“Wherever you go, there you are” – Jon Kabat-Zinn
I realize more clearly that no matter where I go, I will follow. And what I mean by this is that I can’t run away from myself. I can change my environment, move away, change jobs, change friends, change partners – but I will still be the same consciousness dealing with the same issues no matter what new circumstance I am in. I can’t run away from myself simply by changing the external world. I must change my internal world first; I must face myself, not run away. If I change myself from the inside, then it will not matter where I am because I will be just fine.
For instance, sometimes I am shy to express myself and I think that if I move where no one knows me, then maybe I can feel less shy to express myself. But then I find myself visiting new places only to find the shyness still present.
Or sometimes I feel awkward about how I look in a bathing suit so I think that maybe if there were less people at the beach I will feel more comfortable. Yet even with very little people at the beach, I still feel awkward.
See? I am externalizing an internal issue. I keep saying things like “When I move, I will feel better” or “When people grow nicer, I will think the world is a better place.” But the more I meditate and experience life, I see that I need to work on my internal issue, not the external world. Sure, having the external conform to my ideals help, but so long as I still have an internal conflict, no matter how perfect everything in the outside world is, my experience will still be distorted by my warped perspective. But better yet, if I build a strong, loving, and accepting internal world for myself, then no matter what is going on in the outside world I will still be peachy! Change, my friends, happens from the inside out.
I need to look in myself and see what is it in ME that I am projecting out into the world – and start by fixing that. One step at a time.
It’s a journey! And even though it may hurt sometimes, the process is so rewarding.