Wednesday, August 8, 2007
Tempestuous Waves of Change
August 8, 2007
Clinging To The Core
When Our World Falls Apart
There are times when our whole world seems to be falling apart around us, and we are not sure what to hold onto anymore. Sometimes our relationships crumble and sometimes it’s our physical environment. At other times, we can’t put our finger on it, but we feel as if all the walls have fallen down around us and we are standing with nothing to lean on, exposed and vulnerable. These are the times in our lives when we are given an opportunity to see where we have established our sense of identity, safety, and well-being. And while it is perfectly natural and part of our process to locate our sense of self in externals, any time those external factors shift, we have an opportunity to rediscover and move closer to our core, which is the only truly safe place to call home.
The core of our being is not affected by the shifting winds of circumstance or subject to the cycles of change that govern physical reality. It is as steady and consistent as the sun, which is why the great mystics and mystical poets often reference the sun in their odes to the self. Like the sun, there are times when our core seems to be inaccessible to us, but this is just a misperception. We know that when the sun goes behind a cloud or sets for the night, it has not disappeared but is simply temporarily out of sight. In the same way, we can trust that our inner core is always shining brightly, even when we cannot quite see it.
We can cling to this core when things around us are falling apart, knowing that an inexhaustible light shines from within ourselves. Times of external darkness can be a great gift in that they provide an opportunity to remember this inner light that shines regardless of the circumstances of our lives. When our external lives begin to come back together, we are able to lean a bit more lightly on the structures we used to call home, knowing more clearly than ever that our true home is that bright sun shining in our core.
This really resonated with me today because although my world is far from "falling apart," it is certainly shifting and changing at an uncomfortable pace. I always say that I don't do well with change but that is probably selling myself short; I do just fine considering the amount of it I've had to deal with lately! When I think back to the past year, as I am wont to do around my birthday, I am stunned at the amount of transformation that has taken place! In one year I have gained a full-time mate, 2 part time children and a new job. I have seen one daughter through two car accidents. I have suffered through chronic emotional attacks by my 2nd ex-husband's wife, watched them separate and prepare for divorce, and attended my 1st ex-husband's wedding. I have held the hand and heart of my child as she suffered her first major break-up, and celebrated another as she proclaims the finding of her own soulmate. I had a life-changing surgery that affected me both physically and emotionally. I have lost two dear friends but gained several new ones. I have watched several other friendships change form, am hoping that they will survive my inevitable continual growth.
When I look at all of this, I realize I need to be more gentle with myself, realize that I have a lot on my plate and that I'm doing a helluva job managing it all. And when I become completely overwhelmed, when the waves of change are rocking me, threatening to knock me down, I will steady myself, seek the very core of my being and hold on with all of my might.