Discontent and Contentment
Shambhavi riffs on the necessity of discontent to waking up and how the play of contentment and discontentment helps to invigorate our spiritual practice.
Satsang with Shambhavi is a weekly podcast about spirituality, love, death, devotion and waking up while living in a messy world.
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FIRST WORDS FROM THE PODCAST
I’m gonna talk about contentment versus discontentment. One of the great things about our reality is that it works the same way at every level. So, whether you’re a person living in a lot of darkness, experiencing a lot of compulsion, feeling that your life is out of control or controlled by intense emotions and desires, or whether you’re a person who’s doing a lot of spiritual practice every day and has your heart and mind focused on waking up, you’re really operating with the same basic components of your life. There really isn’t any big break between someone who’s, say, controlled by lust or controlled by alcohol or drugs, and someone whose doing meditation every day and leading a clean and sober life.
Both of those situations are governed by the play of discontentment and contentment. It’s just a matter of how much awareness, how big of a view, and how much compulsion somebody is under when they’re experiencing discontentment. So, discontentment, or we could just say a feeling of lack that gives rise to a desire to do something about that feeling of lack, is built into reality. It’s a feeling of lack and discontentment with feeling lack that causes someone to shoot heroin. It also causes someone to seek a spiritual teacher. I mean, it’s the same feeling. It’s just expressed in a different way. So, it’s really beautiful how the same feeling of discontentment and lack, or the perception of lack and the discontentment that arises because of that, is driving all of us in different ways. It means that we don’t have to experience so much separation between all of the different people who are experiencing lack in their own way.
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