Most of what people call surrender is a very subtle form of control. It is an attempt at controlling their experience of life under the auspices of letting go. I surrender becomes I surrender in the hopes of becoming “happy” or achieving “awakening” or increasing “freedom” or finding “stillness”.
If I say I am giving up something, it is still ego giving up. Even if ego says it is giving up ego, it’s still ego which is in charge. There is no way of getting around this aspect of control. And that is ok, it does not have to. Control and letting go of control can co-exist.
In a fit of frustration, he threw his packet of cigarettes out of the window and declared he was giving up smoking. At one level he is giving up something – his addiction to smoking. At another level, he was trying to gain some control over his life and his way of gaining control was in the form of abstinence.
Surrender works and is powerful not so much because there is a complete surrender but because it gives us practice in not clinging to our attachments. If we extrapolate to spiritual endeavours, the importance of surrender is more about gaining practice in letting go, so that we can create spaces for something ‘other’ to enter. For instance, by loosing our grip on life through the reduction of fear, it creates a space for intuition to occur. In terms of intuition, what should be surrendered are the barriers which prevent intuition.
The same is true of life. We must let go of the things which do not serve us if our intention is to live a ‘good life’. Easier said than done granted, but nonetheless it is an important concept to retain. Both the need to be in control at one level and letting go at another level can coexist