Excerpt About Selflessness

We Don't Know the Value of Selflessness Until We See Selflessness

The ego controls how you feel. If you don’t let yourself surrender to the situation or to the teaching, how are you going to learn to be selfless? How are you going to learn to let go of your boundaries? How are you going to learn to trust reality if you can’t trust your teacher when she asks you to do some simple task? You might not know why, but you trust that it is going to be good for you. Most of the time in our work it is obvious why we do certain practices. But sometimes it might not be obvious, and you won’t understand what’s useful about the activity until several years of practice. We don’t know the value of selflessness until we see selflessness. We don’t know the value of boundlessness until we experience boundlessness. We don’t know the value of surrender until we experience surrender. If you want to learn from the teaching situation, you need to let your teacher teach you. That’s part of the price you pay. But if you always have to do things according to your own choice, that is an assertion of the ego. And since your teacher knows that, she might ask you to do things that are silly, that don’t make any sense, so that you do something without calculating your self-interest. Some teachers ask students to do things for years that have nothing to do with the work simply so that the student can develop the capacity to act without being self-centered.

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