stress is an illusion - part 2

We live in a world of constant stimulation. And as we cruise through life, we get seduced by self-imposed stress. You might be surprised and asking why we deliberately go through stress in our daily lives. The simple and short answer is that we love stress and we keep creating it.

A big reason why we invite stress in our lives is because it makes us feel alive. At a subconscious level, all feelings — stress, happiness, despair, satisfaction, frustration, pain, exhilaration, excitement, disappointment and many others — are all equally loved by us, with pain being one of the most intense and juicy ones. Our soul finds all of them stimulating in the same measure.

Life is in a way an illusion, like a movie. When we step into a movie theater, we leave our everyday life behind. For a couple of hours, we are completely involved in what’s going on in the screen in front of us. We feel suspense, thrill, adventure, fear, excitement, stress or horror as we watch. But the movie is nothing but a mere flickering of light and shadow on a screen. We get wrapped up in it thinking it is real, but in fact it’s just an illusion. The reason we go to a theater to watch either a horror, thriller, comedy or action and adventure movie is because we want to feel the respective emotions; they appeal to our spirit and make us feel alive. We know it’s a temporary outing and once the movie is over, we can leave the theater and step back in our normal life. The movie is just an illusion, it does not affect our real life in any way, and we are not attached to it.

From a detached perspective, the moments and experiences that we go through in our life are also not as real as we think they are. The sensations and emotions that we feel are temporary and exhilarating to our inner spirit. This is the reason why we create circumstances and situations in our lives that may be painful and difficult, but are stimulating and blissful to our soul. Like an audience, we get engrossed in the drama of our own movie. We worry over our bills and debts, we try to fight injustice, we take charge to fulfill our dreams in spite of obstacles, we do monumental things for our family and our country. On a subconscious level, the reality around us is ephemeral; it’s as much an illusion as the stories and characters that J.K Rowling creates for her readers. 

Just to make things clear, our lives do exist and unfold in real-time, but not exactly the way we think they do. This lack of awareness is what actually causes all the pain and suffering that we go through in our lives. 

Our awareness is our most important asset in this lifetime. As the quality of our awareness improves, the quality of our life becomes better as well. 

Once the illusion of stress melts away and as we cultivate better awareness, our life becomes easier. As we get unattached from the movie of our own life, we naturally start feeling more alive, vibrant and relaxed.