Inspiration. It’s nice isn’t it? Inspiration gives you the power and fuels you with the drive and the force to go on and do the thing you want to do. Whatever it may be, when inspired, you can tackle it.
Inspiration is like the spearhead. Without it, you’re just a stick. But a stick inspired becomes a spear.
But one must ask: What is inspiration? What is this force of nature that we absorb for a brief moment that allows us to overcome our internal struggles to then get up and face our obstacles with ferocity and courage? Aren’t we curious?
Have we thought about why we struggle to take action in the first place? What is with this need for inspiration, the thing we do not know or understand? Why is it we can’t do the thing we want to do and can’t explain why we can’t just do it? Buddhism calls this particular pattern of our behavior an internal resistance. The Western psychiatrists have adopted this thinking and further developed an understanding of it. We now understand it as an internal emotional resistance.
What does that mean? Remember, we’re talking about something you objectively can do, but for some reason, for some invisible force, you can’t get yourself to take action and do it.
Let’s take the example of you having a chore that you have to drive somewhere to finish it. So you get to your car, you turn the engine on, and you’re pulling out of your parking spot, then another car drives by behind you and you have to hit the brakes. That’s a gram of resistance there, because a tiny unconscious part of you was expecting there be no one behind you. “I’m supposed to just drive out of the parking spot, there shouldn’t be any obstacles to this!” says your mind. But you don’t hear it as words, it barely registers to your conscious awareness as a fleeting feeling that quickly gets buried. On the outside, you hit the brakes, wait a moment, then drive out. Nothing happens. But deep down, you had and lost a little battle.
That’s something so small you’re not even aware of it. But it does register within your body (physiologically) and within your mind (emotionally), and it does carry a little weight. A gram of resistance. Things like this pile up throughout the day. As you go out and do a little chore or something, there’s a million of these micro-battles happening within you. Each is like a tiny cut. And a thousand kill you.
Over time you associate doing that recurring chore with these thousand painful cuts. There’s your unconscious resistance.
Then you see someone online who’s inspiring. They do all their chores early in the day, then they spend the rest of their day learning skills, enjoying their hobbies, and generally being alright. You feel inspired by that to master your chores. Seeing someone who’s on top of their life, who’s got things settled, who’s not crushed by the weight of life and taking care of oneself makes you feel you can do it too!
But… what is that?!
I’m starting to believe that that moment of inspiration is a moment where you saw someone else handle the same struggles that crush you without being crushed themselves. When you see them, you see an example of how to exist, despite the crushing circumstances, and still have energy, be optimistic and hopeful, and be able to look forward to things and be feeling vulnerable. That inspiration is a moment when you were able to see past your resistances.
The way to overcome an unconscious resistance is to be consciously aware of it. To shine the spotlight of consciousness on it. Unconscious resistances are like vampiric demons; they avoid the light at all cost, and the mere exposure to the light is what evaporates them entirely. It’s magical how that works. Miraculous even, maybe.
Those unconscious resistances need to possess you to continue to exist. Once you point the light on them, you’re no longer possessed by them, you become separate from them. So being aware of them is almost like a trick to be separate from them, and to be in control.
That moment of inspiration allowed you to separate from those resistances, and see past them. The reason it’s fleeting though is because those resistances will come back again. But you weren’t the one who initiated the act of separation from them. It was the inspiring figure who had that effect on you. That’s why it’s fleeting. It’s a very emotional experience when all of a sudden you’re not jailed by all these emotional resistances of everything around you, when all of a sudden you feel space, freedom, and power to act. I think the intensity of that emotion is the experience of inspiration.