Seeing through the eyes of a child is viewing life through the perspective of spirit, before egoic resistance, judgements, and attachments have been formed. When our minds are conditioned to believe in illusions such as black-and-white concreteness, discrete categories, and organizational elements; such as those represented by letters, numbers, colors, and clock time; we may gradually lose our natural intuition and openness to the universe. But we don’t have to, and if we do, we can get them back again.
Joy Is Enthusiastic Acceptance of What Happens
To me, joy is an enthusiastic acceptance of whatever happens, starting with being alive. In addition to children, animals and plants are also good examples of this. Beyond the joy of my own spirit, when considering this concept, I usually arrive at kids, dogs, birds, and trees; along with the sea, the wind, and the sun. From there, it extends to all natural flora and fauna. People are usually the last thing I think of when reflecting upon the awe-inspiring radiance of this phenomenon. I believe this is because people are the only living things capable of interfering with that which is natural. I believe this is the result of human intelligence, and its amazing and destructive ability to perceive things in a variety of different ways. When focused on gaining a broader understanding of truth, our intellect can be the gateway to the universe. When attending to ego issues or negative emotions, it can create a life of wasted energy and needless suffering.
When asked to describe me, there is usually one word my friends come up with; “joyful.” After losing my external vision, and sustaining more than 20 traumas; my natural state remains one of enthusiasm, alacrity, and excitement about life. Nicknames have included “Dr. Happy Talk,” “Mr. Positive,” etc. I have flatlined (clinically died) twice, and been brought back to life again; and during these moments experienced a bright light and warmth containing bliss beyond anything I have ever encountered in the material world (including amazing sex). They were my spirit (true nature) connecting directly with universal consciousness. After tasting this, my goal became to find it, and live in it, which I did (and I am). This is the source of my joy. In short, it is living within higher consciousness, within the vibration of truth (where true love, true joy, and true peace exist naturally). It sometimes causes me to be a little isolated in the human world, which prompts me to turn my focus more toward the spiritual world (which is our natural home anyway). It is usually hard to find others who share this awareness, or who can relate to it; so, outside of my healing work, I may spend much time alone (from a human perspective). This is my choice, preference, and fulfillment; unless connecting with others in this place of natural joy.
Rediscovering What We Were Born With
As we “grow” beyond the reaches of the wide-eyed wonder of children, that natural joy that paints our perspective with a smile, portraying our open acceptance of the universe; we gradually lose sight of it, and may forget about it after while. When we are taught to believe in the illusion of separateness; separateness of people, places, and things; we are being trained to replace the truth of universal consciousness with illusion created to satisfy the limitations of the human mind. This indoctrination usually begins early in life, starting with learning numbers, the alphabet, colors, and how to tell time; along with playing on Mom’s phone, Dad’s iPad, or Grandma’s laptop. So too are we conditioned to value discrete pieces of these illusions more or less than others. We are also trained to believe, often through harsh punishing measures, that our ability to grasp these concepts is a measure of our own worth.
This is like spending our entire lives learning how to get further and further away from the amazing truth we were born knowing, and calling it progress. Imagine that we were born with the ability to hear and understand music, to play it, and to link it to spiritual and emotional principles of health, joy, and fulfillment. And then, when we began our formal education, the goal was to learn how to understand the lines, categories, rhythms, notations, time signatures, and chordal progressions; in black and white; without ever realizing that music could be played from this linear understanding of the disected, delineated concepts. We would know, in many ways, how to separate, organize, and categorize the concepts and the data; but we would not even realize what its purpose was. Hardly anyone would play music, because few would know that it could be played; and those who did would be considered unconventional, fringy, or new age. This knowledge would have been conditioned out of us when we were taught to understand the quantifiable concepts rather than the music. And we would call this regressive illusion progress. As preposterous as this may seem, what happens in our day-to-day lives is even more extreme than this. If we were able to retain the spiritual awareness we are born with (intuition and direct access to universal consciousness), and if what we learned throughout life reflected this wisdom, then our growth and evolution would occur at an exponentially faster rate. We would also be continuously filled with true love, true joy, and true peace. This perspective is attainable, and we do not need to suffer to discover and live within its rhapsodic radiance.
Joy Comes From Within
As I see it, joy comes from living our outer lives in alignment with our inner true nature, through its direct connection with universal consciousness. When this occurs, we are shining the light of the universe through our thoughts, feelings, words, and actions into the material world, to aid in its healing and growth. Doing so will bring us great joy. Such enthusiastic acceptance of whatever happens, when deriving from our true nature (spirit), is not counterbalanced by mind-based negative emotions, like happiness and sadness, or stress and calmness. These situational states are unstable, and are usually determined by either our thoughts or external circumstances. Spiritually-based joy is stable and continuous. It is not contingent upon our thoughts, or external situations. When we discover our true nature (spirit), and live within its luminous radiance (higher consciousness), we will discover a sustainable joy that surpasses what we previously imagined possible.
Photo credit: Alba Soler