In Meditation we go to a space beyond feelings. When we enter that space, the world of emotions calms more and more down, and we are in touch with a layer inside of us, which is not disturbed by the ripples of our emotions. And this space is very beautiful. And naturally we want more of it. And this is exactly the place, where it is very easy for a big misunderstanding to come in.
This inner peace which we can find in our very centre, is not connected with feelings. It is not against feelings, neither does it cling to them. It actually comes, when we have met our feelings, and we moved on, deeper inside. In every day life, we move through the world with our defences around us. They protect us from too much sensory input, insensitivity or even aggressive energies around us. Naturally we do not want to feel all this. We also protect us from feeling aggression, or pain, or fear coming from inside of us, as this might make it more difficult to work, or relate with partners, friends or colleagues. And then we wonder, why it is so difficult to find this inner peace, which we know already. And the reason lies in our rejecting our feelings.
It is not that our feelings are so important, or are the absolute truth, not at all. Feelings are just feelings, they are totally subjective. And they can be very mistaken, but we have them. And when we reject something which we have, we create an inner conflict, tension. And the peace which we long for is far away.
It is an art to grasp this situation fully. We need to say yes to the way how we feel in a certain moment, and know at the same time, that these are just our subjective feelings. When I am angry, I am angry, it is my feeling, my reality in this moment. When I feel this anger, and I say yes to the fact that this is how I feel right now, the feelings move on, the anger dissolves, and I get more peaceful. But not because I rejected the anger, or because I declared my anger the truth. I got peaceful, because I accepted my feeling angry. I accepted, that right now this is my subjective truth. This is a statement about me, not about the world. The world of feelings is so subjective, and fleeting, but we have feelings all the time. Whenever we say yes to the feelings which we have, the gates to our centre open.
But mostly this is not what we live. We choose, we cling to certain feelings, and reject others. This is the place where our personalities, our egos come in. We want to have certain feelings, like joy, happiness, pleasure, relaxation or aliveness. And we do not want to have other feelings like sadness, fear, anger, vulnerability or helplessness. We live in an ongoing stream of choosing, of clinging and rejecting. We do this for others, and for ourselves. We sacrifice the reality of this moment for how we think we should or should not feel, for how we want or do not want to be. And in this way we maintain the inner separation, we disconnect from our core. We create worlds of secondary feelings, struggles, effort, in order to avoid our deeper feelings, the primary feelings. They make us feel vulnerable, and make us realise our helplessness in many situations. But when we meet these deeper feelings, inner peace, inner strength come on their own accord.
For our core, our feelings are not so relevant, but for reaching there they are very important. Virginia Satir compared feelings with a thermometer. It tells you the temperature, it says something about the reality in this moment, and how to respond.
This is especially relevant in our relationships and in our contact with our body and past. Old wounds come up in life, especially in relationships. When we reject the feelings connected with those old wounds, we will try to make people behave in such a way, so our wounds do not get touched. And we end up in one big never-ending struggle. Our ego wants to look good, and have things under control, this is the reason why it is more difficult to accept sadness, or anger, or helplessness, feelings which are often looked at as “negative”.
The secret of being in contact with our core, of feeling inner peace lies in perceiving the feelings which we have, without identifying with them. When they they are accepted, they move on. Buddha sits so peacefully not because he controls his feelings, he sits so peacefully because he is at ease with all feelings. He does not fight with any feelings, he does not cling to any feelings, and they do not disturb him. The feelings come and go like white clouds on a blue sky. And the sky remains untouched.