Many misunderstandings in life would be avoided if we could all become more responsive and less reactive. Too often we allow past experiences to harden us, (particularly if they were painful), and to inform the way we perceive future events. We all want to organize our journey, to make sense of it, to categorize situations as “wanted” or “unwanted” and people as “friends” or “not friends” and bring order to this whole mysterious and uncertain world. We want something we can count on, but there are really only two things you can count on for this ride: everything is in a constant state of flux and one day you will die. That’s it. (I know, you’re probably like, “Geez, Happy Holidays,” but I’ll get to that, I promise ;)). I mention this because often we allow ideas to harden and take hold of the mind, and sometimes those ideas create a filter through which we receive information. The ideas are there because they make us feel like we are somewhat in control, like we “get” what’s going on, but a lot of the time the filter is really causing trouble, because no two events are the same, nor are any two people. I often hear people saying things like, “Men___”, or , “Women___,” as if all men or all women do, or are, or feel any one thing, as if it’s easy to put people into neat packages. Do you want to be the recipient of anger that really belongs to someone else? I’d put a “Return to Sender” on a gift like that.
This business of being human is not easy. Life is messy and unpredictable and frequently amazing and sometimes devastatingly painful. It’s an adventure, an exhilarating ride, a lesson in uncertainty, an invitation to open and expand and practice being present which naturally leads to gratitude. It is not something you can organize or control. As much as is possible, try to open to each day with the wisdom of yesterday minus any hardness. Allow yourself to be curious and surprised. Sometimes, yes, you will be disappointed – heartbroken even, but don’t doubt that life might bring you some incredible gifts as well. Try not to close yourself off to that possibility, because without hope, the world becomes a very dark place. Sometimes the filter needs a serious wipe-down, and other times it really needs to be shattered. If you’ve got a tinted window over your heart, I’d vote for a shattering.
Hoping that you open to all the light and love within you if you haven’t already and wishing you very happy holidays. Peace to all, and continued prayers for those who are missing people around the table.
So much love,