"This very human life seems to be drawn eventually, as if by some unspoken parallel, some tidal flow or underground magnetic field, toward the raw, dynamic essentials of its existence, as if everything up to that point had been a preparation for a meeting, for a confrontation in an elemental form, with what an individual could until then, only receive stepped down, interpreted or diluted.
This experience of lived in, on-going crisis, where the touchable rawness of life becomes part of the fabric of the everyday, and a robust luminous vulnerability, becomes shot through with the necessary, imminent and inevitable prospect of loss, has been described for centuries as the dark night of the soul: La noche oscura del alma. But perhaps, this dark night could more accurately be described as the meeting of two immense storm fronts, the squally vulnerable edge between what overwhelms human beings from the inside and what overpowers them from the outside.
The wave form that catches a maturing human being from the inside is the inescapable nature of their own flaws and weaknesses, their self-deceptions and their attempts to create false names and stories to place on themselves and the world; the felt need to control the narrative of the story around them with no regard to outside revelation. The immense wave on the outside is the invitation to give that self up, to be borne off by the wave and be renamed and re ordered by the powerful flow.
Walking the pilgrim edge between the two, holding them together, is the hardest place to stay, to breathe of both and make world of both and to be active in their exchange: aware of our need to be needed, our wish to be seen, our constant need for help and succor, but inhabiting and surrounded by a world of luminosity and intensity, subject to the wind and the weather, surrounded by the music of existence, able to be found by the living world and with a wild self-forgetful ability to respond to its call when needed; a place where inside and outside can reverse and flow with no fixed form …"
--David Whyte (2013)
This poem came to me today and it is so powerful considering the time we're in: Mars in Gemini … Mercury Retrograde in Cancer. It's a meditation to be immersed in for days. I love the image of the meeting of two storm fronts ... and the vulnerable edge. What does it mean to live on the vulnerable edge?
I can feel myself scaling this narrow precipice where I have to cling fiercely to any inner anchors I have and slow time way down. I can feel everything is about to shift into fast-forward motion when Saturn goes direct next week. I can feel the part of me that wants to remain in denial, in limbo ... I resist moving forward even though the days are about to speed past me and the I Ching even warned me this morning about the danger of resting when I need to be moving forward. I find myself wanting to sleep and then blinking and discovering it's one in the morning again. Can you relate?
Here's to catching our own flaws, weaknesses, self-deception and false-names.