In life, because it is easy to place responsibility on others, you blindly follow other people’s directions instead of relying on your own intelligence. You say you are obedient, but you are actually shirking the responsibility of owning up to your actions. This is a dangerous and age old habit of following the rule book. It is dangerous because sometimes you are not even aware that you are missing responsibility and intelligence. You become a parrot, repeating the same thing for years together because someone told it to you. It is always easy to put the blame on the whole world for what happens in your life. But if you just look a little deeper, you can see how you are completely responsible for what is happening in your life! Because you do not live every moment with awareness and take responsibility for your words and actions, you do so many things unconsciously. Then, when the effects of these actions happen, you claim you don’t deserve the results! Acting out of your own intelligence is taking complete responsibility for what you do at all times.
For example, when you obey someone else you feel that you are being subservient to that person. But when you disobey that person, you feel guilty because a part of you feels that you should obey him or her but you are not obeying. The way out of this conflict is to follow your intelligence at that time with the clear understanding that you alone are responsible for your action. Then you will not hurt anyone including yourself. And you will be responding intelligently to the person you are disobeying as well. The answer depends on the person asking the question!
Moving with time, flowing with life, becoming a fluid process instead of being a solid ego is called intelligence
Being intelligent requires the effort to be yourself, which you are not used to. So you choose to react based on your past experiences. Usually, we only react like programmed machines. We do not respond to situations. Someone insults you and you become angry even before becoming aware of what you are doing.
A beautiful story from the life of Buddha, an enlightened master from India:
Once a person insulted Buddha openly.
His disciple Ananda said, ‘I was getting so angry with the person. Why did you keep quiet? At least I would have given him a piece of my mind.’
Buddha calmly replied, ‘You surprise me. What he was saying was completely irrelevant and you know that. Then why are you getting angry? You are punishing yourself. It is foolishness. When somebody else has made the mistake, why are you suffering for it?’
Moving with time, flowing with life, becoming a fluid process instead of being a solid ego is called intelligence. But we are too lazy to act intelligently because responding to the present requires us to be continuously aware and alert.
Living in the present moment is living in utter insecurity. It needs courage and intelligence. Actually, even the idea of security in life is an illusion. How can you predict what will happen even in the next moment? Anything that you predict can only be based on the past, something that you have seen. But the future is yet to happen. It is an unknown gift, so it can never be predicted.
source: Living Enlightenment