“That is the real spiritual awakening, when something emerges from within you that is deeper than who you thought you were. So, the person is still there, but one could almost say that something more powerful shines through the person.”
~ Eckhart Tolle
People talk a lot about “being on the path.”
Simply, it means at one point you looked at your singular life and saw that it was part of a greater whole. You found higher purpose to your life, even if that purpose was not yet clearly defined.
This mind-blowing knowledge was enough to propel you forward (can’t go back now!). You swung your psychospiritual rucksack over your shoulder and began traveling toward a unity with that greater whole. You became a seeker of authentic soul-knowledge.
You woke up.
So, you’re on this path to being the best You you can be in this life.
Maybe you started the journey at 20 or 30. Maybe later. Maybe earlier. Whenever you acknowledged the existence of your higher self and what relationship you wanted with that self—that’s when you took the first step.
Then, somewhere, for some reason, you fall off the path. Someone breaks your heart. Badly. Your career becomes deadlocked or just plain unfulfilling. After three years of yoga, you still can’t bend yourself in half like the petals of a morning glory at dusk.
And you’re sitting there saying, This sucks. I try so hard to be a good human being. I buy local and organic. I meditate. I’m kind to animals. I recycle. I’m compassionate. What does the universe want from me? I’m too tired to even move. Maybe this is the wrong path.
These thoughts loop like that until you feel drained. (Of course you do; look at how much energy you’re expending trying and assessing the trying.)
You cycle through the loop over and over again. The loop begins to leave residual guilt over how horrible you feel, especially since your life is pretty darned good. You even remember that at one time—maybe as far back as childhood—you were happy! Confident, even.
It sucks to be off the path.
The paradox is: You are never off the path. This is the path. The path (a.k.a. the life of an awakened being) is a journey of learning. Whatever we are going through is what we need to learn now.
I feel a need to repeat that: Whatever we are going through is what we need to learn now.
That’s all! Our “problems” are actually blessings pointing us in the direction of our own wellness. When we address them with love and without judgment, we honor our steps along the path and continue walking it. They are beacons that guide us right to our highest self.
Make a list of what you consider to be your most pressing issues at the moment. What’s bringing you down in your life? Keep it to no more than five.
Look at each one separately and ask the following: In metaphorical terms, what does this “problem” want to teach me about myself? What part of my life is lacking love such that this problem had a chance to develop?
What adjustment, even a minuscule one, can I make today that will resolve this problem?
Whatever you release, always do it with love. Disgust, hatred, or repression of what we reject in ourselves are spiritual boomerangs. They will most assuredly come back, landing somewhere deep in your shadow bag, or “the long bag we drag behind us,” as Robert Bly refers to it in A Little Book on the Human Shadow.
The universe has your back. It proves this in the only way it knows how: by using your most intimate language—the one you speak to yourself through your thoughts and with your body.
You are the oracle.
Greet whatever you encounter on your path—difficult or not—as a divinely chosen personal guru to guide you to your highest self.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Emily Bartran