It’s Not About Me

December 14, 2011

I blind my eyes and try to force it all into place,

I stitch them up, see not my fall from grace.

I blind my eyes, I hide and feel it passing me by.

I open just in time to say goodbye.

—from “That Was Just Your Life” by Metallica

The New Year finds me at or near the end of a long, underground tunnel where I’ve spent months digging through muck, gathering nuggets and gems, and seeking the light that I hoped I knew must be at the end.

It was both an exercise in faith and a lesson about faith. It sucked, horribly—but it was a profoundly meaningful experience for me. I recently arrived at the end of that particular tunnel, and it takes a little while for my eyes to adjust to the newfound light again.

But it isn’t all about me. I’m just the guy writing and sharing, the guy who has gone inside and plumbed his own depths a little and told others what he found down there. I’m not a bottom-dweller, but I think that to ride the river it helps to know where the rocks are. You can see them a lot better underneath the surface.

If my words seem to be loaded with heaviness or melancholy or “sludge,” it’s only because my time below has been so recent. Like a miner who emerges from a long day’s work, a nice shower and some rest makes everything better and shinier again.

I don’t intend to live in the darkness of pain and suffering. In fact, I’ve emerged from it now anyway. At this point, I’ve reformed my inner world so that it’s more in harmony with Life. Now I’m taking steps toward celebrating life again.

And I’ll share that part of the journey, too. Why? Because I don’t see anybody else doing it in quite the same way.

Like I said, it’s not about me. It doesn’t matter what I have endured to reach a point of greater understanding. All that matters is that we learn from our experiences and don’t get dragged down (emotionally) by life experiences we can’t control.

My life is the same as yours: a function of the Universe, a point of Consciousness, a lesson, a wave to be ridden for all it’s worth. And to go back out and ride again and again and again.

I’m not special. I just learned in 2008 to surrender to the Will of…Whatever You Want To Call It.

And you got to have a ringside seat.

(written in 2009)


Healing in Relationships

December 10, 2011

We are all broken by the time we start to seek partners. Real love heals us, and it grows as we heal. Maybe the trick to romantic relationships is finding someone who understands this, who will stay in the trenches with you as you both fight and kill your own demons with each other’s help. Maybe a true partner is our “wing man” in our struggle to heal ourselves, which is our life’s work.

In my experience, there are many hurts that we can only heal with a partner’s help. I think a lot of conflict in relationships is “just” one partner becoming aware of a problem (an unresolved hurt) in the other and making the other aware of it through the mirror of relationship, while the other’s ego reacts in self-defense.

After the conflict, with that particular battlefield clear, when the healing is done, maybe we can go about enjoying a deeper love and connection than we enjoyed together at the beginning, when we chose each other—before our inner battles became shared, when new love was easy.

Maybe this happens in steps, again and again, over a long time together, until all our hurts are healed together—both the past ones and the ones that happen along the way.

Not all old couples are just living out their marriage contract. There’s something powerful there, in being with someone who knows you thoroughly, scars and all. But to get there I think there are some uphill battles to fight along the way. That’s where commitment comes in. To me, commitment is faith—faith in yourself, in the other, and in the togetherness you share.

I think we only find what we’re really after when we see and accept each other’s pain and ugliness, and resolve to accept each other completely in spite of it. We can’t do that if we try to find a mate who is already perfect when we are not.

Nobody is.

(written in 2008)

Tomorrow Never Comes

December 8, 2011

If you wait for the perfect time, it will never come. Your idea—your hope, your dream, your vision, your plan—will never materialize. If you want to make something happen, you have to start where you are, with what you have, and take the first step.

You cannot wait for it or it will never happen. You are a function of the Universe, carrying out the desires of Life Itself. These desires—your desires—must be fulfilled through you.

The first step is a step of faith. After that, the Universe responds to your faith and begins to contribute to your creation. Ideas will come more quickly, you will meet people sympathetic to your dream, and you will encounter situations that “coincidentally” help you along the way.

The first step is always the hardest one to make. Every one after that is easier. Eventually, you wonder why you waited so long to start.

To keep pondering some idea that you’d like to bring into reality “someday” is to keep it in the unseen future—the world of possibilities that may or may not become reality—depending on you. NOW is the time to begin.

Tomorrow never comes.

Fear holds you back, and fear is a harsh overseer. Fear hates you and everything you hold dear. It tries to make you form a protective womb around yourself, filled with amniotic fluid. You know, like back in the womb, before you felt the cold harshness and separation of being your own person. Back when life was warm, safe, and comfortable, and you felt your mother’s heart beating, the soothing sound of her voice, and the gentle rocking of her movements. This was your experience for most of your first year on Earth.

Those memories are still with you. They are your first impressions of life. But that life is long past, though you might unconsciously try to return to it. And, as an adult, it’s no way to live.

It’s scary to step out into the darkness of the unknown. The other option, though, is to stay in your fake womb with your TV and your bed and your familiar objects. Safe. Protected.

Dying inside.

There is light out there! The light within you aches to meet the light outside. They meet when you break your shell and take that leap of faith, not knowing whether there is solid ground to stand on.

It doesn’t matter, though. You have wings.

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