Questioner: For many years I have given all my time, energy, knowledge and power to my family and to my business. My life was completely oriented towards bringing up and giving advice to my children and earning my living. Now my children are grown up and no longer need me and I am retired from business, and I feel a certain loss of orientation and an emptiness that was previously filled with all kinds of activities.
How can my life have meaning and fulfillment?
Jean Klein: See things how they are now, not as you wish them to be. See only the facts, free from all psychology. Look at your feelings of lack, boredom, loneliness, desire, confusion. See how all these feelings of confusion and absence are related to the fact that you have taken yourself for a parent and a worker. Now these self-images have no more role to play. Your colleagues no longer need you and your children no longer look to you for advice. See how you still take yourself for a parent, for somebody, and this is a fraction. Become free from the self-image. Then you can have a non-objective relationship with your children and your surroundings. When there is no longer any reference to being a parent you are open to the facts, what actually is.
Live in the perceived not the conceived. Only the perception is right. The concept is wrong because it is memory. So give no more place to the concept. In the absence of psychological behavior there is no reference to old brain patterns and only then is there intelligence which is the awakening of all your resources. Then you will have a new relation to your surroundings. It is no longer one of object to object, but of love. There is no longer an “I” and a “You” but only oneness. When there is no superimposition on your children and surroundings, every moment is joy. Life is joyful and in the absence of any patterns of behavior there is only friendly togetherness.
From The Book of Listening, p. 182.