March 31, 2016

Addressing Life’s Challenges from Within.


When your mind and heart are truly open abundance will flow to you effortlessly and easily.

By Nirmala Raniga


Many religions believe in the concept of the “Devil,” a word that conjures the image of an evil being that hurls temptations in our paths. In reality, the Devil is not an external being that we are powerless to, but comes from within and is actually the product of a doubting ego that makes an individual feel like a victim and contributes to low self-esteem.

A temptation is one way of describing stress, and stress is something we experience when we perceive obstacles as threats to having our needs met. When our needs are not being satisfied, we can experience one or more of seven biological responses:


  • Fight or flight
  • Reactive
  • Restful awareness
  • Intuitive
  • Creative
  • Visionary
  • Sacred


Fight or flight and reactive responses can be deeply damaging to our physiology, psychology, and relationships; while the remaining five higher responses can be therapeutic and nurturing to others and ourselves.



A victim mindset, or belief in an external devil, is a product of the reactive biological response. The reactive response is a form of ego protection and is activated by a threat, be it physical or emotional. We react when we feel our boundaries have been violated and are compelled to defend ourselves. Very often, it is the ego that feels threatened. When this happens and we are reactive, we fall back on old habits that help us control the situation or environment and manipulate other people to get whatever it is we want at that time.


When we attribute our responses to threats as coming from malevolent forces that exist outside ourselves, we take the responsibility for our reactions off ourselves and foist them onto imaginary beings. “The Devil made me do it,” is an oft-heard expression, indicating that if it weren’t for this external entity, we would not have reacted badly or succumbed to some other temptation.


The concept of an external Devil creates fear that there are threats beyond us that we are completely unable to control, thus generating even greater stress. And, while life is full of change and factors that we sometimes cannot completely manage, we are definitely able to take charge of the way we interact with the world.


Still, when we have been steeped in the idea of outside forces working against us, we can find it very difficult to accept that the true Devil is actually the part of us that confuses our ego-mind with who we really are, pure consciousness. Placing the blame on external sources such as the Devil, takes away our own ability and personal responsibility to move beyond the reactive response into the higher, more beneficial responses to life’s myriad challenges—behaviors that ultimately elevate everyone involved and cultivate greater joy in our lives.


One way we can access the higher biological responses and move beyond mere reaction is to employ Dr. Deepak Chopra’s STOP method. When faced with our personal devils, we can simply:


  • Stop what we’re doing.
  • Take some deep breaths.
  • Observe how the body feels and where we feel those feelings.
  • Proceed with kindness and compassion.


By taking a moment to assess the situation and understand where our reaction to it is coming from, we are better able to confront our inner devil and make more compassionate, conscious choices.


After practicing such a method over a period of time, we will begin to notice that not only does our reaction to external circumstances change, but the circumstances themselves also transform. For example, people with whom we may have had tumultuous relationships with in the past, now begin to see us in a new light, as people who are thoughtful in how we deal with difficult situations, choices, and temptations.


Another important way we can quell the Devil within is to commit to our meditation practice. By simply practicing 30 minutes of meditation, twice each day, we begin to feel more grounded, confident and better able to shed the old insecurities and victim mentality that no longer serve us.


Releasing a long-held belief, like that of an external Devil, requires self-compassion and non-judgement. The philosophies that have been handed down to us or that we have discovered on our own, were simply what we needed at the time. However, as we move into states of greater awareness in our lives, we are free to let those old beliefs go, much like changing from one suit of clothes into another, and open ourselves to new, richer opportunities for true happiness.

At the Chopra Addiction & Wellness Center in Squamish, BC, Canada, we help our guests address the trauma they have experienced in their lives. Through daily yoga, meditation, walks in nature, healthy eating, massage, and therapy with licensed and experienced counselors, our guests are encouraged and provided with the tools to move far beyond the place of pain and trauma and reconnect with the true Self, pure Spirit. In this way, our guests are able to live lives free from addiction and full of joy.


Write Your Comment

  1. Daniel Sneeden

    If you are a friendly person that also loves Deepak Chopra, then send me a friend request..let's connect friend.

  2. Daniel Sneeden

    If you are a friendly person that also loves Deepak Chopra, then send me a friend request..let's connect friend.

  3. Daniel Sneeden

    If you are a friendly person that also loves Deepak Chopra, then send me a friend request..let's connect friend.

More Comments
How AI Can Elevate Spiritual Intelligence and Personal Well-Being
September 17, 2024
Scroll Up