What if I gave you a pill that guaranteed access to any positive state of mind whenever you wanted it?
Joy, fulfillment, and ecstasy are all on demand. Always there for you to tap into.
How would that change your present-moment experience of life?
Would it make life better for you? Would that not just be the most exciting and liberating power to have? What would you be able to do if you had access to that power? What would you achieve?
Maybe you wouldn't do anything with that power. Maybe you want to be happy, and that's about it. I respect that.
But! What if I told you that you didn't need a pill to do that?
What if I told you that you didn't need anything?
What if... this superpower is something everyone on this planet can access.
Sounds too good to be true, right? Wrong.
You & I have this power. We've just overlooked it.
Let me explain...
The Misery Equation
So why is this called the "misery" equation? It looks pretty standard, right? I thought so too, and have lived most of my life thinking that way.
I would go and chase some goals because I thought it would help deliver some form of relief to my constant anxiety & worry.
I would always put something in front, some obstacle, in the way of feeling good. It was almost like declaring that I did not deserve to feel good unless I accomplished X, Y, or Z.
This is misery. It is the outcome of putting mental/physical obstacles between us and our happiness.
Is it true that certain conditions must be in place before being happy? I certainly thought so. But is it absolutely true?
I'm not so sure anymore.
A Chink In The Armour
There is a tiny sliver of hope to help us out of this conundrum. What is that hope?
That unconditional joy IS possible for us.
All that is needed is to open the doors to the possibility of this being true.
Once we do so, we might be able to experience that.
Maybe. Let's see more...
The Joy Equation
Here is the Joy equation. The slight difference is that we START with "YOU FEELING GOOD." Afterwards, all the substances, activities, and relationships can be dealt with.
The added benefit is that you're now going to come from a place of joy over misery, so those things you do in the outside world will be much better. Eventually, at some point, you'll realize you never really needed all those things. You have all that you need right here – you feel good now.
"But? How? Can you be practical about this?"
Here is a practical and effective method to help reach this state.
I have named it "The Power Line of Joy."
THE POWER LINE OF JOY
a method for feeling goodness
You first must realize that joy, happiness, curiosity, fulfillment, love, ecstasy, expansion, excitement, and all positive emotions live within you. The same goes for negative emotions.
They all have a permanent home in your inner world. A dedicated memory slot. They are always here in your experience. Yes, even now.
This is so logical. How can you desire joy without having first experienced it? We have all already experienced the feelings we so desperately seek. They are stored in our memories & our heart. That is how we know to desire it.
Why is it that when we're out and about, we sometimes smell something that reminds us of a joyous time in our lives and makes us feel good? Was it the smell that made us feel good? Was it the memory? Or was it more simple than that?
The Power Lines (Visualized)
What we experience most of the time is the "dust layer." This is where all the dust, debris, and garbage collection of our experience happens. And this is what we often experience as negative emotions like unease or anxiety.
Looking at the image on the right, you'll see a golden line labelled "Joy" – let's notice that the joy layer is behind the dust layer.
This joy, love, happiness, whatever layer is always behind the dust layer. It is always there. It doesn't need to be evoked. It is constantly running beyond the dust layer.
The problem is that we experience the dust layer so much that we overlook the joy layer.
Why is this a problem? Because when we do feel joy, since we've been so deprived, we associate that feeling with the outer circumstance. In reality, all that has happened is that your dust layer has momentarily been cleared, and the joy naturally comes forth.
For example, you receive a thoughtful letter from a friend, and you notice a good feeling arising within you. Was it the letter that was the cause of the good feeling? Or did the letter momentarily clear the debris allowing your joy to shine naturally?
This is worth repeating.
It is not the outside circumstance that causes your joy. It does not somehow magically evoke those feelings in you. All that outside circumstance does is momentarily bypass the dust layer. It's a process of subtraction.
That event momentarily clears that layer of dust.
So let me reiterate:
- We experience a layer of emotions & experience called "The Dust Layer" most of the time.
- Sometimes, specific experiences clear this dust layer, allowing "The Joy Layer" to shine.
This joy layer is silently humming in the background, just waiting for its chance to see the light of your awareness once again.
But what should I DO?
If the goal is unconditional access to the joy layer, we should probably ensure that the dust layer becomes non-existent.
Access to pure joy comes from the removal of this dust layer.
So how do we do that?
Well, by cleaning it yourself!
Remember, we mainly used to rely on outside experience to clean the dust layer FOR us. This time, we want to take matters into our own hands and clean it all OURSELVES.
The Cleaning Process?
- Stop what you're doing – you need to escape from the outside world for a moment.
- Go somewhere quiet
- Sit down, close your eyes and steady your breathing (5.5 seconds in and out) for 10 breaths.
- Now completely freeze your body, do not move.
BEGIN ENTRY INTO THE DUST LAYER
- We want to get in touch with our current experience. So take this time to note what is happening in your body silently. What feelings are arising? What thoughts? What sensations? Start getting the lay of the land.
- We now want to become curious about the most thorny object in our experience. You'll usually be able to tell what that is because it'll be a distracting feeling, thought, or sensation in the body. Pick the most distracting.
- Start getting clear about this thorny object. Ask questions like: "Hmm. I wonder what this is? What is this like? What is this thing all about? How is this thing affecting me? Is it okay for me to feel/think this?". Inquire into it, and be curious about it.
- After inquiring into this thorny object, you'll notice that the feeling begins to lose its lustre. This is evidence that you've penetrated the dust layer.
- Feel free to repeat steps 1-4 with any other feeling, thought or sensation.
- Take 10 breaths (4 seconds in, 8 seconds out) and imagine breathing those thoughts, feelings, and sensations out of your body.
- Cleaning complete.
BRING AWARENESS TO THE POWER LINE OF JOY
At this point, we've cleaned the dust body, but the feeling of joy, love, or happiness may not be immediately available. This is okay. Eventually, the association will be made, and every time you internally clean, you'll get there immediately.
Let's keep going...
- We need to use our internal feeling sense to help bring the power line to the forefront.
- Firstly, set the intention to find this feeling (joy, love, fulfillment, whatever). We already know that it's in here somewhere. We may not know where just yet. This intention acts like a magnet for the power line, drawing you and it closer together.
- Be aware of judgemental & critical thoughts at this time. Your inner critic doesn't want you to break the status quo and will most likely sabotage you. If you notice thoughts like "You're stupid for doing this.", use the cleaning process with it, then come back.
- Start to feel. The feeling of joy may not feel very strong. It'll be like a whisper. Bring that feeling into your conscious awareness – pay attention to it. The more you pay attention, the stronger it becomes. If you beckon it, it will come. Just know it's there, and let it come to you. Allow it. You deserve it.
- If you still have issues, a shortcut is to ask yourself, "When was there a time that I felt X emotion?". Let the memory come up with the feeling. Incubate the feeling and let go of the memory.
- Once you've gotten a hold of the emotion (either through steps 4 or 5), keep it in place.
- Hold this feeling in your experience and bathe in it.
At first, the emotion you want to experience will not be very strong or last very long.
Because our dust layer becomes cluttered once again. But! You now have a process for cleaning it up. And over time, the dust layer will stay cleaner for longer until it just dissolves.
A Joy-Infused Life
With this process mastered, we eventually can collapse some of the steps and bring ourselves back to joy in seconds. All it takes is practice and a willingness to clean up our inner experience.
When we feel good, we do the things that we want to do. We no longer NEED to do or be anything to feel something. We already have all that we need.
When we become detached from activities, substances, and relationships, there is this tendency for all of them to work out in our favour. It's almost like not needing a specific outcome makes it more likely to happen.
So we not only get what we want, but we feel good throughout the whole process.
The Sun and Its Shadow
We've all spent our lives chasing our shadows. But with every step we take, the shadow always seems to be one step ahead. We chase and chase until finally...
We stop. And turn around. And WOW! What do we see?
So we begin to walk towards the sun. And guess who's following?
Stop looking outside. Quit it. Look towards the sun that is burning bright within you. Walk towards that. And just like a moth to a flame, you too can have all you wish.