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Translated teachings of Master Patana

The Foolish Motivation Seeker.

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It’s not the world that needs to alter for one’s growth, it’s the individual who needs to transform. One must cease seeking validation, stop pursuing motivation from external sources, instead discovering it within oneself. In one’s own awareness, the drive to push through discomfort can be found, for it’s in discomfort, it’s in challenges that growth manifests.

The role here isn’t to sprinkle glittering words of motivation on individuals, but to guide them towards the profound revelation of their unconscious pursuits.

Life doesn’t offer a constant supply of motivation. It teems with peaks and valleys, and in these valleys, lie the greatest opportunities for growth, for change. Understand this, nothing in life is permanent, not even our troubles, so why the hunt for a permanent motivation?

The notion of constant motivation is a fantasy, a mirage. It’s a drug that’s been sold, and to which many have become addicted. They have permitted it to paralyze them, to control them, to make them reliant upon it. But just like any drug, it only provides temporary relief, a fleeting high. Once its effects wear off, they’re left empty, a hollow shell, seeking the next dose, the next wave of motivation to get them through the day.

The time has come to awaken, to break free from this self-imposed prison. The time has come to stop being a puppet to motivation, and start taking control of one’s own life. The time has come to seek awareness, understanding, and growth.

One must stop blaming others for their lack of progress, stop blaming circumstances for their stagnation. The blame lies solely with the individual. They’ve chosen comfort over growth, stagnation over progress. They’ve become victims of their own complacency, prisoners of their own fears.

Motivation isn’t needed to live, to grow, to succeed. What’s needed is courage – the courage to face one’s fears, to step out of the comfort zone, to embrace discomfort. What’s needed is determination – the determination to persevere, to keep moving no matter what. What’s needed is discipline – the discipline to stay focused, to stay committed, to stay on track.

Many individuals succumb to a fatalistic view, taking shelter behind the concept of “Karma” as an excuse for their lack of progress. (That’s probably what religions want you to believe!) They declare, “It’s my Karma not to advance.” No! It’s their unconsciousness, their unwavering dependence on external motivational triggers. When such triggers are absent, they surrender to Karma. This is the mindset of the fool. Ironically, these fools often possess robust egos. They are intellectuals, fluent in language and debate, experts at defending their skewed beliefs. Yet, they remain unmotivated, unspiritual, and unawakened. Despite their intellectual prowess, their lives remain stagnant, mired in a cycle of external motivation and justification that is nothing more than a cover-up for their lack of will and effort.

They may portray a picture of spirituality with their inaction, their surrendering, their disengagement from life, but this is merely a disguise. A mask to escape from the reality of life, from the responsibility of personal growth. Their gaze is persistently outward, rarely turned inward, leaving them spiritually empty and hollow. They may drape themselves in intellectual arguments, concocting a myriad of justifications for their stagnation. They can certainly sound spiritual, but this is merely a façade, a deceptive display of pseudo-spirituality. They are strangers to meditation, to introspection, to the profound peace that comes from genuine self-awareness. Unconscious, unmotivated, and unspiritual, they remain trapped in a self-created labyrinth of illusions.

Here’s a story:

In a faraway land, there was a young man named Tao who was possessed with a burning desire to paint the world with color and beauty. It was said that the gods themselves whispered to artists, filling their hearts with inspiration.

Seeking the gods’ whispers, Tao left his village and set out to paint every sunrise and sunset, every valley, and every mountain peak. However, he never found satisfaction in his paintings, as he believed that he needed more motivation to capture the true essence of the world.

Tao then decided to seek out the Elixir of Motivation, a legendary potion said to endow artists with boundless creativity and zeal.

His journey was long and arduous, leading him through treacherous forests, scorching deserts, and stormy seas. He sought guidance from elders, wizards, and ancient spirits. Each offered him a different item that symbolized motivation, but he was never content.

Decades went by. His strong limbs withered, and his luscious black hair faded into wispy white strands. He had spent his entire life chasing the Elixir, but it was nowhere to be found.

In his old age, tired and heartbroken, Tao decided to return to his village. When he arrived, he realized the world he sought to paint had evolved, and he had missed it all. His family had passed, friends had forgotten him, and the canvas of his life was blank.

One evening, as he wearily painted the sunset, a young girl approached him. She was captivated by his painting. “Sir, your painting makes my heart happy. How did you paint something so beautiful?” she asked.

Tao looked at his painting and for the first time saw beauty in it. Tears welled up in his eyes. It was then that an ancient spirit appeared before him.

“Tao,” the spirit spoke gently, “The Elixir of Motivation you sought was not a potion, but the joy and contentment of others in your art. You sought motivation in whispers of gods and magical elixirs, but true motivation was in living, painting, and sharing.”

Tao, now at the end of his life, understood the grave mistake he had made. With the last ounce of energy, he painted a final picture, a vibrant, full-hearted painting, and gifted it to the young girl.

His life had been consumed by an insatiable thirst for motivation, and he had forgotten to live and share his gifts.

As he passed away, his spirit soared over the lands he had traveled, and he wept with both joy and sorrow. His tears fell upon the earth, and where each tear landed, a flower bloomed – an eternal reminder of the beauty in living and sharing, not just seeking.

The constant need for motivation is an illusion, a trap. It keeps individuals from growing, from advancing. It’s time to break free from this trap, to become aware of one’s inner strength, one’s inner potential. They are more than they believe, more than they’ve been led to believe. They are not weaklings in need of constant motivation, they are powerful beings capable of greatness. And it’s high time they started believing in themselves. The only motivation ever needed, the only motivation that will ever last, comes from within.

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