Do you sometimes feel the world is against you? You feel like you are climbing up a steep hill with gusty winds push you down and a three hundred pounds weights on your shoulder. Why do things have to be so hard? Why can it be more straightforward? Or do you ever have this inkling inside and know that you are tired of grinding but don’t know what else to do?
Moments like those, what should we do? Should we give up? Should we push harder?
Why should we surrender?
The truth is that many of us are taught that to have things happen in life, we need to take actions. We need to work hard. We need to be a type A personality and push it. Googled around and you will find many articles about how to set goals and achieve them.
If you are like me sometimes, it is discouraging to read those articles. Yes. I see and understand that it is THE MOST POPULAR WAY to achieve but somehow it does not feel right and I wonder if there is a different way to manifest.
What am I about to share with you is that different way – It’s not the only way but a way worth for us to explore. It is about surrender and the power of surrender.
A different perspective and way to support you to manifest greater doings from a place of intention.
A greater doing is an active engagement from within. A place of being which allows us to be carrying in the flow of something bigger than us.
One might ask what surrender is.
In the dictionary, The definition of surrender is “cease resistance to an enemy or opponent and submit to their authority. OR give up or hand over (a person, right, or possession), typically on compulsion or demand. ”
However, if you look at the words apart. Sur means over, above. Render means become. The word, surrender, can mean becoming something greater.
My spiritual teacher, Samuel Sagan, described surrender is when you hit the conclusion, “I can’t do it. It just doesn’t work. And you surrender totally; you open to the light.” He further defined surrendering as a way of turning up to the soul and wait for something to come to you. It is a compelling direction to let something bigger than you work through you.
Surrender brings opening. Opening to what is inside of you – strength, light, wisdom. Life experience will remain shallow even if they are explosive, attractive, captivating without the dimension of the opening.
The Mother, a spiritual guru, and a collaborator of Sri Aurobindo described what surrender is about, ” The most important surrender is the surrender of your character, your way of being, so that it may change. If you do not surrender your very own nature, never will this nature change. It is this that is most important. You have certain ways of understanding, certain ways of reacting, certain ways of feeling, almost certain ways of progressing, and above all, a special way of looking at life and expecting from it certain things – well, it is this you must surrender. That is, if you truly want to receive the divine Light and transform yourself, it is your whole way of being you must offer – offer by opening it, making it as receptive as possible so that the divine Consciousness which sees how you ought to be, may act directly and change all these movements into movements more true, more in keeping with your real truth. ”
Chameli Ardagh of Awaken Women Institute described a path of surrender is a surrender to your Self and your big Self. In surrender, you find your power, and in bowing down, you see your dignity. It is in that moment of getting out of our way; we find our way.
How to Surrender: 7 Steps to Greater Flow in Life
The idea of surrender is scary and so foreign. However, In surrendering, something wise and open can merge from within. It is also about letting go of control and trust something more significant than us to work through us. Rise to a standpoint that is different from our smallness and limitation.
In my meditation practice, surrendering is also so necessary. I let go of how or what meditation experience I should have and surrender into the unknown, into the open and graciously receive the lessons. When I apply, this know-how of surrender in daily life, it is about letting of control of the trust. It is also about turning my worries to the unknown and ask for help.
The process of surrender is genuinely a beautiful process of turning inward – opening, receiving and connecting.
Dare to try it? May I suggest steps that work for me and feel free to modify to what works best for you!
Protocols for surrendering:
- Become aware of the resistance
- Ask yourself: what is it that you are resisting?
- What is the desired outcome if there are no fears?
- Take ten deep breaths, and with each breath – let go of you need to take care or control
- Feel a sense of lightness or opening
- Patiently wait
- Something will click inside and inspiration for the next step will come
A Story of Surrender: Why are you sharing this tale?
King Janaka had read that Knowledge could be attained in the time it takes to mount a horse. He became eager for attaining spiritual knowledge and called a meeting of all the rishis, scholars and mahatmas in the land and had a stage built. He said, “Whoever can reveal to me True Knowledge in the length of time that it takes to mount a horse, please come and sit on the stage.”
The assembled crowd thought that this was an impossible request and so kept quiet. Just then, an ugly hunchback with bent limbs, entered the court.
The people laughed and jeered at him in their ignorance. After receiving their insults, the hunchback started to laugh. When asked as to why he was laughing, he said, “I was under the impression that this was a meeting of saints and sages, and not of cobblers and dealers in prostitution.” The king asked him what he meant by that. “Judging the beauty and appearance of the skin is the work of cobblers and people who deal with prostitutes,” replied the hunchback.
Hearing this reply, the king realized that he was a Realized Soul and sought Knowledge from him. His name was Ashtavakra (one whose limbs are bent in eight places). Ashtavakra asked, “O king, are you sure that you really want your request granted?” “There is no doubt whatever in my mind,” replied the king. “I am seeking for the True Knowledge with the utmost earnestness.”
Addressing the king, Ashtavakra said, “King Janaka, there is a price that must be paid for obtaining this. Are you prepared to pay it, no matter what it may be?” “Yes,” said the king.
“Then I will tell you the price. The price consists of three things that you must give me – your body, your mind, and your wealth. Is this agreeable to you?” “Yes,” replied the king. Ashtavakra then said, “You should think this matter over very carefully, and only after thorough deliberation should you promise to hand over to me these three things.”
“I have already given the matter the most careful thought. There is no doubt whatever in my mind. I will be glad to pay the price,” said the king.
“Now that you have surrendered everything to me, will you please leave your throne and come down and sit where all the shoes of your subjects are lying?” said Ashtavakra.
The king was quite annoyed at this but soon realized that he had already given everything to the rishi. So he quietly left his throne and sat among the shoes. When Ashtavakra made this request, he was aware that many people do not advance spiritually because of their sense of ego, honor, and glory.
When the king had seated himself amongst the shoes, the sage told him, “Now, please do not allow your mind to think of your wealth, since you now have no wealth of your own to think about. It all belongs to me.”
At that time, the king had in fact been thinking about his treasury, palace, kingdom and family. Now he realized that nothing belonged to him and he gave up the thought of these things. Like a bird in mid-ocean that comes back to the ship, the king’s mind returned to its center.
“This mind is now mine. You have no right to think with it or to desire with it,” said the sage. The king withdrew his attention from all objective existence and concentrated his mind within. Due to the gracious glance of the rishi, his mind went up to the higher planes of spiritual existence and merged in the Inner Bliss. He became silent and still.
After some time, the sage brought the king’s mind down to the body and said, “Have you obtained the True Knowledge that you requested?” “Yes, Mahatmaji, and it is far greater, glorious and blissful than I had ever dreamed it could be,” said the king.
Ashtavakra said, “O king, I have no need for your body, mind or wealth and so I return them to you. You are to act as a trustee and use them on my behalf.
By giving up everything, you have received the All.
*See resources below for the credit of the story*
Practicing surrender is a practice of your truth. In the process, we reconnect with the light even in the midst of the darkness.
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