I love looking at water. Any form of water: rain, rivers, lakes, oceans. There’s something about it’s magical powers that puts me in an instant good mood. It just so happens that I’m blessed to be sitting outside in the salty air with waves crashing in front of me. The sun is setting to my right and to my left are the most magnificent pink and purple clouds floating in the blue sky. There’s a slight breeze blowing–just enough for me to wear my mom’s old college sorority hoodie and feel completely comfortable. If you’re reading and shaking your head saying to yourself, “Shea, you’re just not right” and I’m making you a tad jealous… if it makes you feel any better, there are these little relentless bastard flies that keep biting my skin. They know how to kill tranquillity in a second. C’est la vie, I suppose.
I’ve stolen a few quiet moments to have some down time and read a book I’ve been wanting to for two years now. It’s called Finding Jesus, Discovering Self and it’s really incredible. I came across this passage awhile ago when I started the book in first attempt. Re-reading it still has the same impact upon me, if not more.
In the same book, I read another passage that I underlined and asterisked and wrote a capitalized YES in the margin. That good.
“Life is a good teacher and a good friend. Things are always in transition, if we could only realize it…To stay with that shakiness–to stay with a broken heart, with a rumbling stomach, with the feeling of hopelessness and wanting to get revenge–that is the path of true awakening. Sticking with that uncertainty, getting the knack of relaxing in the midst of chaos, learning not to panic–this is the spiritual path. Getting the knack of catching ourselves, of gently and compassionately catching ourselves, is the path of the warrior.”
-Pema Chodrön from When Things Fall Apart
I can honestly say I’ve (recently) experienced every.single.feeling Chodrön writes. Hopelessness, chaos, panic…Transition has made me sit with a lot of uncomfortable moments. A LOT. But like the moments of beauty and consistency of waves crashing on the shore…life will give us some really annoying biting flies that disrupt our security and focus. Life’s success depends on how we react to those bugs…I even think it’s how we grow to be true warriors. Making peace with these emotions is apart of our spiritual path and if we could only learn to gracefully accept the waves of transition, perhaps we would have more moments of true awakening. Or so I’m learning.
In the words of Dag Hammarskjöld, from Markings,
“For all that has been-Thanks!
To all that shall be-Yes!”