Being Willing. Being Free.
If we want to change and grow we have to be willing. We have to be willing to see all the difficult parts of ourselves with honestly. Not only do we need to be able to see them. We need to be willing to be fully open to them. And we need to be open with all of ourselves; that includes being willing to feel these places within us; not just think about these places.
Most people are somewhat okay with seeing a difficult emotion or pattern within themselves. But when asked to actually feel and experience those emotions, most turn away and find anything else to do. But if we want an emotion or some deep pattern within us to change or transform, we have to be willing to give it our full attention. To be Free means that we are not going to hide from anything; especially, the difficult and painful parts of ourselves. We have to be fully willing to meet them with love and compassion.
But meeting ourselves with love and compassion can be difficult or confusing for most of us. Often when I meet with someone, and ask them if they are willing to meet themselves from this place, feelings of unworthiness or not knowing how arise. I love to use the image of the good parent. “How would a good parent meet us in our pain and confusion?” I ask. Would they stand 10 feet away and give us a lecture about being loving to ourselves, or would they pick us up and put us in their lap and hold a deep space of love for our pain. And so this is our work, to be willing to sit with the pain, feel it fully, and meet it with a universal friendliness; experience it without pushing it away or running from it. This is not work we do in our heads from some sort of psychological perspective; this deep pain lives in our bodies, so we must be willing to sit with the emotional pain in our bodies. And as we begin to sit with it, feel it and experience it; the pain may actually get worse or louder for some time.
And at this moment, we have a choice, to sit deeper and begin to let go or to listen to the story about why this should or shouldn’t have happened, (or whatever the thoughts and beliefs are around the pain) and hold on. This is where most people go, away from the pain and into their thinking minds. And because of this, the pain does not get a chance to move, transform or release. It would be like a child who was hurt at school, and the parent began a conversation with why the child shouldn’t be crying or why life shouldn’t happen, instead of holding and embracing the child. Often deep healing doesn’t takes place, if we aren’t able to feel the pain, to walk through the doorway of grief, fully experience it and come into our own Strength, Beauty and Wholeness, that becomes clearer after we let go.
But being free does not only mean that we are able to be open and honest with all the difficult parts of ourselves. It also means that we are willing to see our own Beauty and Spaciousness as well. And a funny thing happens, when most people look at their own Beauty and Spaciousness; they become scared. Scared because they never knew this to be themselves. Or scared because they know this is the Truth of themselves, and if they are going to live from that place they must give up all the silliness of their own minds (all their thoughts and opinions, about themselves and others). Or scared because it is something totally new; and most people are really scared of something new. Especially being somebody new or for the first time truly being themselves.
The biggest fear is that in embodying this Beauty, that we will somehow disappear or lose who we are. It is true in a sense that there will be a death; a death of the ego as the fore front of our consciousness. It will be the death of our false ideas about ourselves. And in the end, the ego will certainly still be there, but it will take the back seat to this Beauty and Spacious Consciousness that we are. And this is a whole different way of being.