One Question That Can Change Your Life

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As the media swirls around the news of Harvey Weinstein, and our social media feeds fill up with stories of #MeToo and #HowIWillChange, a light has been shined on some truly despicable actions by one particular person and the abuse that half of society deals with on a regular basis.

 

As one comedian put it so well, it may surprise some of you, but i have a genetic history of women in my family. But that shouldn’t even make a difference. It doesn’t matter whether you have women in your family or not. The rights of any person or group of people are valid equally, until they start hurting other people. In my mind, people are always free to do whatever they want. They’re not free from the consequences of those actions.

 

So, as always, I turn to the keyboard to get clarity on the brownian motion of thoughts tumbling around in my head. I spoke in a recent blog post about the biggest liar in the world: the ego. The ego’s job is to lie to you. That’s its purpose and it does it remarkably well. It’s also the ego’s job to tell you that you’re separate from everyone else. This – without further explanation, since I explained it in the aforementioned blog post — is also a lie.

 

There IS no separation. To damage another is to damage oneself. This is true not only on a spiritual level, but in many other ways, which again, I won’t go into here for the sake of brevity. Suffice it to say, that you cannot harm another without harming yourself in the process.

 

So I’d like to present one question that has profoundly affected my life, and one that I hope will help guide you in what to do in any given circumstance. The question is simply this:

 

“Is this love, or is this ego?”

 

The ego is a liar, liar pants on fire. Everything it tells you is a lie, so it can be immediately discarded. The ego is what makes us think we’re separate from others, that we can be either superior or inferior to another. Are you feeding your ego? Are you trapped in self-agrandizement? Are you seeing yourself as superior to another person? Do you do things to spite another or to harm them, physically, emotionally, or otherwise? Do you take joy in the suffering of others? Do you feel righteous when someone gets their comeuppance?

 

If so, then stop. Stay out of the ego.

 

The Bhagavad Gita states, “You are entitled to your actions, but not to the fruit of your actions.” What this means is to do everything without expectation of reward or recognition. Be divorced from outcome. Don’t seek aggrandizement. Don’t feed the ego. Simply take the most loving action, and perform every act or service with love. The path of enlightenment starts with the recognition that your ego isn’t you. The path continues until you realize that love is your true nature.

 

As all the mystics have stated, love is the answer. Love is all there is. By embracing loving actions in every available opportunity, not only are you turning away from untruth, but you’re turning towards ultimate truth.

 

When you don’t know what course of action to take, ask yourself, “Is this love, or is this ego?”

 

Love is eternal, unlimited, and free. Love has no condition. Love simply is. Embrace this truth, and love flows freely in every situation. Embrace this truth and you cannot harm another. You simultaneously seek to lift others up, instead of tear them down. You cooperate, rather than conflict. You see others with compassion, rather than condemnation. You humanize people, rather than demonize them.

 

As Augustine put it so profundly, “Love, and then do what you will.”

 

Namaste.

 

Tommy

 

Tommy Heiden is a family photographer based out of Maple Ridge who, when he’s not caring for his amazing wife and two beautiful children, is occasionally found taking pictures of other peoples’ wives and children, and even more often, speaking and blogging about how to add more love to your life.

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Free Report Reveals Family Photographer’s Greatest Secret:

Learn the Number One Secret This Family Photographer Uses to Get Great Photos Every Time (Regardless What Camera You’re Using)