Am I A Good Person? Am I Doing The Right Thing? Should I Be Proud Or Ashamed?
We live in a world that is very, very concerned with doing the right thing, achieving success and being a ‘good’ human being. This is all well and good but the problem with this paradigm is that all of these things are entirely subjective. One hundred years ago, the things people would commend you for today may have made you a disgrace at that time and vice versa! Trace back another hundred years and you will find another set of entirely different viewpoints. So, are our current perspectives and attitudes a true representation of what is correct or true? How can they be? They’ll have changed again within 50 years! You must be very careful not to limit yourself to the beliefs of your current time or even your particular culture.
In reality, nothing is 100% true.
Every idea that exists is mind-made and if you allow yourself to be controlled by these standards, you are taking your own freedom and throwing it right out the window.
Freedom is choice
If you decide that you are going to conform to the majority of opinions and disregard your true internal psychological and physiological make-up, you are giving your outer world full control over yourself and giving up every ounce of control you have. So rather than question whether you are doing the ‘right’ thing or being good (if that even means anything), maybe you should start to question whether you are living authentically or not. If the ‘right’ thing is only done because you’ve been conditioned by society to do it, then you are the robot or cog in a machine and the world is controlling your behaviour and replacing your inner passion and fire in your belly.
You can’t be truly happy unless you are living authentically
This can be applied to anything – From career to relationships to courses of action. For some people, the ‘right’ thing to do is spend their life making vast amounts of money whilst for others it may be to give up everything and take risks in foreign countries as a jobless experience seeker. For some people, a serious and logical approach should be taken whilst for others, a light-hearted and casual approach will always move them forward more effectively. It is always a case of listening and being in touch with yourself and not allowing external influences to affect you. You can never achieve happiness and satisfaction by trying to do what you think you should do but you can achieve it instantly by doing what you feel drawn towards doing in the moment. It is a question of being your true self as opposed to trying to get to some imagined destination.
Achievements don’t equal happiness
Many people are also obsessed with seeking pride which is a huge blocker to inner fulfilment. If your main concern is to be respectable and proud of yourself, you are likely entirely overlooking the idea that for you to be happy, you should simply do what you want to do right now with no regard to whether this will fulfil your idea of what would make you proud of yourself or not! To rely on pride is to live anxiously anyway as that pride could be taken away from you in an instant if you fail to meet the external needs that the pride depends on one day. You also only need to look at some of the most wealthy people in the world who are deeply miserable to realise this, big accomplishments do absolutely nothing for your inner fulfilment. If living consciously and spontaneously results in respectable achievements, then this is a great bonus! But to view these achievements as the gateway to your true happiness and peace will always leave you empty in the long run.
There’s no such thing as reality, only your perception of reality.
Look at an animal for a good example of this. It is impossible for an animal to feel unworthy or ashamed of itself because it has no concept of what it ‘should’ or ‘should not’ do. The animal simply responds to its environment in the moment, does as it pleases and doesn’t crave for things that it doesn’t have. Humans create their own suffering by trying to live up to ideas that aren’t even ‘true’ – They can’t be true because nothing is true. The things that we believe are important are simply either drilled into us or a part of our culture. You could even fly to a different part of the world tomorrow and experience an entirely different set of values and beliefs! Does that mean ours are true and theirs are false? Or does it mean theirs are true and ours are false? Each individual culture will probably fight for their own unique set of beliefs and views because they have been so intensely conditioned to believe these viewpoints as being the only truth, but if you step back and look at the wider picture, you can immediately see that there really is no absolute truth and never will be. Removing these limitations from ourselves empower us to no end and allow us to view the world with no judgement or anxiety as opposed to being caught up in the programme and becoming one of the cogs in the machine that allow this paradigm to live on, unnoticed by all.
Interesting article Jake and thought provoking.
I like your blogs Really you are doing a great job keep it up