It’s dark because you are trying too hard.
Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly.
Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply.
Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them.
I was so preposterously serious in those days, such a humorless little prig.
Lightly, lightly – it’s the best advice ever given me.
When it comes to dying even. Nothing ponderous, or portentous, or emphatic.
No rhetoric, no tremolos,
no self conscious persona putting on its celebrated imitation of Christ or Little Nell.
And of course, no theology, no metaphysics.
Just the fact of dying and the fact of the clear light.
So throw away your baggage and go forward.
There are quicksands all about you, sucking at your feet,
trying to suck you down into fear and self-pity and despair.
That’s why you must walk so lightly.
Lightly my darling,
on tiptoes and no luggage,
not even a sponge bag,
Via my beautiful friend, Ellen
Joy is being willing for things to be as they are.
~Charlotte Joko Beck
Post Courtesy of: The Path of the Mystic
VULNERABILITY is not a weakness, a passing indisposition, or something we can arrange to do without, vulnerability is not a choice , vulnerability is the underlying, ever-present and abiding under-current of our natural state. To run from vulnerability is to run from the essence of our nature, the attempt to be invulnerable is the vain attempt to be something we are not and most especially, to close off our understanding of the grief of others. More seriously, refusing our vulnerability we refuse the help needed at every turn of our existence and immobilize the essential, tidal and conversational foundations of our identity.
To have a temporary, isolated sense of power over all events and circumstances, is one of the privileges and the prime conceits of being human and especially of being youthfully human, but a privilege that must be surrendered with that same youth, with ill-health, with accident, with the loss of loved ones who do not share our untouchable powers; powers eventually and most emphatically given up, as we approach our last breath. The only choice we have as we mature is how we inhabit our vulnerability, how we become larger and more courageous and more compassionate through our intimacy with disappearance, our choice is to inhabit vulnerability as generous citizens of loss, robustly and fully, or conversely, as misers and complainers, reluctant, and fearful, always at the gates of existence, but never bravely and completely attempting to enter, never wanting to risk ourselves, never walking fully through the door.
You’re with me always – the weight of you like an anchor
tenacious, forcing me deeper, holding me to what matters
like the desert sun to the scorched sand.
For years I measured my life in before and after
until finally, there is only now and this relentless becoming.
We’re not meant to survive it. We’re meant to be ravaged by it
until it wears us away like stone ground to sand.
And not just by heartache and loss, but by beauty too.
By all that’s pure and true in the world,
and by everything we love and hope and dream.
If we’re doing it right, we’re meant to feel it all viscerally,
unreasoning and aching as we take it all in.
I will have become like
the madman running
to see the moon
in the window,
I saw tracing the cliff edge
above the river.
I will be the man
I have pursued all along
and finally caught.
I will be
all my intuitions
and all my desires
and then I will walk
slowly down the steps
as if dressed in white
and wade into
the water for
a second baptism.
I will be like
someone who cannot
hide their love
my joy will become ordinary
and like a lover
I will find out
exactly what it is like
to be the happiest,
the only one
understand how much,
a hair’s breadth
I do not believe that sheer suffering teaches.
If suffering alone taught, all the world would be wise,
since everyone suffers.
Suffering must be added mourning, understanding,
patience, love, openness, and the willingness
to remain vulnerable.
~Anne Morrow Lindbergh
Image and quote courtesy of: The Path of the Mystic
The Path of the Mystic