January 10, 2012 § 1 Comment
I am pretty convinced reading and yoga keep saving my life, over and over. I’ve been reading Pema Chodron, The Places That Scare You, and it couldn’t be more timely.
The book is very deep, a purse-sized tome filled with wisdom of the heart. An exploration of how to become a warrior for loving-kindness, Chodron offers meditation and other techniques for how to deal with the more unsavory aspects of life, and how to truly transcend pain and fear by learning to investigate the roots of why we get scared, why we shut down or hold on too hard, why we hurt ourselves, and most importantly how to learn to reverse these divisive acts. I highly urge you to pick it up!
I’m re-reading it for about the fourth time now since I picked it up in September, and I feel like more and more keeps unfolding for me, and I begin to understand myself better and I’ve been working very hard in undoing the behaviors and patterns I keep falling back into that allow me to hurt myself and others over and over. It’s…scary. It’s not easy. And it’s definitely a massively huge process. Right now the biggest piece I’m working on, the thing that is truly saving my life right now, is that when the pain and the fear get overwhelming, I connect to it, I allow myself to feel the pulsing rawness of pain and hurt, and in that moment I remind myself that other people have felt this way, do feel this way, will feel this way. There are times when I can connect to a friend’s story or someone else I know going through a hard time, and this helps me stay soft, this helps keep me from hardening the shell around my heart so I can become cold and angry again.
I used to think I wanted to be cold and untouchable, that it would protect me, but now I see exactly how flawed that is. If I protect myself with love, I will have a much stronger armor than if I protect myself with fear.