.It takes courage to let go. More often it seems that you let go out of exhaustion or desperation; you feel you have tried everything else—including positive thinking. Eckhart Tolle says that most of us are dragged, kicking and screaming, to enlightenment. I believe what he means here is that we are all in stillness anyway, but until we learn to be better at letting go, our journey to stillness can be rough. From this point of view, when things happen to you that you experience as loss and suffering, you are in fact being given an opportunity to connect with your stillness, and, in the end to be free of suffering. I hardly need to add that this is easier said than done. Nevertheless, the process of relaxing into stillness and exploring your pathway is designed precisely to help you on this journey to life, by responding to your suffering in a kinder and gentler way. (From Chapter 5 in Pathways to Stillness: Relax, Release, Renew).
,In a stillness or mindfulness approach to suffering and loss, in contrast to positive thinking, you do not split yourself between what you accept as "you" and what you do not want to accept. It is all you—the stillness and the area of suffering. For example, one of my Dutch colleagues works with people who suffer from depression. His clients first say "I am a depressed person". He tries to help them move to a different story: "I am a person who is experiencing depression". In this way there is less danger for the pain part of your story to take you over and run the show—the pain story gets placed into a larger story of who you are. At this point, there is the possibility that your ordinary wisdom can emerge and help you find meaning, peace, and stillness—even in your suffering. Notice that in this approach you are not trying to DO anything or get anywhere in particular— like find a positive answer to your problem. You are accepting and letting go, but not letting go into nothing, but into stillness—a comforting presence.
Pathways to Stillness Blog
My Blog is about how you can discover your own Pathways to Stillness, and why that is so valuable to your life. We will explore what it means to lose and regain our sense of “our story” in the midst and aftermath of loss—negative beliefs about aging and how we can make them more positive, and the many benefits reaped by creating a refuge of stillness within.