Saturday, March 15, 2014

The light shining in the darkness


In speaking with a friend this morning, I was reminded of the great bias in our culture toward the light and away from the darkness. When we meet with a friend who is depressed, feeling hopeless, shut down, or otherwise not beaming and joyful, we can become convinced, quite quickly, that something is wrong, that some mistake has been made which needs fixing. We scramble to put them back together, to remind them of all the gifts in their life, to let them know everything will be better soon, and that it will all turn out okay. 

It is so natural to want to help another and to lessen their suffering and their pain. There is nothing wrong with this intention and with using whatever skillful means we have to help. But we can also start to see that much of this fixing activity arises out of the abandonment of our own relationship with the darkness within. Perhaps as little ones it was not safe to feel sadness, rage, despair, or hopelessness. If our early environment was one in which love, affection, and connection was withdrawn as a result of our confrontation with these and other "non-happy" states of consciousness, we learned (very intelligently) to disavow their messages, truths, and potential gifts.

It is possible the kindest thing we can offer our suffering friend is to sit in the darkness with them, removing the burden that they change, transform, feel better, or heal in order for us to love them. As we turn to embrace own unmet sadness, grief, and despair, we can begin to resist the temptation to project our unlived life upon others and the world.

As we learn to rest in the wholeness of our immediate, embodied reality, we can start to see that love is a movement of the totality. It is whole, never partial, and is raging and alive even in the darkness, shining brightly in its own way. In the core of the darkness, the sadness, the grief, and the aloneness is something very real, breaking through the dream of partiality. But what this is may never support conventional egoic process or our cultural and spiritual fantasies of a life of invulnerability. 

In the wholeness of what you are, everything is alive in its own way, everything is path, everything is the integrative activity of the beloved. She is not only the joy and the sweetness, but at times will arrive as the darkness itself to reorder your world. Let us stay close to our own suffering and the suffering of others, careful not to cut it too quickly. Let us turn toward the darkness before we discard it, and finally see what it has to say. 


1 comment:

  1. I like this post for the value of recognizing the darkness that we sometimes experience and that we need our loved ones to overstand that we sometimes lack curtain developments in our childhood or some other significant issue in our life.

    "It is possible the kindest thing we can offer our suffering friend is to sit in the darkness with them, removing the burden that they change, transform, feel better, or heal in order for us to love them. As we turn to embrace own unmet sadness, grief, and despair, we can begin to resist the temptation to project our unlived life upon others and the world."

    We hopefully as an adult we journey into our - Self-Awareness which is the ability to look at yourself without such harsh judgement!

    Today's society is getting away from good family values. Or one example is the Maslow's hierarchy of needs theory:

    Self-actualization – includes morality, creativity, problem solving, etc.
    Esteem – includes confidence, self-esteem, achievement, respect, etc.
    Belongingness – includes love, friendship, intimacy, family, etc.
    Safety – includes security of environment, employment, resources, health, property, etc.
    Physiological – includes air, food, water, sex, sleep, other factors towards homeostasis, etc.

    We use to spend quality "time" with family old and young~!!!!~

    We sometimes try to fit too much 'time' with outside sources that does not truly fit our core values!

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