Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Your embodied experience is path, not pathology

It is so natural to want to help others, especially when they are suffering, hurt, confused, or experiencing profound sadness. But are we willing to set aside the very deeply rooted tendencies to fix, change, transform, or heal them, even for a moment? Can we walk with them into the raging fire that is their present reality, exactly as it has been given, and stay attuned to their precious experience as it is unfolding?

Can we dare to see the "other" so nakedly and intimately as an authentic, unique, sacred person in their own right, moving toward wholeness and integration, rather than someone who is “depressed," "anxious," "lost in their ego," or someone who has fallen apart, a total mess, stuck in traumatic response, bipolar, passive-aggressive, schizophrenic, or even insane?

Let us hold the hand of our friend and go directly into the darkness with them, if that is what love is asking, willing for our hearts to be shattered and put back together with them, over and over and over again. Let us allow the other to matter so much we cry deeply with them, we join them in their sadness, we get on their side, we do whatever we can so when they look into our eyes they feel us fully with them. Perhaps for the first time, they are actually seen by another human being, the way they organize their experience is held, and the way they make meaning of their life is contacted and shared. 

Let us join with them and with the entire phenomenal world in proclaiming that no mistake has been made, that they are not broken, flawed, or a project which needs fixing. To see together that all states of mind are utterly workable, intelligent, and that their experience, exactly as it is, is of the nature of primordial wisdom and sanity. Let us see once and for all that sadness, grief, depression, and rage are not pathology, but path.

To the degree we are able to stay with the intensity within—cradling our own sadness, despair, hopelessness, depression, and fear—it is to this degree that we will be able to touch and hold another, setting aside the need to fix, cure, or heal them, and remain as a sanctuary of space, holding, and kindness. It is by way of this sanctuary that love is able to find safe passage in this world. 

1 comment:

  1. As the mother of six and grandmother of three, and daughter of a profoundly loving, compassionate, deeply troubled and alcoholic mother, these words reach deep into my heart and soul at such a perfect moment in my life. A series of epiphanies following so many adventures and misadventures during this long and wonderful sacred journey of life have brought me back to a space of knowing that loving kindness is the most powerful way of existing in this vast and turbulent yet wildly beautiful world. With open hearts and open minds we can embrace our fellow human beings and celebrate their presence with total acceptance of who they are and who we are, right now, at this very moment, and we are each exactly where we are supposed to be! There is definitely a specific reason for each of us to be here, a reason for the people whose paths cross ours, a reason for the love we are given to share with other human beings, for the soul tribe we are born into and the soul tribe we encounter as we venture outward.

    As a massage practitioner, I attempted to massage away the pains of the world, but neglected to be careful with my own self, and as a caregiver all my life lost myself in the caring of my loved ones, and only found myself after becoming shattered and hurt to the point where slowing down for many years became a requirement.

    I am still in that healing phase, and after getting my degree in English Writing last year I now write poetry and will someday write about my journey and that of many dear souls whom I love and cherish with all my heart. Especially my dear mama, who crossed over back in 1999, my sweet angel, my muse, always whispering to me hints and promises of the Divine Creator who loves us all so much that He/She made us in their image.

    Thank you so much for creating this space and for sharing these beautifully written and brave sentiments.

    May peace be with you always. We are blessed to be here, right here and right now, in this breath and this heartbeat, where all the healing in the work exists.