The official site of the sleep-deprived

Friday, March 12, 2010

Spiritual Hives

In one of my first posts I admitted to an obsession with searching for the next big thing. I’m convinced that once I find the thing my life will change so profoundly that it will redefine my very existence. A new king-sized mattress came close. Bio-identical hormones came closer. But there’s always an intangible something still missing that I can’t quite put my finger on …. so, I keep looking.

For way too many years I’ve been addicted to anything and everything self-help. A definite off-shoot of the thing. With unwavering certainty, I know that the next book, the next tape series, the next DVD, the next Omega workshop or Brother Dyer live appearance – will be the thing that finally leads to my personal satori. Even my blog partner, Skye, half-jokingly talks about the need for an intervention and 12-step program. Hmmmm.

I’ve always thought that reading self-help books before falling asleep was the way to go – let the sub-conscious mull it over, construct an action plan and all that. So the other night after an hour of reading the latest and greatest about becoming a new and improved, excuse-free me – there was no way I could fall asleep. I couldn’t sleep because my mind was frantically trying to assimilate, organize, and somehow not forget what I had just read – the tips, the quotes, the secrets, the exercises, the 4 main categories with the 14 essential bullet points … I was an information-overload mess.

At any given moment I’m trying to be compassionate, feel gratitude, be in the now, focus my attention, let go of judgment, watch my breathing, work through my fear, let go of attachment, feel love toward everyone and everything,visualize, keep my ego in check, lose my self-importance, meditate, find my life’s purpose, take responsibility, manifest my destiny, stay balanced, get in touch with my higher self, and, oh yeah, remember that visualization without feeling doesn’t count – all done in a blissful state of joy, while understanding that it’s nothing but a universal, holographic dream anyway.

I’m supposed to keep all these balls in the air every waking moment, yet remain relaxed and detached? I have an in-box of motivation quotes dating back to the early 80s that I can’t bear to delete, reams of inspiring quotes I’ll never read again, every personal transformation guru’s website bookmarked in “my favorites” … this is insane. My obsession with enlightenment is seriously stressing me out.

So that’s it, you’re all going to have to go on the vision quest without me. I need a break. In the true spirit of detachment, I’m hitting the spiritual pause button. I’m going back to reading Stephen King and Architectural Digest, cancelling every emailed motivational quote of the day, deleting Amazon’s s self-help book suggestion of the week, and taking myself off of Oprah’s “Live Your Best Life” mailing list.

I no longer want to live my best life. Right now, I just want to live.


Anonymous said...

Congratulations Lyndsey!!!

Experience is the foundation of understanding. That is to say, if you tried to paint like Picasso, you would only discover how many different ways you are not Picasso. There is a school of thought that believes the only path to enlightenment is to know ourselves. It has it's students study and memorize texts, and the only students who move on and matriculate are the ones who give up in frustration. Sadly, there are many students who spend their whole lives looking for answers in those books.


Anonymous said...

hi Craig,
I appreciate the encouragement - hopefully I am one of those students who is giving up, moving on, and hopefully up ... I think I finally understand that much of my searching is actually (sadly) a form of self-avoidance. I'm betting that true satori lies hidden somewhere in those pages of Architectural Digest!

All the best,

Sensei Drew Lawrence said...

Good plan Lyndsey. Searching for enlightenment is pie in the sky. I believe we must accept ourselves as we are... the good, the bad, and the ugly. The change we seek will come...or not. Hot-cold,light-dark, good-evil,enlightenment-ignorance. Yin-Yang. You are the master. OM SHANTI,
Sensei Drew Lawrence

Skye Alexander said...

Hi Drew and Craig,

Thanks for writing. And thanks for the good ideas. It's always nice to hear your thoughts. Acceptance....hmmm. Perhaps we all need to give ourselves a break? Working on it.


Anonymous said...

Happy new year to you. be 2012 the year of your discovery.

Skye Alexander said...

Thanks, Isabelle. Happy New Year and best wishes to you in the coming year, too.

Unknown said...

One thing comes to mind that you may or may not have considered. By being so "good" you really haven't gotten to know your dark side very well. Which in my opinion keeps one from being too naive or too consumed by it. I'm not saying ho out and do something horrible just explore and allow yourself some fun.

kala said...

Yes!! I so relate!! BUT---look into AJ Miller's teachings about the difference between the Natural love path and the Divine love path. I now feel real hope that there is another path besides mind controlling my behavior. He explains why the Law of Attraction is not controlled by our minds. I gave away all my self help books on changing my life in some way. Happy reading! Oh--his website is