Q: I think everyone in this room has his own spiritual path, and everyone has his own projects and his own work life. My question is about where those two come together. How do we put our energy into work without being dependent on the outcome?
John: By openness engaging what we do, instead of want and need engaging what we do.
Q: So we should be open and not want and need?
John: You’re able to be openness instead of want and need, openness engaging in a process. It isn’t dependent on the outcome.
Q: If a writer wants to write a book, what if he suddenly finds that his book is not as successful as he thought even though he invested so much time in it? How can he be open? What tools can you give him?
John: By doing because you’re clear. You’re clear about what to do and how to do it, so what you are really doing is your clarity. Clarity isn’t result-oriented: it’s clarity-oriented. You’re always doing what’s clear. As what you’re doing has success, you keep moving in your clarity. As what you’re doing on the surface fails, you keep moving in your clarity. It’s your clarity that you’re doing.
Q: So you separate those levels?
John: Clarity-orientation in your doing is a manifestation of deeper knowledge. It’s form, in your self, of deeper knowledge. That clarity means more to you than your self, so it isn’t for your self that you move in that clarity.
Q: The way I imagine what you’re saying is that you root that clarity in some ideal or goal that is not dependent on your person: something that keeps you going; something which you can see and feel and move forward towards.
John: The clarity isn’t project-oriented. It’s direct knowledge-oriented. The clarity is manifestation of what you really are. It’s a manifestation of direct knowledge within the space of your mind and your self. If everything that you do from within your deep, quiet clarity that comes from what is deeper within than your self, then if everything that you do from within your clarity fails, you are not less clear. It isn’t deflating. When you’re being your clarity based on what’s deeper, you are a non-polarized presence of clarity.
Q: What tool can you give to us, to that book-publisher out there who is trying to root into that clarity and trying to find that inner truth as he is working 8-10 hours a day into the night.
John: It doesn’t matter much what you do in your life. That enables you to more quickly realize that your identity doesn’t come from what you do. The whole relationship to an identity comes to rest and, instead of relating to an identity that’s fixed on what it achieves from doing, you are deeply rested awareness directly being, and it doesn’t come from any kind of doing. The deep, inner completeness is already there. You can’t do anything to improve on it. Success doesn’t make it better and failure doesn’t make it worse, and this beingness is able to manifest as functional clarity.
Q: How can we find that clarity as we engage in these other areas of our brain? Our brain is occupied while we type in that email, for example.
John: That it is all done for something other than the manifestation. It’s all done for what you’re oriented to, much more deeply within. That makes your doing a manifestation of something much deeper. It’s like the innocence of a small child engaged in doing something. It isn’t result-oriented in what it’s doing even if it has a result in mind. Everything that it is doing is because of what it already is. It’s innocence doing. That’s not the same. It’s different from separating a little bit from innocence and doing, engaged in doing.
Q: Yes, and that innocence comes naturally to the child. We sometimes have to deal with concepts and people and relationships, which pull us in and away from that clarity.
John: Then that’s a separation from innocence.
Q: Yes. How do we do that engaged action? How do we get back to the innocence while still being in that world and in those needs that are around us?
John: By returning to your heart and remaining in your heart, unconditionally and at any personal expense, and letting that, in its clarity, do whatever it does.
Q: Is there some tool that you can give us to train in this connection to clarity in case we go away from it momentarily? How do we get back into it as we move in our day-to-day life and get distracted sometimes by emotions?
John: Live sweetly never taking your self to heart. What belongs in your heart is everything deeper within than your self. Take your self to heart, and you separate. Within whatever it is you do, as soon as you take your self to heart you fool yourself. You give importance to your self in a way that is about your self. That self-importance is the life of the ego. If you live not taking your self to heart and all you take to heart, all that fills your heart, is what you quietly know the truth of, what fills your heart is anything of your being and it’s your being-filled heart that fills your self. There is no ego. It isn’t an accomplishment to have no ego. It’s deeply, quietly natural.
Q: I can feel that and, again, this book publisher or someone who owns a store, he has to not identify with his ego yet he is still identifying with the project he is building, inevitably, by pulling in so much energy.
John: Not identified with it – just doing it.
Q: Right. And that’s my question: how do you do it without identifying in it?
John: Because you’re clear to do, you’re clear in what you’re doing. The doing doesn’t come from a polarization. It comes from the deep, quiet clarity. The doing of that clarity is a manifestation of what’s deeper within than the clarity: of what fuels the clarity. What fuels it is you, awareness and knowing, being one. Oneness manifested in the self is clarity, form of oneness.
Q: Do you sometimes, yourself, feel pulled out from this or are you always in that clarity in your day-to-day life?
John: It isn’t in my day-to-day life. It is my life. The greater the difficulty, the greater the depth of clarity that moves.