The 3 Golden Rules for living

“I’m just working and having a good time and seeing what develops, which is so awesome, because you don’t know what’s going to happen, and I’m letting myself do that a lot more than I ever have.”
Kathleen Hanna

Just as gravity over mass on earth, circumstances and randomness are inevitable. Fighting over the facts is and will always be like swimming against the current. When something happens that makes us feel defeated, inutile and impotent, anger will devour our selves with no reason nor contribution. It seems as if we needed to mortify ourselves and mourn about what arrived to us. Loosing a phone, loosing our wallet, failing an exam, not passing an application, not winning a tournament… There are many past results that rest stagnated in our heads which could serve for growth or motivation instead of depravation and blockage. All of this simply resulting into stress, a cliche word which we know that connotes lots of diseases.

Directly form the teachings of The Buddhist and Taoist philosophy, I gathered three concepts that may lean us into a smoother and much more tranquil way of living. Alan Watts, one of the furthermost westerner interpreters of Eastern Philosophy once said:

“The art of living… is neither careless drifting on the one hand nor fearful clinging to the past on the other. It consists in being sensitive to each moment, in regarding it as utterly new and unique, in having the mind open and wholly receptive.”

Just as Alan Watts explained, life and circumstances can’t flow if we cling into the past or if we disregard every moment we live. We most embrace everything that happens to us and as mystic as it might sound: we are where we are meant to be. In other words, pure content.

Now The 3 Golden Rules

-Do not Judge

We are not the creators of what surrounds us. Things, places, people and situations are out of our control. We can interact with these but the final result or veridic won’t be in function of ourselves. Because of this, judging is  unnecessary and useless, what I call, a simple waste of energy. Judging is trying to mentally adapt things to our own preferences, and if they do not adjust, it is criticizing. When we judge we stress over things that won’t change or things we do not understand. Not liking the way things are and how they develop is natural, but judging is simply an ego need that alleviates our inner desires. We cannot control and neither can we always know why thing are the way they are. It is useless to judge and stress over the behavior of a violent youth for we won’t change him in this way. In the same way we cannot judge the attitude of an angry salesman if we do not know what happened to him before. Judging disables our quality of comprehension, something which is necessary to follow the aphorism, “Live and let live”. Instead of superficially judging situations and people, we should hear, comprehend and help.

-Do not attach

One of the basic principles of The Buddhist philosophy is the acceptance of the impermanence found in the universe. We have to understand that things change permanently and that evolution and flow are two universal concepts. Life changes, people change, things disappear, are destroyed and living things are born and die. When we attach to one thing, one moment or someone, we are inevitably chaining ourselves in time and space. These attachments create feelings and emotions which are vulnerable to the impermanence of the former two. If we attach to something or someone, the absence of it will create pain in us. Seemingly, if we attach to a past moment, we won’t be able to live fully in the present one. The first step into not-attaching is acceptance, for when we accept we let go, and letting go is not attaching. The moment we learn to accept things as how they are, later we won’t suffer because of any type of attachment, neither we will stress for our gap-filling judgments.

-Do not control

We tend to panic when we loose control. Having blind faith is something that we can practically find only in theists. We have an urge and need to control, manipulate and guide things as we want. When things start to wreck out from our hands we stress and loose peace. Control is a simple illusion for the only thing that we can control is what we say, and even that can be questioned for impulses and primitive wills come into hand. We need to learn that when water flows and nature grows, time heals and things resolve. We cannot control other peoples’ actions, wills nor desires. We can judge, attach and manipulate, but the energy we put upon external things and other people is simply the same reciprocal thing, external influence, but not the pure source. There is no need to handle things more than what we can or should, sometimes when we push to hard, just as the refrain says, it might be s···. When we stop controlling a blind faith starts cultivating in us, something that in healthy measures mean a happier and smoother life. When we believe that the future unknown will positively resolve, the manic over-controlling attitude will disperse into acceptance and flow.

Jose Arvide

One thought on “The 3 Golden Rules for living

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