Finding anchor, adrift.
There is a sitch in existence, where irony has its way with us. The magnetic forces of burning desires come to head in a comical meeting of paradox and play, as we sit at the crossroads between security and instability, connection and sovereignty, passion and peace and wonder how we are ever to achieve, let alone sustain, balance in our lives.
It is exactly at this place where we call upon the mercy of the middle road, a path much undermined by the capitalist value system where only the experts, perfectionists and multi-talented may enter the spectrum of the Accomplished Human Society. Of course, there is no security there, only highly strung, highly numbed and vulnerable transience, the hand that gives our sense of worth is the same that takes it away.
Try as we may to hold on to Things, to youth, to beauty, people we love, places we cherish; life itself cannot be held. Change is the very nature of nature and we are the fruits of eons of that evolutionary truth. Little by little we come closer to the cheek of our own mortality and learn one way or another, the art of detachment. Loss is not a fixed state, it is a threshold of alchemy and infinite potential. What we lose we may find again in another form, in another way.
To be human is to be at the mercy to our own condition, we think, we feel and in that tension exists the paradox of life. Union is the path of equilibrium, the meeting place between our hearts and minds, between our inner and outer worlds. If we can remember that our eyes see only a fraction of the colours that exist and our memory is a theatre of our own choosing, then we can be courageous enough to accept disillusionment as a present part of our realities. We can laugh at our inescapable humanness and learn again and again, to let go of what isn’t true and let in, what is. We come to accept ourselves in our confusion, in our changing and in our contradiction. No person has a ‘get out of human suffering free’ card, not even the yogis in their caves of bliss are removed from the tension of that human stitch.
Our collective noise for planetary equilibrium and sustainability are not separate from our own yearning for this state within ourselves. We too have to find our way back to who we naturally are, each with our own needs, boundaries, desires and beliefs. Carving our own relationships, identities and life paths from the clay of our past we re-shape our realities with imagination, trial and error.
Our future is not learned but created from the cornerstone of self discovery. We may not yet know ourselves, but we are learning who we are not and what we do not want.
Where we once found comfort in old structures we now find unease. We are learning to learn, without having to know. In no other terrain is this shifting state more evident than the ‘new relationship’. No longer bound by the proprietary claims of security dependance, nor to religion and the pious rules through which to wed is a liberation from sexual suppression or a step towards our ‘happy ending’. Instead we question whether to marry at all, and what kind of relationships we really desire, often unearthing the disney stories, parental patterns and any other dredging love goo from the past along with it. Illuminating our blind spots not for pleasure but for empowerment.
Relationships are not meant to make us happy, but to make us conscious.
I often feel the sand falling between my fingers and think, this is how I experience clarity. I can’t cradle it for long because the landscapes are always changing. Still, underneath it all, layer after layer, we unpeel the onion of our much congested stories about who we are and how we need to act in the world. The core of our essential nature is untouchable and can never be tarnished by the judgements our mental stories machine firing upon our sense of self. But it is exactly that, the unearthing, the unbecoming and undoing of our stories that nudge us towards the balancing act of the middle road.
Although ideas of mediocrity, boringness and anything that can be seated anywhere near what we call average; have become the repulsive dead zones of our desires, boring is often a sister to peacefulness and simplicity. Isn’t it time we valued peace?
Sometimes we need structure, to frame our ideas and focus our minds upon a single thought. There is so much aliveness demanding our attention that we can miss the beauty, the meaning of a single idea. If we look at a dandelion, scattered in the field amongst weeds and fallen leaves we think nothing of it. We place the dandelion in a frame, embellished with golden carvings of care and thought we become still. Contemplation reveals beauty. How we choose to embellish the meaning of our lives deciphers whether the misery becomes magic or the loss becomes new life. Our lives renew themselves by the vision we give them. Change the framing, change the story.
Quietness, slowing our motion towards achievement and relentless moving forward towards some future allows us to lean into a moment and find there is an endless depth to the beauty of each person we meet, each fallen leaf and each thought.
If we dare to allow ourselves to be okay with where we are at and who we are now, we may realise This Moment has so much to harvest. Even if the Notorious Now may have been spiritually squeezed dry in every self help shelf, I can’t deny the allure of its enchanting secrets and peaceful respite from the anxieties of an unknowable future and often depressing past.
The perfect illusion is the illusion, of perfection.
So what is identity but an illusion? We weave its cloak around ourselves, shaping our path in the world, our story, how others perceive us and fooling ourselves to the reality that we are naked underneath. As we grow older we become more convinced, of our confidence in the story we have sewn for ourselves. We are used to the way it falls around our shoulders, covering the burden we carry; the heaviness of being anyone other than who we truly are.
We are, because we are.
What if we reframed instability as adventure, loss as lucrative doorway, climate change as a coming together? Perhaps, we would simply... have a lot more fun.