Warning: this is not really a Busting Loose blog post, per se, although it may contain some of those elements.
Over the past few months, I've created my dream world to be populated with people, myself included, going through hard times, struggles and depression; spiritual people who have the tools to work through these obstacles and the knowledge that they're just creations founded on false beliefs. Yet, we, I continue to struggle in some aspect of our lives.
I used to think that processing my way into Phase 2, (now Phase 3, I guess) into a place of transcendence or bliss was the answer to relationship problems. Once I was at peace, and truly remembered that I was an infinite being, nothing in the dream world would matter. All relationships would be fine, no matter what they looked like in the hologram. All situations would be perfect, no matter what it might look like through my human eyes. That is the Truth as far as I know. Of course, achieving that awakening was a whole other matter, and it became apparent that I was leaving something out.
Fortunately, my ex-partner, Liz, set something in motion that allowed me to find the missing piece.
I am deeply embarrassed to admit that more than two years after we separated, and in spite of our best and loving intentions to be different, to not just walk in opposite directions, but to give ourselves time to work through the many lies, beliefs and illusions raised by the separation (and I'd say that was my need mostly, not hers), I realized I was stuck.
I had created a relationship that had fallen into what for me was a disturbing, uncomfortable and often painful pattern, sprinkled with occasional moments of fun. But because I had convinced myself that our relationship was happening at a higher level, and that two such amazingly spiritual people as ourselves had to be able to resolve this, I soldiered on.
I do not consciously believe in the axiom of "fake it until you make it," but it is apparent I still had some learning to do around that. I realize that I was doing that all the time, just rationalizing my struggles by putting a spiritual overlay on them. Instead of embracing my discomfort fully, I would swiftly extract the great and wise lesson from it, dress it up in some nifty spiritual/intellectual clothes, and convince myself that I had expanded. I was not really absorbing the lessons at a soul level. I was just making myself think I did and trying to make her think the same thing.
Liz and I reconnected recently, after several weeks apart and spent an afternoon together absorbing the grounded wisdom of Adyashanti. What happened that afternoon stirred me.
Afterwards I wrote her an email detailing some of what appears above. Then I went into silence. It was in that space I realized that the missing piece/peace was healing.
You see, as I mentioned in a previous column, I'm not good at doing endings. But it hadn't occurred to me until that moment why. I was practiced at eventually forgetting the pain and suffering of separation caused by the end of relationship. I'd had "closure." I'd had "resolution." One time I even got a call from a friend telling me he was dating my girlfriend a few days after we separated. But I could not recall the experience of ever having truly healed, because time does not truly heal, it only lulls us to sleep and gives us a false sense of hope. As long as there's a future, things can always get better, right?
The root of the word healing means to become whole, sound and well. It means in spiritual terms to erase the illusion of a gap between you and God, or the universe or Expanded Self or your own divinity or whatever metaphor you choose. (Great Mysteriousing, a Cheyenne description, is my favorite.)
Healing, as opposed to forgetting, means cleansing the wound with forgiveness, dressing it with love and accepting the scar that was left behind as a joyous memento of life here on earth.
That sounds suspiciously like enlightenment to me.
Now my first impulse, my egoic impulse, is to explain to Liz how we could heal together. But my gut says not so fast. Sucking poor Liz into yet another step of my enlightenment is too much to ask. It could become mechanical and grasping and yet another attempt by my ego to re-create our relationship in my image. Perhaps healing can only come from within. But to tell you the truth, I don't have a frickin' clue. I haven't done it before.
So I believe I'll just sit a spell and wait to see what the healing might look like and how it might happen.
In the meantime, Liz and I appear ready for anything, from creating a new form of relationship to splitting for good. The dynamic has already changed between us. In responding to my email, she said she no longer wanted the role of being my teacher. I guess that leaves it up to me.