01 October 2006

We Can Be Ourselves

When we do not expect anything we can be ourselves.
That is our way. To live fully in each moment of Time.
This practice continues Forever.

- Shunryu Suzuki Roshi, Not Always So

Not expecting anything. Does this mean that we don't try? That we give up? That we don't care? That we won't plan?

No, I think that Suzuki was simply stating a deeper fact. We can do our work, and step back (the Tao te Ching says something similar somewhere in its short pages).

We can feed the hungry without expecting that we will feed the world. We can vote for a politican without expecting s/he will change anything. We can sit without expecting enlightenment. We can go to bed without expecting to sleep. We can plan though we have no expectation that things will turn out just as we might wish.

Without expectations we are free to react just to what actually happens rather than plan for a million scenarios that may never happen. Though we might enjoy the outcome, we do not expect anything. And by not expecting anything, we can simply be ourselves. If something good happens, we can celebrate, if something bad happens we can mourn. But inbetween we do not need to spend energy, thought or karma on expectations.

Expectations make us live in the future, failure to live up to expectations make us live in the past. Not having expectations makes us live here. Now. Today. This moment.

This is a wonderful freedom.

Namaste.


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4 comments:

The TechnoBabe said...

Exactly. No expectations. That way each day is an adventure.

Anonymous said...

No expectations. Unless we do, then it is so until is isn't again.. By aspiring to "no expectations" we create a dichotomy. :-) Derek

Anonymous said...

No expectations. Unless we do, then it is so until is isn't again.. By aspiring to "no expectations" we create a dichotomy. :-) Derek

Anonymous said...

Wow - this really says it all - kind of like the theme of a book I am reading by Sakyong Mipham
Thanks!