Transcendence Through Acceptance

I’ve been driving myself insane the last few days on particular issues that only I’m propelling and keeping alive because thoughts keep giving it energy. I was trying every method under the sun – from journalling to meditation to Tai Chi. That was until I realised, I needed to surrender to it.

Transcendance-post

Our moments of madness (as I call them) that come from anxiety and worries, thinkings over what other people think of us and self-made theories that we create, require some degree of mastery over our fear. But there is no shame in experiencing these feelings and thoughts, none should feel lesser or believe that they missed the basketball hoop because they can’t move on from it. These experiences create our strength and provoke our courage. Through the turbulence, it’s a call to ascend to a higher level of self understanding and being, though difficult to see while in the thick of it. And no easy path will take you to that kind of place.

Peace came only when I gave up trying to stick on a band aid and let whatever it was bleed instead. When I surrendered to my problem and accepted it instead of expending energy trying to ‘fix’ it, I realised that I was not the sum of my problems and it was going to be ok. We transcend when we accept.

It is difficult to see the learning or have that epiphany of wisdom whist weathering through the storm because there is no space; you are essentially in survival mode and there is no time for a shaman’s perspective. You’re manning your ship and it’s all hands on deck.

The seeing only comes afterwards. It leads you to realise just how strong and capable you are. Your identity could be lost or you may feel like you were broken, but in time, it knits back together.

Additionally, perhaps there needs to be a more deeper level of acceptance of where we are in life. A true reflection of not how we idealise ourselves to be, but how we are right now. Paradoxically, I’ve found that once you accept yourself entirely in the present moment, you can begin to grow in different ways exponentially.
Reflecting back on previous times in life where you were brought to the brink of insanity, convinced you would keel over that precipice, you somehow managed to bring yourself back. And here you are today, reading this article that I’ve written. Shouldn’t that be a testament to something?

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Loving Yourself and Finding Your Calling

In the midst of my struggle in liking someone, I knew and felt the torment and lamentation of knowing I’ll never be able to have a relationship with this person. The pain of it in my chest was unbearable.

I began to wonder why such a powerful, obsessive attraction that is so strong it cancels me completely, and makes it difficult for me to concentrate on anything, regardless of the time of day? How did this make me so blind?

Love-Yourself-and-Finding-Your-Calling

As I sank deep into myself in meditation, I explored and found something profound. What materialised out of this conundrum, this dark ether, was the plain simple fact that I Saw this person. I saw their vulnerabilities and it wasn’t my eyes that Saw it; it was my heart. And it was only because I opened up my heart to them that I was able to see that.

We can’t acknowledge people’s vulnerabilities in a humane, understandable and accepting way if we don’t see it from the heart. There and then, I realised that I accepted that person with loving feelings because I acknowledged them not mind to mind, but heart to heart. I also saw some of myself in them, making this connection even stronger.

Once I came to this realisation, something else profound happened. I felt a bursting sensation of love coursing through my body and I knew in that moment I had touched on something deep, like a massive root beneath a tree that goes unnoticed beneath the ground but is of huge significance.

The tree root was love, and it is something we rarely show to the world above. It pumps away giving life to the tree but it’s work goes largely unappreciated and and noticed unlike the smaller, more insignificant roots above are given the limelight.

I noticed how strange it was in how we strive to keep it under wraps.

In that moment, I completely loved and accepted myself as I was. Whether it was obsessing over someone or other perceived wrong doings and things I still think I’m doing wrong, it didn’t matter. Because no matter what, it was all ok.

From this came one final realisation; to spread it. To give it out into the world and from somewhere deep within or deep beyond I found a calling of some sort. A calling to connect people, to unify and strengthen the relationships between humankind. To foster, facilitate and act as a conduit of love. For everyone to realise we are all one. It’s in the silence that we come to know our purpose.

And is there any other kind of calling more beautiful than that?

Overcoming Obstacles in a Hostile Environment

My mental health has been severely tested several times by those closest to me, resulting in moments of high anxiety. I was constantly getting anxious thoughts about what would happen to me in the future. 

Overcoming-obstacles

My natural state of mind and emotion is not anxious – it is the actions of others that heighten it to a point where it began to happen sporadically regardless of what was going on in my environment, and that’s when I knew it was spilling into my life and affecting how I behaved.

How I got through this very difficult time (and now still) came down to a few things:

  • Self acceptance. Accepting that I was anxious more so than most people was difficult to accept, especially when everyone else ‘seemed ok’ (I say it that way because a lot of people to some degree are not what they put themselves out to be).
  • Mindfulness. I had to start watching my thoughts and heighten my sense of self awareness. I did this through meditation each morning, regardless of what was going on. It’s pretty difficult, especially when there’s a part of me that crying inside and distraught over what has happened or is happening. But gaining a perspective and recognising my anxious thoughts was the first step to being free of it. It allowed for an objective knowing leading to an acceptance that it’s there.
  • Space. I gave it to myself in the form of time and giving myself space around all the traumatism I had been experiencing, and an almost solemn yet peaceful acceptance of it. I basically took my own side instead of parenting myself harshly through shitty self talk. I moved to a place of self love and allowed myself to wallow and feel the pain before moving on.
  • Loving Others. This I have found always comes afterwards – once you completely accept and love yourself, it naturally extends to others. Could you imagine what the world would look like if everyone worked on this?
  • Randomly tarot. I bought a pack when I was 16 and although I didn’t know it at the time, it was in itself a form of meditation and looking inward. I understand now why I liked doing the spreads so much, because they offered me additional insight and angles I hadn’t considered before.
  • Perseverance. Acknowledging that life goes up and down, and knowing good times lie ahead, helps in a lot of ways. If you really think about the pain you’ve been through before, you know that it’s possible to emerge intact and stronger than before. We are in essence the sum of our experiences.

A family member asked me once where I got my strength from, this blog post is the answer.

What You Find in the Pinnacle of the Moment

From observing the curl in a tree branch to walking barefooted in a temple in Thailand, I’ve found that staying with yourself, wherever you are is great for three things; it slows your life down, you worry less and become more confident in your ability overtime to deal with things as they come.

Pinnacle-of-the-moment

I realised as I was walking around the park during one lunch time how life continues on in it’s own way, regardless of whatever is that I may be preoccupied about. It put things in perspective for me as it reminded me of the bigger picture of life outside the microcosm of the endless chatter in my mind. It reminded me that I share the world with all life in a massive biosphere called Earth. It reminded me there is no linear, fixed way of living your life regardless of societal expectations. Human interpretation of what life should be is what makes it complicated.

I watched a stork gaze across a pond dotted with ducks and swans and I wondered what it was thinking. I guessed it was staying in the moment likewise, perhaps revising its surroundings for potential food. It reacts instead of trying to anticipate all kinds of unrealistic scenarios unfolding, which is unfortunately what are brains are geared towards at times.

I found that once I opened myself up to being in the moment, I opened myself up the quiet wisdom it tries to whisper in my ear when I’m working, exercising or reading. Life is the ultimate teacher and we are all it’s students, and that won’t ever stop. It does need to be however, a very patient one!

Humanity and I, We Are All One

When I travelled for one year I kept my heart and mind open and there are no words that I can use in this blog post to describe the most humbling, eye-opening and breathtaking moments that I had. It was like I left my home country and asked the universe to show me humanity, although I don’t think I was aware of it at the time. And by god did it respond.

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From the taxi driver in Bangkok who talked to me about teen pregnancy in the capital to an Aboriginal in Australia telling me about how she had no money to feed her children, or the man in Adelaide who was gathering signatures for a petition to help keep jobs. Every person touched me in some way.

I saw what it meant to exist in this world, what it meant to live here. And I realised that there is little difference between me and others who live on the other side of the world.

I saw while I away two common things in the people that I met. One was that they were all searching for something and secondly wanted to connect with someone, to belong. I saw their vulnerabilities and I was humbled by them. I saw humanity in it’s purest form and it was like I was staring at one part of the picture my whole life and then I stood back and saw nearly all of it.

What made part of the experience so enjoyable was that I was curious about people.

I walked around emotionally naked most of the time resulting in me being vulnerable myself and humanity responded in kind, showing me something beautiful. Their acceptance and receptiveness and kindness to a young woman travelling alone. I saw their empathy and understanding and was completely blown away.

I gave my hands over to the universe to let it direct me wherever it wanted me to go. And it was from this sense of being guided yet myself walking the path alone that a blissful state of oneness came over me. Humanity and I, we were all one. Never did I see it so vividly, intimately and fiercely as I did when I was away. And I will always be tremendously grateful for that insight.

The psychology behind one of the most important experiences in my life can be summed up in this very enlightening TED talk below on vulnerability.

The Sickness of Denial

My counsellor revealed something extraordinary to me today – he told me I was in danger. I sat in the chair and said nothing. We were in the middle of discussing something else when he dropped the bomb. It’s amazing how denial can do that, can put your life at risk. It was related a family issue that had somewhat peaked weeks ago but was left unsettled, like a poisonous gas and everyone decided to wear masks instead of trying to rid it. I had my own on and was unwilling to take it off; to deal with the heart of the problem.

Sickness-of-Denial

The clock ticked away on the tabletop next to me, marking each second of my withdrawn disposition; I wasn’t sure if I should respond. He looked across at me expectantly and I could only express my guilt around the problem that I hadn’t talked about in the last while.

He discussed at some length how it was a problem I needed to address at home, because if I didn’t, the situation could only get worse. Problems don’t go away on their own. And he’s right. I hate it when he is.

I left in quite the introspective mood when I left, reflecting his words over in my mind like a Rubik’s cube. I realised in that moment how easily we trick ourselves into denial of many things, even in situations where we really are in potential danger. Perhaps this is something seen widely in people in the Middle East, where wars have been raging for the better part of the last decade, and denial is probably part of mental preservation in hostile areas.

Healing and maturation only comes when we face up to what it is we are running away from. It sound so simple but a problem will persist until we solve it. The sickness of denial happens when it gets to a point of it affecting our lives, but we continue in the delusion of disassociation. We essentially run away. And as a result, we need a reality check.

I was thankful in a way that he had brought it up. It seemed to be another test for me, one that I have to ultimately overcome regardless if I want to or not.

I love how life never stops teaching us.