Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Cleaning out the Closet

When you open your eyes to the world
You are on your own for the first time.
No one is even interested in saving you now.

and the world steps in
to test the calm fluidity of your body
from moment to moment

as if it believed you could join
its vibrant dance
of fire and calmness and final stillness.

- David Whyte, "Revelation Must Be Terrible" via
Stephen Cope's
Yoga and the Quest for the True Self

I love this poem, because it reflects the uncertainty of life as well as the inevitable in just a few simple lines. In life, it is certain that we will be faced with a first day and a final day, but the time in between is unpredictable each and every day. This is the challenge of our minds, hearts, and bodies. "The world steps in to test the calm fluidity of your body from moment to moment," and your body has options: to welcome or reject, to sleep or run, to fight or embrace, to love or to isolate, to wonder and to hope...

Somewhere within this "vibrant dance" we encounter stress in many different forms, but the outcome is usually the same: movement away from the true self and into a mental oblivion of "I should" or "I wish I had" or "I need to," etc. It is at these points when we are challenged most to stay centered.

It's time we asked ourselves, "What have I done for me lately?"

Treat these times like a messy closet, and approach it with the idea that you have endless time to organize and dust and store until the truly desired contents are left. Some items can be folded neatly and put away until the right time. Others can be hung in clear sight so they shine out from the closet like brilliant ideas through your eyes. Some items are simply ready to be discarded, and others are ready to be mended. Before you know it, the well-deserved attention you've given to your "closet" will pave the way for smoother days.

And now when you ask yourself the loaded question, "What have I done for me lately?" you can simply answer, "I cleaned out my closet."

Be well, and enjoy the days.

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