I have recently encountered several individuals who have been unduly involved in other people’s troubles, carrying their burdens and life challenges as though they were their own, weighed down by worry and anxiety.
,p>For three days I was with a woman who constantly referred to her son. She was obviously deeply concerned but unable to let go and get on with her own process. My intuition guided me to ask her his age. “49”, she replied. I was reminded of the delightful story in which a mother says to her son “Get up and get ready for school. You’re going to be late.” “But I don’t want to go,” he replies. “Come on,” she encourages him. “Look, mum, the boys are mean to me. They don’t like me and I don’t like them and I repeat, I just don’t want to go.” “But you have to go. You are the headmaster”, says the mother.
When we are not in the shoes and skin of another it is not possible to understand their path. Could I remind you, we cannot even see our own! We simply step forward trusting we are moving towards some goal which we may or may not have consciously created. There are many who simply resign themselves to the unfolding of their lives, hoping everything will turn out right.
There is no way in our humanness we can have an inkling of the need for certain experiences in the journey of another. It is only the wisdom of the soul which can lead someone into what they have to go through for their growth and development. Life is a mystery, it is unknowable. Who are we to try to direct the knowing of the soul? All of us are finding our way, some successfully, some not so successfully through the unknowable, the unexpected, the surprises, disappointments, fears and joys. We have to let it flow, let it be. For ourselves or for another, we have to be in the fullness of the experience and to honour another enough to allow them to live what the soul wants to feel, experience and know. We cannot direct it, neither can we protect another from it.,/p>
The soul is on a journey in this earthly dimension to experience the fullness of life in order to come to the point of understanding the Self and undertaking the growth and achievements agreed on for this lifetime. It may seem senseless but it is not for us to judge whether it is illogical, useless, lacking understanding, even unforgiveable, irresponsible, close to lunacy, causing suffering and pain to themselves and others, for it is still unknowable to us.
I recall many years ago interacting with a woman whose talented, powerful, creative son was into drugs. She had a clear inner connection. In a meditation she communicated with his soul. She was told that this chapter, and it was but a chapter, was a necessary learning for him before he was able to take up his great life purpose. I felt moved by her ability to let go and allow, yet still be firm and clear.
Let me explore this further from an experience in my own life. When my youngest brother died, his son came to live with us and my husband generously paid for him to do a 4-year university course. At one stage my dear nephew replaced his studies with rugby, beer and girls! I was distraught as his marks plummeted. My beloved spouse could be very tough, actually ruthless, and I knew if my nephew did not produce acceptable academic results, the funding for his studies would be withdrawn. It was then I learnt a big lesson. In my anxiety and concern I was not accepting, allowing or respecting my nephew’s journey or the lessons he had to learn. After all, he was 21 and surely he was responsible for his own choices and decisions? Maybe his lesson was to learn the consequences of his actions. Who was I to protect him from that?
Somewhere I had read that when we try to be tolerant, which I had been trying to do, we still carry negative emotion, which I was drowning in! If we could shift into allowing, we are in acceptance and not adding our dose of dense energy to the ‘problem’.
I became allowing and the results were amazing. Not only did I become more relaxed and simply an observer, free of blame and judgement, but without negative input the atmosphere in the house improved as did the relationships with my nephew and husband. A short while later, the young man was back to his studies and all was well.
It would be valuable to look at whether the fears and anxiety we carry for another is in truth fear and anxiety for ourselves. If we did not have these feelings for another, we would be able to come to a truly loving, compassionate non-attachment. It is we who need the healing, and our burdens of sorrow and concern for another are loud signals that we are not yet whole and there is work to be done.
In this cycle there are many who are going through particularly stressful and challenging times. It is not easy to lose an income, a job, a house, a relationship, to be suffering with ill health and in some cases all of these at one time. However, there is an initiation, a passage of life. I have heard it aptly referred to as a de-structuring process and in some teachings, a hurricane. It is when all that we have held most dear is stripped away in order to arrive at our core. It is a re-building of the self onto a solid foundation so that we become secure in ourselves not reliant on exterior things to determine our identity. It is to come to the consciousness where we feel love, expansion and freedom. When that understanding comes and the penny drops, there is a complete turnaround but until then the soul has to go as far as it can into the depth of the experience.
Someone was relating how a very successful, wealthy, ruthless businessman has just undergone this rite of passage. He lost everything. A much kinder, gentler and more humble human emerged who discovered a love and care for his family, which he had never expressed before. While his family and friends stood around feeling desperate for him, his soul knew what would bring him to the Self.
Life is not easy for those with a loving heart who find it difficult to understand and experience another’s pain. It is especially difficult for women and mothers, who break their hearts at what their children go through but it is all part of for the great experience of life, bringing us to the point where we understand only love exists and love will heal all. Until this is learnt a soul will fall and knock its head again and again. So let me re-iterate: no suffering or struggle is in vain, for everything there is a purpose, although it may not be knowable or understandable to us. Perhaps it is important to step back, become an observer and see another’s passage as a season. These are always changing and lives go through different phases to complete a cycle in different ways. No winter, no exquisite summer lasts for eternity. Allow another their barren, cold season with respect and honouring, love and compassion but let go the mantle of over-concern and anxiety. It does not serve you or the other.