Friday, October 30, 2015

John O'Donohue - Poetic Ponderings on Wounds and Herding.

John O'Donohue - Poetic ponderings on wounds and herding.

Beauty out of wounded-ness:

Listening to the audio books of John O'Donohue, and there was a sentence that struck me so deeply that I had to stop whatever I was doing and sit there and let the words roll back and forth in the scale of my own mind where something is either completely relatable, but my ego isn't quite sure if it should pretend it is not, or if I should let go and bask in the acceptance of knowing I'm not "the only one" that thinks that!

“Our greatest pain is given to us to make beauty from it. Not to explain it away through patterns or models of analysis."
John O'donahue

I'm often told I'm "too much" or I "give too much" or that I "never learn." Never learn what? To be bitter and protective and scared and pitying of myself? I hope I never learn that. I get mad, sad and feel sorry for myself, but I can't, will not, and have never stayed in those places. They are emotional states that serve a purpose and then they can go. Thank you, not very much.

In "Beauty- The invisible Embrace",  John O'Donohue writes:
"Often when you're hurt the tendency is to move back…inside shelter of the shell, and yet, when you do, you really squander all your possibilities. Some people arrest and freeze there. they never come forth again with the same urgency or innocence that they had before they got hurt. "
 IF you give in to that, (freezing in a state of defensive protection) you can really limit your life to a very lonesome edge where nothing real will ever  happen to you again   and your anxious and defensive and always on the watch for the next series of hurt…when you do that-go out there expecting it, you actually are magnetizing off, almost a herd signal."
The inner beauty in the soul comes forth only when you have looked into the wounds, found out what hurts, and is so scary to get to. In doing that, a beauty of bravery and love gushes out, instead of blood, and the wisdom from all that we learn, and experience and watched comes into play and none of the original hurts and fears are remotely what we had built them up by the very act of trying to protect ourselves…ohhhh the irony.

He goes on to explain how just the opposite- when you gain your poise and confidence and stand in yourself with compassion (in a non-threatening way)…hurts don’t even come within your stratosphere.

In building a shell to keep safe the heart and the wound, we actually built it to be bigger than anything else…thoughts without truly FEELING things have a way of doing  that. The mind likes to grow, and get bigger…feelings merely want to be recognized, accepted and seen. That is all they need, and so this pull towards getting bigger or comparing isn’t even applicable.

 Freedom is: that poise of a soul at one with a life that honors and engages its creative possibility...Its really about the courage to become who you are, and not to fit in to the accepted kind of patterns....
There is also an inner gravity in the mind that constantly drags us towards the herd. And we want to fit in at any price. And you know life is too short to pay such a huge price for something so banal. If there is an old dream at all in the heart, any urgency, any passion, any calling towards horizons no one else is interested in. I’ve never seen anyone who took huge risks for growth who wasn’t rewarded a thousand times. "

There is a strong motivational quality in those words. It actually departs, quite greatly from the systems and encouragement of many organized religions and churches I've experienced, and rather celebrates the very beautiful and often discouraged, idea of "differentness."

My own children often LEARN that pressure to be the "Same" as other kids, or "fit in." as if there is a major premium on it..past not getting teased by the other kids getting the same pressure. I can live with that if they can, but man, do I want them to learn sooner than I did about that one. 

I attempted a blessing, in the beautifully Irish and John O'Donohue way: 


"Shimmer with a smile. Life is hard, bloom anyway."


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