On my walk this morning I was listening to the audio book, The Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer. It’s a pretty good book overall. It doesn’t contain new concepts (to me, at least), but it does have a perspective that’s different enough to give me pause sometimes. The narrator (it’s not read by the author) described how one must make the commitment to be happy and not to let anything that happens — because stuff will happen — dissuade you from that commitment.
Zap! I realized I was making some other people in charge of my happiness. My mind is so sneaky!!!
Boop, Boop, Boop. Backing the truck up. . . I’ve been attending OA meetings for the last few weeks. I kept looking for “glowing” people: Someone who had mastered abstinence, seemed calm and serene, and seemed — happy. But I didn’t see any one like that. The meetings here are lightly attended, too. I had even ultimatumed myself, that if there were only a couple people in the Sunday meeting, I was going to stop going. So that meeting had over twenty people (rats!) and some interesting sharing. However, I still didn’t see anyone who looked happy [to me]. This made me angry and kind of pleased, too. Again, my mind is very sneaky.
Now this morning, I realized I had put them in charge of my happiness. I wasn’t going to be happy because they weren’t acting like I wanted them to act. Just like there is no “because” in love, there is no “because” in happy. This is probably a case of not seeing because I wasn’t being.
In that great way of the universe, when I decide to be happy no matter what, interesting things validate it, not cause it. Janet Jackson’s “Nasty” song just came up on the song shuffle. I read there will be a blue moon on Friday. I am going to have coffee and a hug with a friend on Sunday morning. Contented sigh.
“Once you have made the commitment to free yourself of the scared person inside…” – Michael Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself.
When I read that line, I had a physical reaction. Sound rushed in my ears, my throat constricted, my heart sped up.
Almost my whole life, the story I told myself of who I am, is really not who I am. I thought I was a mean-angry person at the core, and I had been working for several years on letting her go. She was just the gate-guard for the scared person.
Preparing to write this, I had a glimmer of thought that letting the mean-angry identity run my life, while protecting me, has had limited potential. It always had to keep an eye on the prime mission of hiding and protecting the scared person.
Letting myself fully experience being frightened or being a scared person showed me a different person. A person I am actually more compassionate with than the mean-angry girl. This fear is not of anything that I’d label “animal fear.” Nothing is going to kill me or maim me. This is fear of ego and identity-self. An existential fear is the best way I can label it.
It took a great willingness for me to experience that resisted identity. It doesn’t matter whether it comes unbidden or I set out deliberately to create and experience it. Only by experiencing it fully can I know that (a) it will not kill me (b) it is a creation just like everything else.
What’s after that fear is experienced though is a “self” so wide and great and all encompassing it’s not explainable.
Setting aside time to process allows me to know what it feels like, so when I encounter the leading edge of the feeling during the day, I allow myself to feel it. The funny thing is I expected allowing myself to feel fear to look like I was cowering in the corner all day. Not at all the case. It’s also not obvious to others what I’m doing, except that I am not covering something up.
I have more compassion right now for those who let their frightened self out for all to see. It is still a bit repugnant for me to view – more opportunity there! A big thank you to the Avatar tools for enabling me to experience these feelings safely and without judgment.