I used to be a problem. To myself. And to others.
Filled with self-loathing I shrunk from the world, unable to offer anything from my heart, unwilling to be seen. At first, self-harm and self-hate. I tried to get rid of myself because I was not worthy of life. Later on, self-help and self-improvement. I tried to fix myself, to make myself more perfect, more deserving of a perfect relationship, a perfect career, a perfect life. I did everything possible to fix my personality, to make it more confident, more capable, more clever, more desirable, more lovable. But nothing ever reached into the whirlpool of unworthiness that threatened to drown me in shadowy depths.
Later on yet, self-transcendence. I tried to leave my imperfect self behind by becoming more spiritual, more esoteric, more evolved.
And still life was not perfect. I lived in the dream of a future in which only good things happened. And denied the nightmare of a broken past. My family was a shambles, full of secrets and shame. My relationships were a mess, full of rejection and hurt. Without direction and purpose, the world was a scary place. Everything was a problem, waiting to be solved when I was more perfect.
Until presence revealed itself. Until I stopped right where I was and looked life in the eye, no flinching, no dreaming, no hoping, no praying. Just this. No more meditation, no more spirituality, no more trying to fix or improve or transcend. Just the bare bones of reality revealed in the “I’. Just this unbroken presence that is always here. Irrefutable, irreversible, history but a dream, personality but a fluid vessel for this presence to flow into. Now and now and now.
Now, there are no problems. Nothing to solve, nothing to fix, nothing to erase, no better destination. Just this life moving according to its own intelligence.
Today, there is just presence. Unending. Unbroken. Presence is reality stripped down to the fact.
Today, I am no longer a problem to myself. And the world is not a problem to me.
Friend, presence is the solution to all problems. Not trying to be more present, or practicing presence. But the presence that reveals itself when you stop being concerned with yourself, when you stop being self-centered and know yourself as one with the totality of being. The presence that is here when you are unwaveringly present without coming to a conclusion about reality as you experience it. When you stop being a problem to yourself, you stop being a problem to the world. And the world stops being a problem to you. In presence, right action moves from life’s intelligence.
Friend, presence is your birthright. It puts everything right again. So simple. So beautiful and true.