Last turn in the road
And yet again, I feel these alternative states of satisfaction and hopelessness. I just finished writing an interesting story. Perhaps not groundbreaking but it helped me gather my thoughts about the process that has been unfolding for me in the past few weeks and that which I have allowed to simply take over this time of my life.
It was not an easy release – loosening my grip on, and control of, my experiences, my thoughts, my emotions and my actions, has not been easy. It has never been easy for me – the master of my destiny in every which way. And then this time happens. This jury time, this down time, this time to grieve and feel pain and find solace and then heal, the time to let go, the time to simply experience this world by traveling to different lands and witnessing other people and lives and lifestyles and recognize that all of us go through all of this. All of us feel the pain and create the problems and find the solutions and enjoy the pleasures. All of us are just here allowing the process of being and becoming human. All of us, though, are not always entirely aware of the difference in being and becoming. One seems to complement the other for some, and negate the other for others.
So, anyway. This letting go - letting go of control to feel pain and stay open to sorrow and allow grief and anger and to succumb to healing - has not been easy. I still find this so hard to comprehend at one level, although it does seem to loosen its grip on me when I do try to take conscious action to allow consciousness into my reality.
The meditation retreat was another highlight – this practice of letting go, not resisting the resistance, or accepting the non-acceptance, presented more challenges to the rational Ego and allowed chance for more catharsis from preconceived expectations of how to deal with sorrow and fear.
Traveling to Costa Rica alone and to Puerto Vallarta with friends was also an amazing experience since that allowed me to let go of other kinds of control. Of trying to organize, arrange and manage the process of having pleasure and fun. There were other, more experienced people, who would take care of those choices for me. All I needed to do was allow myself to be taken for the ride. Regardless of whether it was swinging like a monkey through a rainforest hanging on to a thin cable; shown the sights of birds and crocodiles and wildlife by brazen guides on a muddy river safari; or allowing myself to be taken to a restaurant of someone’s choice, or to just experience the food, the ambience the company and the moment, at any given moment.
Such letting go has indeed come with its own issues, none of which I was as aware of as in PV – the process of leaving stuff, losing things, walking away from material possessions. Knowing that they never belonged to me, or knowing that although they did on a certain plane, they were really simply placeholders for keeping track of these moments in time on another. If they were no longer here with me, they were somewhere with someone else – the Not Me who also, on another plane, was part of me.
And now. This final phase that I have started in the past few days and which will finally kick off ritually today – with the full moon. This conscious choice of abstinence, to focus on what I can give up, and bring this sacrifice into my awareness and sit with the results of such choices. How will I feel to let go of such pleasures – of drinking, companionship, fine food, sex, and other substances? Will there be pain and frustration and anger and a fearful realization that I am simply attempting to plot against the inevitable – the way of the world that has been charted for me? The way of this world which is, for everyone, harsh and ruthless and ultimately isolating?
Am I doing these things with the hope of being granted certain gifts in return? The gift of whatever I have sacrificed but now in its much higher and purer form? Instead of pleasure, to drink the nectar of joy; instead of sex, to experience lovemaking with a soul mate; instead of heartburn from food and drink, amazing health and fitness in return for a sensible diet; instead of routine companionship, a divine connection with the aforementioned lifetime lover; and instead of momentary release from mind-altering substances, all kinds of holy, godly, divine and sublime experiences that will keep me in a perpetually altered state of unadulterated bliss?
Is that the condition then? Grant me these when I sacrifice to thee their much lesser and more meaningless versions?
I don’t know – and I can’t tell you until the process is indeed complete.
All I can do at this point is dive into it.