On Being Human (the reason we're here)
It’s taken me the better part of 40 years to understand that Being Human is what we are here to do. But what exactly does that mean?
When I first began my spiritual journey as a child, the Seeking path was about finding a paternal figure to believe in, to nourish me and save me and take care of me in the way no one’s parents ever did in the exact way they needed. I was immaturely seeking to be taken care of rather than learning how to care for myself.
Let’s face it. We all miss a few developmental milestones along the way.
As I matured in my spiritual awareness, I realized this responsibility was mine, but it was confusing that all that this responsibility was seemingly far outside the realm of the Yoga Sutras, Bhagavad Gita, Tao Te Chang, the Bible, the Upanishads, or any Buddhist scripture I ever picked up. These Eastern practical traditions plugged me into a life of what seemed like stainless steel discipline, emaciation, a quest toward perfection and most of all, masochistic attempts at the conquering of my very fragile, unhealthily developed ego.
Eventually, these disciplines brought me to the realization of my own personal journey and a recognition that this “spiritual bypass” thing I’d read about in Buddhist psychology books was to be avoided, not encouraged. It was hard to rewire my brain. After all, I had “enlightened” teachers that suggested that if Classical Yoga couldn’t fix me, that I was unfixable.
No one is unfixable.
Christopher Robin is quick to remind us that miracles happen every day, and all we have to do is open our
eyes to see them occurring right in front of us. And one day, all the Brahmin Boy practices I was seeking to change and conquer me, brought me only to the awareness that I’m actually here to love me and be me. It just took some time for me to figure out who me actually is.
This takes energy and determination…vigor, a relentless desire toward Truth, and a will and courage to find it no matter what it takes.
Really what I’ve found is the importance of using the discipline of traditional Eastern masculine practices to help me learn to serve myself like a compassionate parent, to meet my spiritual needs; all while bringing a delighted and compassionate humanness with the power of the divine feminine, fearless in working through the specifics of the shadows, engaged with orientation toward the Light. Not to conquer the ego, but to lovingly bring it to a place where it is so full of awe of its cohabitational higher nature, that it naturally yields with delight and gratitude, like a well-loved child.
Folks, lemme tell ya, there’s no illumined astral float without a solid and firm connectedness to the shadowy ground.
While I’ve stayed true to Eastern practices that engage my mind, body and heart, I’ve also seen the power of the psycho-spiritual and the deepening into the shadow work. This is the understanding that we have karmas to untangle while we’re here and the disciplined spiritual practices will not untangle these so much as bring awareness to the realization that these specific entanglements exist are are important to our individual biological evolutionary process.
As we look in the mirror that is yoga, we can embrace our very individual paths from a higher perspective, and through the practices, we relinquish judgment and criticism and gain compassion for ourselves and others. After all, at some point upon recognition of this never-ending (and HARD) path of growth and healing, we gotta just find a soft sense of patience for ourselves, and when we do, we bring our very human needs to a very illumined place.
And this is where the divine feminine shines. Where the masculine energy is calm, ascended, focused, and squeaky-clean, the feminine energy is creative, grounded, mystical, messy and colorful. And when these energies peacefully cohabitate, synergy and joy can be found. Truly, one cannot exist without the other.
This is the age-old conversation between Shiva and Shakti, Consciousness and Chaos, Purusa and Prakriti, with the understanding that it is all held in the Divine.
In this way, there is no bad or good, there is no comparison among paths, there are no winners or losers, there is no right and there is no wrong. With this understanding, Truth is found, and Joy is the experience.
Now, let’s all take a deep breath, and keep on truckin’
Here’s to Being human!