Rather than turn around and run, I stood my ground. What was this man trying to say to me? Why was his face turning red as he stood up yelling at me. What old hurt had been triggered within him that I unintentionally tripped into? As I followed him out the door I became curiouser and curiouser as to what was going on inside him and me. He finally stopped and turned around knowing I was right behind him. “I’m sorry,” I said. “I didn’t meant to hurt you.”
He looked at me like an angry little boy and yelled, “I’ve been told what to do all my life and I’m not going to take it from you!” Then I realized that I had, with what I considered to be helpful fatherly advice, touched an old wound in him. With sadness, I felt a wave of compassion for him. He huffed away and that was that. I became one more unsafe place for him to project his unresolved inner conflict. I now had to let go of my ‘should’ and ‘could’ to forgive us both.
A colleague of mine has taught me that ‘the deepest cry of the Human Heart is for a safe place where it can be seen, know, heard and accepted. This means we’re only truly fulfilled when we have transparent heart to heart relationships.’ As I continue to ponder this wisdom I’m struck by how few heart to heart relationships I’ve had. How about you? The teaching I received as a boy taught me clearly that transparency and vulnerability were dangerous places to live. So I learned how to become very heady, guarded, protected and externally tough.
As I’m now living in the fourth quarter of my Life, I’m getting curiouser and curiouser about living more from my heart than my head. What would that feel like? Am I strong enough to take the hits from a culture that holds up the warrior and put’s down the poet? Am I able to model the ‘sacred heart’ that can be wounded yet remain compassionate, collaborative and challenging? The answer is yes because in calmness I’ve found an inner spiritual strength. How about you?
As I look back on my sixty plus years of life I’m seeing how strong and relatively invulnerable I became because of my fear of being hurt. The more I’ve become aware of all this, the more I’ve discovered that I’m not who others define me to be. Rather, I’m defined by who I truly am. Jacquelyn Small says it this way: “We are not human beings trying to be spiritual. We are spiritual beings trying to be human.” We’re God seeds awakening into a greater fullness.
One of my favorite things is to do is to go where I’ve never or only frequently been before. That’s the vast majority of mental, emotional, physical and spiritual spaces and places. This doesn’t mean I have to travel to far off places on the globe though I might. What is does mean is that the freedom I’ve sought is always right here. There are places like empathy, compassion, forgiveness, love, joy, laughter, harmony, serenity, bliss, and illumination to embrace and explore in greater depth. There’s a completeness that sometimes beckons and lures me in. . .
No matter what your hurt, pain or sorrow; the amazing magnificence of creation is here for you. In this, the Creator, the One who calls you by name in every bird’s song, drop of rain, ray of sun and gentle breeze is loving you. Your attention to Life will help you feel the calming energies of this Love and heal your wounded heart. When you smile awhile, laugh a lot and give Life all you’ve got you’ll begin to remember who you really are and be surprised by everything again. As you take the risk to come alive, Life will get curiouser and curiouser. . . and so will you . . .