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More Is Never Enough

June 9, 2007

 

There is in each of us a sense of lack and therefore of needing more. I need more approval. I need more money. I need more stuff. I need more status. I need more love, more appreciation, more fulfillment. I need more experiences, more knowledge, including more spiritual experiences. I need more. Always more.

What I have is never enough. What I am is never enough. Always inadequate. I am always feeling like whatever I do, however much I accumulate, however much I learn, however many friends I have, however beautiful my house is, however much I have accomplished, however fast my computer is or my network connection, it is never enough. I always feel this lack. If only I can get this much more, maybe twice as much as what I have now, then I will be happy. But it never is true. Whatever I have, whatever I do, whatever more I get, it is never enough. I can kill myself doing social work, and it is never enough. I can have a hundred wild altered states of consciousness, but it isn't enough. I can own five houses in five countries, but I still feel this lack in me. So I go after more and more and more to fill this lack, and it never works. More is never enough.

So I think it would be really helpful to understand what this lack is in us.

Why do I think I lack anything? Is it just a story I was told that I believed, that I repeated to myself until it became a well-worn neural pathway? You're not rich enough. You're not sexy enough. You're not thin enough. You're not smart enough. You need this new car, or that new house, or this other exotic vacation! Did I take that in and give it a home? Whatever I feel I lack, someone is ready to sell it to me.

Or is this feeling of lack a true perception? Is this an echo of what the mind must know about itself? Really, I am nothing.

There is all this empty space between thoughts. All this silence. When I go to sleep at night, I cease to exist at all! And the mind can't grab hold of it, can't see it, can't describe it, can't plumb its depths. So it dismisses it. Yet the silence is so pervasive; It is everything and everywhere. It is ever present. It is unavoidable, try as we might to avoid it.

Maybe that is the lack. I know that ultimately, I am empty. Really lacking!

The mind tries to fill all the space with itself, so it doesn't have to face its ultimate emptiness, which it cannot understand or control. The mind tries to find fulfillment in more, and more, and more. And it can't. It never works. It can't work!

I think the solution is obvious. If running away doesn't work, turn toward it. Turn toward this emptiness, this sense of lack. Get to know it.

There is nothing to fear in this. You have been running from yourself your whole life. Turn and become acquainted with the emptiness you have been running away from.

Then you can embrace your body, your thoughts, your experience, the Earth, without the fear of the emptiness they embody. See your thoughts and feelings and experiences in a new light. See the Earth with fresh eyes. Listen with open ears. Soften your identification with particular thought patterns or feelings. Then there is nothing to defend and nothing to improve. The amazing wealth of silence, of emptiness, is realized. And the fear of lack and the need for more fall away, maybe suddenly, maybe over time.

You were wrong about the emptiness. It isn't empty at all. It is everything. What more could you possibly need or want than the whole living world?


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