ANOTHER ORDINARY DAY – (Flowing)
“Life in itself is so beautiful that to ask the question of the meaning of life is simply nonsense.” – Osho
This morning, the sun came up: as it does. I saw it peeking through the trees on the other side of the valley, still in my dressing gown, making breakfast for Lorca and the boys, and as the beautiful golden light poured into the kitchen, I was glad to be alive. Nothing needed to be done other than stirring porridge, making tea, chatting about homework and batman. Gently waking up to another day.
Growing up happens. Life alternately showers us with blessings and rubs off our corners, uplifts us and takes us down. We get what we need, not necessarily what we want.
When I first read Maps To Ecstasy I remember being vividly struck by the possibility that life has built into it the process of enlightenment. After a decade of meditating religiously and reading many books alluding to this seemingly impossible to reach goal, it was a novel idea that the everyday business of living could actually be taking me in the right direction if I could just get out of the way and allow it’s natural momentum to carry me.
Finding our way in the world, making friends, learning to love, raising children, dealing with money, building a home, tending to a garden, finding one’s community, creating meaningful work, and above all step by step facing the reality of our own death… all these things are profound tasks that alter us deep down inside. Sometimes dramatic, often ordinary, day to day life is a big thing to learn to manage, and to adapt to as it changes, and the iterative awakening of power, wisdom, and responsibility is inevitable.
Except it’s not.
According to Native American wisdom we all have one deep-rooted addiction: to our primary pain. No-one escapes this, it’s just part of the deal of human existence at this point. This fundamental wounding and attachment then manifests in those patterns we all know so well before getting as far as obvious substance or behavioural abuse – the tendencies to shirk responsibility, avoid awkward decisions, to suppress difficult feelings, to generally shunt ourselves back towards unconsciousness. Many of us spent long years practicing the art of denial before it got to some breaking point and we found something deep inside crying out for more. And then having taken our brave first steps to reverse this imprinted cultural tide, it’s still terribly easy to fall backwards at any time.
This is where a practice that works for your life and lifestyle is invaluable, sustaining a subtle ground of awareness that’s always there, strengthening the entire span of your presence from body to spirit, helping to keep you emotionally clear, and giving you an avenue for healing as and when it’s needed.
The other thing a good practice does is make us more available and alive to the teachings that life naturally offers us day to day. It’s as though the daily flow of life can take us one of two ways long term – either becoming chronic drudgery or on-going awakening. At any point we have a choice about which way to turn, and a strong practice that works on all levels of the psyche – like the 5rhythms does – simply helps.
Thank you Gabrielle, what an amazing gift.
”You can’t stop the flow of life, but you can constipate it!” – Gabrielle Roth