and Facing Reality
Buddhism about Spiritual Growth
taught that "the one who has
conquered himself is a far greater hero than he
who defeated a thousand times a thousand men." He recognized the ego
presence that feels threatened by and therefore fears the truth. This mental
power is resisting the simple spiritual act of shining the light of
consciousness toward your ultimate inner source.
"To see reality clearly, we must learn to let
go of all our cherished beliefs about who we are and what life in general is
all about. We can't hold one thing tightly in our grasp, and at the same
time reach out and take something new. We must let go of and put aside what
we are grasping, in order to be able to receive something that we want or
need much more. All spiritual and psychological growth requires a letting go
of a limited belief in order to open up and receive a more expansive belief
– or even better, a direct experience of reality that makes all beliefs
unnecessary. This is the challenge of spiritual growth: to enlighten the ego
to where it realizes, through more and more
meditative experience, that letting go of judgments about reality and
embracing reality itself, is not only worthwhile but essential to a truly
fulfilling life," says John Selby.
Buddha observed, however, that the ego is
fearful of its own demise – and will fight hard to preserve its groundling.
We should learn how to conquer these fears within us that
Lama Surya Das puts it this way, 'As you walk the inner path of awakening,
recognize that it is most definitely a heroic journey. You must be prepared
to make sacrifices, and yes, you must be prepared to change. Just as a
caterpillar must shed its familiar cocoon in order to become a butterfly and
fly, you must be willing to change and shed the hard armor of self-centered
egotism. As compelling as the inner journey is, it can be difficult because
it brings you face to face with reality. It brings you face to face with who
you really are."