“I was very afraid at the beginning, until Master told me that pain isn’t the truth; it’s what you have to get through in order to find the truth.” — Deepak Chopra, The Return of Merlin
My life and life situations had been in battle. For the last few weeks this dark space has been home, everything that could go wrong did and just when I thought it couldn’t possibly get worse, BOOM. Worse! In all honesty, I strive to be the most authentic version of myself, but what I’ve come to understand is sometimes that could mean good, bad, or even ugly. I am what I am at that moment, and then I let it go. This concept inevitably unfolds during my times of emotional instability as well. So, sadness found its way to me the other day; I could not bear it and I could feel it seeping into my inner consciousness. It overwhelmed me, as often the dark clouds overwhelm the sun when the storm is coming. I longed for the expected joy I took for granted as a child. Sadness is an all too familiar feeling for most of us; yet it doesn’t have to be. That’s what I’ve learned.
As I looked for every way to pull myself out, it was evident that I was going against the natural process; Recognize, Release and Rest. I wanted to rest in joy, but I didn’t want to acknowledge what brought me to this space or even release it. Part of being authentic is the deliberate awareness that you lack nothing. You are whole, perfect and complete. But what do you do when that little voice of disorder whispers sad nothing's in your ear? What happens when you don’t feel whole, perfect or complete? Follow the process!
Step one- Recognize. My downtimes often lead me to recite the words of Eckhart Tolle. “Death is stripping away all that is not you. The secret to life is to die before you die and find out there is no death.” This affirmation can combat even the saddest moments. Why? Fear ceases to exist; Sadness is no longer the big bad monster under your bed once you distinguish that it is not you, just a smokescreen in the present moment. Once that is understood, feel it, be there with it, but do not dwell in it. I repeat, DO NOT DWELL IN IT.
Step two- Release; let it go, unravel the tightly wound emotional cord, or I should say discord and set yourself free. How? Be an observer of your emotions and thoughts. Truly hear those whispers. Pay attention to them, and soon you will see just how preposterous they are. I find that when I am an active listener and vigilante of my own thoughts, I can source what comes in and protect myself from the negative fabrications the mind unsurprisingly creates. Soon you will find that you can laugh at what would normally consume you.
Step three (my favorite)-Rest! When? Right now! There is no art to it, but it isn’t simply closing your eyes and going to sleep, it is being at peace from the depth of your soul. The bible references this as the “Peace that surpasses all understanding.” You may be wondering how to get there. Guess what? There is nowhere to go. Rest is already a part of who you are. You just have to connect. Rest is the zenith of the journey of connection with your highest self. Through meditation, prayer, quiet time (Whatever you call it) you will reach this peak and I must say, when you do, it will be incredible. Your being transforms from the inside out and you can get back to living your life from the center of stillness, which is the real source of love, joy and fearlessness.
So note to self: Recognize, Release, Rest because “even when the sky is heavily overcast, the sun hasn’t disappeared. It’s still there on the other side of the clouds.”