Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Healing, Part Four: Jimme That Thing

The hardest thing you’ll ever do is learn to love yourself.
… or words very close to this, Adyashanti.

Last night I noticed a large cut notched in edge of the front door underneath the lock. There was a second smaller cut near the dead bolt.
I’ve noticed a smaller knotch before but that didn’t really register with me mentally.
This new cut fairly screamed.
Someone had tried, and tried hard, to jimme the lock.
I kind of freaked.
Last week I sold my car to people I had enjoyed talking with, but who obviously lived in a world much harder than my own.
In fact, I was thinking drug deals and gangs and wondering if someone would return to steal the cash and murder me in my bed.

Now, I fingered evidence: a knife-cut deep in the wood. Metal weather stripping
bent out of shape almost as much as I was.

This morning, as I revisited the fact of the cut marks I noticed what my mind was saying:
“Someone is trying to break into the house!”
Yes, present tense!
And what a great opportunity to try a little Byron Katie inquiry.

“How do I feel when I hear this thought pounding in my head?”
I feel so much fear it’s hard to stay present … in fact, I don’t.
I do something to distract myself. I control my terror and panic by turning away.
If I force myself to stay with it – I see a child cringing in the corner as the door to his shack is pounded down by a pogrom in the night. He knows when the door blows open, he is dead.
I realize that someone forcing entry into my quiet suburban home still translates into death to me.

So, I tried a more accurate statement of the situation:
“Someone tried to break in and they failed.”
Yes, past tense!
That’s a good start.
“At least twice they’ve tried and failed.”
Now, I’m getting even closer to reality.

At this point you can go either way.
Twice attempted. Twice failed.
Is this good news or bad?
I wasn’t sure.

Then, I saw just how furiously Bennie would have barked and rallied with the little guy.
I also recalled that about a year ago when I intuitively read my house, I was surprised and amazed by how I could feel the building’s desire to shelter and protect me.
Such a possibility had never crossed my mind – feelings from inanimate structures!
Well, it seems the house is not all that unconscious.
With these two images, Bennie and the house, I was overwhelmed by how much love and protection that the Universe has already provided me.

The entire Universe supports me.
And my heart broke open with the impossibility of ever being large enough to receive the unbounded Grace.
I felt slayed, “How can anyone be deserving of such a gift?”

Immediately another belief spoke up:
“No one, no one can ever earn this blessing!” And I think this one is really true.
But that only made the pain worse, as it emphasized the enormity of Love we never see.

Then, deeper layers, the hidden beliefs that hold my unworthiness in place rang out like some Greek chorus:
“No, I could never deserve all this.”
“I am not pretty enough.”
“I am not smart enough.”
“I am not even kind enough.”

“And still, it has been given.” …well, one belief in five might actually be true…

I sat there with my belly, sobbing, trying to simply let it relax and breathe.
Curiously, my heart was totally at peace.
The lesson now was for my belly. And I tried to give it time.
…noticing too – how very lucky I was that someone had tried to jimme that door.

Which brings to mind a song … in all silliness, given my short attention span and proclivity for loose associations.


Ruth said...

I read this and what comes from my heart and spills out me..."oh wow..." and a big lump in the throat. I read. Get up from my chair. Walk away. And I ask myself why I'm still running from deeper levels of knowing. Such a process, this healing, and without directly stating the layers, you impart by the sharing of your life. It calls to those parts of me I've been sequestering and boxing up in a corner, trying to ignore as the essence of it leaks and spills. The more mystical, spiritual daily awareness. It has been in my life from a young age. But how burned I've felt by it, oddly enough. Afraid. What do I do with this knowing and that and...? But the universe, complete with alligators and whirlwinds, still wants to comfort me. Thank you for this. I know it's a cryptic bit of rambling but this really blessed me. Great song too...

Anonymous said... the end of the day we are still struggling with all our human frailities, our position being all the more precarious, in that we are unable to overcome our limitations completely and live on a daily materialiastic plane..and neither have we yet reached that stage where we have transcended all our 'failings' (?) and reached our buddha nature/attained permanent samadhi many more lifetimes to go..i wonder...? until then the see-saw of fear, yearning, knowledge, loss, pain continues....

take care of yourself my dear..
thanks for sharing..

Pat Bralley said...

Ruth, I think it's really nice that you can have such a potently felt reaction to what you read. I've really enjoyed and benefited from listening to CDs - of Byron Katie, Adya, Tolle... as they talk with students, something in me is taken along with the student's questions (I might even have a different issue) but the knowledge can hit as if I was there. Maybe it's even better cause I can cry and hold nothing back because I'm in the privacy of my own home.

Anjali - will it take lifetimes? Maybe not. We're in a new age and new knowledge is available (even if it's ancient)... and it seems the world needs us to evolve right now! If humanity doesn't shape up and quickly... will there be a world to come back to? Personally, I think it a risky bet.
Luckily, Adya says the biggest hinderance to enlightenment is our belief that it's difficult. So why not stay open to that possibility.

And to you both... thanks for joining me! Gimme dat thing!

jRuthk said...

I am moved by what I read. Always have been. But that's true about many things in life. Keep it coming! Love your blog...

Pat Bralley said...

Thanks... I will try to keep going here, but writing seems impossible lately.

Anonymous said...

Nothing from you for some time now..hope all is well in your world..waiting for you to come back..

take care

Pat Bralley said...

Anjali - sweet of you to check in. I have been having migraines and dizziness to such an extent that it takes all my effort just to go to work and cover the basics.

Hopefully, things will settle down eventually.

Thanks, Pat

Ruth said...

strength to you. you are missed. sending waves of release...

Anonymous said...

Welcome back Pat - glad to have you back. Was concerned about the silence but hoped that you would be back.

Your new post does not seem to allow comments, so decided to write one in here - hope you don't mind.

Thank you for the post - very interesting and has come at a time when I am mulling about things and wondering why I am mulling! Some confusion within - and questions about why I should even be on this 'path'? why not just live? sigh...