Monday, December 25, 2006

David Deida on Living Our Truth

David Deida offers an interesting and useful look at how we integrate truth over time and how that process translates into our experience of sexuality.
This week's blue truth

Live Your Heart's Truth

The truth is easier to know than to feel, and easier to feel than to live.

Everybody knows the truth about something. For instance, most people know that it is unhealthy to eat too many sweets. Of those who know it, less feel the truth while they munch a box of cookies. Fewer still change their behavior, once and for all, on the basis of knowing and feeling the truth.

It is much harder to live the truth than to feel it or know it. Knowledge is easiest. The mind is more malleable than the emotions or the body, and so the mind is relatively swift to change. You can hear something and immediately know the truth of it. Then you can tell it to others. You can write about it. You can create a whole philosophy based on it. And still not much changes in your life. You can know the truth—for instance, exercise improves cardiovascular fitness—and then still sit on your butt.

After your mind has grasped the truth, your emotions are next to change over time. Often years of suffering are necessary before the truth of something sinks in deep enough for your tears to flow and enthusiasm to grow in response to how true something is. Yet even highly developed emotional intelligence—your capacity to feel the truth with great sensitivity and nuance—is not sufficient for real growth.

The last part of you to be transformed by truth is your body. Being more solid than your mind or emotions, your body changes last. You will know what you are supposed to do, and you will feel the truth of it, long before you are willing to live it with your body. You may know that you can’t afford a new dress or another trip to Las Vegas, you may feel the truth making you nervous and queasy, and yet you may not be ready to live the truth—so you plunk down your credit card and go through the usual motions, as guilty as you may feel. Your body’s habits—the motions you go through—are the most stubborn, the most rigid, and the least yielding to truth.

Because your body is the thickest part of your self-process, sex is often the last part of your life to be transformed by truth. First, you know that love could be the basis for sex. Then, you learn to feel your lover emotionally during the tumble of passion. Finally, you learn to live your motions as love during sex.

Even during the most erotic, pleasurable, or painful sexual moments, you can learn to breathe as love, writhe as love, thrust as love, receive as love, and speak as love. Sex can become the doing of love with your entire body. Sexually, and in every moment throughout the day, you can do love by opening out, feeling everybody, inhaling the entire moment full of pain and pleasure, and exhaling love to all from your heart as you go through your motions as love.

You can train your body, like a marathon runner, to go the distance as love. When you are tired and want to collapse, give love through your breath and actions just a few more minutes. Offer a smile, lend a hand, or caress your lover, for just a moment more than your habit would curtail. Over time, your life opens as love’s doing, more and more.

Throughout the day, slow down and feel your heart beating. Feel deep in your heart for the source of love’s flow. Let your body open as love by softening your belly and breathing in and out of your heart. Offer your deep heart to all through your breath, and allow love to move your body every moment you can remember.How would love wash a dish? While standing at the kitchen sink, breathing love in and out of your heart, feeling outward to the moment’s open edge, how does your body rub the soapy sponge across the surface of each plate?

How can you give your open heart-truth to your coworkers, even when you disagree with them? Should you smile, tell jokes, act efficient, touch them, or walk away and give them space? Day by day, practice unfolding love as your body’s skillful offering, from your deep heart outward to the moment’s open horizon.

Knowing the truth is fairly useless; feeling it is profound; living it makes all the difference.

~ Excerpt from Way of the Superior Man

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