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Holding on to Nothing is Liberation

By Halina Sobrado Wydrzycka | 12/30/2021

Pull down the blind, tune out the time. Sitting hour after hour, from 4:30 in the morning until 9:00 o'clock at night. In silence. One day, two days, three days...

I sit, get up, stretch, sit, repeat. I observe the mind, coming and going. I recognize myself running away from the inevitable. I nod off the accumulated fatigue of the previous months. I procrastinate, postponing concentration with thoughts, thoughts, thoughts. I know the process well (or so I think), and still the mind plays tricks.

Sooner or later it gets bored. It has cleaned up everything necessary, rested as it needed, and has gotten tired of looking for diversions. No networks, no phone calls, no conversations to distract me from the inevitable. It's just me and my mind.

I see the fear come and go. The anticipation, the impatience, the anger, the fire burning in the body, the evaluation, the judgment. I like it, I dislike it. I like it, I dislike it. I like it, I dislike it. The reminder: I am not what I feel. I am nothing, I am no one. Nothing.

Nothing.

Like a miner I dig, dig and keep digging. Solid stone, loose stone, sand. Water. A sip of fresh water. I am nothing. I am free. For a second, I feel light. Nothing that has marked me exists. What is, exists only in memory. The impressions, the emotions caused by my memories, I choose them. I associate thoughts with an emotion. I think, every time, of me, my history, my memories, my pleasure, my indignation. I. I. I. Me. Me. Me. 

If the "I" disappears, there is nothing else. Only experience, impressions, memories. Freedom. Love. When the accumulation of thoughts and worries disappears, the world appears as it is. The sky. The sun rising as it does every day, bright and beautiful. The birds dancing in their flight, singing to the dawn. The wind caressing the trees, oblivious to what is happening elsewhere.

Stilling the mind is a gift that shows us the world as truth, as perfection. The opportunity to see one's own humanity with all its imperfections, and to embrace them one by one, holding on to nothing.

Holding on to nothing is liberation.

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