So let’s try this again. What is your deepest desire? What do you really long for? What would make you feel as if you have it all? What is that one thing / state of mind / experience you would like to have in order to die happy? Or let me put it another way: What is it that you want so badly that you can almost taste it. You probably do not have it right now, but you just know in your gut that if you had that you would feel really good.
These are interesting questions. I have been asking myself these very questions many times. For me, at least until very recently, my number one wish has turned out to be ‘complete inner and outer harmony, peace and quiet´. This is not a very big surprise to me, as it corresponds for 100% with my favourite enneatype, type 9, the peacemaker.
At one point a good friend and fellow colleague Rob de Best took it one step further by asking: You have this thing you want so badly, but you are convinced you cannot have it. Why are you not allowed to have this thing you really, really want? And here comes the punch line: What would go wrong if you got what you wanted?
My mind went completely blank. A glimpse of how things could be and the immense freedom it would entail. I felt panic. Restricted beliefs parading by: If I were to get this, then I would have no excuses anymore. If I were to have it, I would do nothing anymore. Who would I then be? Aaaaarrgh… Existential terror. And then I felt as if my mind shut itself down, because it just could not take this kind of information. Let’s tune out, numb out, disappear. We need to protect ourselves from this. Ego pressing the button for ‘automated programme number 9’ to protect itself from change.
Some time later another good friend, Miriam Kasbergen, had an interesting follow-up question. So, you know your basic desire… What would you do now, if you only had half an hour to live? Does your wish stay the same, or does it change?
As she posed this question to me, a somewhat unexpected answer came out. All I could think about was a range of physical experiences I still wanted to have. Something like: if I am going to die anyway and go into a different blissful state of being where I do not have a body, then I want to have a full body experience before I go. This desire was centred around food. I could see this huge buffet with delicious food, and I would stuff myself until I felt completely saturated. Half an hour left – never mind any highflying ideals or noble ideas I might have about who I am – I just want to eat. Now… That’s a clue!
Funny, how a few innocent questions can tell us so much about how our ego operates. And it is very interesting to see what added time pressure (you have ½ hour to live) can tell us about areas in our lives where we still feel we lack something.
Try it yourself! I would absolutely LOVE to hear what these questions show you about you (ego and beyond)! So please, share!