When we are born into this world as a little baby, we are very simple, ordinary and in a state of immense trust in the world. A baby inside the mother’s womb is never occupied with thoughts on how it will get its food or how her eyes may look when she is grown up. Everything is taken care of for the baby. From the moment of conception until birth, baby is in a state of surrender, a deep trust in the universe and creation.
Lao Tzu said, “All being originates in non-being.” The essence of non-being is innate within us, and it is called different names: Source or Tao or God or Intelligence. This state of surrender to Source, is an effortless state.
But as we grew up, we lost touch with this effortless state. We started to identify with all sorts of material and worldly things. Our primary objective in life from then on was to strengthen and protect those identities. Anything that shattered those identities, perhaps an illness or a financial crisis or loss of job, deeply disturbed us, because we were not aware of any other way of looking at our self.
There is another way of living that is possible: living with our authentic, True Self. This means being able to return to our primordial baby self, inside the womb. This means having immense trust in the universe that everything is taken care of and we are in a safe world.
To live in such a state of trust can be very challenging in the modern world. To discover our True Self and live with authenticity in this modern world is to strike a balance and follow a middle path. Buddha realized that the middle path is the most favorable way forward to practice and realize one’s own True Nature. By following a middle path, one becomes much more grounded, centered and less likely to identify with any extremes. There are fewer chances for the ego to identify with one particular thing when we follow middle path.
When you follow the middle path, the purpose of one aspect of life is to be in balance with any other aspect. We start seeing all aspects of our life as interdependent. Striking a balance between work, friends, family, relationships and money is not about carefully giving equal importance to each of these aspects of life. Rather, the calling is for a new way of looking at life. Look at everything in life as contributing invaluably to everything else. Money and job are contributing to wellness and family. Family is contributing to money and wellness.
By following the middle path, we are never really carried away by the intensity of the anticipation; we stay with the awareness of the act. In this way, we find meaningful time for work, relationships, money and simple acts of kindness, rather than always looking for opportunities to serve our ego and its false promises. We become more appreciative of everyone else’s presence in our life. We become more caring, loving, self-aware, compassionate and kind in our interactions. We drop our false identities and start living from a much more authentic place within us, and in so doing, we accept others as they are, without judging or forcing them to change.
Living from this place is like returning to the baby inside of us. We tend to become more spontaneous, creative, playful, expressive and unconditionally loving.