One of the most important and interesting practices of spirituality is to contemplate who is the true doer of all our actions. Have we “done” this masterpiece that we are so proud of? Or has the divine doer, the universal intelligence, the cosmic consciousness, whatever we may wish to call it, been the true “doer” within?
Let us try this little experiment. While doing our daily chores, if we just select any one of the repetitive tasks that we do, and then first pause, create a space, breathe, feel the quiet presence that is within, and then do the task with all love and mindfulness, we will feel the beauty of the shift of consciousness that has been created. Rejoice, we have just given ourselves a present, the present of our own “presence.”
As we repeat this art of mindfulness again and again, we will begin to notice that we can identify the doer and the non-doer. Gradually we will discover that we are entering into a new continent unknown to us in the very space of our own mind, where this glimpse of the play between the doer and the non-doer is a dance of matter and energy, between unconsciousness and self-awareness.
Our goal is to let the small things of daily life bring us the truth that we are a vibrational being and that every thought or action is creating its own vibration to honor the law of attraction; like attracts like. When our mind thinks with the higher mind, we are awake, and we attain more with less effort. Our efforts are steps to reach that state of effortlessness, where doer and doing merge into the witnessing Self.
As we become conscious of the inner doer and inner thinker, we will find we are not be able to complete any act or think any thought without being conscious of its divine potential and manifestation.
This is the art of non-doing! Things happen the way they are supposed to happen! To be positive is to be aware that we are not the doer; things are being done through us. This positive thought could clear the dirt of ego that pollutes every act of goodness. This thought of non-doership could help us to break the grip of our expectations of being continually appreciated. When we get out of the clutch of the perception of "doership," the prime illusion of un-awakened mind, we let go of all need to please others by trying to live up to their expectations of us!
With all the societal focus on multi-tasking, the mind gets used to a state of a mad rush from one action to another, or from one thought to another. As a result, the mind becomes comfortable with the idea of “doing,” but not “not doing.” The highest human achievement is to manifest a state of being where doing flows like nature, which is accomplishing so much without doing anything, all in silence, all in perfect synchronicity.
Try find a little time to not only be in nature, and study the superficial aspects of its pristine beauty, but also open an eye of awareness and our heart to her, praying for her to talk to us and teach us the “art of doing” she practices so silently every moment. The lotus opens its petals when the first ray of the morning sun kisses its bud and whispers it is time for you open and spread your fragrance and exquisite beauty. It is slow, steady, and natural unfoldment. There is no rush, no hurry, no stress, yet this continual dance of creation is the very essence of Nature.
Doing is easy. But not doing is difficult. Most difficult. To be lost in a crowd of thoughts is easy, but to step back and observe the fleeting thoughts of mind till the gap between thoughts could be perceived is sublime. The gap between thoughts is the silence, is the space between actions, the state of non-doing.
If you look carefully, every small activity of our daily life could be transformed into a wonderful series of mindful acts. Then we can see for ourselves that paying attention, without any judgment, and being in the moment, takes us to that dimension that no great achievement, however glorious, could give us the same sense of peace. It is like we are suddenly shown the treasure within and had the key handed over to us to have it for our self.
Non-doing is not passivity, but the ultimate dynamism. For in the silence of not doing, the seed of infinite innovation and productivity manifests, the moment expands, opening vast vistas never explored. The very treasure house of infinite creativity is flung open to us! We realize we were never a beggar, but were the prince. We were begging due to our self-forgetfulness of who we truly are.
The core philosophy of the path of dis-passionate action, Karma Yoga, is founded on this insight of human excellence where so much is achieved, the ultimate dynamism is manifested at the periphery, yet the center within is calm and passive, just like the eye of the storm.
The goal is only to become more alert, more conscious in performing the actions of the day-to-day, and more and more conscious of the divine doer within. We strive to become a divine instrument, a channel, a conduit. We closely observe and ask: Are these actions driven by the desires of my ego? Are they sincere offerings of my heart to please and serve the divine? Are they motivated by selfish concerns or by selfless dedication? What is the force behind my motivation?
As we practice this, even mundane activities gradually become focused on the divine doer in the course of becoming more focused, conscious, and aware of the divine potential within. The divine is ultimately the source of all thoughts, the source of all actions, the source of all energies, the source of consciousness. The more we rediscover this lost connection, the more there is a celebration and joy for no reason; happiness is the most natural thing of life. Peace is the very emanation of the soul that is our Pure Essence.
Life is neither a battle nor a struggle, winning is temporary, so is losing, success and failures, pleasures and pain, for they are offshoots of egocentric mind! Don't be obsessed with doing, rather learn the art of doing without doing, to calm the mind and experience the flow of Perennial River of life! Slow down to know the divine doer, and be peaceful and happy in life!
Shuddhaanandaa Brahmachari (Kolkata, India): Globally acclaimed motivational and inspirational teacher, (specializing in mindfulness, meditation and stress reduction), author, and peacemaker (Man of Peace Award 2012). Visionary social advocate; founded Lokenath Divine Life Mission, 1985. Programs serve thousands of poverty-stricken individuals in slums of Kolkata, India and remote villages of West Bengal.
Thank you. I've forwarded to the publishers.