Thoughts – Hold on Loosely

Are my thoughts a habit of mind that I acquired as I grew up?  Were they planted by my family . . . cultivated and nurtured by my peers, experience and education?  Or are they “closer to being instincts” as Robert Wright proposes in his book Why Buddhism Is True?  A classic conundrum – nature vs. nurture.

Wherever they’re born, it’s easy to fall into the trap of believing I am my thoughts.  I am not.

“A thought is harmless unless we believe it.  It’s not our thoughts, but our attachment to our thoughts that cause suffering.  Attaching to a thought means believing that it’s true, without inquiring.  A belief is a thought that we’ve been attaching to.” – Byron Katie

All those stories I tell myself and others about who I am, what I know, are just that – stories.  Believing my own stories, that drama; the spectacle – creates suffering.  Letting go, releasing my expectation that a certain something must happen, brings a relaxed sense of calm.

Holding tight to the story – attaching to it as Byron Katie says; brings resistance – and ultimately suffering.

I have a choice.  Calm, relaxed awareness – or resistance and suffering.  What will I choose today?

♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

“To me the ego is the habitual and compulsive thought processes that go through everybody’s mind continuously.  External things like possessions or memories or failures or successes or achievements.  Your personal history.” – Eckhart Tolle

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