When we engage in an authentic spiritual practice, we have the responsibility to change ourselves. With that personal responsibility, there is a requirement of additional thoughtfulness. Otherwise, what tends to happen is that as we are empowered by our contact with creative energy, our egos get energized. Then what our sense of personal responsibility does with that power facilitates change in us, but that change gets expressed in conventional pathways. Our commitment to our own lives collapses into a kind of self-centeredness that is aligned with the conventional values of our culture.
I can’t think of a time when the circumstances I have felt personally responsible for haven’t turned into a disappointment. Any sense of commitment we have to worldly endeavor almost always gives rise to some profound sense of failure. The fact of the matter is that maybe it isn’t a failure. Maybe it’s just that the possibilities that are available to us in the world from our ordinary states are intrinsically limited. That kind of endeavor isn’t a place where we should be looking for fulfillment in the first place. In the beginning, middle and end, fulfillment exists only in us.
I used to think that sadhus went into caves in the mountains for long term retreats in order to have some kind of spiritual attainment. Now I don’t believe that’s why they went on retreat. It’s my opinion that they went on retreat to get away from people so that their natural awareness of the profound abundance at the core of their being would not be disturbed by all the insanity that goes on in the world.
The solution to all of our personal problems and issues is present within ourselves. We truly need do nothing other than establish contact with our own deepest resource, align ourselves with that deepest resource every day, and flow in that resource in our daily lives as it flows within us. Contact, alignment and flow are the essence of a fulfilled life. That is what we need to take personal responsibility for.