Do I suffer when I fight what I am?
Commentary by José Parés Pérez, Concepción, Chile.
-At what moments in my life do I fight what I am?
Since I very much enjoy what I do, I really do not think that I suffer as a result of that. -It seems fine to me, it is absolutely fine; it is how it should be.
But what do you say to me when you do what you dislike doing, when you feel troubled by something that you do not know how to handle?
-Nothing, if I don’t like doing something, I don’t do it and that’s that.
-Whatever our activities are, our circumstances, our moods, we always have to do tasks that we dislike. Often we do not like what we feel. For example, an atmosphere, the tone in which someone speaks to me, a physical or psychological pain, the presence of troublesome noises, an opinion about me, etc. etc.
-Now I understand the question. However, these things are not what I am. That is what I feel.
-Now we are getting to the point.
What we are is what we feel not what we think we are. This is of tremendous importance. Observe yourself frequently in detail, and you will realise that you are in the present. You have been and will always be Now.
Thought is in the past or the future but is not what you feel, your feelings, your emotions, your sensations and even your thoughts in this moment even if they deal with the past or are about the future. What you are doing at this moment is what exists, not what has been or will be. You do not consist of the money you have in your pocket or the car you drive nor the diploma that adorns your office. Your identity is you, what you feel.
-Really I find it difficult to accept what you are telling me.
-Let me try it some other way. What is your profession, what do you do?
-I’m an artist, I paint in oils and my paintings sell well.
-Fantastic. May I look at a picture you have painted?
-Of course, there’s one right here. Look at it.
-Thank you, let me see. Mm mm…May I give you my honest opinion because I know something about painting and particularly about your style?
-Don’t scare me. I didn’t know that you knew about painting…
-Look. I have made you suffer because of the possibility you see that I may not like your painting. You are worried that I may tell you that you are not a good painter and that is making you suffer. Now you understand what I am talking about.
-Yes. Thank you very much.