Posted On 10 Mar 2012
Except for sages, the rest of us experience reincarnation frequently. Surprised?
This is important, because it explains why we suffer and sages don’t.
I argue in a related post [see below] that “if we make incorrect or unwise identity judgments about ourselves, we can really get into trouble.” This is exactly the problem here.
As strange as it may initially seem, there is no better relationship cure or booster than to stop making bad identity judgments.
The adjective ‘incarnate’ means ‘embodied in (especially human) flesh.’ Like thoughts and emotions, all physical objects such as human bodies are “forms” (objects, denizens of the domain of Becoming).
To identify two (apparently distinct) forms is to take them to be (in reality) one. Many times daily we take ourselves to be our bodies. That is the truth about reincarnation.
Answer quickly: “Where are you right now?” You are in your house or on the train or in the library, right? Notice the natural identification with a particular physical form.
Such physical identification is similar to mental identification. Except for sages, the rest of us habitually take ourselves to be our thoughts or minds, in other words, our stories or autobiographies; we are the protagonists of our own works of fiction.
We continuously drag these mental and physical identifications around with us.
This explains the heaviness of our lives, why experiences seem so serious and important. What would you expect to happen if you continuously take yourself to be a particular skin bag or set of noisy thoughts?
This explains why we suffer. Without realizing it, we habitually make ourselves suffer.
We don’t have to. Suffering is optional. To end it, simply identify yourself with Being rather than Becoming, with formlessness rather than with forms.
It’s not easy to break identification habits, but it’s possible. Ask any sage.
While you are asking, enquire, too, about the incredible lightness of Being. Once we stop continuously dragging mental and physical identifications around with us, we begin to soar, to live freely. Living becomes playing.
Even if you have never before put these ideas together, you nevertheless have an inkling they are true, don’t you? That’s because you have spontaneously, if only occasionally, experienced for yourself the incredible lightness of Being.
The more you break the reincarnation habit, the more you will experience that lightness or freedom.
Why not do whatever it takes to break that habit?
Partly because all your encounters will begin to flourish, it’s a much better way to live.
Additional Resources: Panayot Butchvarov’s Being Qua Being and Eckhart Tolle’s “The Art of Presence” (6 CD set).
As always, if you know someone who might benefit from reading this, please pass it along.