by Robert Wilkinson
Life is eternal change. Throughout Nature, all that lives grows until that way, branch, direction, tendency, or way of accumulation ends. How we handle the endings and "in betweens" determines whether our lives continue to be an adventure in learning how to apply our skills and gifts in ways that fulfill us.
Whether we want it or not, elements of our lives must end from time to time so that we can move in new directions. Our lifelong timeline of experiences bring us potentials that we fulfill to whatever degree we choose and/or are able. After a potential is used up, we must learn to apply what we learned on that "vector of realization" in our on-going evolution into future experiences.
Remember that we are Eternals inhabiting electromagnetic bodies that also feel, think, and aspire. Our minds keep us moving into changing perceptions and interpretations, while our feelings exist on deeper, more visceral levels. That's why we are deeply moved by our feelings when things end.
We like the comfort of the familiar, the consistent, the "safe." And yet nothing is "safe" when measured with the yardstick of on-going eternal change, since change demonstrates the impermanence of just about everything on Earth. That's why when we learn how to navigate the endings and "in betweens" we can find a greater peace in the unfolding process of our own growth.
Because we feel, we are feeling all there is whether we know it or not. We also live within a collective Consciousness, so we're feeling that as well. What the collective feels and knows becomes an ocean of feelings we all experience in some way. In short, given the collective feeling that we are at the end of time, or the end of the Age, we all are feeling that something greater is ending, along with whatever ends for us personally. That's why the feeling seems so vast at times.
For many, it's the end of how they've lived, who they've related to, and even their sense of themselves. Old jobs, old relationships, old ways of approaching new experiences and possibilities are slipping down the timestream, sometimes with breathtaking speed and finality. So what can we do about our responses when we confront endings that will help us navigate our lives into more helpful actions, feelings, and thoughts?
Most of what we've experienced up to now seems somehow disconnected with the circumstances that stress us. I believe that we can learn what we need to in order to navigate the endings and transitions into a new life, given the proviso that "New wine requires new wineskins." In moving into a better future, we must find new "containers" in our personality and patterns of behavior that adequately suit the requirements of a new life.
What we do is not separate from who we are. Even if it seems that external conditions are unnecessarily limiting, they exist only because we continue to dance with that condition. When we see that something no longer nourishes us, then we can stop beating our heads against the proverbial wall and turn to something new that suits our need in the Now. What we turn to indicates whether we move into new experiences or have merely swapped "the devil we know for one we don't."
When it's time to leave the old behind, it's good to make a list of what we know worked well for us in the past, since what has happened once can happen again, if in a new form. That's why in reinventing our life, there will be elements of past good patterns that can be invoked to come forth in our future. These past productive patterns can serve to show us that we are in fact growing according to our nature into even greater growth patterns in the present.
The Sanskrit word Dharma has as its approximate meaning "true function," or "essential quality of character." It is said the Dharma that can be known is not the "true Dharma," but I believe we can catch glimpses of our unique Dharma by examining the recurring lessons of our lives, seeing how these have led us out of darkness to Light, from illusion to Reality, from fear to a greater Love, and from our lower nature to our Higher Self.
So if you struggle with endings, of unknowns and apprehensions of what will or will not be, detach from the "not knowing" and contemplate your life as a timestream of experiences coaxing forth skills, strengths, realizations and talents throughout the difficulties and endings. You are an eternally evolving Consciousness, collecting forms of understanding to apply in your world the best you are able.
You have imagination and an ability to be creative in ways you've never known. You have a mind that when trained can easily cut through illusions and fears and express the strength of your heart's direct knowing. With an open mind and a strong heart you can move into unknown futures and find yourself doing your Being in excellent ways.
Doing this requires us to learn to recognize when to let go of the past so that a new potential can be attracted and glimpsed. Even when it seems that change is forced upon us, it is still our task to change the inner patterns in our lives from negative feelings to a new sense of potential effectiveness. That's why it's better to voluntarily choose to let go of old patterns that no longer fulfill us, especially those which create suffering and feelings of lack, fear, and frustration.
As we learn to cooperate with our own evolving process and let go of old patterns that no longer fulfill us, we create the psychic space to attract something more appropriate to our evolved Self. While often we move uncertainly into the future "waiting for the other shoe to drop," just as often we find something much better than we had before. Sometimes "the light at the end of the tunnel" really is a new day dawning, and not just the headlight of a train coming right at us!
So if you have experienced a loss, whether of a job, a friend or loved one, a sense of purpose or an old way of life, it's a clear signal that there's something better out there for you. As we learn to "get out of our own way" we cooperate with our unique Dharma, the specialized function we're here to play in the world.
From one point of view, life is a dance, a play of All-That-Is eternally changing forms for our experience so we can realize more than we used to know. As our lives shape shift, it's up to us to embrace and enjoy being the roles that are ours to learn and become skilled in expressing.
While sometimes endings can be quite difficult, what renews us is often a joyous thing. The trick is to let go of the feelings of difficulty while embracing the joy of the possible.
Change patterns of thinking, interpreting, feeling and acting, and you take command of your life in dramatic ways. Then relax into simply enjoying the many ways to do your Being throughout the changes, demonstrating past skills and strengths while cultivating new ones. Then each ending becomes the foundation for a new beginning. Welcome to the Now!!
© Copyright 2010 Robert Wilkinson