No Precedent

An honorable human relationship — that is, one in which two people have the right to use the word “love” — is a process, delicate, violent, often terrifying to both persons involved, a process of refining the truths they can tell each other.  – Adrienne Rich

 

So after many moons coming and going, after much research into the many theories and philosophies…. I’ve narrowed it down to this…
When it comes the four letter word, Love
The “romantical” type if you like,
The one you save to for the altar, I want a love like there’s one there’s never been before… No Romeo or Juliet or any other mythical tale.
I want a love without a precedent, one that’s going to make me cry tears of joy and tears of pain, as I grow, because real love is hard work, but it’s also fantastical and worth the trouble.
I want the kind of love that sets you free and resurrects you from the dead, I want a love soul deep, no pretension, no ego, no petty games, but playfulness…
I want the love I can bare my soul to and also make passionate love to.
I want a love with a honorable man, who has the guts to be himself, to be real, to be raw, to be vulnerable…
To accept he’s afraid, but still dare…
I want a goddam warrior of love, just like I am… someone who’s been to to hell and back knows which side he likes best…
So he works hard to make heaven on earth…
A man who knows nothing valuable in this life comes easy, but can still laugh and take delight at the little things in life…
Someone who can be happy with who he is, where he is and what he has while working for what he wants…
Someone who can be honest, that he’s got no idea what he’s doing, but he’s trying and he’s willing to work hard and everything once.
I want someone with a courageous, compassionate heart just like mine.
Someone who’s not afraid to love himself, and love me the same way, because we are both crooked and scarred but still worthy of a love divine.
Someone who knows there’s more to this life than the material things we leave behind, the knowledge our minds can amass, and feelings of a million things at once.
Someone who knows this life is made of little moments called now,
So he’s not willing to postpone, his dreams, his life, his love
Maybe I’m asking for a lot…
But when it comes to this “romantic” kinda love nothing else will do,
Because I want a love that can revolutionise the word.
Because that’s what love is and that’s what it does.
So I know I’m not asking for too much
Love is mysterious, everlasting and divine
Sadly, our society has distorted our views of love so much most of us don’t even know what we want when we say we are looking for love…
Thus, why sadly many so called “romantic enterprises” fail dismally time and time again.
Because most of the time this relationships are based on fleeting feelings of lust or physical attraction. Often times, the person we thought “we loved” and saw as our “saving grace”, who would offer us all the satisfactions we yearned for in a lover, disappoints us with their humanity. They weren’t in the end; all that we had fantasised them to be based on our expectations created by outside influences, our experiences of “love” in childhood and often what the media or culture around us preaches “love” should look like…
Oftentimes we are deceived with the idea, that a loving relationship should should look like two people meeting, “falling in love” at first sight, being totally compatible in everything, reading each other’s minds, hardly ever being in any conflict or disagreement and living together happily ever after? I think not.

The truth is, in my understanding, love, is a not just a fleeting feeling but a universal truth and cosmic force and virtue, which we have in all of us and it’s our moral duty to nurture and share this love, which translates into, kindness, compassion, understanding, patience, forgiveness towards every being in the planet, including ourselves, “good or bad” irrespective of our self righteous judgement, I really could and am called to love anyone and everyone. Especially those who we think are less deserving are those who need love the most.

But when it comes to this “life companion”, kind of love, where agape, philos and Eros, are combined, that is something else…
A true blessing from above, something designed by the divine, when you find that special someone who is just somehow “easier” to love than most.
That special someone who you feel this magnetising attraction to for some strange but wonderful reason, beyond physical exterior…
Who you feel a “connection” to that you just can’t understand, you’ve only just met but yet they are so familiar, and you can be so intimate with, as if you’d known them for a while already… somehow you feel secure and safe in their presence, someone who feels like home.
That someone who’s smile, makes you smile,
You want to best for them, and you are willing to sacrifice, make concessions and commit. But this comes with ease….
Although real love is hard work, with this special person is less so.
Because you both on the same boat, keeping afloat, paddling together to the shore
And you know, you won’t let go.
You are in it, for keeps, for real.
You are willing to work hard to make your garden bloom and shine with an ever present spring, but when winter comes, you’ll know that’s also, alright because the trees you planted have solid foundations, in a deep understanding of love, which can endure any weather.
So you treasure the garden and gardener, you’ve got beside…
Because for some reason with this one particular person…
You felt a sparkling soul connection,
Even though a there was million others who would’ve fit in all your intellectual boxes
And expectations of what love “should” look like…
Other’s who made you horny perhaps,
But there just was no magical spark, that “je ne sais quoi”
Which is only ignited by this one special person you feel drawn to…
Your soul recognising in the other clay from the same terrain…
A magnetising pull, almost instinctive hypnotism to this one special person…
Where as when with the million others, who intellectually qualified as potential lovers there was simply no, “divine spark”, even though you tried, but it just didn’t come…
This things, I’ve come to believe you can’t force, but they are mysterious blessings from above given to you when the time is right.
Your reason can’t explain, your ego tries to defend, and you are feeling perhaps, shit scared, excited, and a million things more at once, so just you have to surrender to this feeling of love inside.
To the universe and his funny ways…
Perhaps the answer will be revealed much later.
So when it comes to “relationships” and
love, I want that other soul, who to come home to at the end of the day,
And endlessly conversate about our days…
How it’s rough out there,
Someone you with you can rant and complain to, without fear of being judged.
Because you both understand you are not perfect; you are human, but that perfectly alright. You are still divine, in your beloveds eyes.
Someone you can be silly, confide with in the most childish and intimate things…
Someone whom with you sulk, and then discuss what was behind all of that, healing the wounds from the past.
Someone who inspires you to be a better man, but still accepts your broken self.
I want the love that can heal, it hurts but it’s real… the love that is not afraid of tenderly exposing the wounds, suppurating the pus…
And gently, lovingly, soothingly, sensually, little by little, letting the pain drain away….
Becoming a better a man, by the side of your beloved…
Not by hiding our vulnerabilities and insecurities, but by being authentic and grounded
And so transcending your egoistic humanity. Accepting each other as broken and flawed but still intrinsically worthy of love.
Two souls helping each other evolve.
And why not, heal the world, because we’ve done our work, what else are we here for?
This is what I want, not to satisfy my ego, but liberate my soul… and my beloveds too.
Someone who inspires you to be a better man, but still accepts your broken self.
Someone who’s willing to go with you go on this roller coaster, you don’t know what love would look like, but that’s alright, you are making it up, as you go along…
Theres no blueprints stablished, thats all rubbish…
Your writing your own version of happily ever after, guided by your loving heart.
By the divine; rising above the ego, and ways this world tells you “love” should be like so…
You make your own rules, your own vocabulary, your own tribe.
You found one of your kind, and that’s a blessing divine.
And sometimes we’ll just sit together in silence,
Because our souls are communicating in ways our minds are not understanding…
So we just let go,
And embrace in passionate love.
Love is an intimate friendship set on ardent fire, that’s true.
But sadly most people don’t even know what friendship is,
Keeping it all at surface level, we hide behind our ego…
Friends are someone you can be frank to and they accept you,
Friends are so hard to come by; because we are all so screwed up…
So to find love, that’s something from another world, something worth fighting for, and dying for.
When I’m on my death bed, its ok if I have a million regrets…. of things I “should’ve done”, but I don’t want one of them to be not loving hard enough, with all my heart.
That’s my mission in life.
To love and to let everyone know, love is the only way to go and antidote to all the ailments of the world.
And when I find that special person with whom to tango.
I won’t let go, in fact I couldn’t even I tried, because our destiny would already be written in the testament of the stars.
It’s true, I love everyone…
But with this one special creature, I would let them know day and night how much they mean to me, how I’m so so glad they are alive…
I would write poetry about them all the time, they’d inspire stories in me I never knew I had…
With this one special person, we would face hell and it’ll be ok though, because we are both warriors in love, with the most potent weapon, there’d be nothing we can’t face
With this one special person, we’d grow old together, we’ll see how time draws lines in our face and our bodies deteriorate; yet we’ll still love and be attracted to each other, because what unites us is beyond the cover…
We’d understand each other with just a look, we’d know what’s going on, our minds would be in synchronicity, we’d understand each other’s moods and looks, yet at the we’d still surprise each other, because we are different and cherish our differences, we’d let there be space in our togetherness, and encourage each other to pursue our individual dreams and respect our autonomy and admire our different abilities so we’d communicate our wishes and feelings clearly and honesty, without pretention or fear, but eventually after the many years it would all be almost effortless, because our communication is just great, we both understand the foundations for a solid relation.
With this one special person…
I don’t know what it would like…
But I’m exited, I can’t wait, but I must be patient… to find out
Maybe we’ll marry
Maybe we won’t
Have children? I don’t know….
Because the story is not just up me, but we’ll write it together with the prince who decides to his reserved place next to me and together we’ll sail this ship, into our own horizon and treasure island.
Where we’ll live happily ever after, we’ll make sure of that, because we’ve been to hell and back and we know which side we like.
We’ll create our own paradise.
All I know is this love won’t have a precedent.
Nothing like it, ever before.

“For one human being to love another: that is perhaps the most difficult of all our tasks… the work for which all other work is but preparation.” Rainer Maria Rilke

To Love Oneself…

To love oneself…

What does this even mean?
We all have different understating of the word love…
A fleeting irrational, animal response? A mere feeling?

Most often people relate the word love, to “romantic love” between two people, in a relationship, but even the meaning and understanding of what a relationship is so distorted nowadays… We are more “connected” than ever, but more isolated than ever before, especially from our own selves. The only real home and sure source of love we’ll ever find, our own souls.

I believe real love is more than just a feeling.
Real love is a verve, and a most potent sacred force making the world go around…
Unfortunately, language often impedes us to make sense and even express of all our feelings…
The same with love, which yes, is also a feeling of affection, care…
Eros love, includes attraction and feelings of lust…
But real love goes beyond fleeting momentary feelings, real love is a virtue and a divine gift.
I shall attempt to deconstruct or sketch a clear picture of what this love looks like:
First of all, real love encompasses the words:
Kindness
Compassion
Acceptance
Understanding
Patience
Forgiveness
Attention
Empathy
Care
Resilience
Precede the word “unconditional” before all the above…
Now I could go into defining each of the above as well, but I trust we can all look up the meaning of the afore mentioned and get a clear understanding of what they all mean.
Although these words might look all “fluffy” and rosy, rainbows and butterflies, spring everywhere…
They are actually the most difficult things to practice, for us humans, trapped in our ego shells, but they are the most powerful and redeeming forces for any one of us.
So when it comes to self love, where to start?

First by accepting yourself, sounds simple right? Easier said than done.
Accepting our messy, broken selves who everyday we try to change according to societies expectations of what we “should be” as humans.
From a young age we are made to feel inadequate and ashamed of our short comings, some more than others….
So this is the beginning, accepting who you are warts and all, and realising you are not just your “mistakes”, “defects”, but realising that these things are actually what shape you into the unique wonderful individual that you are.
Realising that it is through these struggles you are actually being polished into the diamond that you are.
Realising that there’s nothing wrong with you, you are just the way god, the universe, the providence, nature, whatever you wanna call it intended you to be… Perfectly you.
This is the first step to self love.

Acknowledging yourself in all your glory as not just a pile of negative adjectives of everything the world told you, you “should be”, but being real with the truth of who you are, and being proud of that. Sure, you are not perfect, you could have a million defects which you want to change but we all do, but the first step in changing or “improving” any of those defects or bettering yourself in any way, is by first acknowledging who you are in the first place, acknowledging and loving ourselves into “better” versions of ourselves, not outcasting or berating ourselves for certain parts we are not quite proud of or we don’t like.

For example you could have a fiery temper, and tend to feel anger which you often try to deny, keep contained or reflect onto other people, until eventually you explode… and then you give yourself even more of a hard time for “losing control”, or being an asshole, or a bad person or whatever the condemning thought might be.
The first step is to have compassion towards ourselves, for having all these feelings and unhelpful thoughts, being human and vulnerable and simply not perfect.
Then gently, being aware of certain tendencies or unhelpful habits we might’ve picked up throughout the years for whatever reason, and try to transform them into something more helpful for ourselves and others.
For example that anger, passion, all that energy can be a powerful force for transformation, for taking action towards a noble cause with compassion and benevolence above all. Because we know hate or any destructive action doesn’t benefit anyone, it only damages all parties involved.

So it’s about acknowledging yourself in all your glory and go from there…
To illustrate this, in my experience, I’ve always been an anxious person for as long as I can remember, given my “difficult” upbringing, trauma etc…
For years I tried to negate, hide this anxiety and deep sadness I felt, I just didn’t want to acknowledge them because the feelings where too painful, they were real, but I thought they were a nuisance I had to ignore and just “get on with it”. I lived totally disconnected from my emotions, trapped in my mind, telling myself how “I should” feel instead of owning up to my feelings and which lead to years of destructive behaviour. First of all, I hated myself for all the things I should be and I wasn’t, I hated myself for all my “mistakes”, so often I kept myself isolated, I lived behind a mask, never showing my true self, all my pain. It was only when I opened the doors of my own heart to myself that I could be free…

I started to feel deep compassion for myself, because my anxiety and sadness where there for a reason, I’d had a difficult past, I’d gone through some very rough things that would leave anyone sad and anxious, and there was nothing I could do about the past, the past was done, but my emotions which I didn’t allow myself to feel, where still stuck there because I never allowed myself to process them…
So I started by accepting my past and the feelings that came with them, and realising how it was ok to feel everything that I was feeling. What’s more, I realised these experiences where actually a gift, these deep suffering allowed me to become a more compassionate person towards those in pain, these experiences taught me how to forgive, myself and others.
These experiences taught me the way to love.

Now I realise, there’s no such thing in the universe as mistakes, everything happens for a reason even if we don’t realise it or understand it at the time, everything is a lesson, everything is working towards the evolution of our better selves…

So back to loving myself,
This means forgiving myself for all my mistakes, things on retrospective I could’ve done better? But hey! We all try to do the best we can with what we have with what we have and what we know at the time, so what’s the point in dwelling on the past?
We can only learn, and move on, wiser than before.
Second, loving myself means being true to myself, in all aspects.
First, it means acknowledging my past, all it’s pain and owning it. It means acknowledging all my emotions, not judging them as good or bad, just allowing them to be there, and have compassion for how hard it is sometimes to feel a million things at once that my brain can’t even process.
Loving myself means chasing my dreams, it mean having the courage to break out of my shell and create a life I’m proud of, a live that reflects my values….
Loving myself means loving others around me as well, and not being ashamed of this love, not being scared of being who I am but beaming proudly all this Love I carry within me because, heck it’s a treasure I’ve worked hard to find, literally through many years and tears.
In practical terms it means, acknowledging all my moods, all my physical sensations and acting mindfully to take care of each one. It means being present to my life every second. Being grounded in love.
It means accepting my body as it is, scarred, hairy and all.
It means nourishing it with healthy food, it means giving it the rest it needs.
It means taking care of my mind, nourishing it with wisdom, allowing it to rest and have some fun as well.
It means taking care of my emotions and listen to what they are trying to tell me…
It means making peace with myself, from the constant war… it means working with me not against me…
It means unity, mind, body and spirit…
It means learning to trust myself, my gut, my intuition.
It means being true to my values and beliefs and not be ashamed of being who I am
It means having patience with myself…. having endless compassion for my ego and anxious mind.
It means living a life that makes me happy even if others don’t understand…
It means being in touch with my real self, my soul, endless love.
It means being a compassionate, nurturing mother towards myself.
It means being deeply aware at every time of what I’m feeling and thinking, and grounded, respond accordingly.
It means being mindful and present to my life.
It means acknowledging all my desires and feelings and not keep them exiled or be ashamed of them.
It means reconciling my heart and mind.
It means spreading that love I have within me with others and everyone around me in any way I can…
It means trying to make the world a more loving place.

“To know thyself is the beginning of wisdom.”
― Socrates

Courage, dear Heart

This walking in the dark; through the cool mist, trying to palpate the face of uncertainty… Feeling the abrupt wind slap my face and pierce my core as it gushes past me, thrusting my body forward and back, diligently, ever so carefully whispering at me rushes of air from every angle…
Walking at the mercy of the elements’ temperament and capriciousness, with no protection or life-cover, no road map or compass…
Guided exclusively by my curiosity and rapid heart beat…
Like a babe left alone to feebly, clumsily almost comically start to stumble and take his faltering first steps…

This fascinating exploration of the most remote, dark cave, in the utmost depths of fantastic, uncharted, new-lands, where no predecesor has ever gone before…
Where it will lead or what I may find nobody knows.
And so I take a deep breath and keep walking…
This floating in the infinitude of Unknown space, of endless, unexpected possibilities…
Of fleeting comets, shining stars, supernovas and black holes, alien constellations and whole different worlds…
Where my next breath is not guaranteed.
No one knows with exactitude just how long this oxygen tank will last.
And I know this illusory ground I walk on is shifting quicksand…
Any minute I could step on a trapdoor and fall through.
I know this for I’ve already fallen through.
I’ve been falling from the minute I was born…
And where I will land nobody knows.
Or if I ever will. So why am I expecting a landing? Or to reach a destination?
Expectantly awaiting the next station and missing the breathtaking view along the way.
And so I take a deep breath and continue plummeting through this cosmic tunnel….

Like an autumn leaf being graciously swept in whirlwind through a congested maze of concrete, in a confounding metropolis comprised of a million different landscapes… Dark-alleyways, leafy-boulevards, underground subways and bunkers, rooftop patios in sky-scrapping lego block buildings, opponent monuments, secret hideaways, public arenas and amphitheaters, shopping malls and amusement parks, quiet parks and deserted parking lots, junkyards and serene lagoons, shady neighbourhoods and privileged quarters, a whole array of different landmarks and destinations, inhabited by a colourful assortment of a million different races and ethnicities of busy human ants, young and old, rich, poor and everything in between… Where and at whose feet this leaf will land is anyone’s guess…

So is this falling through life… left, right, up, down, forwards and backwards, sideways and swerving, slowly and fast, spiralling in every direction, life is no straight line.
Nothing is guaranteed, and just what we’ll see and be presented with is anyone’s guess… The present always being a surprising gift for us to unwrap the minute we open our eyes for a brand new day…
Despite our calculations and best predictions and expectations, despite a certain degree of the predictability perhaps derived from monotonous and sheltered existences… As much as we’d like to think, we know where we are going and try to cruise control, the reality is there are a million different external factors affecting our existence over which we have absolutely no control over, and really the only thing we can control is the presence we have in this very second.
For the past and future, are right now as much as an illusion as the dreams we carry inside.
Unsettling, freeing and empowering realisation all at the same time.
And so I take a deep breath and continue gliding through this whimsical rabbit hole…

And so I’ve realised that’s its this process of falling, of walking and being swept, of journeying along that counts…
Because somewhere along the way we become what we are, we grow into our own skin, we find the guts to grow the balls, to bite the bullet and brace ourselves for an ever present winter… To show up for our existence no matter what the weather.
It’s about realising this tumultuous falling is our evolution…
Realising that through this process, through time, through experience, through the many wounds which heal to become scars, we develop a shell, an armour, a protection from the weather and impending chaos of the outside, which then prevents the disruption or minimises the impact of any external turmoil on our internal ecosystem and inner harmony…
It’s about not just helplessly falling anymore, but dexterously unfolding our wings, those we never knew we had to begin with and purposefully going along with the flow of life…
It’s about growing strong and hardy along the way…
Yet at the same time conserving our essence, the ingenuity with which we started, remaining authentic, cultivating our keen, sensitive hearts and becoming ever more vulnerable and intuitive at the core.

It’s about integrity; becoming whole. A fusion of mind, body and soul.
It’s about having what we say and do align. It’s about reconciling our hearts and minds.
It’s about conquering our fears and shining the light on the scary shadows that use to give us a fright at night. It’s about realising our limitations, and making peace with our imperfections. It’s about daring to speak our truth, untying the knots on our throats and breaking free of the bindings tying our limbs, hearts and minds and daring to start crafting our visions and living our dreams, regardless of contrarian opinions or pessimistic forecasts… It’s about expecting things to go wrong but daring anyway, because we know we’ll be ok. Because we’ve realised there’s no such thing as failure but that every mistake is a valuable life lesson, regardless of how awful it might feel, how wrong it may seem or how difficult to overcome it might be.

It’s about falling and getting back up again and again and never giving up, changing course if necessary but continuing to march. Its about no longer constructing our castles up in the ethereal air of false promises and passing illusions, but in the solid ground in which we’ve fallen, in the rugged reality of our flawed humanity in an imperfect world, where things don’t always go right and without fail we will make mistakes.
It’s about opening up and welcoming pain and difficulty, because we’ve realised that it’s through the fire that we are polished.

It’s about daring to be accountable for all our actions and taking responsibility for our existence. It’s saying “Yes, thats my mess and I will clean it up”, “That’s the bed I made and I will lay in it”, “Yes, I fell, but I’ll get back up again.” It’s about learning to mend the ruptures in the fine linings of our souls, recognising where we’ve gone off course and then gently and compassionately, picking ourselves up, kissing better our own wounds, nursing back to health own our souls and once recuperated dare to try again and build the bridges between where we are and where we wish to get to…

It’s about seeing our rise and fall as alchemy, a process of transfiguration.
It’s about collecting life lessons, like pebbles along the way, souvenirs for our souls.

It’s about understanding that we are the creators of our own luck and architects of our own destinies, because no matter where life may take us, ultimately we do have the power to decide what we settle for and what we strive for. Wether we choose to be passive victims of our circumstances or choose to take mindful action and take ahold the reigns of our life’s. It’s about exercising our full beings, mind, body and soul and growing flexible and open minded, tolerant and resilient. Letting our hearts marinade in suffering’s potion, grow tender and be cleansed of ego’s condemnation and futilely vain agenda. Letting go of what we think life should be and accepting what is, trusting, hoping, knowing that everything is working out for a higher good… Trusting that everything we may encounter along the way is serving a purpose, even if the reason is not immediately obvious or agreeable with our perception.

It’s about realising that just because things don’t go our way, it doesn’t mean it won’t be ok, but learning to trust the Universe and it’s wisdom, the Mystery and many things we can’t understand… Being ok with not knowing and letting the uncertainty excite us not paralyse us.

Because we’ve realised there’s no such thing as dumb or random luck. The universe is wise, and in all its wisdom it has allowed for human life to flourish. And so we can rest in the knowing we are ruled by these mighty wise laws we might never be able to fully comprehend or decode with our limited human sciences, so we do well to respect and uphold in revenrence and awe and coexist with the Mystery.
Embracing the Mystery. Because one thing is for sure, if the universe and all its wonders have conspired for us to alive in this very second is not for us to just merely exist but rather to thrive; to become a full expression of our humanity, exploit our gifts and talents, experience a full range of emotions, take a hold of our existence and leave a print where we are standing…
To flourish like crazy beautiful wild flowers, which withstand natural and man-made oppressions and against all odds bloom and delight us with all their splendour…
Like every other living creature lovingly crafted, so are we, called to unravel to our full potential, fulfil our purpose of being uniquely ourselves and so find our own beat and style and join in the rhythmic, kaleidoscopic dance of life…

It’s about realising this journey is not of becoming or achieving anything in particular but rather realising and fulfilling who we already are in all our magnitude.
It’s about becoming acquainted with ourselves, realising there’s no need to “find ” ourselves in external sources, or try to construct makeshift alien identities and looking outside for external validation… But instead turning inward and befriending the stranger that’s been with us for from the start, our worst enemy and best friend. Its about opening the doors of our hearts, coming home to ourselves and filling that vacant seat of honour in the thrones and driving seats of our lives. Letting go off everything we’ve learnt we should be and embracing and nurturing everything that we are… both the good and the ugly.
Because we’ve realised that’s it’s only when we accept what’s already there that we can become anything else we might wish to be….

It’s about realising that no matter what life will throw our way, we will be alright…

Because despite the 99.9% of things we can’t control there is one thing we are the sole and rightful governors and custodians of, ourselves.
And it’s in this .1% where our freedom and power lies…
It’s about realising that despite where the currents of life may take us, we have the power to create our realities wherever we are, through what we choose to pay attention to, through our attitudes, through our actions…
It’s about becoming aware of this enormous power and with it, this great responsibility.
It’s about understanding that every action has a reaction, and although we are free to choose, we are not free from the consequences of our choices…
It’s about learning that, that which we saw we will harvest… Good, bad, or nothing at all.
Not because there’s a patriarchal, condemning judge or law enforcer overseeing the universe who will give you punish or reward each person according to their behaviour but simply because of physics and laws of the universe which although we might not be able to fully to comprehend we are all bound by and no one can escape… And although we may try to deny it, although our intellects may try to device loopholes, and we may try to philosophise and argue white into being black, the reality is we can’t fool ourselves, our hearts intrinsically know right from wrong. Wether we choose to uphold it and act accordingly we all have a moral code we are born with, ingrained in us at conception.

So its about understanding that wether in this life or the next, call it karma or law of reaction or whatever else you like, it will catch up to you, eventually.
But even if never does, it’s good to do good anyway, for we are the sole espectators of our own lifes from beginning to end and from our consciences we can’t hide.

It’s about understanding that life can either be seen as the most absurd tragedy or trivial black comedy in its entirety, scripted by the most accomplished sadist author with a questionable, crude, sense of humour… Or as the greatest fable, an epic saga; tales of love, truth, justice, courage, a testimony to the sacredness of the human spirit.

A universal saga of boundless proportions, the greatest story ever told in which these empirical, timeless virtues will always rule supreme and will always overcome despite the adversity, endless hurdles and torrential curve-balls thrown our way…

Tales in which each one of us is called to be the author and main character, heroes and villains…
Tales which will tell of the many dragons we slayed, the many frogs we converted into royalty and of all the many times we ventured off and climbed into the tallest tower of the greatest castle in the highest mountain of a far far away land to liberate and revive many a damsel in distress… Tales which will tell of the many tempting apples in which we met our downfalls, our many Waterloos, and kryptonites… But then, just when we thought we were done for and as our oppressors were preparing to have their final laugh, the miracle happened and something in us resurrected, we embodied yet another superpower we didn’t even know we had; courage, resilience, hope, a human heart…

It’s about realising that as protagonists and authors ourselves, we have the privilege and power to choose the genre these tales are written in, even if the backdrop and scenes have already been set for us, we still have free reign to choose the next plot twist, the moral of the story and even if not necessarily how it will end, we can choose what we lived for and what we dared to die for.

So I’ve realised that in this wonderful precipitation that is life, all that’s required is for me wholeheartedly show up, to say “Yes” to life’s audacious invitation, to come forward, let life’s mystic envelop me, take me into her sturdy, playful arms and propel me onto this miraculous journey, all I need to do is be fully present for each marvellous and terrifying moment. So even though I have no idea where I will land… All I know is it’ll be alright.

For I’ve been falling long enough now to understand life has a funny way of always working out…
So I’m learning to let go of the way I think things should be and just relax, be patient and trust the intuitive sophistication of the flowering of life, everything in due time… As long as I’m present and living from my heart, taking advice from my mind, honouring my past and exercising its many lessons while expecting and equipping myself for an unexpected future, no curve-ball can do no harm, but everything is simply another chapter in my epic saga…

And so I’ve realised that in this life everything we are called to do is to continue plunging and rising again, perforating celestial stratospheres, pushing the boundaries of our human limitations, forever breaking new ground and reaching milestones we didn’t even know existed… Falling ever deeper, bonding ever more intimately with tantalising uncertainty and the ambiguity of life… And in the process, graciously unfolding ourselves, shedding our cocoons and exposing glimpses of our hearts through the magnifying covertures of our actions; the deeds and tales, legends of what we dared to do or regretfully neglected to in this animated, awesome vortex out of which anything can be expected, but where nothing is for sure and only one thing is guaranteed, no one will come out alive to tell the fantastic tale, all we can do is fully live it while it lasts…

So I take a deep breath and keep on walking, floating, falling high into the open everlasting, limitless heavens… Now with my eyes wide open, relishing at the views, taking field notes, and photographs, collecting momentoes, making pit stops to stretch my legs, talking to other travellers and making friends along the way. My heart heart is now exposed and our only protection is the love it radiates, and it’s sheerly obscure skies ahead…

“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.” ― Rainer Maria Rilke

The Questions of my Heart…

“As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being.”
― C.G. Jung

Ah! What peculiar creatures we are… Us humans and our intrinsic egocentric need to “matter”, to be of some notoriety, of some importance or to be somehow “special” and superior to our fellow men and creation, to have dominion not only of ourselves but our surroundings….
Irreparably we live in a culture plagued by the illusion of separateness, of “every man for himself”, and so we are encouraged and driven to some extent by the need to compete in every possible manner even if only partially acting out on this sometimes unconscious programming…
But nowadays it seems to be our daily bread… The media is a constant unrelenting broadcaster of these pernicious arbitrary yet rigid assessments we pass on each other, every news article can be condensed more or less to be a rundown of who’s “succeeding” and who’s “failing” at the game of life, who should be admired and emulated and who’s to inspire in us disgust and should shamed or feared, this manoeuvres taking place both in an intimate personal level in our everyday interactions and on a large sphere in between nations or other social groupings…
We are constantly reminded of this virtual running score of who (as individuals and collectives) has got the most of (insert an infinite variable of any given possession or asset)… Who’s the wealthiest, strongest, smartest, kindest or even baddest… We are so quick to judge and look at the speck in our neighbours eye while simultaneously consoling our own insecurities as we strive to be the “righteous ones”, who, even if we only admit to it partially, want to have it all, know it all and want it now, guaranteed.

It seems to be part of our mere human nature that we are driven by a thirst to conquer our surroundings, to achieve quantitive knowledge, and immediate measurable results all the while suffering from a desperate silent need for the certainty that our grand life plans will be realised and that after all, there must be a reasonable satisfying explanation behind all our otherwise absurd toiling, that the lives we lead “mattered” somehow, and that once we have long been buried underground we will not be forgotten, that we won’t just vanish into the eternal unknown as if we had never even existed but that hopefully, some form of legacy will remain in remembrance or to the very least perhaps merely our memory will “live on” in the minds of others …

We live in a culture where being “ordinary” is classed an insult and to be considered “nothing especial” is to be cursed… It seems that with each passing generation this problem entrenches to the extent that in our increasingly narcissistic, “selfie” driven culture, notoriety, approval, admiration of some sort seem to be the driving forces behind a lot of the commonplace routine interactions and enterprises structuring our society…To live a quiet, reserved life, to pursue an “alternative lifestyle”, free of societal expectations and influences is an anomaly, and a sure way to be granted the grand tittle of “outcast” or colloquially speaking a “weirdo” or “loser” who’s sanity is put on the balance…
It seems to be an irrefutable truth, that as humans we are all dotted with the inbred need to know ourselves to be of some importance, we all want to be cherished and be the “anointed ones”, and that’s ok, it’s part of our human character and we are after all remarkable beings…. But the glitch lays in that when confronted with our actual insignificance and impotence when faced with the grand impositions of not only life and the world as we know it, but also with the unsettling knowing of our eventual looming demise, we freak out and seek out shelter in our “reason” by constructing intellectual fortresses and armours and holding onto some form of “safety blanket” to try and alleviate or distract us from the inevitable discomforting anxiety we feel in the face of a future by nature ambiguous and indocile, maybe a little too much for our liking.
However, regardless of our preferences, that seem to be the structure of the timeline of life; a promising magic casket containing an abundance of infinite dormant possibilities but yet also a finite one, with a limited number of permanent, inedible possible realisations…
In this scenario, our “safety blankets” wouldn’t be a problem if only they provided a real answer to our existential enquiries instead of being band-aid/dummy solution offering only temporary relief and perhaps unwillingly, as a side effect fortifying the actual wound even more since the cause is left untreated… These “safety blankets” or foe cures, look different for everyone of course, some of us find comfort in amassing earthly fortunes, others in attaining “prestige”, reaching some sort of respect or admiration from our peers, some sort of fame. Others feel alleviation when exercising some sort of power or control, others seek shelter in the presence and validation of others through pursuing relationships, romantic or otherwise… Or some of us by dedicating our intellects to science or any other subject we’ve deemed as worthy… As well as devoting our talents to the arts or some other craft we find purposeful…

It seems that even if we were blessed with having attentive parents and sensible mentors who from conception and throughout our formative years asserted our worth and did their best to lay the solid foundations for healthy self-esteem, we simply can’t escape the shrewd appraisal of the social structure we operate in, which as soon as we have full use of our faculties demands from us to “prove our worth” in some way and burdens us with the burning question of why it is we even came into this world? Some arrive at this conclusion either through their own self deduction often in the face of difficulties or others when being bluntly challenged with the query by an outside entity nonetheless it seems none of us can evade this nagging itch.

And so we’ve become these species of conglomerated lone rangers, all baffled busily walking our own strict business of high importance, oblivious to each other’s common pain, not recognising in each other our shared humanity, silently bearing this mutual existential enigma… And so through life, even if only unconsciously, we strive to “justify our existence” and make up or find a meaning (or in some cases absolve ourselves of the question which is in itself an answer) as we best see fit, one which satisfies our intellects and settles our souls? As aforementioned these “safety blankets”, some form of formal religiosity, scientism, humanistic, nihilistic or hedonistic dogmas are just some of the mediums through which we attempt to soothe our souls…. And so from the beginning we’ve unconsciously absorbed the implied message that maybe we are all just trivial mishaps of nature, genetic mutations born barren into a competitive, discriminatory terrain where only the “fittest” survive and so we must be productive and make ourselves useful, legitimise our lives and increase our chances of survival… And so the eternal striving and grasping begins…

It seems to me, that in these times we live in we find ourselves in a bit of a conundrum. The “dog eat dog”, “every man for himself”, “survival of the fittest” dogma which seems to be primordial and dominate the workings of our modern western world is in my view totally absurd and self defeatist. The reality is that we are a collective of temporal very fallible and sensitive beings yet we demand of each other and of ourselves to be literarily bullet proof, perfectly working omnipotent specimens. Furthermore, we expect or aim for at least some aspect of our existence to be transcendent and go on for ever, almost as if we intended to transform ourselves into the Gods many of us have renounced… So when confronted with the reality of our own flawed mortality there’s nothing we crave more than compassion and acceptance, connection and union, love, despite our evident shortcomings, but sadly these are the very things our own egocentric tendencies, customs and self constructed armours fight against and prevent from being realised.

Sadly, it seems that this materialistic profit-driven western world offers nothing to alleviate this deep existential hollow all of it’s citizens carry, but on the contrary it seems to be programmed and operate in a way which aims to negate and often dilates this latent blank space… Sadly, it’s quite obvious that we live in a culture which encourages competition and discord not only with neighbours but starting with ourselves…
Naturally, this disapproval and dissatisfaction with our own being carries onto our interactions with others…

Sadly, I know it’s not just me who’s for too long suffered from the infectious “not good enough” epidemic. For years I too was a subscriber to the perpetual hourly bulletins this society bombards us with, selling us the current and ever changing ideals of “perfection” being promoted at any given time…
Sadly, almost from birth I too swallowed this bitter pill, its destructive intoxicating effects only becoming stronger with the passing years… And so for most of my life I walked around in a state of blind deception, resigned to solemnly believing I had to justify my existence because I, as I was, was not ok, there was something inherently wrong with me… what exactly that was I wasn’t quite sure, but it didn’t matter anyway, all I knew is at any minute the jig would be up and I’d be found out, ridiculed and vanished into a corner of the universe where all of the “not good enoughs” go. And so my life became a constant and arduous DYI self-improvement project… An improvised stand up routine where everyday I put all my might into upholding the different masks I tried to juggle, constantly switching into different characters for my expectant and demanding audience to judge and value, review and categorise as worthy or not, A+ or merely a B… All the while, the leading actor, the “real me”, my “true self”, was never to be revealed. Whatever that “true me” was, at that point I didn’t even know anymore… The only thing I believed is that whoever that self was, could never be pretty enough, clever enough, thin enough, wealthy enough, kind enough etc etc… And so I became a dazed and confused stranger forever running from my own shadow…

I wish I could say that one I woke up and casually stumbled upon the antidote to cure my malady, but the truth is the road and quest for recovery has been and continuous to be more like a tumultuous high speed chase for the holy grail of “self acceptance” and peace of mind. Fortunately, I know Im not the only one who’s had the realisation that maybe this quest for perfection and superiority is futile. So instead of trying to fight my humanity, my imperfection why not accept it and even embrace it. Instead of always trying to outdo my neighbour why not help each other along the way, why not love?… Because it’s not our first or learnt response, but it’s always an option and for me love has been the answer, it’s being the light against the darkness of mere being.

After many years stumbling around in the shadows, blindly trying to “make something of myself”, trying out many different “safety blankets”, looking for a potion to quench the yearnings of my soul, it was only after I had exhausted all my options and had no bullets left that I had to put down my armour and do the one thing I hadn’t dared to do before. To cease all striving, call a truce and raise my white flag, only then I was free to the most simple yet most revolutionary thing I ever did, to turn to love. The answer I’d been looking for had lied within me all along, always being within mine or anyone’s reach, yet sadly more often than not its foregone… Maybe because it’s often misunderstood, seen as weak and dainty or infantile, a myth only valid for fairy tales or Hollywood films, a fleeting fluffy feeling we sometimes experience… When really, it’s the most powerful earthshaking, word-transforming power we all carry within us, if only we chose to honour and embrace it… The answer, love, being the only antidote towards all the indifference and frivolous inequity we encounter in this world.

I’ve now made peace with myself, both my light and my shadow. I now see the idea of “perfection” for what it is, a handicapping belief keeping us from fully experiencing life, from realising our full potential afraid we won’t live up to a certain ideal… Truth is there’s nothing wrong with making “mistakes”, with being different from the norm and breaking the mould…
I’m not perfect and I don’t expect to be. In fact I now see that’s it’s in my imperfection, in my idiosyncrasies where my unique power lies. It’s truly through my cracks that the light gets in. I’m broken and I needed to be so I could break free.

It feels amazing to say that I’m now ok in my own company. I don’t need anyone else to validate me or entertain me. I’ve made peace with the fact that I’m perfectly comfortable spending a Friday night in the company of my tranquil self and perhaps a good book rather than feeling guilty or pressure to be out and about “hitting the town” in the company of a million strangers engaging in social rituals I find no real enjoyment in… Societal expectations no longer seem to have the impact they once did. I’ve realised now there’s really no guidebook to follow or script I must stick to, it’s up to me to to create my own path and write my own book, and it’s doesn’t matter if it makes sense to others or not as long as I’m living and writing from my heart, all things in love. After so many years feeling like a stranger inhabiting an alien body I can finally say I’m at peace in my own skin, and I can breath deep down into my belly. Sure the future, is still uncertain, I’m well aware that I’m living in a very opinionated sometimes intimidating world, but I can now relax into the flow of existence knowing that no matter what the future holds it’ll be alright. There’s no need to walk around inflamed, geared up and armed for battle because I’m not here to fight, I’m here to love, myself, my messy existence and everything else in this truly quirky whimsical world…
I’ve realised I don’t need to do anything to prove my worth, life is so much more than a rat race, a pageant or stage play. I’ve realised there’s nothing I could achieve, no earthly fortune, no amount of fame or “success” that could satisfy if I’m not satisfied with my naked self, full stop.
I’ve realised I don’t need to make anything of myself, I’m already whole. I don’t know need to build an empire or a fortress where I may rule supreme, truth is the natural world is already a majestic wonderland I’m not called to conquer but to submerge into and integrate… I don’t need to try and control or manipulate others or my surroundings but instead embrace, become one and amalgamate into the flowing dance of life. I don’t know if my memory will go on living after I die, and it doesn’t matter for this one life I’m already experiencing and the memories I carry in my heart are more than enough. I don’t know if I can change this material world we live in and I don’t intend to, but the truth is I can certainly change my world and make it a loving place, if I can do that and in some way help change someone’s else too, I’d consider my work done.
I’ve realised I will never be next Einstein, Nietzsche or mother Theresa, Luther King, Picasso or even Michael Jackson (insert any other well-known icon) and that’s ok. I’m called to be nothing other than me… And maybe that’s what the world needs, people who are not afraid to be themselves and let their true colours shine with all their might.

So now, my only task is to have loving compassion for my flawed self, everything that I am and not as well as my mirrored neighbour. I’ve realised we are all in this together, we are all part of the same family, living this puzzling temporary human existence we at first know nothing about and try to figure out as we go along… I’ve realised that deep down we are all feeling just as overwhelmed and isolated, deep down inside we all just want to be loved and treasured, and why wouldn’t given the intricate, wondrous and forever enigmatic creations we are? Despite our fallibilities, despite our massive egos and tendency to turn on each other….

So I’ve chosen to take up love as my shining light as I navigate this excitingly uncertain life…
I’ve learnt that there’s no need to fear the future or my brother, I’ve learnt that by paying attention and taking loving care of the present, the future will take care of itself. I’ve learnt that as long as I’m living in awareness and present in each moment, living true to my heart and the values I hold dear not a borrowed ideal of a “good life” everything will be alright… So now I’m putting my feet firmly on the ground and standing true to myself and pursuing my own idea of a live well lived,  fully inhabiting my body and being present to experience all the joys and all the heartbreak, the thrilling vulnerability of life…

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King Jr.