Upon much recommendation, I recently read “Eat Pray Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert. (It was a #1 best seller and what’s that? I’m slow on the uptake? Yes, I know.) Today as I was struggling with my strep throat.. again… and feeling just pretty much the lead in my pity party, I finished the last chapter on the porch of our tiny condo in Seattle.
She explains something the Zen Buddhists believe, that an oak tree is brought in to creation by two forces: One being the actual acorn and the other being the will of the future oak tree. That during the growth, the older version of the oak tree leans in and whispers “GROW” to its younger self urging it on to the final version of itself. She says she feels much the same way through her spiritual journey, that her self confident, peaceful self breathed wisdom to her younger, more uncertain self. She found that all along she knew it would be OK in the end, that God or Self or Universe is forever finding the balance of truth and happiness.
I grew teary reading this.
Perhaps it’s the hangover of antibiotics and the insane amounts of water I’ve had, or delusions from the fever itself, but there is a simple clarity to this ideal. Something inside me clicks. Something whispers “yes.”
After a sorted religious background trying on denominations like shoes, finding which fit and don’t squeeze too tight but give freedom and comfort and support, I find that I prefer to live barefoot.
This will send my mother in to fits of tears and my Christian friends to their knees on my behalf, but if I am being honest, and I see no other way to live if I am to find truth, sincerity, and peace, I can no longer pretend that I am seeking an external source of happiness. I am no longer seeking. I am finding.
I’ve been internalizing a great many things of late: not only of the spiritual, less tangible aspect to life, but also the physical wellness (not only brought on by a two years solid of illness and medicines and doctors). I am finding the link between wholesome foods, plenty of water, exercise and spiritual and mental health. There is no body without the soul and there is no fuel for your soul while your body fights toxins.
By god, I’m going hippie on you.
This isn’t sudden, nor is it a single product of one event, but rather the culminating of several events coming to head at once. I’ve seen Christians breathing hostility and anger and I’ve found Atheist to be loving, truthful, and honest. I’ve found a community that welcome all people and turns away none and I’ve walked in to churches judged before I sat down.
There is no correlation to religion and goodness within people.
I’ve seen that I am in charge of my own decisions, that I decide with whom to invest my heart and time with and where I spend my words and thoughts. I can use those for the greater good of my soul and my friendships and family members or I can use them to cook and boil the angry waters of unfairness.
This path is 9 years in coming, not a day, not a month, not a year. I’ll continue to share with you the path as it fell, starting one night on the Gulf of Mexico digging my feet in the warn Galveston sand talking politics and religion, to sitting on my porch in my tiny condo in Seattle, nine years, three states, two kids and one marriage later.
Welcome to the transformation.