Day 1: the ultimate un-guide to Surrender

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Yesterday I made a commitment to myself to explore the question, “What is the more I seek?

To begin my quest, I wrote a list of words (surrender, hope, faith, mystery, loss, God, and the power of love) which I felt were all inclusive of my seeker’s journey and declared that I would dive deeper into clarity by exploring each word without expectation of an outcome.

Staying unattached to my need for an outcome is a challenge for me. I like to know what’s going on. I like to be in control, or at least give myself the illusion of being in control.

Realization 1:  The journey begins with surrendering my need for an outcome.

“Surrender”. It is a big word for me. A tough one.

I let go of my labelling of the word and begin.


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I enter meditation with a question. “What does it mean to surrender?”

My goal is to allow myself to fall effortlessly into the silence and allow answers to find their way to the surface.

It isn’t working. I find myself fighting, resisting, defending against the word.

I want to push it away. I want to cry out, “No! No! No! Look at those synonyms! You do not want to succumb, to yield, to give in. Don’t do it.”

My mind, ever-willing co-conspirator in over-thinking, resists the quiet space and leaps eagerly into the fray of my thoughts run amuck in my resistance to stillness.

It begins with criticism.

Why didn’t you start this quest on a Monday? Really? Who begins a spiritual journey on a Friday?

I ignore it.

It is unrelenting.

Surrendering is not good. Surrendering is a sign of weakness.


How can that be?

Is it true? Am I weak when I surrender?

A thought swoops in like a hawk diving for a mouse. “What are you surrendering to?”

Is it ‘to’ something or is it all about the act of surrendering with no outcome in sight, I wonder.

I breathe. I scurry after the last thought, searching in its entrails for the stillness of mind that comes when I surrender my thoughts to the nothingness of being present.

Resistance rises up. Again. 

Seriously? Can he not just stay quiet just this once?

I notice how I like to separate my thinking from my desire to be still.

My resistance to my resistance crumbles. I give up and submit to its call.

There’s something here, it says. There’s a piece of information that is important for you to see. Don’t stop thinking. Let the thoughts roll in.

I do not want a cloudy mind.

I want the stillness of reflection.

I find neither in my resistance to letting go of having to know the answer.


How can I surrender when my mind wants desperately to be in control?

Good question.

Live it.

Breathe into it.

Be it.

Surrender your desire to know and be present to your breath moving in and out.

Let go of your resistance. Stop defending against that which you fear and be present, right now. Allow yourself to…


I think I’d rather run away.

Is that another form of surrendering?

Or is that just a way of avoiding?

Good question.

And I begin again.

Live it.

Breathe into it.

Be it.


11 thoughts on “Day 1: the ultimate un-guide to Surrender

  1. surrender doesn’t mean give up or give in

    surrender is being vulnerable and open – feels like high risk, but really it is high-quality opportunity

    as for outcomes … we all think we have some influence on those , but mostly we are wrong and can’t predict as well as the weatherman or an economist

    keep on .. you’re doing great



    Liked by 2 people

    • I agree Mark — to allow what I dont’ know to arise means allowing myself to be present in all I know, dark, light, in, out, up, down, good, bad. It’s to allow my judgements of what I know stand — and not defend against them.


      • Ah. Maybe there’s something you seek within what you feel you know. If it keeps coming back, there’s often a reason for it.

        I don’t know. I only know that is usually my experience. Things come back until they are somehow resolved.


  2. As I read I started thinking about the Buddhist meditation practice of focusing on breath and, when thoughts or fears or resistance arise, release them and just go back to the breath. I’ve always liked it and understood it to a point, but something I can’t quite put words to dropped into place as I read your post; something about how the practice may be less about focusing on the breath with an empty mind than realizing I can release any thoughts that arise to interfere… ???

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is focussing on my breath that allows my mind to empty Leigh — I don’t consciously think of emptying as much as following my breath which lol — is a thought! but at least it’s not filled with all my chatter. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Our ego will cling to anything that threatens it. What a great example Louise! . I take Mark’s perspective. The word surrender is connected with losing a battle … compared with being vulnerable and compassionate enough to give over. This comes from a knowing in the heart, not the critter talk in the head.
    Be with it and next time perhaps place a hand on your heart. Let it’s knowing speak to you.

    Liked by 1 person

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