To suffer means to be constantly engaged in a futile drama of finding someone, others, to give you what you are not able to give to yourself: self-validation, self-understanding, and self-care with the freedom from self-judgment.
Universally, people go through life saying, “If I have this or that, I can be happy.” Once the desired person or situation is gained, there is only the briefest moment of satiation before another desire surfaces. Most people live within a background drone of “I want… I want… I want…” so I can be happy.
Most people respond to their lives as if something is out there to be had or experienced. Whereas in Vedanta, we say there is nothing more important than YOU, or the experience of you, because ‘you are your life.’ You are not your accomplishments. It is not what happens to you but how you respond to what comes your way that makes up your life.
No matter what we gain or attain in life – things, relationships, money, fame, and power – there is never a point where we are full and free from want. Spiritual seeking remains superficial until we realize that everything we have done so far has not worked to give us complete freedom from lack or want.
Nothing is more important in your life than discovering your being as the source of unconditional love, where everything about yourself is completely acceptable without change. Your nature is already whole and complete, including your perceptions of yourself and others, regardless if your views are right or wrong.
The key to unconditional love is recognition of the fact of your wholeness. In other words, nothing about you or others needs fixing. From this higher perspective of yourself, you can grow into ‘Vedanta’s vision of wholeness’ by giving unconditional love to yourself and others as a natural expression of your being. What a relief!
~Swamini Saralananda (edited by Julia Lorimer)