Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Out of the Darkness into the Light (Continued)

I am unwritten,
can't read my mind.
I'm undefined,
I'm just beginning;
the pen's in my hand
ending unplanned
(Natasha Bedingfield, Unwritten)

There are tensions inside of me that seem unbearable at times: the uncertainties surrounding my job as financial strategist are simply unacceptable for a mind that loves perfect foresight, and to be frequently wrong feels just like dying each time for someone like me who loves being right. I had an eye-opener about the miserable situation I am in when I read the astrological description for Leo/Snakes: "The Leo-Snake is always right, even when he is wrong!" Yup, I could not have picked a worse job since in my profession having a 55 percent success rate is just about as good as it gets. Sure, this tension gets me going to be the best at what I do, but it also generates dark energies inside that want to be released. There are other conflicts as well such as wanting to be admired while being shy at the same time. Over the years I realized that my job is somehow perfect in making me the person I aspire to be, but it also comes with a heavy price tag. Growing, changing and evolving is often hard.

I am certainly not alone when it comes to having a challenging profession. Dr. Gabor Mate, author of "In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts", is a psychologist who treats heroine and other addictions in Canada and confessed in his book that he has a strange compulsive habit; he buys expansive classical CDs whenever he feels down. When he is on his shopping spree nothing can stop him. While only a strain to his finances and his mental serenity and not his life, he nevertheless felt as helpless and embarrassed about his compulsive habit as anyone. Reading his story I couldn't help drawing parallels to my own struggles. Who knows why we sign up for the missions in life we have chosen, and who knows what kind of conflicts and traumas result because of it. We are human, not robots. When Gabor Mate cares for the struggling and dying, buying expensive classical CDs might well the price to pay for a little artificial moment of peace and happiness. 

The other day Google dug up a note I wrote in 2012, that outlined my desire to quit a compulsive habit that had held me back in my spiritual development. When my spiritual path opened up to me I was forced to step away from participating in sexual chat rooms and watching porn. A battle of good and evil ensued in me that lasted many years.

When I struggled to get rid of these dark energies, I simply didn't know where they were coming from. Today I understand that these struggles simply had a message for me: to recognize the prevailing conflicts within me, and even if not completely able to put them all aside, then at least to accept them. Similarly, maybe Dr. Gabor Mate realized that his compulsive shopping spree was simply the price to pay for lifting others out of misery. Who knows, maybe his bewilderment over his behavior started a spiritual journey for him as well.

I continue to claim that spiritual travelers have no choice but to remove all dark energies from their lives, but today I would focus much more on the alternative lifestyle we can build for ourselves than just merely "winning" the battle of good and evil. A good example in this direction might be the story of Sherlock Holmes in the tv series "Elementary". The modern day detective lives in New York and is a recovering heroin addict. Yet he has built a life for himself that apparently allows him to beat his addiction. He lives and works with a woman he respects, and probably secretly loves, Dr. Watson played by Lucy Liu, and finds a mission that keeps his overactive mind occupied, solving crimes in New York. 

Isn't that what we all do? We find our idiosyncratic mission in life, and find a way to put our conflicts aside, or transcending them. I found my creative outlet in writing. Three years after I gave myself the homework to do, I put the battle of good and evil to rest, and wrote up my idiosyncratic story in the note below. However intricate our problems might be, eventually most of us stumble towards the finish line.

Today when the inner tension gets too much and the demons bubble to the surface, I get my iPad out, prepare a coffee, and start writing notes like this one. Honor the life story you are writing for yourself; be proud of your efforts, and find your contribution to make the journey a little easier for the next generation. Make your story a Hollywood ending. Natasha Bedingfield's pen is available for everyone. Complete the journey out of the darkness into the light.

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