I have to admit I wasn’t jazzed to get this prompt. The possibilities seemed pretty limited, given my philosophies on the subject; but the struggles of someone close made me take a second look. This is my response:
The bigger picture is never clear. We often focus on the details thinking we might find control, but the illusion is no one can halt the progress of time. It’s a tapestry woven with joy and pain. Each event has a place, some threads shine brighter than others. If you take one out, the entire picture begins to unravel, because they interlock to create a life. With every choice, a new thread forms to expand the edges.
Still we grasp the frays tucking them away from memory or dying them in less painful hues; mentally rewriting our history, editing out the parts of the tapestry we don’t want to face. A single thought hits: If we could go back to the beginning, it might be possible to remove the frays altogether. While this may be true have you ever considered the consequences? I have…
I married at a young age to a man I didn’t really love. It’s not that I had to marry him; I could have gone back to school and raised my daughter as a single mother or accepted the proposal of the man I did love. For many years after I left him, I considered what might have happened if I chose a different path. Each time the thought hit me my son would be there, in my arms, telling me about his day. I would smile and nod, and then hug him until I couldn’t breathe.
You see, if I had chosen the other path this amazing child would not be here today. Sure, I would have other children, but not this one or the beautiful little redhead that makes my heart smile. Every event exists for a reason. We can never see the purpose until we live the result. If we change a single thing in our history, it creates entirely different threads. Some may be better, but I believe the better is lived in the now and is based on choices.
Change doesn’t exist in the past, only lessons. We learn and grow from them to make the now right or we repeat the mistakes of our past. Either way, it will only get there when we stop looking over the fence at greener grasses and tend our own.
* * * * *
I’m done. Maybe you missed the cue or you just don’t care to hear, but believe me there won’t be any doubt after today. This woman is no longer going to kneel before your doctrine and quietly assimilate. I don’t need anyone’s help finding what already lives inside me. So stop knocking, because my door is closed.
Unless—wait, were you here to say something important? Is there some divine message I missed in all those long drawn out lectures you gave? The ones where you mentioned that people who don’t share your beliefs are wrong.
Judgment seems to be the norm. It’s sold on street corners by Religions all over the world like counterfeit Rolexes’; their sales pitch colored by fear, anger, and hate. Salvation is optional in their world; and no one can guarantee if you do it right, if you follow the rules, it will find you in this life or the next.
God isn’t someone you have to seek out or accept. So stop telling me how and where to find him. No building or book carries all the answers, because He exists in each of us as light and love. If no one ever stepped into a church, it would be just another empty building. It’s only when people come to fellowship, share common beliefs, that He can be found walking the edges smiling. Not because you came to pray; it’s the gathering and sharing that’s important.
If you think sharing the love is about opening a book and knocking on doors then you’re missing the point. It’s not about telling me anything; because we’ve all listened to your messages until our ears bleed. You’ve had the same song on repeat for last few centuries and it’s getting old. The notes are no longer in tune and the melody skips every time you point your finger. So close your mouth and show me something.
Show me how you’re going to make the world better. Help that lady down the street with three kids who’s about to lose her house or the guy sleeping on the street because it’s easier for people to walk around than stop and ask why. Don’t sell me salvation from a pamphlet or in a sermon, show me how your actions of love and light will lead you there. Maybe then, I’ll stop and listen to what you have to say.
You’ll find the new trend stalking every street corner. Most people walk past, eyes glued to the pavement, hoping they find someone else’s ear. If I weren’t such a believer in the base philosophy, I might stand in a corner out of sight hiding from them myself. I can’t do that anymore. (So, for better or worse, here I go opening my big mouth.)
I’m over the long speeches and quick jabs about how we’re all lost people. The self-proclaimed spiritual leaders can take their mantras and sell them on a different corner, because love and light wasn’t meant to be a commodity. I live by the same philosophy in life as I do in my writing: Show, Don’t Tell. Yeah, I could tell you how meditation brings peace, the way a hug and an ear sooths the soul, or how God’s love (yes, I used the G word) heals a heart, but how does that really help? Isn’t better to show you how these things work in my life?
There are many people in the world throwing out clichés about living in spirit and light, but how many listen? The first reaction I see from those scrolling their timelines is the classic eye roll followed by a quick click of the refresh button. That is, if they stop at all. Because no one really wants to be told how to do something or, and I really don’t like when spiritualists do this, told that they are broken.
This journey is personal and custom crafted to fit each one of us. No one has the formula. So stop acting like you do. This isn’t a club people join. If you want to reach the masses, show them how your personal spirituality has transformed the way you love people and see life. Be there when they stumble and fall, and then hope they are there to do the same for you. Because no matter how evolved we become, everyone stumbles eventually.
Light, love, and spirit aren’t exclusive; everyone carries a piece with them. So next time someone shows up on your step, stop and repeat this 10 times or 100 times or 1000 times until it sticks: Show, Don’t Tell.
Light pierced the clouds like ribbons of ambered glass. I watched from a distance as it cut the billowing sheets into feathered shapes. They reached out across eternity in quick leaps while words appeared briefly before the wind came to scramble the letters. I listened to the message form, break apart, and reform in a melody only time knew.
The drops on the windshield hinted at the rainbow hidden in the sky. And the light danced between the streaks traveling along the glass. It heard the music captured in the tiny prisms.
I’m sure something was tucked in the hues for me, but the humming of tires against the pavement masked the sound. If I had stopped along the road, perhaps my heart could have taken a better hold.
Hidden away in each creek I passed, the frogs croaked the songs of summer, mirroring the skies message. The urge to get lost along their banks grew stronger as I drove by.
Thoughts of old country roads removed from time flooded my mind; and still they chirped through the wind and rain. Calling me to join in; reaching into my heart to pull apart misconceptions.
It was a day to get lost in nothing and everything; a moment to hold tight to amber ribbons and let the song carry me back to connection.
It will bubble beneath the skin. You scratch at the sores hoping to release the pain, but escape wasn’t meant for you. They’ll taunt with a line, maybe even a stanza; never truly giving relief. The clichés will pour across white like blood at a crime scene. You’ll look at the evidence, each clue as though it was gold, but the answers you find are screens. They fog over truth with an elegance and conviction that keeps you spellbound.
There’s a song hidden somewhere in the break. Something lonely and soulful, but it’s not yours. Just another clue holding you or that you hold too tightly. If you were willing to look beyond, gather them all to make a whole, perhaps sense could be made. But the details captivate and the bigger picture was never of interest. So you’ll listen to the song again, hoping to pull from beneath the flesh those things that haunt; like victims of a crime they’ll whisper from the beyond. Still, the fog jumbles all the words and you aren’t in the mood to hear.
Though this is a journey, have you considered not all is meant for the page? Sometimes we must stand back, allow the mind to reform and recharge. Inspiration is fickle; there’s a time when talent isn’t enough. The universe needs a moment to move forward as do the words. If you take a breath, if you let the Muse run through fields of pleasure and pain; she’ll return to you with stories that will give thoughts to the pen and peace to the flesh. And you’ll once again make sense of this thing we call life for all of us. Because in the end, you are the Muse we seek out.
“A firecracker snaps behind your ear, shattering the senses. As your brain begins to liquefy, a hand reaches out to catch the drips…”