Rumi says,”The cure for pain, is in the pain.”
See? If it’s a google image, it must be true! But seriously, he’s right.
I haven’t lived this way, for much of my life (although I often convinced myself I was). But no, I’ve lived more with the adage, “Pain sucks. Fuck that. Get away from it however you can.”
I’m somewhat embarrassed to admit this. But, you know, that’s not true. Hahaha. I’m actually not. Why be embarrassed for how The Universe flowed through the past-you? You’re not that person anymore. Maybe, if you make even infinitesimally different choices, The Universe will flow through you differently, and you’ll be more courageous, embrace your suffering more fully, heal and grow more authentically. No sense crying over spilled milk.
It just feels like “being embarrassed,” and certainly saying you’re embarrassed about your stupid shit from the past, is the right thing to feel and the right thing to say. Because, aren’t we SUPPOSED to be embarrassed about our flaws? Hide them from people? Put on a brave, warrior face and be all like, “I’m one bad-ass mothafuckah, don’t you worry ’bout me, I got my mojo on. Like a BOSS!” ??
Isn’t “being successful” all about “projecting success”?
No, fuck that. If that’s what “success” is, then you, or society-at-large, has one totally fucked, dysfunctional, immature, and harmful standard of success.
“Success” means opening your heart.
That’s it. Nothing else. I have seen far, far too many “strong, successful” people live lives of puzzling isolation, hidden addictions, hypertension, conflict, quiet depression, closed-mindedness, prejudice, anger, pill-dependence and “thank God it’s Friday,” to believe that shit anymore.
Or, they’re just faking it, hoping nobody ever sees through their charade, including themselves.
Or they’re narcissistic, manipulative and/or controlling assholes who make other people’s lives worse in their vain (and ultimately futile) attempt to prop up their own fragile sense of self-importance and desperate need to believe that about themselves.
That’s not success. That’s a tragedy.
Every single atom in existence dances with joy and gratitude at the sheer miracle of being.
“Success” is opening your heart, so you can first perceive, then feel, then BE that, consciously.
Anything else, ANYTHING, is squandering your potential for a truly joyful, fulfilling life.
I used to really like smoking weed. Especially when things were feeling kinda shitty. “Take the edge off, maaaaaan. The Dude abides.”
But The Dude, while he had a pretty chills life bowling and shit, was clearly NOT living his potential. And I don’t mean potential for “success”.
I mean potential for JOY. Fulfillment. Ecstasy. Wonder. Love. Companionship. Connection. Zest.
I used to think that “being happy” meant, you know, doing all that shit that happiness-guru people tell you to do. And sure, that stuff works. Kind of.
But it don’t mean jack shit if you are FIRST blocking your actual heart-opening by avoiding deep-diving into your pain, swallowing that entire ocean of shit inside you, tearing your heart into ribbons, and then, when you are fucking BEREFT of hope and strength and attachment to your pitifully small and inadequate Ego, THEN the universe will knit you back together, support you, humble you and finally open you to the reality of Love. It will help you SEE, and BE, more than you ever thought possible.
The cure for pain is in the pain.
You very likely won’t be able to handle it all at once. You know the whole onion thing? You know, layers and shit, and each one makes you cry? Well, that’s true. You’ve got a lot of layers. So don’t be a dumb-ass about it and go all Rambo, Lone Ranger, bullshit on your pain. That’s just your Ego taking a last stab at making you believe you’re special.
You’re not special. Not any more than any other collection of atoms in the universe. Which is ok, because every single one is infinitely special. (And doesn’t actually exist as “an atom” anyway, but is indelibly interwoven into the whole Quantum enchilada.) So stop trying to convince yourself you’re “more special” than infinity.
Instead, feel. Everything. You’ll probably need help doing this. Which is, in some ways, exactly the point. Because “you” are not you, just like an atom isn’t an atom.
Embrace this. Your heart will open. And everything you once relied on for “coping” will seem so silly, when contrasted with Being itself.
This is not an idea. It’s as real as biting into an apple. Taking a shit. Moving your eyes back and forth to read these words.
You can do this. As you go into the pain and let it work through you, you WILL feel alive, new, unshakeably connected. (Note: probably not right away. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was your suffering. Don’t expect to dismantle it all in one courageous “training montage”, like Neo learning Kung-Fu in a handful of minutes. It don’t work that way. Again, that’s Ego-bullshit. Let it go, maaaan.)
But you know what you ARE going to find? Eventually? That’s really fucking cool?
Deep down inside, deeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep as you can possibly imagine, you love THE SHIT outta yourself.
If you don’t feel that yet, then….well, the cure for pain is in the pain.