I’ve been hearing a lot of people crying out for solace, for comfort, crying because the emotional pain they feel seems unendurable. They feel that if they lash out at others, their pain will be lessened. They forget how to be happy, and forget how to do the work that comes with being happy. They want the world to change to suit them and their desires, and they may very well lose their way. It is we who must change to suit the world.
The world is not with out pain. However, it is also not without blessing. Have we counted our blessings lately? Have we looked to those around us and appreciated who they are, as they are right now? Or are we blind? We long for some ethereal “other” and forget about the people closest to us. We even push them away, thinking “This is best for everyone”. And we hurt the people around us.
The world has always been dangerous and ironic. Life is unpredictable and full of challenges. Your pain is the same pain that your ancestors felt in their life times. They say there is nothing new under the sun, and in regards to human suffering, you can believe it. If you choose to medicate yourself from emotional pain, then you may miss something that you need to understand. If you continue to medicate to block your emotional pain, you will be visited with an addiction that will take you to the deepest, darkest wells, until you choose to live your life sober. This is the way of physical beingness.
For people diagnosed with OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), the treatment includes getting the patient to face their fears willingly. Once in the midst of what that person fears, they will ask the patient, “Where is your anxiety level, on a scale from one to ten”. The patient assesses and responds, but conquers their fear by staying in the midst. The therapist will ask a little later, and again a little later, and the patient soon realizes that at first the anxiety spikes up really hard, and then it slowly comes down. This is how they begin to see how their bodies respond to anxiety so they make some changes in their behavior to take back control of their lives.
I believe that the emotional pain is like this. It spikes, and then comes slowly down if we allow ourselves to feel it, let it flow through us, and then let it go. We mourn, loudly at first, then more softly, then less often, and finally we release it. Let it go, simply put, means to forgive any transgressions and let God take care of it. Our mourning time is done, and although we may still feel the hurt, we have faith that everything is exactly as it should be. We can sigh, and get on with our life.
In order to be happy, you must simply put, work at it. It will not arrive at your door and extend a hand. You have to appreciate and socialize with the people you care about, or at the very least, the people who care about you. You need to extend your hand to the people around you, and learn to love them despite their flaws. You need to consider treating everyone with respect and dignity, without prejudging who they are based on income and social standing, race, looks, etc. You need to find out what you can give that makes you happy, and then give it freely without expectation of return. You need to learn to forgive them and release the hurt associated with them. The continuation of these practices will keep you happy. The smiles you generate will fill you with joy. And know that we are in a unique moment in time, when we can honestly say that we control who we are, how we are, and what we do. We choose.
The following passage is from Lee Brown, speaking at the 1986 Continental Indigenous Council.
And now it is us. We are the ones they spoke of long ago. They say to be alive, to come into creation and to live upon the earth at this time is a great honor. In the cycle of time, from the beginning to the end, this time we are in now will change the purification of all things. They say this is the hardest time to live, but it is also the greatest honor to be alive to live and see this. – Lee Brown