One of my favorite things to do to unwind from the day is binge watch. Netflix and other streaming services knew they were on to something! And me being who I am (weird) I find the most obscure things to binge watch. This week, I’ve been watching a Hindi Soap Opera about Siddhartha Gautama and his journey on becoming Buddha which means an enlightened being. The entire series is in subtitles and Heaven forbid you dozing off. You kind of miss out on what’s going on. The series starts with Siddhartha’s parents being King and Queen of the Shayka Republic. The king had 2 wives that were sisters. Though both wives desired to have children, one in particular was over whelmed with sadness because she was barren. One night, the King was going to lay with one of the sister wives. The one sister wife insisted the King lay with the wife thought to be barren. He obliged her and the barren wife was blessed by a CGI elephant carrying a lotus (no lie this was on the series) and 9 months later Siddhartha was born!
The series went on by showing how Siddhartha was a dominant figure in everything he set his mind to do but he was over burdened by questions. His father previously received a prophecy that Siddhartha would become an ascetic (basically a non-violent spiritual monk) and the King was having no parts of that. He tried to shield his son from all pain in the world like sickness, poverty, and death but Siddhartha found out about these things anyway. This lead him into the forest to seek a way to escape pain of the world. After seeking guru after guru, fasting, yoga, and almost killing himself; he ended up meditating under a tree where eventually he found enlightenment.
I found this story very intriguing. Besides loving all the costumes and the funny looking singing guy that would pop up ever so often to do a song and dance number, Bollywood staple, I actually found myself taking notes during the series. The series was dropping some pretty heavy stuff that made me reflect over my own life journey. One of the things he said that stuck with me is we lose focus and our minds have a tendency to go into different places at one time. We worry about our future, we cry over our past. What matters now is this very moment. Subsequently, we can then realize our true worth.
For a long time, I personally let the past and the future dominate everything about me. I worried about my past struggles and the negative things that were said to me and done to me growing up. I worried about my future being slave to my addictions that were bred out of rejection and self hate. It took a very long time to realize the all of this was a manifestation of fear. Fear of the past, the future, of success, and of failure. That was the basic thing that had me stuck for the longest time. It kept me immobile and stagnate with the inability to truly find my voice. It was not until I made a decision to live, literally to change my mind, that I was able to find myself out of my fears and live a more abundant life.
I sometimes get questions about my weight loss and what were the steps I took to get going. Although I took many steps, the first one I took was to literally change my mind. Change the way I was thinking. Change the way I looked at myself. Decide to live the life that was given to me because it is a gift. Would you throw away precious stones given to you? If you chose to stay in the same place you are now, although you want to progress, you are throwing away precious jewels which is your life. When you chose not to live, you chose to stay in slumber. Not conscious of all the beauty that is around you and within you.
Siddhartha also said that after our awakening a person has a very different perspective of looking than a person who is still in slumber. You have a different way of looking. You notice the sunlight and how it helps the trees grow. You notice the rain drops and how it helps nurture. You will realize how it is all part of the universe. When you awake or decide to release out of fear, you radiate. You shine a light so brilliant that others see it around you and in you. You then go after a better life and all that it has to offer you. It all starts with a changed mind. That is such a simple idea but being truly awake helps you realize it.
I don’t consider myself a sage. I consider myself as a student because I am never afraid to learn. I had to learn from my past and I had to embrace my future. I had to realize that to live better, I had to think better. A better life starts with a decision. You want a better life? You want to progress? Decide it. See the light that is your future. Let go of fear that will inhibit you. See yourself in a better way. Embrace life because it is a gift and you only get one. I challenge you on this day. Decide…