We are scattered like a thousand pieces across our world. There is the part of us that appears like we “have it all together” in public. The part of us that is terrified of what people would think if they saw behind our mask of “perfect”. The part of us that constantly worries about what people will think if we do this or that. The part of us that yearns for something greater, like a purposeful purpose, or a determined and clear way forward. The part of us that believes we must do the right thing. Whatever that is! Stay in an unhappy marriage for the kids, or because of the money thing, or because isn’t that what you do? The part of us that has a different self outside of a marriage, playing the field, hoping to remain undiscovered. The part of us that is trapped in work that has no movement and rhythm, that we experience as the same track playing over and over again, day in, day out. The part of us that obeys someone else’s rules, and wonders, why? Maybe our parents said that this is how we are to live our life, and we bought it, no questions asked. The part of us that thinks we can get away with some of our little tricks and little atrocities, that falls under a spell of power, or seduction, or glamor. The part of us that misbehaves anyway, because we have not yet learned to stop throwing tantrums.
The pieces of us that are scattered in all these places have a deep yearning. Yet for what they are yearning is often not clear. Something is missing. But what? All of our small pieces are separated from the core, from our centre, yet unaware even that they are separate. And in their isolation and loneliness lies our pain and confusion. “Who am I?” “Where am I?” “Why does this feel so very hard?” “Where did I get lost?”
When we live this divided life people never really know which “us” they are speaking to. Are we the public person? Are we the person with the fears and insecurities…the one we try our very best to hide? Are we the happy go lucky larrikin or the man who cries at night into the pillow, the pain of his divided life swallowing him in despair? Which part of us is true, we cry to an empty room?
People don’t know us! Even more tragic, we don’t know ourselves! How can we know who we are when we are scattered like dust motes in the wind? Where do we begin to look to find our all together self?
Our journey and our joy is to bring all the pieces back together. To be the one person, undivided. To show one face, the same face to all and sundry, aligned and in truth, and with courage and fortitude.
No easy task this. On this road we need to get passed our insecurities, challenge all the rules we have been living by, learn to like all the bad bits…the anger, our smallness, our apparent weaknesses, our addictions; find our song inside, bring our selves out from the dark place, say yes to what we know is our path, say no to all the distractions; distinguish between our voice of truth and the voice of ego, find our courage, rejoice in our vulnerability, stand up and sing!
Living the divided life has a high cost. The burden of carrying all of these pieces is enormous. To project an image in public of having “it all together” takes every ounce of our energy. Many people who carry this burden end up sick, their physical body so depleted of vital energy sources in other areas, for so long..that breakdown is inevitable. Or they suffer depression. The demons they work so hard to suppress from public view demand attention. After all, they are a part of us, denied. So they squeeze through the cracks of our soul, and find residence in our heart, where they play their drums in increasing intensity. These demons are not bad. They are the parts of us calling for attention. Our depression and illness is our siren song to find a way to bring all the pieces of ourselves home. To be united in one song, our unique song, the song we were born to sing.
So we go to work. This is the inner work of being human. Many people try to avoid this work. Its not something taught in schools, or discussed in most homes. Our world is focused on the world out there. It’s far easier to focus on the world out there. The world of bricks and mortar, stuff we can grow and move and do things with. Our society has divorced itself from the inner work, often confusing it with religion, or ‘new ageism’, or ‘whoo whoo!’ It is none of those things, although it can be found within all of them. It is the work of getting to know our animating spirit, the real “who”, of who we are. The quiet, steady, always present part of our self, wise and all knowing. But first we must take the time to listen, or develop the courage to hear this wise all knowing part of self.
Our inner work involves bringing all of our broken and disparate pieces back together, back to our core. It doesn’t matter where we start. Starting is what matters. Getting to know all the parts of ourselves and finding acceptance. Or finally looking in the eye of our insecurities, our fears, our self hate, and questioning their dominance of us? Or learning to say NO to what is not on our song sheet, and YES to what is. Learning to know the difference between the two.
And where does the journey of finding all of our broken pieces and bringing them back together take us? It brings us home. Only when all the pieces are together again can we really step into our own power and magnificence, and sing with the clearest of clear voices. When we find this place we speak with the forces of all of nature that are now together. There is an ease and freedom that is found in this place. Our energy is high as we are no longer juggling all of the pieces of a divided life. All of our energy is now available to do one thing, and that is to be us in full song. We are aligned, congruent, whole. We know who we are. And we accept our truth as it is.
And of course, the mystery and paradox is that now, from this place of wholeness, we can move to the end of the final separation. We can come home to home itself and find oneness with all.
As my favourite poet, Hafiz said…
Become like this:
Next time you meet him in the forest
Or on a crowded city street
There won’t be anymore
God will climb into
You will simply just take