Peeling Back Your Onion – Day 137 of 365 Days to a Better You

Look beneath the surface; let not the several quality of a thing nor its worth escape thee.

~Marcus Aurelius

You and I are far more than this momentary personality having these temporal experiences. Yet, we live much of our lives on a surface level, doing surface things and having surface thoughts. It’s quite easy to get swept away by the surface currents and lose your ability probe the depths of your being.

An onion is a great metaphor for the complexity embodied by a human being. An onion is not really a solid mass. It’s a myriad of thin layers packed tightly together in a ball. As you peel away each layer, a new, fresher layer is revealed. It takes some doing to literally peel all the layers away one-by-one to reach the core. It takes a lifetime, even with conscious action, to peel away all the layers of you.

This, I would argue, is one of the central reasons you’re here. You are a puzzle of your own making engaged in the challenge of solving yourself. That can only be done by going within. The outside world will distract you, but it will not guide you on this journey. Descriptions of the path by others can help you map your the terrain, but you alone hold the key to the core of you.

Meditation, prayer, energy work, hypnosis, counseling; there are many modalities you can use to peel the layers and get to what’s real. The problem isn’t that you lack tools, it’s only that you’ve lost focus.

Today I’m sending a wake up call to you and to myself. Let’s not get so focused on the surface that we forget to peel back our onions.

Thank you so much for reading, sharing, and supporting this blog! Have a fantastic day!

Ray

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Be Still and Know – Day 117 of 365 Days to a Better You

What can you know? How can you truly know anything?

You’re born into this world like a blank slate and at first all you know is what the people around you tell you. That’s based on a combination of experience and what other people have told them.

You don’t know if they’re sages or idiots. Yet, what they know begins to form what you know. As you get older, you encounter friends who have their own vision of what there is to know that they got it the same way.

Eventually, you begin to consume spiritual traditions, education and media and they impart what the wider culture believes it knows. Even the best-read religious teacher or pHD, without further reflection, is only teaching you to know what others have taught him or her to know.

Even the best science, while many consider it the standard for rational unbiased inquiry, often results in the scientists finding what he set out to find.

What can you really know and how can you really know it?

I’m not saying that you don’t listen to our parents, friends, science, the media, or religious teachings. I’m saying that you must understand that each of them is filled with the biases of your culture, the biases of your five senses, and the biases of a hundred generations before you and what they thought they know.

Power hack: All the ways of knowing listed above have one thing in common. They all encourage you to look outside. There is a way to know, but it come by looking within. Why? Whatever the ultimate reality of all you see around you is, you are of it. That means you’re connected to the rest of it and can know whatever it knows.

There is a knowingness that pervades all that is. That nine months you were in your mother’s womb neither you nor your mother controlled that process. The Universe knew how to birth you. How does the bee know to pollinate the flower? How does the cloud know to rain?

There is a knowingness that pervades all that is. To hear it, you simply need to be still, listen, and know. Turn off the outside noise and the century’s old opinions. Look for guidance within the part of you that is connected to the knowingness that guides the bee and the cloud. It can guide you too.

For some of you this might sound a little woo-woo. That’s OK. You’ve been biased toward a world that tells you the answers are out there when they are really in you. Be still, listen, and I promise you will know.

Here are five ways to access that knowing within.

  1. Meditation
  2. Contemplative prayer
  3. Connect with nature
  4. Turning off all the noise, sitting, and just listening.
  5. Asking questions out loud.

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Ray

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