Psychological survival has become more important than physical survival and is the reason for most things we do.
|Modern times make it harder to become enlightened. Distractions are plentiful.
This is the hypothesis we are going to explore in this article and discover why survival is still the driving force behind most of our actions. Consumption, travel, entertainment and most forms of distractions beyond that which is demanded by physical survival is a direct extension of this drive to survive. Our need to survive indeed extends beyond securing physical survival. You might wonder what I mean by this and why this is the case.
If we dig deeper into the nature of reality, we find that all experience is an illusion. Including our physical body and the sense of separation between us and the world. By definition an illusion needs to employ some mechanism by which it becomes invisible to the one who is deceived. We could think of this illusion as a metaphysical entity with it's own drive to survive. In eastern traditions this illusion is called ego and is the center of our being. We are literally deceiving ourselves into being. How marvelous is that?
In our modern world, most work and most activities are far removed from immediate survival. And even though we have to earn money to survive, this is only partially true. Much of what we work for is not contributing to this end directly. Only to the degree that it feeds our own self-deception.
But with that deception comes also a lot of trouble, suffering and the covering up of Truth. This illusion has an easier time to maintain itself when we are distracted of course. When we are not even asking any suspicious questions. When we are so caught up in what life presents us with that we are not bothered to take a closer look or become serious about discovering Truth for ourselves. From this point of view, all action could be considered distraction. There is nothing wrong with that, but we have to be aware that is also the root of all suffering in the world. With a firm realization of Truth there is no suffering. Fully realized beings perceive all experiences of life as the perfect manifestation of the infinite nature of reality.
To solve this issue I recommend following the practice of all-day-awareness. Training the mind to be fully present in every moment. With the full spectrum of sensory experience, without slipping into conceptualization and thoughts our mind is constantly coming up with. Over time this will quiet the mind and facilitate the state of no-mind. A state where the joyous nature of reality shines through in every moment. Beware though, there will be no you anymore. But then, you could say, there was no you to begin with. The veil of illusion will have been lifted.