In order to grow spiritually in this world, you need something akin to xray vision in that you need to be able to see through the realities of this world. In the tao te ching, there is reference to “the 10,000 things” in many of the chapters. This essentially refers to what could be called realities. Realities come in several types: life, object, idea, and situation. Realities are essentially anything of this world that you can relate to. All realities are impermanent and subject to the 8 laws that govern the EW, or external world. The EW is essentially everything from the skin out. There is also the IW or internal world. The IW is everything “inside” the skin, including metaphysical reality or Truth. The IW is just as vast as the EW. Look for a post with a detailed explanation of these two and realities.
Being able to see through realities means being able to take note of a reality and yet avoid projecting meaning on it. This is incredibly difficult, yet easy. In the tao te thing, it says “if I have just a little sense, I will stick to the main road and my only fear will be of straying from it. Sticking to the main road is easy, but people love to be sidetracked.” so we can easily see through realities but we enjoy the EW and its trappings and we forget. Seeing through realities is not like running a marathon, it doesn’t require that kind of effort. Its a lot easier to do than that. But we love the distraction of the EW and realities. And if there was no distraction, there would be no power in avoiding it. There would be no alchemy. That’s why this world is such an opportunity. Its powerful.
We are often unable to notice the inherent meaninglessness of the EW or realities because we are so attached to them and enjoying the distraction. We often won’t look within or grow spiritually until things in life aren’t working out, until we are “unhappy,” until we are unsatisfied. In this way, a loss in life becomes a spiritual gain. (See an upcoming post on gain and loss.)
So if you are compelled to grow, you must be able to avoid projecting meaning into realities. This is easier to do when you are centered and grounded. This is easier to do when you are inwardly still and quiet. This is where meditation comes in. It helps to achieve inner stillness and quiet. “only still water reflects what’s in front of it.”
Remember, there is a “payoff” to spiritual growth. Its peace and joy. Its an inner font of powerful positive energy. This can be used to attract things into your life or develop yourself further. The rub is that when you are able to attract whatever you want, you have already stopped wanting things… The payoff for growth is a wonderful blessing in itself. You can share this with others, which becomes more of an interest than the things we used to value so much.