“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.”
In the hustle and bustle of our daily lives, our attention is like a wandering traveler, always exploring the external world. We are engrossed in the problems and challenges that surround us, from the demands of work to the complexities of relationships. It's as if our minds are constantly on a quest for something outside of ourselves.
The agitation we feel, the restlessness, often stems from this outward focus. Swami Satchidananda offers a remedy, "Learn to watch your drama unfold while at the same time knowing you are more than your drama." It's a shift from being entangled in the plotline of our lives to being the silent observer.
When we are caught up in the external world, our minds are like turbulent seas, easily perturbed by the storms of daily life. The worries, the pressures, and the never-ending to-do lists create waves that toss us around, leaving us feeling overwhelmed. It's a cycle that repeats itself, day in and day out.
However, when we consciously shift our focus to the Self, something magical happens. The mind begins to settle, much like the calm after a storm. The chaos of the external world fades into the background, and a sense of peace takes its place. As the renowned spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle advises, "To know yourself as the Being underneath the thinker, the stillness underneath the mental noise, is freedom."
Why does turning inward have such a profound impact on our well-being? The answer lies in the nature of the Self. Within each of us is a reservoir of tranquility, a source of peace that remains untouched by external circumstances. It's a wellspring that, when tapped into, can provide a sense of serenity even in the midst of chaos.
The act of directing attention toward the Self is not about escaping the challenges of the external world; rather, it's about finding a center within ourselves that remains unshaken. In the words of the ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu, "At the center of your being, you have the answer; you know who you are, and you know what you want."
This internal journey requires mindfulness, a deliberate awareness of our thoughts and emotions. It involves taking moments to pause, breathe, and connect with the stillness within.
In essence, the path to peace is not always in searching for external solutions to our problems. Sometimes, it's a matter of redirecting our attention inwards, towards the silent sanctuary of the Self. As the poet Rumi once said, "Don’t be satisfied with stories, how things have gone with others. Unfold your own myth."
In the quiet exploration of our inner landscape, we discover a reservoir of peace that has been within us all along. So, let us take moments each day to turn our gaze inward, to embrace the stillness, and to find solace in the sanctuary of the Self.