Striving

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I recently downloaded a trial version of some software to convert audio files from one format to another. It worked well but was limited to file lengths of 5 minutes or less. A few days before I downloaded an app to combine multiple bracketed exposures of digital photographs into a single high definition composite -or HDR- image. Only the files were saved with the software watermark in the background. To get the full version I had to pay a small fee and then a key or registration code was emailed to me which allowed me to “unlock” the full version of the software. I was glad to do this. The amount of money was small and I was happy to support the developer who had created tools that I found very useful.

But in neither case did I need to download any additional software, only a 16 digit numerical code. The program and the intelligence behind it was there on my hard drive all along. Just needed to be released.

We are much like trial versions of software, living lives in some way limited or living with an imprint in the background. Trial versions of life, unrealized but complete. everything needed on our heart-drive. Waiting to be unlocked.

Mindfulness teaches that we are complete. We do not need to strive to become. We need only to access that which is already present.

The foundatatios of mindfulness as outlined by Jon Kabat-Zinn are non-judging, patience, a beginners mind, trust, non-striving, acceptance and letting go. In this we are speaking of non-striving. Or to quote Kabat-Zinn:

Although it takes a lot of work and energy of a certain kind, ultimately meditation is non-doing. It has no goal other that for you to be yourself. The irony is that you already are. This sounds paradoxical and a little crazy. And yet the paradox and craziness may be pointing you toward a new way of seeing yourself, one in which you are trying less and being more. This comes from intentionally cultivating the attitude of non striving.

Jon Kabat-Zinn Full Castrophe Living, Random House

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