Journey Challenge - LEARN TO RIDE THE UPS & DOWNS
LEARN TO RIDE THE UPS & DOWNS
FINDING VITALITY WITHIN THE ORDEALS WE FACE
It is important to learn that we can learn the most important things about our essential nature whenever we are put in the most trying circumstances in our lives.
Any time we move through a difficult while staying present to it, we come away with more of our self afterwards. This is a key understanding of the maturation and growth process as human beings.
HERE’S THE CHALLENGE
As we mature, we face the reality that life involves suffering. In the end, the avoidance of suffering becomes its own source of suffering, as we entomb ourselves in a protective shell, and withdraw from the life opportunities that are increasingly perceived as threatening or overwhelming. The over-emphasis on security becomes a posture which deadens us, reduces us and gives us a sense of smallness.
Eventually, our postures of protection, withdrawal and avoidance is exactly what will keep us from entering into the journey life brings for us. Adventures and ordeals are no longer life-giving encounters, and we gradually give up on the venturing we need to bring ourselves alive, again and again.
HERE’S YOUR TASK
Accept That Adventure Brings Forth the Inevitable Ordeal – Understand That Ordeals Can Bring Forth Your Boon
The adventures of our life will also yield ordeals, and vice versa. This is the deal, and we have say ‘yes’ to it. The intertwining of an adventure with an ordeal is the very thing which can bring forth the exact conditions needed by which we discover many unrealized potentials in ourselves. This creates a sense of largeness in life.
If we don’t identify ourselves as an active player in the mythological field of opportunity, we will tend to project our vitality into our imagined superheroes – we will perceive them as larger-than-life figures who can do what we can’t do – or don’t want to do. We end up disowning and projecting our own potential onto those bigger-than-us figures.
Once we move past our initial emotional reactions to life circumstances and interactions that involve our perception of an ordeal, we can find within our authentic ‘hero response’ to the challenge that has been placed in front of us.
We can then awaken to the realization that the exact conditions needed to elicit our true potential from within us have transpired, but in ways that we may not yet be able to understand or appreciate.
A Poem by Jennifer Welwood
The Dakini Speaks
My friends, let’s grow up.
Let’s stop pretending we don’t know the deal here.
Or if we truly haven’t noticed, let’s wake up and notice.
Look: everything that can be lost, will be lost.
It’s simple–how could we have missed it for so long?
Let’s grieve our losses fully, like ripe human beings,
But please, let’s not be so shocked by them.
Let’s not act so betrayed,
As though life had broken her secret promise to us.
Impermanence is life’s only promise to us,
And she keeps it with ruthless impeccability.
To a child she seems cruel, but she is only wild,
And her compassion is exquisitely precise:
Brilliantly penetrating, luminous with truth,
She strips away the unreal to show us the real.
This is the true ride — let’s give ourselves to it!
Let’s stop making deals for a safe passage:
There isn’t one anyway, and the cost is too high.
We are not children any more.
The true human adult gives everything for what cannot be lost.
Let’s dance the wild dance of no hope!
By M. Basil Pennington
LIVE INTO THE QUESTION
It is good to live in the question.
A pat answer is closed, it is finished; that’s it.
It goes nowhere
and leaves little room for hope.
A question, the mystery,
Opens the space for us.
It is full of possibility.
It gives hope and life
and ever more abundant life.
Our faith, solid as it might be,
is full of questions.
And therefore full of life and hope.
1. STOP & DROP IN – Give yourself five minutes to ground into your interior, and breathe deeply.
2. GIVE THANKS FOR SOMETHING YOU’VE BEEN GIVEN. Recall something that you have been gifted with in this life, that you have valued greatly.
3. GIVE THANKS FOR SOMETHING THAT HAS BEEN TAKEN FROM YOU. Acknowledge something that has been lost that you have greatly valued – knowing its value to you, by having been lost.
4. GIVE THANKS FOR WHAT REMAINS. Realize how what has been given to you, and taken from you – both – live on in your interior, as something that is shaping your life today – living on in you.
5. REACH OUT TO SOMEONE THAT MATTERS. Give your love away today. Make a simple phone call, email, text. Complete your gratitude exercise by expressing your gratitude to someone you are grateful for.