There are so many forms of inquiry that reveals the complete innocence of anything about our human selves. The Work is one.
And Adyashanti suggests another…
Adyashanti’s inquiry into what you really really want
- Make a list of what you want. Don’t hold back. List everything, including or maybe especially those things that seem patently unspiritual, immature and embarrassing: money, sex, fame, eternal vacation, beach, hot women/men, the adoration and love of others, power, the ability to eat anything at any amount without getting out of shape or sick.
- Then go through each one on the list and ask: what do I really hope to get out of this? What is the best possible outcome? Again, be sincere. Find what you really want to get out of it. What do you think and wish you will get from it? When you find it, ask the same question again: what do you hope and wish to get from this one? Then repeat, and repeat, until you arrive at something that seems irreducible to something else.
The results from my inquiry
For me, when I do this, I find that each one – no matter how unspiritual and immature they may seem to be in the beginning, end up in freedom from suffering, and happiness. That is where they all lead. The real motivation is revealed as completely innocent.
And it also happens to be the explicit and essential motivation for practice in several traditions, including Tibetan Buddhism.
What started out as a clearly wicked wish ends up as a completely innocent wish, and the most sincere motivation for practice.
Deep seated suspicion of our human self, unravelling quickly when we look a little closer
Yet, as Adyashanti points out, there is the myth that our desires are inherently flawed or will lead us astray. There is a deep seated suspicion of our human self in so many traditions. A suspicion that unravels as soon as we scratch just a little bit under the surface.