What does it mean to say YES to the world? And why would we?
First, what does it mean?
It means to say an internal YES to whatever is in our world – the situation and people, and our own emotions, thoughts, sensations, and whatever else is here.
It’s an intentional shift in orientation from the NO parts of us have towards the world to a YES.
Why would we say YES to the world?
Mainly for pragmatic reasons.
What’s here is already here. We are too late in doing anything about it. If I fight it, I just create additional stress and distractions for myself. If I say YES to it, the stress and drama calms down and I am in a better position to relate to it more consciously and do something about it if that’s appropriate.
Saying YES to my world is a kindness to myself. It helps me act more from clarity and kindness.
How do we do it?
For me, it’s easier to ask myself a question:
Can I say YES to what’s here?
How is it to say YES to this situation? To what I am experiencing now?
Can I say YES to the “no” in me?
This opens the mind to the possibility. It opens for curiosity. It helps me connect with the side of me that already says YES to this experience.
Does it mean being gullible or passive?
Not at all.
It just means to allow some of the drama to settle and finding the more clear side of myself. I’ll still act if that’s needed, and I may do it a little more effectively.
Aligning with reality
This is not only pragmatic. It’s also an expression of what we already are.
The reality is that we are already “built open” for the world, as Douglas Harding says. What we are is this awake no-thing that’s open for the world as it is. What we are is built with an inherent YES to the world.
By asking ourselves can I say YES to what’s here? a few things may happen. One of these is that we notice what we are and live from it, especially if this is available to us from experience.
Getting to know the NO in us
A side-effect of this is that we get to see the NO in us. We get to see the parts of us that say “no” to life or a situation.
It’s very natural and understandable that we have these sides of us. They were created from separation consciousness, and there is often a lot of pain and fear in there.
When we get to know them more closely, we may see that they are here to protect us and really come from and are an expression of love. They also come from painful beliefs, identifications, and sometimes trauma.
They come from unloved and unexamined fear.
By saying YES to the “no” in us, we acknowledge these sides of us while not getting caught in them.
A what-if orientation
These type of explorations work best if they come from a what-if orientation.
What if I do this? What happens?
This also opens from some receptivity, curiosity, and even playfulness.
Where does this pointer come from?
The YES to the world is something we find in many places – from poets to psychologists, philosophers, mystics, and some spiritual traditions. It’s one of the things we discover if we explore ourselves and how we relate to the world, and what works and doesn’t work so well. It’s also what we discover when we discover what we are, and explore this for a while in daily life.
I suspect that I got the “YES to the world” wording from Adyashanti although I don’t have a clear memory of where from. (I haven’t taken in much from spirituality for the last several years.)
Why do I write about this now?
Well, the answer is almost given. This is something I have explored and applied in my own life over the last few days. It’s something I have returned to since I have needed it. A lot of primal fear has come up, partly triggered by working on and exploring it in myself.
What it is / isn’t
Pragmatic, makes it easier
say yes to the no in us + get to see / explore the “no” in us (parts, beliefs, fears)
discover through inquiry
aligned w. reality
from Adya? (not sure, years since listened/read much from sp. teachers)