“If anyone on the verge of action should judge himself according to the outcome, he would never begin.”
- Søren Kierkegaard
There comes a time in everybody’s life when one must face one’s fears.
One of my big ones is having to live somewhere for extended periods of time. It is the evervessence of change that gives me strength, where my soul takes flight, and leaves the known behind, just to embark into the unknown once more. It gives me breathing problems once I get to know many people in one place. Even a big city becomes small-town and at a certain point I know that it is time to leave again. Such is my character in this lifetime. I do not look back and I say goodbye to people with a light heart. Maybe I will meet them again, maybe not. They have left their mark on my life and I on theirs. Some I have met again after years or even decades of being abroad, some were like actors in a play that did their part and departed the stage of life never to make a reappearance again. Such is the Divine Lila that we all must play this game that is called life. Most are unconscious of this Lila, they never even question it once. And so others are purely convinced that I am Vanessa whereas I know deep inside that I am only a speck of light in this grand scheme, eternal, yet very much impermanent in my current physical structure. It becomes easier over time and now I know that I will leave this place in a few months. I am already giving the last batch of books away. I have accumulated some paintings, which, for once, I will take with me. I have a feeling that they will serve me in the future. I need to look for another singing teacher where I am moving to, a new arts school, but that is okay. I will be given something even better than now. I know this. It has always been like this.
I love this feeling of embarking on a new adventure yet again.
Yesterday I had the clear feeling that things dropped off of my shoulders, that every person I will meet from now onwards, will have to be looked at with clear eyes. That I must meet people with a completely open heart, with gratitude, with no fear or preconceived ideas, that even old friends, I must see in a new light. There is no other way.
Even myself. I must look at myself each day, each moment anew. Each breath must be a new beginning, each gesture must be the beginning of a tale that rewrites itself all the time. That tale that leaves no traces in this stubborn world.
Is it this that I have feared for so long? The eradication of egotistical patterns, the clinging to old habits? Is it really that bad? No really. We always find new things to do, new people to meet, new places where we can feel the silence that surrounds us. We can make an effort to meet everyone on new terms. We must forget our old impulses and behaviors and say each day to ourselves: “Welcome to this world, you beautiful soul. Today is going to be a new and wonderful day for you. Let us take a look at what is going to happen today.”
In that space one cannot hold grudges, one just forgets what happened just a few seconds ago. One must be brave to restart and reset.
One must forget one’s own style, one’s identity that had been falsely built and one must ask: Who is this person that is underneath all that rubble?
Nothing really. You have to look closely and you will see that all are merely movements of energy, of emotions, of thoughts, of likes and dislikes that play no importance whatsoever. They are mere constructs.
Yesterday I did nothing of any importance, I just watched the garden outside, listened to the squirrels playing and chasing each other. I lay in bed and watched the ceiling and listened to my own heartbeat of love and old pains leaving. So I said to myself: you know that no one can hurt you. No one has this sort of power over you. You are safe, no matter where you are at. Love is your guiding star.
So this morning I walked past an ice cream parlor. It was named: “I am love.”
Of course I am, I thought to myself; yet I am also nothing.
My teacher always recounts this quote from Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj: “When I see I am nothing, that is wisdom. When I see I am everything, that is love. My life is a movement between those two.”
Only yesterday I understood this at the core of my being. One must continuously move in between those two, never holding onto either one.
I must therefore never judge myself or others for anything, find understanding and compassion in all and everything, set some sort of boundaries, but also never ever judge. When I feel as if others are starting to see me in a certain way, I must prove to them that that is not me. That they are, in fact, building an illusion of me, that all things always are subject to change and impermanence.
I am wondering why my ego has been resisting this for so long?
That is the freedom people have been talking about. The annihilation of what one thought oneself to be.
So do not be scared of your actions. You must trust yourself one hundred percent, all the time. Never disappoint yourself, let go of control and ridiculous standards, because that is the prison you are building for yourself.
Are you on the verge of action?