As Complete as Possible

Excerpt from "Happiness and Completion," by Ken McLeod:

For me, spiritual practice is now not so much about happiness as about completion, a way of experiencing life that is as complete as possible in each and every moment.

...when we see and accept what is actually happening, even if it is very difficult or painful, mind and body relax, and in that rest, there is an exquisite quality that comes through just experiencing what arises, completely, with no separation.

Some might call it joy, but it is not a giddy or excited joy. Rather it is a deep and quiet joy, a joy that, in some sense is always there, waiting for us, but usually touched only when some challenge, pain, or tragedy leaves us with no other option.

Others might call it truth, but this is a loaded and misleading word, carrying with it the notion of something that exists apart from experience itself. The notion of truth also sets up an opposition, with what is held to be false, and such duality necessarily leads to hierarchy, authority, and institutional thinking and its associated forms of mind killing.

... the desire for happiness itself is a form of suffering as it leads to a struggle with experience, e.g., in the context of relationships, the desire for continual happiness undermines emotional connection.

Thus, for me, the purpose of practice is how to be with whatever arises in this experience we call 'life', nothing more, and nothing less. Everything we do in practice is aimed at the development of the willingness, skills, and capacities needed to experience life this way.

Read the complete essay…