Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Why is 'do nothing' so something?


 Gaian Tarot

**"You are being challenged to release attachments, to surrender to the flow. You are no longer in charge of your life. It isn't a time to resist, for everything is out of your control. Give it up. Your world may feel like it's been turned upside down. You can fight this reversal — you can go into it kicking and screaming — or you can surrender with grace and take it as an opportunity to see your life from a different perspective. It is a time to take no action, other than meditation and prayer. Learn to be still. During this time of suspension and waiting, you may discover within yourself the gifts of inspiration, enlightenment and unconditional love."**

I have the hardest time just being still. It is, sometimes, nigh impossible. My grandfather, when he was feeling particularly irritated by my restlessness, used to say, "I'll give you .25 for every minute you are still." Pretty sure I never even earned a dollar. I usually just ended up going and pestering my grandmother, or going for a long walk outside.

Being still, especially when my world feels upside down, is one of my biggest challenges. I read this wisdom and I know, in my deepest heart, it is exactly what I need to do, but letting go and just 'being' - is profoundly difficult for me. The very thing that should help me feel relaxed, makes me feel all that more anxious.

Lately, I have found tremendous guidance from my inner self in my dreams and in moments of insight throughout the day - little things people say, messages in fortune cookies, a free reading on the internet. Or my car being stuck on lifts at the repair shop, neither halfway up nor halfway down because the electric on the whole block went out, making me wait as patiently as possible to get my brakes done. They all tell me the same mythic story - and while I may not necessarily believe it is divine intervention, I do believe that the mythic message of 'be still' is part of a larger picture that I am trying to tell myself. That harder part is acting on what the insight is showing me. Initially, the message seems so clear and easy.

Putting the message into action is a different story. 

Right now, the message in my life is to find stillness and to let go. Let go of weight, let go of connections and foods that aren't nourishing, let go of places that aren't healthy, let go of people that aren't able to be loving and kind in my life. 

I don't need to ask anyone how to do it, I don't need to read about it. I don't need to do a 12 step program on it, I don't need to watch a youtube video describing it. 

I know the answer is simply to breathe. But then I panic, and I want to ask five people about it, and I want them to tell me I'm okay. And I want to go back through my memories and rehash them. Again. 

I remember one time I was hanging out with Candace. I mentioned an old, favorite topic of ours and she laughed. "Just a minute" she said, "Let me get out my spatula so I can scrape that dead horse off the road and we can kick it around again!"

We both laughed. And then...we discussed it. Because that is who I am and who we were as friends. I am someone who spends a tremendous amount of my time in my head. Heck, I even want to get 'letting go' right. 

I want to analyze why things happen, and how they happen. I want to be a better person for what has happened. I want to learn to make different choices and recognize when I am back in a pattern that only leads to heartbreak. Even if heartbreak is its own lesson. 

And on some level, I know that letting go isn't about making grand changes.

Just like loving isn't about grand changes. I never sat down and thought, 'I should really spend some time thinking and processing if I do or don't love Candace.' I just loved her - through the good stuff and the hard stuff and all of it. It was unconditional - much like my caring for anyone I love, especially my friends and my family.

I have to love myself enough and respect myself enough to be still. To stop. To breathe. To listen. To let go.

And to follow the very guidance I have been asking for, because my heart knows what to do. I just need to quiet my head so I can truly listen and honor my own stillness.



**I love the Gaian Tarot by Joanna Powell Colbert, firstly because the images are so beautiful. I have used Tarot cards of one deck or another since I was 12 years old and forced my mom to buy me my first deck. I found this deck about five years ago now, and no cards have spoken to me like hers. For me, the beauty of these cards is the story they tell. 
For me, the Tarot is all about the mythic concepts held in each card. The whole point of the deck isn't to do 'fortune telling'. The tarot doesn't tell me about a terrible fate that's going to come crashing down on my head. Instead, the cards are about myth. About the story they tell. About the struggles we face - as humans. At the core, we all have the same central mythic struggles (what I'd call the major tarot cards) but how we face those struggles - is unique to each person (the minor tarot cards). How we move through our struggles is what makes us stronger and who we are as people. :).
But the deck aside, I also love the images because the woman that made them is tremendously true. She is a mentor and someone I admire. She lives her truth in a beautiful, honorable way and I respect that. I do not have to live like her, nor do I have to follow her path to have her path touch my own. And change it. People like that are rare, and I am grateful her path and my path, on occasion, merge for a time, then go off on their own again. And I am grateful she created such beautiful artwork that reflect the mythic so well.