A Cloud of Thought!

I envision my thoughts as clouds, floating overhead.  When I want to look at one, I pluck it out of the sky, examine it and then let it go.  Sometimes there are so many thoughts that my head is overcast.  Sometimes they drop and fly around me like a cloud of gnats, little irritating thoughts vying for my attention.  I sometimes need to banish them so I can get some peace and rest.  But that would be overcomplicating things.

I had to learn a lot of things while my marriage finally ended.  It was the most educational time of my life while being the most stressful and miserable.  I started trying to meditate and learn the tenets of Tao (slow and frustrating to begin with), and along the way, I found three men who taught me the main concept that I live by: Andy Dooley, Alan Watts and James Allen.  Together, they taught me the power of Perception, sure, but also how to let my thoughts go and fly.

As I was sitting there listening to Mr. Dooley speak, I heard him say something that turned off my anxiety once and for all.  He said, “Let go and let it happen.”  It was so simple, so obvious – yet so nettlesome and powerful.  It took a bit of time and effort to figure this one out, but once I did, it revolutionized my life.  I could just let it go? All of it?  All of that responsibility for my wife’s behavior? For the conflicts all around me?  Yes.  The only thing I can control is me.  Gone are the tornadoes of thought about what everyone else is doing, thinking or being.  Calm sailing.  Calm meditating.  Calm driving.

I started reading, listening and watching Alan Watts as my interest in Tao grew to ridiculous proportions,  I (ready for the oxymoron?) wanted to become a serious student of Tao. I read an article he wrote as an introduction to Zen Buddhism.  The article introduced me to nin: thought after thought after thought without end.  This is to say you don’t try to “catch” any of the thoughts; you just allow them to flow.  Don’t fixate on any one thought, just let it float.  Mastering this means a much less stressful existence, because no thought remains in place long enough to cause anxiety.  The thoughts just fly by.  Happiness doesn’t need fixation, it just appears in the absence of fixation.

I just happened on James Allen when I was going through my grandmother’s storage space.  It was a tiny little old book, old binding, musty smelling pages.  You know, perfect.  So I grabbed it to read and discovered As a Man Thinketh.  Which seems to be one of the first actual self-help (that intended to be a self-help book) books that was published.  James Allen is adamant that we are all responsible for our own reality.  Which, if taken in the right perspective, is incredibly liberating.

When you learn to let go of thoughts and just let them flow through your head, and at the same time, realize that you are the only reason for you, it allows you to be a very relaxed, happy individual.  It all takes some time to learn and accept, but when it finally is clear and easy, it is very worth the time.

About Nathan

Hi! I am Nathan! So why am I here? That is my main question. I am fascinated by the current wave of science meeting with the philosophical questions throughout history. I am a Taoist and a disorganized dreamer who makes up new words to describe states of being and thought processes. I love to bring to you these simple yet powerful little inspirations and truths. I believe that each one of us is infinitely important and we are all connected. As Carl Sagan put it, “We are a way for the Cosmos to know itself.” We might be all connected, but you are still you. It is your perceptions that shape your reality. So join me in changing perceptions!

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