There is often some resistance to our experience, some fear, some wish for it to be different.
There is unmet, unloved, and unquestioned fear about some part of our experience, and that takes the form of resistance and wanting it to be different. It’s completely innocent, understandable, and nearly universal. It may happen for most of us most of the time, even if it’s subtle.
If the resistance is not noticed or explored, then there is often unconscious identification with it. We take on the perspective of that resistance and the fear behind it, and we may not even notice it’s happening.
The remedy is to notice and have some gentle curiosity about it.
Is there any restlessness, any wish to be somewhere else or do something else, any compulsion to think or do something else? Is there any wish for parts of my experience to be different?
Where in my body do I feel it? Rest with those sensations. Notice the space it’s happening within, and that’s also within the sensations. Notice any images or words connected with the sensations, rest with these too, and return to the sensations.
Rest with it in kindness.
You are welcome here. Thank you for protecting me. Thank you for your love for me.
I am sorry. Please forgive me. I love you. Thank you. (Ho’o.)
We can also do some gentle mining.
If the sensation could speak, what would it say?
What do the sensations mean?
What’s my earliest memory of feeling that way?
Often, I will just rest with the sensations and whatever images and words come up. If it seems helpful, I may ask a few simple inquiry questions just to clarify what’s here. For instance, an image may come up, I sense it feels like a problem or a threat, so I can ask if it is.
When the fear underlying the resistance is unmet, unloved, and unquestioned, there is that unconscious identification with it and its scary story about my experience, myself, and the world. As soon as the resistance or fear is noticed, there is some distance to it and some disidentification. There is room to relate to it more intentionally and with kindness and curiosity. There is room to give it what it wants, which is often to be met with kindness, allowed as it is, held in presence, understood, treated with respect.
Note: I realize I took the reasons for exploring this as a given, and only addressed it indirectly above. I see two reasons. One is that being unconsciously identified with scary stories means I perceive through this filter and live as if these scary stories are true, or at least somewhat true. That can create some problems in my life. I may live and act in ways I wouldn’t if there was more clarity around the fear. Also, being identified with scary stories is in itself uncomfortable. Resting with what’s there, and see more clearly the components making it up, allows it to soften and relax.