By Deborah Anne Quibell
There’s a path.
You know it well, heart-centered being.
You began the trail long, long ago, without much of a sense of anything, at all. But you had a holy resolve to find meaning. And somehow that mattered more than anything else.
At times, the path rises up before you, clear as day. And you walk with a stride, long and confident. A bounce underneath your feet and a crystal-like sparkle to your gaze. Lifted, inspired, and buoyant.
“Watch me,” as your mantra.
At other times, the path disappears behind winding hills, leaving you with a foggy vision and no sense of the vast horizon that once called you on. You walk with a stride, timid and unsure. Feet swollen, and a dark, clouded opacity to your gaze. Weighted, confused, and heavy. “Please. Don’t watch me,” as your mantra.
But what you don’t see in the mist, my love, is that another seeker just sat down on a rock two steps from where you are. And another laid down in a pile of drying leaves off to the left of your tired shoulder. And another put his forehead to the dirt where you just slept a meagre few hours before. And another, in five minutes (at the exact same time as you) will open her mouth to the sky in an attempt to catch the raindrops that begin to descend. On you both.
When you collapse, build a tent from simple twigs. Be still and listen for the breath of others that surrounds you. You may not see them. But they are there. And if they could see you, through the mist, swollen with suffering and vulnerability, they would not be able to take their eyes off of you. Your rawness is what is real. Your ability and willingness to sit down and not try to have it all figured out (anymore) is ghastly beautiful.
There’s a dying equation that feeling broken = weakness. Bury this, immediately, should it appear. It is a ghost. It is dead. Completely irrelevant. The heart-centered beings long, long ago rewrote that alchemical equation. They sing songs of brokenness, and their legends reveal that we have to be broken down to come back together more magnificently than before. You’re on their trail—the wizards and priestesses of transformation. You’re not on the path that buries the courage and resilience of the heart, that devalues the human capacity to feel, and tries to convince you that certain feelings aren’t “ok.” We just have to find one another. To call out in the dark, and howl at the ghosts that appear to dissuade us.
In a phase of recent darkness, I sat down to build a tent from simple twigs. As a slivered moon began to rise, one of the wizards of transformation appeared to me for a brief second. He was splendid in his elusive mastery and came just long enough to leave a trail of wisdom for us — apprentices of the heart’s magic — to follow in the mist.
If you’ve made it this far, the wizard’s message is also for you. Let us continue walking alone, together, my beloved friends and companions.
There are moments in life,
when everything you’ve told yourself
and everything you believe in
fall out form underneath you.
And you sit,
On a groundless floor,
more tender inside
than you ever thought possible,
asking the one question
we can never fully answer,
No matter what anyone tells you,
don’t press yourself
into a perfect package
of false compliance.
You are allowed
to throw stones
at the sky.
To write “fuck”
in your journal 74 times
and break into a million little pieces.
You are allowed to ask for help
and wonder, deeply,
about the nature of suffering,
even though you’ve read
a thousand books on the topic
and are supposed to be
“the spiritual one.”
The truth is beyond
what we can see,
and until the veil has truly lifted
the blindfold can feel
cruel and suffocating.
This is all ok.
You have not lost your fath.
You are no less of a person.
And when nothing else
apply this balm, slowly,
to your swollen, cracking heart,
you are not alone.
Featured image: www.paige-mcfall.com
Sip a little more from Deborah’s medicine:
➵ From Unworthiness To Your Own Kind Of Remarkable
For more self-study, The Urban Howl recommends The Universe Is a Green Dragon: A Cosmic Creation Story.