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Immerse Week 43 – Varying Vulnerabilities

During this week you’ll decrease your vulnerability by deepening your connection with values and softening your attachment to cravings and fears, and you’ll feed your whole being—body, mind, and soul.

As long as we have cravings and fears, although the specific vulnerabilities might change, we will stay vulnerable.

Dear friend,

There was a time I couldn’t tolerate hunger. I am told I would wail at the top of my lungs when hungry. As I grew older, winning in Chutes and Ladders became a big deal, followed by pushing the elevator buttons. Everything I wanted, I had to have, right at that moment. My wholeness depended on all kinds of little things—holding a piece of rock, pushing random buttons, watching my favorite TV show, coloring with crayons. I was very vulnerable.

I still am vulnerable, but the details have changed. I no longer care about crayons. I do care about academic success. I want everyone to like me. I want to be in people’s good books, to be talked up in gossip. I want people to remember me. I want to create a legacy.

I have given the keys to my mind’s kingdom to many others. That makes me vulnerable. My vulnerabilities depend on what I find meaningful, particularly in the material domain.

I need to change my sense of self. Instead of protecting my desires and fears, I should protect my conscience. I should expand my kindness. I should develop causeless gratitude. My meaning shouldn’t be contingent on defeating others. Instead, I should value inspiring others. I should remind others how good they are.

I have realized that I can’t get rid of my cravings, fears, and selfishness. I can, however, cultivate a healthy attitude toward these predispositions. I can cultivate a craving to help as many as I can. I can nurture the fear of living a meaningless life. I can try to enhance the self by connecting my thoughts, words, and actions with a higher meaning.

I believe this expanded meaning will decrease my vulnerability. With this meaning I will step out of competition with the world. I will escape the prison of short-term gratifications. The previous cravings and fears that enslaved me won’t be replaced by new ones. I will experience freedom. I will be happy and help others find greater happiness.

May you swap your fears, cravings, and selfishness for gratitude, compassion, and selflessness.

Take care.

@AmitSoodMD (on Twitter)

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