The seeking of a calm, I think, is a good thing to do. It’s not easy though. One of the ironies of calm is that a person must work for it. Not only that, the work a person must do to achieve calm generally involves pain and turmoil. What? Do you think its just handed to you? To find calm, a person must be uncalm.
It seems to me that calm requires two qualites. Both of these are diametrically opposed to each other. These are:
1. The embracing of calm. This means that we must open ourselves to being calm. Many times, we won’t let ourselves be calm. If only we’d let ourselves be calm, then we’d be calm. This is why its good to just practice sitting and being calm. Sometimes, its amazing how calm we really are, if we only allow ourselves to be. Oftentimes, we won’t allow ourselves to be calm because we have fancy explanations of why we shouldn’t. This means that when we are uptight and such, we should review how we justify our being uptight. By having an explanation that we accept, we allow ourselves to become uptight. Knowing how we justify our being uptight helps us to achieve calm.
2. Fighting the aspects about ourselves that prevent a calm. We are not all calm by nature. Humanity is not a stagnant beast that sits, but is very restless and full of energy. Life also instills restlessness within us with all its myriad situations and problems. That’s the way it is. This unrest and uptightness we feel prevents a calm within us. It as if steals it away from us. Much of this unrest and uptightness does us no good. Like weeds in a garden its good to try to weed this useless unrest and uptightness out. What this means is that to find a calm we will have to fight that aspects of ourselves. In effect, we will struggle with ourselves – our worst enemy – oftentimes. This can lead to great conflict and turmoil. We need conflict and pain to be human. The trick is in weeding out what we don’t need.
But, we must be cautious, to truly be calm we need conflict. Calm, in my opinion, is not just being quiet mentally. It is not a ridding of oneself of all the conflict and pain of life. On, the contray, calm is the accepting of conflict and pain. Calm is being quiet in the midst of conflict and pain. Because of this, by ridding oneself of conflict and pain in life, calm is impossible to achieve.
Calm, then, requires a great acceptance of pain and conflict in life. It requires a great coming-to-terms with these facts in our lives. It also requires us to have a good healthy attitude toward pain and conflict. This means you can’t shirk from it, hide from it, or explain it away. Calm, in my opinion, requires great courage to achieve because one must confont the fact of conflict and pain in life face-to-face. This lack of courage, I think, is why calm is so hard to achieve. Do you think this courage just happens? In some ways, this is the greatest of all courage, the most difficult to achieve.
Calm is not just calm, but more than that. Calm is an acceptance of life. Calm is an acceptance of ones position. Calm is the acceptance of who we are.