The Power of Choice
“Dont let them take your power”, says my wife to a preschooler who is crying and complaining about being mistreated by another child. When I heard her give this child this advice I wondered what she meant. Later I asked her about it and she explained that it meant that we can choose whether or not we will let someone or some ‘thing’ control how we feel. Power in this sense is about how one feels. The instruction is to choose to not let something external control the internal. The ability to manage how we feel is very significant. This power of choice is available to us all if we can just wake up and exercise it. In everyday life, we are to take control of choice away from the ego aspect of self. This is automatic when we return our identity to the true self or higher self.
Awakening we begin to realize how we create our moment to moment destiny by what we choose. In self awareness we can examine our intentions and question whether they are aligned with the path of virtue or mired in ego. How significant is it that we take back our power? The very quality of our lives depend upon this awakened choosing.
In this present moment as you read this, there are people lying in a hospital beds around the world suffering from self inflicted diseases caused by inappropriate lifestyles and coping with stress. There are others right this very minute standing behind bars in a jail or prison who can only blame themselves for the path that lead to their incarceration.
The Tao cultivator is understands that we each are managers of our destiny and take great care in the directing of our life path. The direction taken is a matter of choice. Choice can either be assumed by the ignorant mind of ego, or it can be unified by the wisdom mind of the true self.
Why do we not always chose the path of joy, fulfillment and abundance? Why would anyone agree to allowing themselves make stupid mistakes? And one of the best questions of all, why do smart people make such ignorant mistakes? Why do people create such suffering for themselves? The answer is simple. People create a life of suffering because they are lost in distraction, and ignorance is all that they know. This not something new and one can quickly look around and find all sorts of ancient teachings that point to different paths of wisdom. The Tao Te Ching is such a path. It is a collection of wisdoms that have had over 4000 to 5000 years to be refined. It is guaranteed that if you follow these teaching with spirit intended you will transform your life in a profound and positive way. It is as simple as that. Or perhaps we might say, it is as hard as that. Reading and conceptualizing this wisdom is the easy part. Staying present and choosing wisdom over ignorance is the hard part. The longer you have become to be conditioned in the old path, the harder it is and the more practice it requires to move above, or to transcend, the distracted path of ego.
So this is your wake up call. By that, it is meant that you should wake up, be present, seek the wisdom and choose. You must set your intention in alignment with the wisdom mind, the true self. It takes practice. It takes meditation and being mindful. You must learn to pay attention in those critical moment what you choose and why. As you face those forks in the road of life, in each scenario, you can seek what the wisdom of the Tao tells you and then you choose. When you practice this consistently,over and over, the awakening continues and the spiritual self will blossom into clarity. Not only will you realize and begin to understand where you made mistakes and what the correct step to choose is, you will also begin to understand why other people do what they do. As you see ego and ignorance at work in other people, this insight will provide the ability to remain humble and choose compassion for them rather than be arrogant and vengeful. In many cases, your interactions with others becomes harmonious and they will begin to seek out the wisdom that you are sharing. By your example, others may realize that there is a higher path to follow.
It all comes from that moment of choice. Where choice is unified with source and virtue is your compass. This mystic virtue, where the physical domain is balanced with the spirit, is the domain of miracles. But… you must choose it.