The Tao says that the shortest route to enlightenment is non-judgment. This phrase has churned in my psyche since I first read it about 25 years ago. The 2016 U.S. Presidential election results have reminded me again of this wisdom.
One thing that hit me during this election is the universality of opinions and how popular perceptions of reality are made up of opinions and fantasies. Everyone has an opinion. Actually everyone has many opinions, which are based on (and fervently defended by) a personal selection of facts, fantasies, and ideologies that we believe are ‘the truth’. I already knew this, but witnessing the emotional intensity that fueled the bubbling sea of opinions made me realize that I really don’t want to participate in this arena.
Of course, I have my own views. I believe that it is because we were so fixated on our own view of the ‘truth’ that we failed to notice the extent of the anger and disenfranchisement of Americans who feel abandoned and betrayed by the system that supports the few at the expense of the rest. The ‘surprise and shock’ is because we couldn’t see beyond our own interpretations of how we thought things ‘are’ and ‘should be.’
But I must stop my personal opinion there and ask, ‘Where are my opinions leading me?’ I just join the vast pool of mass opinions, which are animated by needs, desires, hopes, dreams, and wishful thinking that for the most part paint many superficial and distorted pictures of reality. Fortunately, there is another choice — observation and neutrality. So I have decided to practice being a witness, observing with non-judgment. If I am able to sustain this commitment, perhaps it will lead to enlightenment, or perhaps it won’t. The truth is that I do not know, but it feels appropriate to do what I can to extricate myself from the opinion poll mentality of the collective consciousness. Perhaps under the sheath of chaotic emotions and endless mental chatter, we can discover a more meaningful, inclusive, and peaceful way to live together according to the values that we all share.
Taurus Full Moon – November 14
5:52 AM PST, 13:52 GMT
The Taurus Full Moon illuminates the interaction between what we see (Taurus the Earth) and what we don’t see (the subconscious as expressed by the emotional undercurrents of Scorpio. The light of the Full Moon gives us a chance to see things in ‘a new light.’ If we choose to see the complementarily of polarities, we can use the best of both to achieve integration and synthesis.
This Taurus-Scorpio Full Moon is a Super Moon (the third in a row) where the Moon is at its closest approach to the Earth. Some say it will be the brightest Full Moon in 60 years. Super Moons intensify their impact on the tides, our psyches, and moods. We can use this cosmic light to expand our perception of (1) gain and loss, (2) win or lose, and (3) death and rebirth. We can clarify what matters most to us, and what we need to do to participate in creating the reality in which we wish to live.
Polarities actually offer us 3 choices — the two extremes and a synthesis. Synthesis is possible when the two polarities operate at their higher expressions and give us the best they have to offer. We reach a synthesis through neutrality, non-judgment, non-confrontation, and non-condemnation of what we perceive as the opposing force.
Yogi Bhajan has directed us to practice a kriya or meditation for 40 days to break a habit. Honestly, it may take some time to work up to a consistent 40 day non-judgment program. How about starting out with 40 minutes of neutral in the early hours of the morning when our opinions are still dormant in sleep mode? Realistically, the road to non-judgment is an on-going process of gradual, but deeply meaningful and radical, transformation.
The complete non-judgment practice has three interactive parts —
(1) Observe/be the witness to both your inner reality and what is happening in the world.
to others without responding with your own opinion.
When you can remain neutral in your mind (not just manage to keep quiet), you have made serious progress.
(3) Feel the sensations in your body to monitor how you are processing your practice. Whatever arises, be with that because whatever we feel is how our energy is being expressed at that moment. The more we (1) feel, (2) allow, (3) accept, (4) embrace, and (5) embody our vital energy, the more aliveness we experience and the more authentic and real we become. As we feel deeply, we get in touch with how our emotional reality is being manipulated (or not) by our own mind, others’ views, and mass opinion. We must dive under our mental chaos and emotional turmoil to connect to our own truth.
We are being given a great opportunity to practice paying attention and staying alert instead of falling back asleep and hoping for the best. In so many ways, the 2016 U.S. Presidential election is a wake-up call. We get another chance to observe how our projections are reflected in our political leaders, who we not only vote for, but animate with our inner energetic reality. Recognizing ourselves as co-creators is both a sobering and empowering experience.
The Power of Neutral
I recommend using my book The Power of Neutral to guide your ‘enlightenment through non-judgment’ process.