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The Message vs The Messenger
It seems human nature, when given a message from God (whoever or whatever we believe that to be), to venerate the messenger (Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed, Bahá’u’lláh, Joseph Smith, Gandhi, etc etc etc). It’s as if we can’t separate the two, but all too often, we end up focusing on the Messenger rather than on the Message. And, they’ve all had essentially the same message: promote peace, love others, practice compassion, be grateful for what you have, don't succumb to greed, etc.. They also usually include having a RESPECT for nature and an appreciation for nature's bounty. We call these Truths.
Would you like to submit some words of wisdom or ask a question? We'd love to hear from you!
"Be wise. Treat yourself, your mind, sympathetically, with loving kindness. If you are gentle with yourself, you will become gentle with others."
"We think that the point is to pass the test or overcome the problem, but the truth is that things don’t really get solved. They come together and they fall apart. Then they come together again and fall apart again. It’s just like that. The healing comes from letting there be room for all of this to happen: room for grief, for relief, for misery, for joy."
"Every day, think as you wake up, ‘Today I am fortunate to be alive. I have a precious human life. I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others, to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings. I am going to have kind thoughts towards others. I am going to benefit others as much as I can.’"
"Here again we can illustrate from physics: the world of “name and form” exists only as a condition of perception; at the subatomic level, separate phenomena dissolve into a flux of energy. The effect of maya is similar. The world of the senses is real, but it must be known for what it is: unity appearing as multiplicity."
Looking back, there was great intelligence in my 20+ years of depression. There was actually grace inherent in life bringing me to my knees. (Sometimes life brings you to your knees so you can finally be present to your own knees!). There was healing there, right at the very core of my loss of interest in going to work or seeing friends, my abandonment of all hope for the future, my total disillusionment in external, second-hand meaning, my nausea at all things ‘spiritual’. Even my lack of interest in getting out of bed held wonders.
Through my depression, life was stripping me of all my illusions, all distractions, everything that was not real, forcing me to stay so, so close to myself, making me remember what remains after everything external is stripped away. Depression forced me to remember my own presence, essential and free, a miracle, bursting with life. My own presence, yes! - so simple, yet so overlooked, had always been here, closer than breathing, more undoubtable than doubt! My own simple presence - the presence of life itself - was the gift, the Source, what I had always longed for.
The whole search had been inverted, since a ‘self’ can never find what it seeks as long as it seeks it. The false ‘self’ needed to fail in its search for presence to be revealed as the ground and essence of all things. The wave cannot find the ocean - it can only be it.
I AM HERE.
And that is the greatest miracle of all.
Sometimes that’s where you have to begin, at the very beginning. You have to get back to the origin of life, the place prior to even the “I Am”, the raw Unnameable. Depression was the ultimate failure of the ‘me’, and its eventual surrender. It was a spiritual reboot, an awakening, for sure.
My longing to die had secretly been my longing to live, to break open my fragile heart to a sacred universe, to touch my own power.
I know this is not a common, or even popular view of depression: that it contains intelligence, and powerful medicine, so very needed in our weary world. So let’s begin a new conversation. Honouring the medical model of depression, but going infinitely deeper. Never turning away from life’s whispers.
With love from yourself,
"Peace requires us to surrender our illusions of control. We can love and care for others but we cannot possess our children, lovers, family, or friends. We can assist them, pray for them, and wish them well, yet in the end their happiness and suffering depend on their thoughts and actions, not on our wishes."
Jack Kornfield (via thecalminside)
We can control only ourselves, our own thoughts and actions and reactions. The first step is learning that we can. The second step is beginning to learn how.