It’s useful and important to have a sense inside yourself of moving through chaos with absolute truthfulness, integrity, and honesty. These are the energies that keep you from losing balance.– Adyashanti in The Autonomy of Unified Spirit
Why would Adya mention this?
Because it’s not a given. When we experience outer and, more importantly, inner chaos, it’s easy to be caught up in this chaos. We can lose our sense of center. We can lose our direction. We can lose whatever truthfulness, integrity, and honesty we had and lived from when things were calmer.
How can we find this sense in us?
Bringing awareness to this is the first step.
We can set an intention to find it and live from it, although this really works only when we are ready for it.
We can relate to the chaotic and suffering parts of us with more kindness, for instance through heart-centered practices (ho’oponopno, tonglen, metta). That makes it a little easier to not react to them and act from this reactivity, and not join in with the painful stories within them and act from these.
We can examine what happens when we don’t do it, when we get caught up in and partially live from the chaos. We can make a list of what has happened in the past in these situations. This helps sober us up and find a more genuine motivation to not join in with and act from our inner chaos.
We can identify the stressful beliefs in us that bring us out of truthfulness, integrity, and honesty, and examine these and find what’s more true for us. (The Work of Byron Katie.) We can also examine any identifications and fears that bring us out of it. (Living Inquiries.)
We can identify the emotional issues behind going out of it and invite in healing for these. It’s often the pain in emotional issues that we react to when we join in with the chaos and act on it.
We can also notice what we are and that all this chaos and reactivity happens within and as what we are. This can also make it a little easier to not get caught up in it and relate to it all more intentionally.
Another side of this is finding genuine forgiveness for ourselves for the times we have been caught up in our inner chaos and acted from it, and possibly hurt others and ourselves. Admitting to what happened – to ourselves and perhaps others – is a support in doing it differently next time.
And forgiving ourselves does the same. We acted from our pain and perhaps created more pain. We can take responsibility for this and for what happened. We can feel whatever feelings come up in us from it. (Anger, sadness etc.) We can also see that when we humans act in this way, it comes from confusion and is, in a sense, innocent. And that doesn’t in any way give us a free pass for doing it again.
What is this chaos Adya talks about?
I don’t know how he would describe it.
For me, it’s the internal chaos that happens when we join with triggered and painful parts of us, or go into struggle with these. In both cases, we join with and act from painful beliefs, identifications, and emotional issues.
This feels like chaos because these parts of us come from separation consciousness and are at odds with reality. They are at odds with other unhealed parts of us, and they are also at odds with the more healthy and sane parts of us.
When we join in with these painful stories and views, we create a sense of internal chaos and this is often reflected in how we act and live our life.