Anonymous presents a conclusion. “We are then in much less danger of excitement, fear, anger, worry, self-pity, or foolish decisions. We become much more efficient. We do not tire so easily, for we are not burning up energy foolishly...”
As our underlying motivations are brought into our awareness, as we become more enlightened, more energy is freed up. Abraham Maslow saw this to be true when he showed that as our most basic needs for safety and security are met, more attention can be devoted to self-actualization. It may seem like we have more energy, and perhaps we do, but some part of that new energy is the result of decreasing the ways that it is diverted or used ineffectively.
I’d go so far as to say that Buddha himself told us this would be the outcome he called the Eightfold Path. That as we dealt with our attachments (the distracting or inefficient use of energy) we would find our way to right understanding, right intention, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, and right concentration.
It turns out that like so many things, gaining greater energy is also an inside job.
While the reality is not simple, perhaps it can be summarized simply: The secret to finding greater energy is through discovering and addressing the ways that drain away energy.
Interestingly enough, today I think of this as forgiveness work. A practice of continuously releasing the things that bind us, over and over again. With practice and some success, more energy is available for higher purpose.
Seeing True in Action
Every path to greater effectiveness begins with awareness. And while these writings may have been a good beginning, each of us can look to where our energy is going by taking stock of any given day, or any given week. Then as we begin to see ourselves more clearly, the shift of energy begins, away from distractions and more toward our heart’s desire…and the realm of Spirit.