Tuesday, August 12, 2014

On Surrender

Surrender is one of the best spiritual practices there is, no question about it, but it’s good to understand what surrender can do for us. When we hear the word, most of us probably go back in memory to early 20th Century American western films with good guys and bad guys trying to get the upper hand, usually with lots of guns blazing. If one group won the skirmish, the others had to raise their hands in submission and say, “I surrender.” Bad example of a good mental/spiritual practice.

Give over, not give up...

A fine metaphysical author and teacher, Ervin Seale, had a wonderful take on surrender when he said that it meant to “give over, not give up.” Give over the problem, the concern, the thing we have been wrestling with to the greater Mind of God, which has the big picture in hand at all times. In this act there is immediate relief. We have stopped fighting. As the mythical Atlas should have done, we have lifted a weight off our shoulders and entrusted it to the wiser, more expansive power than our own. For the believer, there is encouragement and better still, the openness to solutions which can be hard to find when we are caught in the coil of a dilemma.

Surrender a situation to a new mind set...

Spiritual practices are ours to use for help with clarifying our thinking. They help us to recognize the difference between effort, which is often necessary to move ahead, and struggle, which is never fruitful and can pull us back. To be spiritually wise is to know when to surrender a situation over to a new mind set rather than exhausting ourselves in mental lacerations.

Clear guidance...

Come to think of it, active surrender at the outset of a cycle of thought could definitely lead to clear guidance to a stronger, more creative outcome without the upset in between!

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