Some time ago, I suggested to you to go inside and reflect upon what gives you “security” in life.
Did you do it? What did you find out?
Let’s take a quick look at what we normally do and need to feel secure.
Firstly, it is essential that our basic human needs are met: shelter, food and water, access to health care, education. Unfortunately, many people in this world still do not have this luxury and need to fight for survival every day. One thing we can learn from this undesirable state is to be grateful for what we have received. And to stop complaining! Still, having our basic needs met does not automatically lead to feeling safe and secure.
Our mental health is another very important factor. Many of us have experienced or are still experiencing that we do not feel secure, even if all our basic physical/material needs are met; even if we live in abundance, own a large house, and enjoy a lot of amenities. I have been in that place where my mental wellbeing was the opposite of my material status. It wasn’t pretty but it helped me to change my life! If we experience anxiety, fear, being depressed or are just so stressed out that we cannot relax our entire system is constantly under pressure and we cannot experience “security”.
Now, what do we usually do to feel secure?
A common pattern is that we accumulate money and material possessions and expect to get security from things in the outside world: houses, cars, insurance to cover all kinds of risks, stock portfolios, relationships and routines, etc. Quite pronounced is also our intention to create a fixed, stable self-image based on who we think we are (our roles, qualities, talents, social status, appearance, money and possessions, intellectual capacity, etc.) and what we achieve in the world (career level, role and position, success or failure, being an expert in our field, sports, etc.).
Now, the big disillusionment I was in for and I guess you too is that nothing in the outside world is stable. Everything changes in our lives at a slower or faster pace, but we tend to ignore this truth and want to hold on to all the things which are impermanent. It is like attempting to hold on to the splendid sunny autumn day, well knowing that a storm is forecast for the next day. This is futile! And, even the things which seem to be relatively stable (like a long-term relationship or a job we had for many years) can change or be gone at any given moment. It is totally fine to have a house, own things or have a career, but none of them can give us real, permanent security.
These insights might be uncomfortable and disturbing right now but they are essential for letting go our false sense of security. So, the very first step on our journey is to become aware of our attachment to “outside security” and step by step disconnect from it.
It is essential to acknowledge these simple truths:
“Everything is changing” and thus
“Nothing outside myself can give me real security”
Take a few moments to let this sink in and observe what is happening inside.
You might want to use the following questions:
Are you calm? Or is there resistance?
Is your mind looking for proof that actually there is stability in the outside world?
Just observe the emotions and your state of mind. And become aware of what is going on right now.
Now, is there a way to have “real security”?
I will share my personal experiences from the last years with you in the third post of thes series about security.