This is one of the most vital concepts we will ever encounter in life – and subsequently it is also one of the very pillars of my philosophy. Its simplicity is not a weakness, but rather only adds to the vigor.
This is it. I don’t care where you are in life, whether you are a five year old in preschool, a 30 year old in a cubicle, or a 72 year old in a cottage or nursing home. You might be living a wonderful life, or a terrible one. But no matter who you are, or where you are, you’ve got to let it go. That darkness, that past failure, that nagging worry and doubt. That crystal sharp whip you let loose on your own back. Let it go. Don’t cling to it. Let it slip away and fade into oblivion.
I’m not telling you to give up on your journey – that’s not the same thing at all. You should never give up on your dream, but if you are serious about that dream, you must let go of what weighs you down. “Letting it go”, means purifying your flow.
You must learn to let go of anything that doesn’t make you stronger and the world brighter. You mustn’t try to actively fight it, or forcefully attempt to push it away. Rather passively and peacefully let it fade away. Don’t exert energy. Let everything happen on its own accord.
Don’t anger yourself. Don’t try to “show them”. You don’t do this for them. If you think “I’ll show them, some day!” or even “They should see me now!” then you’re nothing but a slave under their rule. You don’t do this for them. You do this for you and for the sake of doing it; simply because it is right – because it is the light. So, just relax your grip, let the tension go, and the darkness will fade away on its own: Then you will open your eyes, smile and find it doesn’t exist in this universe. It is gone.
It’s so easy falling into the trap of thinking “I’ve got to cling on for dear life to this pain! To this problem! [Or] To this person that only weights me down”. No, you don’t have to. There is no glory to be found in suffering. You can let it all go. The only thing you achieve by clinging on, is wasting the one precious day you have in this life. You don’t go to the North Pole by focusing on how crappy the South Pole is. You go to the North Pole by smiling at how nice the North Pole is, and then stepping onto a ship, and sailing to the North Pole. There is nothing more to it. So let go. Let the darkness dissipate in the summer wind.
When all is said and done, realizing the importance of letting anything go, that doesn’t elevate you, will have an immeasurable impact on your life. Big traumas in life, and small everyday conflicts, or obsessive thoughts – all that can be disarmed by you practicing the art of letting it go.
Visualization is a powerful way to go about it. You may close your eyes, and imagine an umbrella above your head, on which all your pain, worries and problems fall – like heavy raindrops – but they only ricochet and lose their energy, and then all that darkness helplessly pours down the sides of your umbrella, and slips into the dark corners of the gutter, and it is no more.
Or imagine that you’re standing at the very edge of this world, at a precipice next to the abyss of nothingness. Violently your white knuckles clench around a cold dead rock of pain and hardship, of everything bad that has happened to you – a stone of all the denial and kicks you’ve been subjected to.
And then. Just like that. You are a subject no more. The muscles in your hand ease. The lock opens up, and You Let Go of all the pain and worry that previously would poison your mind. The cold rock slips out of your open hand, and without a sound it is then swallowed by the the infinite void.
Big or small. Every second of your life. Anything that doesn’t aid you, anything that is not healing, elevating and empowering you. You Just Let It Go. And the darkness is no more.
“Just letting it go” is something you practice, you see. It is not an ability you achieve once and then possess forever. It is a muscle that you must remind yourself to exercise over and over, hundreds of times every hour of every day. It might be something a person said to you – that hurt you and is now chafing against the healthy parts of your mind. It might be a worry about tomorrow: What will happen to me? Or a fear of failure. It might be an old memory. A hesitation. A doubt. Or some conflict or argument you are obsessively thinking about. At the end of the day, does participating in that conflict really lead you anywhere? It might be a muscle tension in your back or in your neck. It might be a cowering posture, pulling you down to the ground as a crooked tree. That, is the darkness!
Don’t allege it didn’t happen. Don’t lie to yourself by putting on a strained and false smile – pretending the darkness is light. It’s okay encountering pain. But it’s not okay clinging to it. For if you want to be part of that which is bright and meaningful in life, you have got to do this: Remember not to circle around your pain as a vulture. Small pain? Or big pain? Practice taking a breath, rolling your shoulders backwards, and just letting it go.