Sunday, June 8, 2008

My Recent Progress...

I write today with a renewed sense of reality. As most of you probably know, I haven't been myself since February when Lindsey and I broke up. There have been a lot of really difficult things that have happened in my life since then, but I've managed to keep it all together for the most part. Still, the past four months have been surreal, causing me to grow and change in some very unexpected ways.

Lindsey's back in town, and we've seen each other a few times, which has been very good for me. It's caused me to think more about what happened between us, why we fell apart, and how it all made me feel. I should have dealt with those feelings before now, I know, but I couldn't quite bring myself to truthfully embrace them. I needed a bit of distance from it all. Now that she's here, I'm figuring out how to get past it, which is giving me a refreshed sense of self-compassion. Thank you, Lindsey.

I also write today with a renewed sense of audience. There have been some times in the last few months that I've been less than respectful to people of some belief systems. Part of this was because I had been hurt and am learning to work through some of my old animosity, but part of it was just out of ignorance, and I'm sorry. It's sad because this is part of what I detested about other blogs, yet I still fell into the same trap of using this blog as a soap box instead of a planting box for my thoughts. Again, I'm sorry. As Derrida commented, this isn't MY blog. This is OUR blog, and my thoughts are completed only when others read them and reflect upon them.

This goes for real life, too, not just the blogosphere. Real life is full of real people, and if you're stuck in pain and self-centricities, you'll never realize that. You'll never be open to who people really are, how much they can love you, how much you can love them back. I've been there the past few months as well, and I don't like it. But I can only get past it by rebuilding myself enough to be able to extend my self-compassion to those around me. I know that.

Which brings me to the actual point of this post. I've been reading a great book a friend of mine from work lent me called "The Lost Art of Compassion" by Dr. Lorne Ladner. It's a phenomenal book that works through Buddhism through the lens of psychology, showing how the brain uses desire as a self-defense mechanism to help cope with death and loss. I'm having a great time with it, and I'm also realizing that though I've heard the Four Noble Truths many times before, they're put into a new light in this book which makes me not only understand them better, but internalize them and come to know the validity of them.

Realizing that only when I fully understand the idea of impermanence can I live fully in the present moment and love myself and others completely and unabashedly, I'm going to spend the next week or so meditating on the propensities of this idea. I'll spend time reflecting upon my death, the death of those around me, the loss of physical and mental attributes over time, loss of material possessions, etc. The whole point is to help my ego understand that everything is fleeting. Pain is fleeting, yes; this is the easy part of the equation to realize. But happiness is just as fleeting unless it takes as its foundation the simple idea that nothing is forever. I am not forever. You are not forever. From there I can cultivate a mind of compassion for the present moment which is grounded in the reality of life, not in the illusions my ego projects for me.

I'll be sure to let you all know how it goes. Have a great day everybody!

No comments: