There are No Problems
When we say that “something is a problem,” what we are saying is that something is limiting our freedom. Keeping us from doing what we want to do.
On the Wisdom Path, we like to differentiate between problems and obstacles.
Initially, obstacles and problems will appear to be the same. However, when you are engaged in your daily Practice, it becomes clear that some challenges are presented to us, but most of the challenges we will encounter are self-created.
In life, things do arise that on the surface appear to be beyond our control, but often this is merely a matter of perception. For the person living an ordinary life with little or no interest in self-exploration, introspection, contemplation, and meditation, life is a necessary struggle and suffering is something always around the next corner. Pain, loss, disease, and death will always intervene at some unexpected moment when things were going just fine. For this individual, obstacles and problems are the same. But for the individual on the Wisdom Path, a problem is nothing more than the result of limited ordinary thinking. An obstacle on the other hand is a “real” situation or circumstance that needs to be overcome or transcended. Something is considered an obstacle because it reduces our effectiveness, limits our freedom, usually brings us some level of discomfort, and keeps us from getting what we want or need, irrespective of our attitude about it. Obstacles come in many types, shapes and forms. Some are the result of our genetic or biological make up, while others are a reflection of events, circumstances, market forces, and environmental conditions that surround us.
Part of one’s daily practice needs to focus on the organizing of obstacles so they can be effectively addressed. When done effectively and efficiently, and with a sense of love and detachment, this is itself a form of chopping wood and carrying water.
In my Practice, I divide obstacles that may arise into four primary groups or classes:
- Personal Resource Obstacles
- Internal Obstacles
- External Obstacles
- Belief Based Obstacles.
Though all of these are important, it is Belief Based Obstacles that cause us to struggle and suffer.
Let’s explore each of these:
1. Personal Resource Obstacles reflect our skills or lack of skill. Poor time management skills, shyness, scarcity of friends, a weak support system, or an inability to use technology effectively, all reflect obstacles in our ability to use our skills effectively.
2. Internal Obstacles are a result of genetic or biological factors that, for the most par, are beyond ones control. These might include height, gender or whether we have some genetic predisposition for a skill or an illness.
3. External Obstacles are created by the external environment or changes in such an environment. In business, these obstacles exist when the demand for a good or service increases or decreases in such a way as to negatively influence one’s ability to obtain the a particular good or service at the best possible cost. Personally external obstacles might limit our ability to find like-minded people, a quiet place to meditate, or might even influence global warming. If you are a man living in Alaska seeking a mate, you are at the effect of an external obstacle – there are a lot more men in Alaska than women. Of course few obstacles are insurmountable and a clear thinking person, with clear intention can transcend such a situation.
4. Belief Based Obstacles are most of what happens in our life. Our beliefs influence virtually every aspect of our lives. It is our beliefs that create the rules we choose to live by. Our beliefs influence the procedures and paradigms that our lives are made of. Many of these beliefs may interfere with our Practice, and with productivity and effectiveness in utilizing the resources that are readily available to us.
Lewis Harrison is an American Author, Success Coach and entrepreneur. He is pioneer in the wellness and alternative medicine movements. He is the author of nine books on holistic and health nutrition including Healing Depression Naturally, Master Your Metabolism, the Complete Fats and Oils Book, and 3- Day Body Purification. He has an Institute through which his Nutrition work is taught www.LewisharrisonsNaturalhealing Academy.com, and a Nutrition Spa and Retreat Center – Thecatskillsbedandbreakfast.com. and offers a free online course on how to be happier. Lewis may be contacted at LewisHeals@gmail.com