Chapter 9: Choosing One’s Attitude
An excerpt from You Have Chosen to Remember: A Journey of Self-Awareness, Peace of Mind and Joy by James Blanchard Cisneros.
Little by little, you hear people changing the way they talk. More and more, you hear people saying “everything happens for a reason.” I remember, not so long ago, when most people just believed that “shit happens.” They were basically saying that good or bad things happen and that’s the way it is – and you just have to deal with it. Now we are in a time when I hear a lot of people saying to one another “everything happens for a reason.” This means that good or bad stuff will happen but there is a higher purpose for why it happened and you should be patient and understanding. In the end, something good will come from the experience.
In order to encourage the people who are saying that everything happens for a reason to take it to the next level of evolution, I would like to offer the view that “everything happens for your own good.” This means that everything that is happening to you now can be used for your development and growth now. You don’t have to wait for the future to be grateful for what is happening to you now. If properly perceived, every moment, regardless of its physical manifestation, is a gift you have offered yourself.
My friend, I understand that you might look back at your life, and tell yourself that this cannot be so. If you believe this to be the case, I have no interest in changing your mind about how you wish to carry your past. I have no interest, not because I do not care, but because I have an absolute respect for how you choose to carry your past and view your reality. The only thing that I do ask is for you to consider the possibility. It is in considering this possibility that you allow yourself to expand and develop. The acceptance of the possibility is not as important to me as your sincere consideration of it.
You may not yet believe that everything happens for your own good, because you still believe that sometimes growth comes through pain and struggle. You hear about pain and struggle, and negative connotations immediately come to mind. Yet you believe that this is what works for you, that this is what helps you get to the “next level.” You may criticize yourself, believing that this is the best way to get yourself motivated and moving.
We can grow through pain or joy, that choice is ours to make. But only the insane would prefer to learn through pain, rather than through joy. Yet, even in insane behavior, there is hope. For the more time we spend in insanity, the less we want to remain there. As we would not want to remain in a pool for an extended period of time because it is not our natural environment, neither would we want to remain in insanity. Growth through pain and struggle is insane, yet it is only because of our choice to grow through pain and struggle that we can recognize and realize this insanity. It is because of this that even insane behavior is a great gift we offer ourselves.
Thus, my friend, grow through pain and struggle if you still wish to, but understand that in doing so, you are coming closer to the realization that this is not how you want to grow. It is because of this that your perceived pain and struggle are great gifts and happen for your own good.
When properly perceived, all moments are opportunities to remember the presence of love. When things seem to be going against us, they are occurring in order to allow us to see and experience our personal blocks to the awareness of love’s presence. The presence of love is available to us in every moment. Gratitude and joy are the only sane responses to the presence of love. If gratitude and joy are not our immediate responses to the moment, we are misperceiving reality. The unconscious misperception of reality produces confusion and stress. Any confusion and stress that we are experiencing are, in and of themselves, gifts because they make us aware of our personal blocks to the awareness of love. The moments when we experience stress and confusion can actually be used as opportunities to find and define our unconscious blocks. In finding and defining these blocks, we begin the undoing process. In the undoing process, we question why it is that we are choosing to act and or react in a manner that is causing us stress and confusion. Sooner or later, we acknowledge to ourselves that we do not want to act or react in a manner that causes us stress and confusion. By acknowledging behaviors we don’t want to experience, we come to understand and recognize that there is another way, a more sane and loving way to experience the moment. We can then begin acting and reacting in this more loving manner and subsequently experience more love and joy in our lives. We can then experience greater peace in our lives. There will be moments when we forget and react and act with confusion and stress, but these occasions will slowly diminish and become a smaller part of our days. As they become a smaller part of our days, they also become a smaller part of our lives. The moments when awareness of the presence of love is experienced increases, filling a larger part of our days. Gratitude and joy become natural responses to having such daily awarenesses. The same moments in which we previously experienced stress and confusion, we now experience the presence of love, and we can simply smile at our past misperceptions. Not only can we smile, but we can also experience gratitude for them. We will know that it was only because we got tired of what they offered that we ever questioned their existence in our lives. And again, we can look back into our past and this time see every misperception as the true gift that it was. Once more, we can smile and be thankful in acknowledging the perfection of each moment in our lives. In this, we can find great peace, for we can understand that in all future moments, we will also have the opportunity to acknowledge the presence of love and be thankful for its perfection.
This material can be found in the book - You Have Chosen to Remember: A Journey of Self-Awareness, Peace of Mind and Joy.
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