Monday, April 20, 2015

Doing nothing as an act of love

There is such a deeply rooted belief that we must ‘do’ something with surging emotions, feelings, and sensations in our bodies: to understand them, to link them to some aspect of our life circumstance, to change them, to transform them, to eliminate them, or even to ‘heal’ them. In their arising, they are pure forms of creative energy – but how will we meet them? 

This belief was carved into our sensitive little nervous systems as young children when we did not have the capacity to allow them to wash through us and become metabolized in an environment of loving presence. And out of this belief was generated our unique strategies of fight/ flight/ freeze – as a way to get out of very intense states of vulnerability. 

But what if for just one moment we did absolutely nothing in relation to the arising of emotional intensity? 

What would happen? 

What if the most wise, loving, attuned response was to take no action? To not scramble to mend your broken heart, to not urgently spin to ‘transform’ the sadness into happiness, and to not frenetically seek to ‘heal’ your fear. To not give into the ancient demand that you fall into the extremes of denial or seeking relief, abandoning the uninvited guests through the fueling of a story about what has happened, who is to blame, why they are there, when they will go away, and what their presence actually means about you as a person? 

This ‘doing nothing’ is not a cold, passive resignation, but is a luminous, sacred activity, infused with presence and a wild sort of compassion. It is a radical act of kindness and love.