Life Without Limits: Seeing Beyond Appearances
By Art Ramsay, Ph.D.

 Have you asked questions like “why am I here?” or “what is life about?”? Or maybe, “why is this happening?” and so on. Life is full of questions with no apparent answers. We just carry on from day to day hoping the answers will come and make our lives seem to have a purpose.

 As anyone who has been reading my articles knows, there are two ways to look at your life: the Earthly or physical life, and your spiritual life. They are not the same; even though they may appear so. Your spiritual life, and I don’t mean religious, is being who you really are, while your physical life is how you carry out your purpose for being here. Let me explain.

 Most of us live each day viewing our body as who we are, since it is how we view the world through our five senses. From the time we wake up in the morning until we fall asleep at night, we are very aware of our body. When we think, which is not something we can sense by feeling, touching, tasting, seeing, or hearing, we are taught it is a function of our brain, which is physical.

 If we are only a body, then we are obviously limited as to what we can do; or are we? Depending on how you care for your body relative to its strength, vitality, and training, some can do things others cannot. But this still leaves us with bodily limitations.

 History tells us that Spiritual Masters, such as Jesus, Buddha, Tao Te Ching, and Krishna had human bodies, yet performed feats beyond the physical. If we are only bodies, then how did they do that and we can’t. The answer is fairly obvious: they knew that they were not just a body, but something more. They had no physical limitations, because in their minds they knew better.

 Those Masters, and dozens like them were able to look beyond what seemed real, to what was actually happening in each circumstance. Now this is subtle most of the time, while it can be obvious. For example, you are talking with a friend and suddenly he or she gets angry. You think it is something you said and get annoyed with the person. But if you observed that the person was looking behind you when the anger arose, you would have seen a former spouse walking past.

 The above was a physical example, but most “seeing beyond appearances” is not physical. For example, you say or do something to another person that causes that person to explode in anger. You are not sure why until the person tells you that you insulted him/her and should apologize. You did not think the remark insulting and tell them so. You both depart in anger.

 What really happened there? Looking beyond the accusation of insulting the person, you see that he/she is responding to an old psychological wound from years ago not necessarily from you. Another example might be that you pass an old friend and smile but she looks the other way and ignores you. Instead of getting upset that she snubbed you, you could just see her as a God Being that may be going through a hard time right now.

 One more example that shows you where the problem lies in most situations. You are on your way to a week at the beach with your family and look forward to a great time. Having studied the map you determine that your final drive from the interstate to the beach will take an hour, so you look forward to getting there. However, time drags on and the hour passes with you not anywhere near the beach. You begin to feel anger at the slow traffic and winding road. You finally arrive and cannot find the resort after following instructions you received. You yell at the kids and fume at your wife.

 The above situation is one of “attachment to outcomes” and not getting your expectations met. Looking beyond appearances, the situation has noting to do with the winding, slow road or traffic. It has to do with you being attached to getting there at a certain time. This kind of event happens more often than any other; that is, you are the one causing your problems. When you can see this by seeing beyond the appearance of something else, you will live a happier, more fulfilling life.

 Looking beyond appearances is not an easy task, because we are living from our past beliefs that have been stored in our unconscious mind. All it takes is a “trigger” to bring that belief into some event you experience. The belief could have come from something you experienced years before, mostly from childhood.

 The way around these kinds of events that may send you life into a tailspin is live in the present moment and be willing to look beyond appearances to what is really going on. While it may seem a daunting task at first, the more you practice being mindful and “in the moment”, the easier it will be to avoid the kind of pitfalls described above.

 While we may not have the spiritual power in the moment as did the Spiritual Masters, it is within us to acknowledge and use it. We all have power to “move mountains” as described by Jesus. It is all in knowing who you are as a spiritual being, and then acting on this knowing.

 Does it take years of study and practice? Maybe; it all depends on what you are willing to do. You can move away from energy vibrations that are low, like hate or judging, and move into high vibrations like joy and happiness, and especially love. Love is all there is; move into its vibration and stay there and you are free to move beyond perceived appearances.


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