Transitions typically occur when or shortly after we experience a moment of truth. I think this is why we so often avoid the truth because it requires that we change an aspect of ourselves and our lifestyles even if we don’t feel ready or know what is next. The way I see it, change is always occurring anyway, so why not acknowledge the truth so we can be in a position to choose our next move rather than having our past, our fears or someone else dictate it for us?
We are taught learning is about building, progressing and acquiring: knowledge, transcripts, experience, credentials, certificates, careers, material wealth…
But what if learning is actually a process in letting go? What if it is through letting go that we are able to be fuller expressions of ourselves, know who we are and why we are here, do the things that make us feel alive and have the things that really matter to us or at least have the choice of how to spend our time?
This isn’t a journey about becoming something. This is about unbecoming who we are not, about undeceiving ourselves. In the end, it’s ironic. We don’t end up anywhere other than where we have always been, except that we perceive where we have always been completely differently. We realize that the heaven everyone is seeking is where we have always been…. Everything is already inherently complete, already fully Spirit. We are already as much as we will ever be. But the question is – do we know it? Have we realized it? If we have not, what is it that’s causing us to perceive otherwise? And if we have realized it, are we living it? Is it becoming actualized? Is it functioning in our lives? And so one of the most important steps is to come into agreement with your life so that you’re not turning away from yourself in any way. And the amazing thing is that when we are no longer turning away from ourselves, we find a greater amount of energy, a great capacity for clarity and wisdom, and we start to see everything we need to see. – Adyashanti
Whether we are having “success” by a linear and accumulative approach to “learning” and “living” or not, there is no denying that society is structured this way. Just because many adults and even teenagers are caught up in the business of being busy, does this mean economic success should be our only concern for the next generation? Is that what we really want for them? Is this what we really want for us now? Did we ever really want the kind of lifestyle that is required to sustain this unsustainable way of life or did we simply never see it as a choice, a series of choices?
Some of us are now realizing, no amount of education will pay off; it might take years to pay off the student loans, and what about all that time and energy invested in our training to not think for ourselves. Was all that just so we could work a job that makes us feel powerless, except as consumers? Degrees are only equivalent to a diplomas now anyway, so are educational standards actually rising as new tests and technologies promise? And what about the freedom we were all promised, the freedom we traded in for responsibility and hard work; when can we cash in on that, once we are sick and dead? Are we really evolving through endless education and certification programs or are we grasping to find our place and stay relevant in this fast-paced world? At what point do we stop buying in to this business of higher and higher education?
I don’t have the answers to these questions on a societal level, but I have been asking myself when will I be, know, do and have enough? Really, the question is when will I learn to just let go of all that I am not?
The answer to that is that I have been letting go and I will continue to do so by not buying into businesses that promise me anything and by continuing to allow opportunities that support who I already am or what I am already doing.
And every time I let go of something (anything — an activity, an idea, a belief, an old emotion) I let in something else: freedom, creativity, curiosity, love.
What is something that you have let go? As a result, what did you let in or simply let be? Is there anything else that you are willing to let go?
I’ve been a student and avid reader for three decades. I have been a certified teacher since 2004. I’ve been a participant in workshops, training programs, webinars, open learning courses related to learning (and unlearning) regularly for the last three years.
Institutions and the internet make the acquisition of knowledge easy, but I have finally accepted that no one can offer what it is that I really want. By acknowledging that I already am who I want to be and that I am already where I need to be and doing exactly what I need to be doing, I can start choosing how I want to spend my time, money, and energy.
My teaching certification is due for two semesters worth of upgrading (which is nothing compared to the work I have already done), but after much contemplation, I have finally decided that I love learning too much to be a student or a teacher again.
Ok, really this decision isn’t about the education system or whether I stay certified as a teacher or not, it is about identifying patterns, our personal patterns and the systems we reinforce, the systems that we carry within us in the form of an inner-critic and/or limiting beliefs. By identifying a pattern, we are in a position to let it go in order to be more of ourselves and to do more of the work we believe we are here to do.
My unconscious pattern was seeking confidence in the form of certificates. Along the way, intelligence became a defense mechanism for me, a way of avoiding healing my heart and expressing my emotions. School reinforces this pattern for me, so I am choosing not to go.
Education has no business being a business anyway.