Saturday, September 23, 2017

Of Two-Way Streets and Enriching Dichotomies

  
Our world of apparent duality offers a wealth of disguised enrichment opportunities. Consider:

A cyber buddy who currently lives creatively without residence wondered why a stranger would open her home and heart to her. She emailed, "I don't understand why she's being so amazingly generous. I keep telling her she just blows me away."

I responded, "You never know what her own journey is…she may have needed to serve someone in exactly this way, and you are providing a golden opportunity, so it is a mutuality."

This is the way energy works. When my lifelong friend Ellie fell and broke her hip at 96, requiring a lengthy convalescence in a rehabilitation center and later at home, I initially despaired about why Spirit didn't simply call her Home.

Then I had a flash of insight: the enforced passivity enabled my fiercely independent friend to learn to receive, and blessed those who assisted her with the joy of service. I told her, "You would never have allowed it otherwise." With wonder and her trademark humility, Ellie exclaimed, "Amara, you're right!"

The Good, the Bad, and the Beautiful

What appears adverse can be advantageous. I needed to park my car on a different street due to an upcoming festival, and planned to be out of town the following week. I gave the young man who acts as my "car surrogate" the spare key, and asked him to please move the car back once the festival was over.

Unbeknownst to me, a road crew was about to repave the street; tow-away signs went up the day after I left. If the festival hadn't been scheduled (and, therefore, if I hadn't given Danny my spare key) my car would have been parked in its normal spot — and towed during the week I was away!

More profoundly: A dear friend was in a near-fatal motorcycle crash earlier this year. After a month in the ICU, he learned he'd need a walker once out of bed, and would have only minimal use of his right hand for the rest of his life (he's a southpaw, but still…). Eight months later, Rick says, "The accident was the best thing that ever happened to me."


During his convalescence he lost seventy pounds, and began exercising several hours a day as part of his physical therapy program; the combination reversed his adult-onset diabetes. He's grateful every day for the gift of life, and more open than he's ever been. He says, "I cry if I'm happy, I cry if I'm sad.

"And you know what? It feels amazing. I have nothing to hide now; what others think of me is no longer my concern. I can be emotionally honest. I feel like this is another piece of the silver lining surrounding that terrible trauma."

Sustained by his new outlook and the outpouring of love and support from friends and family, Rick's regained almost full use of his right hand, and returned to work — as a practicing physician. Practice makes perfect.

Once you've been through the fire, you're recast as pure essence; the superficial no longer holds sway in your life.

How Your Light Is Spent

Milton's sonnet, When I Consider How My Light is Spent, exemplifies the nature of life's dichotomies, and how we choose to interpret our time here. The full text reads:

When I consider how my light is spent
Ere half my days in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodg'd with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest he returning chide;
"Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?"
I fondly ask. But Patience to prevent
That murmur, soon replies: "God doth not need
Either man's work or his own gifts; who best
Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state
Is kingly. Thousands at his bidding speed
And post o'er land and ocean without rest:
They also serve who only stand and wait.

"Apprehension" means both anxiety ­and understanding. If you apprehend the meaning behind Milton's final line, you will understand that simply being is what matters most.

Whoever or whatever your messenger is, listen deeply. Once you apprehend the message, invite yourself to let go, so that you may embrace this wisdom farther along life's spiral. Allow yourself to be amused by the alchemical nature of any apparent dichotomy that shows up in your life. And know there's an invisible cosmic trampoline beneath you, so you can rebound from pain's mirage, spread your wings, and fly.

© Copyright September 2017 by Amara Rose. All rights reserved.


1 comment:

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