You are an ocean. A beautiful, vast, peaceful entity. You are, and have always been, perfect.
Worldly events cause you to put up waves: waves of elation, waves of sorrow, waves of courage, waves of fear, waves of youth, waves of maturity, waves of beauty, waves of ugliness, waves of strength, waves of weakness, waves of belief, waves of doubt, waves of reputation, waves of obscurity, waves of accomplishment, waves of failure. All these waves are temporary configurations of ocean. But they are not the ocean. They will disappear, because they are only movements, not stable forms. Only the ocean persists.
If you define yourself by your waves then this false self will end when the waves end, so your idea of who you are will always be in jeopardy, always doomed, and this will cause you to live in fear of annihilation. You might put great effort into maintaining and defending your waves – sometimes competing, sometimes bragging, sometimes complaining, sometimes arguing, sometimes shouting – but they will disappear on their own anyway, because they are nothing but waves, and you will see that all your efforts were futile because you defended nothing.
You, or other people, might not like some of the waves you create. This does not mean that you are bad or worthless, for those waves are not you.
To insist that you are your waves is to deny your ocean-ness.
Look underneath your waves. That is you. Not the things you’ve accomplished or acquired. Not your job. Not your possessions. Not your race. Not your nationality. Not what other people say you are. You are the infinite source of being that cannot be defined by those things. No matter how many waves you produce and no matter what form they take, you remain the same expansive essence.
When you realize that you are the ocean, there will be no anxiety about the waves’ forms or their imminent demise, because you will know that you are not them. You will become aware that you are real, limitless, and persistent.