Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Expansive Uncertainty: A Look into the Foundaiton of Existential Anxiety

We often hear the saying, "the only thing constant in life is change." However cliche, this is extremely true, yet we hold on dearly to some type of "normality," some sort of mental comfort, in attempts to keep our minds from fleeting into the grand infinite expanse of "what if," or "what could be." Embracing change has nothing to do with choosing to see this or that as some change in ones life. "Change" can be conceptualized, it can be enumerated, and it can be assessed, but this is not necessarily the type of change I am talking about [although it is a part of what I am trying to get at]. Yes, we can witness change in our own lives through observing oneself walk through a rite of passage, change a job, change a hobby, enter into a new relationship, etc., but this facet of change is the by-product of the elemental essence of change that I am trying to illuminate.

What I am saying is that "change," which essentially is just a movement, is expanding infinitely. In attempts to reiterate, the mind tries to grasp and understand this change, follows it to no end only to realize that the analysis only brings us back to the ageless attempt in which we attempt to calm the mind through identifying with abstractions and fleeting notions of what we believe reality to be. Because life is always influx [not just in the social world which we have come to be so completely immersed in], the mind can only attempt to "follow" this change by identifying change with notions, ideas, and words of which are all limited [for the mind cannot fully grasp life through abstractions].

What we typically do is pull ourselves emotionally into the identifications that the mind creates and we subsequently build emotional energy bridges between the notions we hold as truth and the emotional body. Yet, when faced with the expansive uncertainty of life we become anxious for we fear that life as we know it now, as we are comfortable with it now, is subject to change, even drastic change. So therefore it is the identification process, the process that comes about by holding onto the reality as it is now, that causes the existential anxiety.

It seems that we identify inherently. Most, if not all of us, are conditioned to believe that the thoughts we have, the ideas and concepts which we pay homage too, are who we are. So it seems that freedom lies somewhere in between acceptance and letting go of what we thought we are and what we thought life to be. But than again, is it the mind that will try to know what "freedom" is to ward it self from the expansive uncertainty?

The person declares inwardly..."I want to be free...free from my anxiety, free from my misery, and free from the troubles that arise in my life!" Yet, what is freedom than but another word, idea, or concept? The declaration within oneself that says they seek some change within oneself, however noble to help them get on track with discovering what it is to be outside the conventional thought of man, is nothing but another abstraction, another idea...of which cannot grasp with the enormity of change and with the expansive life which is inherently uncertain. So than were does freedom lie?

For me, at least, I have found it in the glimmering moments of when I remind myself to step aside from my identifications, from the idea that all the choices in my life that I make are permanent, and when I see myself identifying with my feelings and my current life situation etc...This is not too say that my feelings are not real or that my current life situation is not real...but what I am saying is that these feelings too are subject to the ever flow of change and the expansive uncertainty that lies within these "walls of change." Feel it, acknowledge it, and move on...Feel it, sit with it, go within it, and seek to see what happens to it, not necessarily allow it to be identified as something permanent or something intrinsically me. This takes self trust and a faith that all that one is witnessing within oneself is their to transcend beyond...Either to transcend to greater depths, greater understanding, greater joys, or too further dismantling [of which in itself is a form of transcendence]...

Like the winds that flow through the seasons of change...so too, do you within the expansive and beautiful uncertainty of which is life. One only has to look to the sky to realize how infinitely uncertain life is...For the way in which the light colors this earth, the way in which the clouds move around the sky, and the way in which the air feels are always different...that is if one is observant enough to look past the identifications of what we think reality is and allow themselves to feel it as it is...

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Forgiving the Past

Not all relationships are easy. Often times challenging relationships come into our lives to help us understand who we are. We come to experience ourselves by relating to these relationships. In regards to a challenging relationship, if we work hard enough (and if it is right) we move further into our own essence when we accept and forgive those who may have troubled us.  When we enable ourselves to integrate the understanding of another into our own sense of awareness we gain perspective.  With this gained perceptive we are then given the choice to have empathy for those who do challenge us.

I am only beginning to realize how much I have stagnated emotionally because I have allowed myself to stay identified with a particular set of emotions.  I felt they were justified given my past...but I question myself...how long do I want to stay tethered to the past?

I come to this post in a time in my life were I feel I am starting to forgive someone in my life, who at times, released his anger on me in ways that I found unforgivable. This person is my father. And as I work with the past lately, really work with it, and allow it to be felt...I found that I can actually come to an understanding as to why my father acted in such a way while I grew up. This has enabled me to feel a sense of forgiveness for him and has given me the courage to talk with my father in a way that I never felt I could have. Yes, we are extremely different people, yet we love, and we love passionately. We express this love in very very different ways.

I have seen that his anger has resulted from a deep fear he had.  Simply put, he just wants us all to be "ok." To him that is his way of loving.  And sometimes securing what he needed in order to have his family be "ok" meant that he became full of stress and anger.  I may not agree with everything he has done, but he did it in the only way he knew how too. The actions that I deemed, even as a young child, as very damaging, I am finally allowing myself see that they occurred as they only would because of who he was and how he dealt with his emotions.

I am now beginning to see how this all has related to my emotional development and self-worth. I realize I am only peering beneath the surface of a very deep matrix of emotions, yet I allow myself to stand humble and be here now. Not judging were I stand, only observing it and accepting it.  I am far from perfect in my own trails of self-development.  But here I am, humbly accepting my faults, my prejudices, bouts of anger, sadness, anxiety, and frustration. At least I feel courageous enough to believe I am accepting things as they are...

It seems though, that as I work through my stuff it allows me to open up to people, in this case my father, in a way that is not only healing for myself, but also for others. Maybe we can humble ourselves too see that the world is not necessarily attacking us, but merely that the world is afraid...afraid to loose its foundation, its security, and its glimmering experience of love...