In a world that strives on letting us know we are not enough, the practice of contentment can feel fleeting. We want more it seems before we are even grateful for what we already have. Recently, I was watching a special on Nat Geo about Generation X. It highlighted the developments of the 70's 80's 90's. Basically, it was a "LOOK AT ALL THIS COOL STUFF!!!" show. A culture shift of "I want it and I want it NOW!" A culture of winners versus losers and being a loser SUCKS so you better do whatever you can to be a winner even if it means being a bully, altering yourself through addiction just to keep up or much worse, throwing all your efforts into making sure someone else fails so you can win. It was a depressing look at the reality this world.
Looking from the outside, contentment seems to be about material things. That is where we go astray. "If I have this, then I will be happy (content)." The only problem with that is we never feel "at home" with ourselves. We just keep piling on more stuff, more stress, more control, more and more. It's a vicious cycle that, for some, may never end, until the end. The other day, my friend and I were hiking at a local nature sanctuary. We talked about being content with where we are in life, even at times when our plans don't match God's plans. She referenced a time when her and her husband talked about purchasing a bigger home, but now being able to see the contentment she feels as a MOM to her kids. Spending time and not money. Living in a smaller home allowed her to stay home and be with her kids, even though there was always the dream of a "dream house", she really has a "dream life". In a time where we are bombarded with images of "happiness" relating to "things" on social media, it is an even bigger accomplishment to be content in our own moments.
Santosa is about shifting our focus. Instead of seeking contentment from the outside, we find it from the inside. Can this moment be enough? It is a practice of being still with faith, with an open heart and open mind. It begins with gratitude for everything that has brought you to this moment. Can you remember that "you are God's son in whom he is well pleased."--A Course in Miracles Can you begin to shift your focus to letting go of the culture of "you are not enough" and know that you are enough, HERE and NOW. Live from a place of contentment. Starting today, it is a practice that must be nourished in every moment for the rest of our time.
As you move throughout the rest of your day, ask yourself in every moment, "Am I willing to accept what is?"