We spoke about the Moment of Grace in Self Realization. In Ch.11 of Falling into Grace, Adyashanti explores grace more broadly.
“Sometimes grace is soft and beautiful. It appears as insight. It comes as a sudden understanding, or maybe just the blossoming of our hearts, the breaking open of our emotional bodies so that we can feel more deeply and connect with what is and with each other in a deeper way. Grace can also be quite fierce. There are times in life that are very, very trying. At the time, grace might be hard to recognize, but as we think back to these powerful times in our lives, we can start to see the greater gift that was received.”
“…grace is simply that which opens our hearts, that which has the capacity to come in and open our perceptions about life.”
He then goes on to describe a moment when he became completely frustrated after 4 years of ardent meditation without apparent progress. He felt exhausted and defeated and crushed. But in that utter defeat, there was a letting go. And then that moment of grace showed up.
“…right in the middle of that moment, my heart just began to flower. It was like a golden love was being poured right into my being. It was as if I could hear everything, and it was just singing with this love.”
Adya heard a voice telling him this is how he shall love. “I remember thinking, ‘I have no idea how to do that! How could I possibly love like this?’ This immensity of unconditioned love was just washing over me in waves, and I couldn’t possibly even consider how I could love in that same way, and yet, somehow I knew it was possible.”
“As time went on, I realized that I didn’t have to struggle so hard, I didn’t have to fight with life or with myself in order to open to grace. But it took many, many defeats before I could open willingly and surrender to the grace that is always there.”
As readers of this blog know, I recommend an effortless meditation. Partly, this is because it gives us the experience of inner being and is thus less likely to create such a frustration. We’re more inclined to have soft grace. However, we each tend to still have places of resistance or attachment that can bring us to such a point. If we’re unwilling to let go, circumstances can arise that may push the issue. Then we experience fierce grace.
“Grace is all around us, if we only have the eyes to see it. The good moments are grace, the difficult moments are grace, the confusing moments are grace. When we can begin to open enough to realize that there is grace in every situation, in each person we meet, no matter how easy or difficult we perceive them to be, our hearts will flower and we’ll be able to express the peace and the love that each of us has within us.”
As he reminds us by the book’s title, “We let go into grace. It’s something we fall into, like when we fall into the arms of another, or we put our head on the pillow to go to sleep.”
Soft or fierce, grace is a profound assistance on our journey. However we see it coming to us; by God, by guru, by karma, or the mystery, it is in letting go that we allow divinity to move through us. Thus grace arrives, just how it is.