In Zen Mastery, one’s ultimate goal is total suicide. Whether we recognize it consciously or not, our goals have the same motive. Somewhere beneath the surface satisfaction of appearing good enough, feeling accepted and gaining something more, we are desperately searching for nothing.
Our real efforts in obsessive accumulation is it to escape the minds excessive trap of more is better; deep down we have a knowing that we are not our minds. However; instead of ever seeing through its game, we buy into it. We think that maybe if we give it everything it needs, somewhere, somehow it will stop asking. The problem is that this tricky son of a bitch doesn’t have a limit, more is more and enough is never enough.
When we buy into the idea that who we are is our mind, we essentially are tricked by the ultimate illusionist. In order to ever to be truly free we have to learn to see through the enchanting charm of our mind, somewhat like seeing through the pseudo compliments of a sweet-talker. The only way I know to do this is by telling the truth on all levels; thus, exposing this illusionist’s tricks to the public for everyone to see.
Using Radical Honesty To Kill “Yourself”
As you may have guessed by now, when I mention suicide I am not talking about putting an end to your physical experience. What I am talking about is putting an end to the false self-image you have until now, called “yourself”. When we think we are who our mind is, telling the truth can feel a lot like suicide. In fact, you may very well say that actual suicide is the same battle of mind vs. being. In the cases of physical death; actual suicide, the mind won. You may recall upon your own experiences of wanting to die, who was the tricky son of a bitch that tricked you into those thoughts? And better yet, what was he/she so desperately trying to protect? I’d be willing to bet the thing your mind was most dying to protect was your identity. This can only come about when the being has become so entrenched by the mind that it believes it is its identity.
By telliing the truth we can use honesty to free ourselves from the jail of our minds. The only way to gain control of our mind is to expose it’s whole show. Telling the truth is for the mind, revealing the secrets of a magician. It’s when we keep our fantasies, emotions, judgements and the other games the mind play inside, that we buy into them and they gain power. According to Brad Blanton, author of Radical Honesty, we learn to expression of the truth in three levels to master our minds, free ourselves from its bullshit and discover our true self.
Levels of Telling The Truth
- Reveal the Facts: The first level of telling the truth is the scariest. It involves un-telling all of our lies. This means if you cheated on your girlfriend or boyfriend, you have to own up to it and tell them now. It is best to start where you are, if you’ve been lying and withholding to your boss at your current job, tell him how you were late and lied about it. Brad says “speak before you think”. Get it out and be authentic, then be awake enough and willing enough to learn from what you feel physically. In result, you will lose the mind and come to your senses. This always scares the shit out of people and this is how I know it must be done. The only reason it scares you is because you have become identified with your story so deeply that if someone finds you outs you’ll quickly after find out you’ve been lying to yourself too. The deepest fear in un-telling our lies for people is to lose their identity. When they lose their identity they open up doors to discovering that they truly have no idea what they’re doing with their lives because they have no idea who they really are. By sharing our secrets, we lose “ourselves” and in the process rediscover our true self. To get over this fear it is as simple as learning to love the thrill of the uncertainty that comes with exposing ourselves, like learning to scare yourself for fun the way we do on roller coasters. By sharing our deep secrets we surrender the false roles we played to feel accepted by others. In this way, you are affirming that your story isn’t you, that your true self is not only good enough but that are larger than whatever identity you’ll create. If you can’t do this, you’ll always feel the imprisonment that comes along with caring what the world thinks of you, so much so that you will forever be a servant of your own self-judgmental asshole of an ego.
- Express Current Thoughts and Feelings: The second level of telling the truth is to start sharing the emotional truth and the truth of our judgements. This too seems like taboo to our modern society. We have been taught to “act nice” our entire lives. The problem is by being force fed this information we never truly learned to digest emotion. Instead, we are terrified of our emotions, so much so that we keep them to ourselves to he point of suicide and closet drinking problems. We are so terrified that if we express our real emotions that we will self-destruct and kill someone that we decided to suppress nearly every authentic emotion. In a world addicted to the smile face emoji, even our love and positive emotions has inauthentic, hence the collective auto-responders you’ll find at nearly every greeting. “How are you?!” “I’m good, how are you?” has become as automatic and as fake as our voice mails. When we express our emotions, the benefit is an even deeper level of exposing the secretive judgmental mind, which takes away its power. This is some hard work because each moment we are feeling due to the never ending analysis of our survival mind. Most of our programmed reactions to uncomfortable situations is to get out fast. When we learn to express our emotions instead what happens is we discover the treasure we’ve all been searching for; intimacy. The experience of real intimacy is more precious than any fake love you’ll gain by manipulation. Restless in love anyone? You will always feel restless and unfulfilled in love as long as you keep avoiding intimacy. When we play role — be it mr. nice guy or mrs. innocent — we never truly receive love. All love received is manipulated love that only goes to the role you wear, never the being beneath it. When we get so caught up in the appearance of being successful, rather than actually being an authentic person, we lose all contact with our “audience” except through our roles. In other words, we get lost in trying to please others so much in order to succeed that we lose touch with who we are and miss out on any “success” anyway. There’s risk in being honest about our judgements and emotions. We fear that if were honest we won’t be loved, that may be partially true. Honesty doesn’t always bring real love, however it is absolutely essential to it. The problem is we trick ourselves into believing that love by manipulation is good enough, but it’s just not quite enough, and the answer is to keep manipulating more and more. If we are to ever truly receive love we have to be brave enough to tell the truth about our emotions and judgements. Otherwise any love received will be poisoned by the false self image. When practicing expressing yourself the point isn’t to make your emotions and judgements the truth. We often express ourselves as a way of winning love and approval. We get mad and believe in our anger as if we are right instead of simply expressing our anger. To express successfully is to not buy into your emotions or justments, but befriend them. With enough expresion of your emotions and judements you wll learn that on theother side of all hate is love. When practicing this stage of honest expression it’s good to have a discussion with others about it. Tell them the purpose of what you’re doing and explain what it is. Also, you know you’ve expressed fully when hate and resentment turn back to love and appreciation.
- Giving Up Your Story: The final stage of radical honesty is to see then express that your life story is bullshit. We like to really believe our life stories, they give us meaning because we haven’t learned how to create meaning. We like feeling a victim to our story and lives, it takes much less responsibility than to take ownership of our creation. When you go through the stages of un-telling your lies and expressing your self in whole you start to have an awakening that this entire game we call life s a big illusion. You hear that often, but have you experienced it? We spend our lives “selling” others on this idea of who we are; smart, poor, rich, creative, doctors, musicians, writers, nice, fearless, etc. However,you don’t really know who you are, that’s why you create the story, to cover up the pain one’s ego must face when it finds out it’s nobody important. When you confess your own disillusionment with the beliefs you have about “who you are” along with the intense, emotionally attached sales pitches to convince yourself and others you begin finding your center. This is the suicide that leads to finding yourself. By killing your false self, you find your true self; the one who created the false self. At first you can feel embarrassed, you might even feel a sense of pointlessness to living. Some really clever people will even become identified with this new identity that is “someone who confesses their falseness”. To demythologize your self is a process and is started by bragging about your false modesty. We have to go through our vanity and the suffering of it to understand that roles do not serve us. We have to show off then be embarrassed by us showing off to actually learn anything authentically; otherwise we force existence and identify by manipulation. Eventually, as we learn the process of creating and destroying; who we are, becomes more of a description centered in the now, and much less about our life stories. The way to do this is to see where your own focus and perception has been how to decided to create yourself. Then, share that with others involved with your life story. You admit that you are lost in this moment and faking your precious self-image. This is a shift from actually believing you are smart and have life figured out to knowing that you are ultimately ignorant, and that ignorance is beautiful when you are able to acknowledge it. In conclusion, you become whole. You are the creator; of both your successes and failures, there is no one to blame anymore, there is only true gratitude to feel, and wisdom to experience.
The Health Benefits of Suicide
Stress from lying and withholding is the greatest killer to humanity. There is no short list for the health benefits of honesty. For contrast, imagine the pain you feel when you keep a secret. You feel completely disconnected, your stomach turns when you think of it, your throat closes and you sweat being around the person you’ve lied to, stole from or are withholding emotions from. You’re entire physiology nearly shuts down during the experience of withholding. Largely because in your secretive mind, you are your lie, you are the horrible person in the story tied to your secret. When we know we are larger than our lies, we come to life. We feel blood circulating in your bodies, excitement trickling through our nerves, breathe filing our lungs, all while a peaceful serenity sits warmly in our heart. When we rise above the fear of withholding, we fear nothing and live for everything. Telling the truth just might be the ultimate co-factor for health, as it opens the gates to intimacy and appreciation.
Who Do You Think YOU Are?
For a few last words, I’m curious…Who do you think you are? If I told you that you were a nobody, does that make you upset? If so, can I ask, who is the one getting upset? I doubt it’s your real self. The real self is detached from the goals, projects and evaluations of he mid and is not identified with any experience; good or bad, it is simply a silent observer. With enough practice and willingness to see beyond your stories and evaluations you will find this part of you.
Who YOU Are
What you are reading are letters made of digitalized number sequences on a computer that is essentially a box of light and energy. Who you are, is the one doing the reading. The being looking at the screen, the one looking for the being in your mind looking the screen, that is you. You are that. Surrender your story, your pains and victories, your hopes and dreams, your worries and excitements to this essence of existence. To your mind this feels like suicide, because it is. Your mind will die, with all of it’s excessiveness. However, who you are is far more unique than your mind will ever try to manipulate you to be.