Mindfulness practise highlights stuff. It brings your ‘issues’ under the spotlight, and this is beautiful (albeit uncomfortable). From that place of awareness and acceptance there is the possibility of change.
Today I find myself pulled in many different directions. I feel I need to write blog posts everyday- because I said I would, I feel I need to go and pick worse flowers to made cordial- because I said I would to a friend, I have jobs to do here at home, things I promised myself I would do, instagram challenges that I have been nominated for so feel I must do! Small things, yes. Things that play on my mind if I don’t fulfill them.
Increasingly of late I have been looking into the causes of this ‘toxic shame’ that is said to be the cause of my kidney failure. One person said that self judgement is the cause of toxic shame- I would hasten to agree with that. Shame arises within me whenever I fail to live up to whatever I imagine another person wants of me. If I am sitting with an Awake Being and I am not Awake- shame comes. If I am with a wealthy person and find I cannot afford something- shame comes. If I am with a very angry person and I feel compassionate – shame comes! Imagine the challenge of being in a group of people! impossible to meet all those imagined expectations- some imagined and some real I guess.
So what is the answer? As I sit here on my sofa, dog curled up beside me- I acknowledge that without trying to be what I imagine others want of me I have a long blank beautiful canvas of a day stretching ahead of me. Nowhere I need to be. The only thing that I must do is eat and care for Diego dog- both of which are joy for me.
Who would I be and how would my days look if I stopped doing what others want me to do and do what I need? I literally have no idea. I’ve never tried. Of course I have had periods of life where things have been so busy that I have had to ignore the requests of others (energetic or spoken) and tend to myself. But mainly- it’s been a feeling of getting pulled around.
I think about someone and they ring me and I find that I was picking up on their energy coming towards me. Leaving me confused about who I want to talk to, who is right for me. I carry out the thoughts of others on their behalf. I don’t know what’s mine and what belongs to another. Pulled around by the collective soup of desire I find myself challenged to finish tasks, or even to decide which tasks to start. As I write this clarity comes…boundaries is the word that comes to my mind. Who would I be without all of this people pleasing, who would I be if I didn’t adapt to make other people comfortable? Who am I underneath it all- I don’t mean the ultimate Truth of who I am but rather the unique flavour and texture of my Being expressing itself in the world.
I have to think back for this. To examine the things that have brought me joy (or rather connected me to my joy) always. Then things clarify a little. Animals- especially horses and dogs have always done this, as has nature, birds, gardening, writing, reading. Since I was a child- these are my things.
So off I will go now- onto the forest to gather those gorse flowers for my cordial- that was me, that was my desire. It got muddled because I wanted someone else to validate it- to say it was a good idea, to reassure me that its not indulgent, that it is good to do the things I want and that connecting with nature and brewing potions is a beautiful thing. I write now to validate myself. In the knowing that in looking after me, there is one less job for the world to do.
I hope that you, whoever reads this- are living in clarity and peace. I hope that you are connecting to your inherent joy and expressing yourself in the ways that call you.
I am awoken in the middle of the night by my neighbour, again. I see my phone flashing and pick it up. It’s a message from a dear one, sharing that she is processing a lot after a recent conversation with me. Gripped again, by fear, fear of her potential anger. It’s nothing to do with her- at all. She has been a beautiful helper on my path by raising up this icy terror in my pelvis. There would have been a time I would have blamed her, but on this night I bow to her soul in genuine gratitude. The very same feeling arose the other day. It arose when I went to collect another dear one from the airport. There was a heap of traffic and I was a few minutes late- it struck terror into me- terror of being told off- terror of receiving the gift of another’s anger. Of course, nothing actually did happen- only kindness ensued. But the trigger was strong. I can’t find it- the point of trauma that set up this pattern. Nor do I feel I need to, to be honest.
As I lay here in the dark silence of the early hours of this Saturday morning, it feels like something wants to break free. As I lay and hold this fear, this coldness, this clogging of my sacred sacral chakra, my chalice of wisdom, centre of all creativity, I feel power radiating. There is the ice present, yes. But something else wants to move now.
I am feeling so done with manipulation and victimhood as a mode of protection. I am so done with rolling on my back in supplication to avoid being on the receiving end of someone else’s expression of displeasure. There is a feeling that my whole life I have been trapped by my desire to avoid anger. That my manipulation by people pleasing has trapped ME entirely and that now that feels far too great a price to pay for illusory safety. Now, I desire freedom too strongly to box myself in like that anymore. And so, on this auspicious night just after mid winter, A releasing of that old pattern has begun, and I pray for a new way.
I don’t know anything. Should it be this way or that? What a question, it is simply as is. How can I feel it should be other than? This moment- drenched in tension, held in the tight embrace of fear, I still cannot see how another way would be better.
If this now is wrong, then I am wrong. And from this space I cannot make myself wrong, for who is there to blame?! This intensity running through the nerves of this wonderful manifestation I call ‘body’ is no more than a passing sensation. Small in fact, though all absorbing it may seem to be. What of this vastness beyond, what of the silence that surrounds that pulsating fear?! How I want to laugh when I witness the problems that I have believed in, when all is silence when I really look. Deep out of this silence is from whence the fear is born, and fall back into itself it will eventually. Like the ocean birthing a wave- the fear is birthed forward and it rises in intensity and then falls, back to its beloved Mother, the ocean Herself. The All that Is, the Peace and Freedom that all ‘things’ are imbued with and eventually will die back into. Only love is real, know this and Be Free!
I connect to you, to your energy- from afar. I feel the dirtyness, I feel the grubby thoughts that you have been circulating about me. It’s oh so painful. The cord between us is polluted from your side and I am receiving that energy. It’s toxic. I want nothing to do with it.
All I can do is clear up my side. All I can do is to keep what I think about you in good shape. To look after my interpretations of situations between us. To love you as best as I can whilst keeping clear boundaries to look after me.
I look at you and I see your heart- your pure clear heart. But between that heart of yours and me, there is a great mess of judgement and delusion. Are you willing to look at it all and see it for what it is? A mind made nonsense that serves no real purpose. Yes, you could argue that in one sense it is there to protect you- but arguing is what got us into this mess to start with.
Maybe it’s time to stop arguing and start forgiving. And by forgiving, I mean seeing things as they really are. Being with reality. In reality- nothing bad is ever happening. In reality, it’s one moment flowing into the next moment into the next moment. There is nothing stuck in this great dance of life. Nothing stays fixed. Only the mind will have it that things remain the same.
The greatest act of courage in my eyes, is to stay in the heart of Being and allow all of Life to harmonise. All that is not in service to Truth will fall away. You alone will remain.
Are you prepared to take this step? Are you prepared to look at me in this moment as I am right now? Not the story of me that you have held so dear. Not how I acted one Sunday five years ago, but who I am in this moment. I pray for your willingness.
I pray for it because I want to meet you again. I want the stories to fall. I want our hearts to meld and I want to look into your eyes and see the purity of my Self, not your resentful concepts.
Please, let it all fall and come back to God with me.
In my prayers for ‘you’, I also pray deeply for ‘me’. May You, and I, and all Beings, be free.
Leave it to the heart, this life of yours- if indeed you can call it your own. What is there to possess really? A collection if events, movements through space, interactions with other beings- those you have named your ‘friends’, material possessions you have pulled close.
All will pass, however permanent it may feel at the time-however real you imagine it to be.
I notice a dangerous thought arising- a series of compliments came to me today, from friends- after the last one, I felt pride arise. I had believed what they said. What a blessing to see that and drop back into the spacious ground beyond good and bad. Beyond divisions. From this ground I am safe, strong. If I believe your praise today, I am prone to believe tomorrow’s criticism. Better that I leave them both and stay as I am.
There is nothing to say from here. Words rise and then fall away, noiselessly- I look on. I feel sensation arising in the body. Fear and guilt and all manner of qualities. I look on. Nothing to say from here.
I was going to tell you about my blood test, but now it has passed. I sit on the sofa in quietude, gently pondering my plans for the next few days. I can feel the temptation to get into thinking about it. To begin worrying about it. To start trying to control it. I must resist the pull- there is nothing but pain there. Once I am caught by a thought, once I believe just one- I am sucked as if by quicksand, into misery. Best thing to do for me, for now, is to touch not any thoughts at all.
I was reading through fellow bloggers posts this morning, finding such beauty in the words of these complete strangers. Strangers in one way, yet I know them all- the way they weave their words, describing with such eloquence, the beauty of Being and the challenge of our shared humanity.
Then (and he didn’t come as a surprise), I notice a greyness approaching…a familiar voice comes in- I would bet everything that you know him too. He is the one that says, in one form or another – that you are ‘not good enough’. I watch him creep into my awareness subtly. He is grey and sly, he sneaks in through the back door. If I wasn’t paying attention he could get in unnoticed- then before I realised what was happening- he would have sprawled himself out on the sofa, dropped crumbs everywhere, turned the tv up too loud, and basically taken over my home.
But I did catch him this time, and, as innocuous as he may appear at first, I know that if I believe his gentle enough opening lines, he has got me- I will find myself inviting him to stay, and- based on previous experience- he is one of the hardest house guests to evict- he is one who long overstays his welcome.
I look at him and see his weakness. His bold, harsh, critical words- all a masquerade.
I’m not interested.
He came in to tell me that my writing ‘isnt as good as other people’s’, I look him square in the eye and say ‘so what? It is an expression moving through me right now, I’m not in competition.’ That flummoxes him- he has no power without my collusion, and he has no choice but to slip silently away. Leaving me to free the stream of words onto the page. I have no doubt he will be back, but he isn’t getting supper in my house anymore- he will have to find seek his nourishment elsewhere.