How dare I?
While walking this morning, I was characteristically visited by the Muse. Walking and bathing are the most common ways I am visited! Earth and water really seem to do it for me.
There are times when I am forthcoming with the Great Mystery's gifts and I allow the flow and the grace to move through me and out into the world. But more often than not, I withhold completely, keeping the buried treasure under lock and key. That's not a recipe for health and happiness, I can assure you. And then on other occasions, I do give up the goods but in a miserly, selfish way, where I put them out and then steal them back, like a pirate of my own good and bad fortune!
It occurred to me this morning, as the Muse cajoled my heart, how tiring this little game has become. "How dare you?!" I heard as I looked up and saw this tawny beauty boldly staring me down.
"Undoubtedly, you heard what I said, but it bears repeating: How dare you?! How dare you squander your gifts? How dare you withhold your love from the world? How dare you refuse the gifts, and worse yet, how dare you receive them and then stuff them in your pockets like so many worthless crumbs? Do you have any idea of how impossible it is that you are alive as you?? Would it matter if I told you that the probability of your existing is 1 in 10^2,685,000? You may be unfamiliar with scientific notation, so let me express to you that second number is a 10 followed by almost 2.7 million zeros! For scale, the number of atoms in the entire universe is only 10^80. Why is your existence so improbable? Well, it required the unbroken stretch of survival and reproduction of all your ancestors, reaching back 4 billion years to single-celled organisms. It required your parents meeting and reproducing to create your singular set of genes (the odds of that alone are 1 in 400 quadrillion).
"So let me be very very clear - YES, YOU ARE SPECIAL! You are virtually, impossibly unique, so let's stop asking these inane questions like 'why would anyone be interested in what I have to say', or 'why would anyone bother to read my words, or buy my book, or come to hear me speak, or appreciate my smile, or care about my joys and sorrows, or my triumphs and disappointments, why does it even matter what I leave behind?' Would you give it a rest, please? REALLY! HOW DARE YOU?!"
"Thank you" I said pretty meekly, then I said it louder, and then louder yet. "Thank you; I'll do better!"
I hope you'll join me in loving yourself and sharing yourself and giving the world your special gifts. I need what you have.
The invitation is to leave it alone. To let life be. To know yourself as being lived. That is what is happening here. Life is alive as you, through your breath, through your being. Don't look for it elsewhere. It does you and undoes you, over and over again. You are not the doer. Stop claiming that you are, and your relentless despair of knowing you are not, will dissolve. The belief in the doer, in the future, in something rich and magical beyond this place, is what deadens you, and crushes your heart. The belief in something greater than this has held you captive, left you for dead. And yet you fear death. The only death you will ever know is this lifeless longing. Question these beliefs, awaken from them, and live it out loud. Then you will know yourself as boundless life, as freedom, and your body will age and die fully alive, without regret, endlessly beautiful.
Analisa Domenica is a naturalist minister and mentor, in private practice as a Doula for living and dying. She offers private mentoring sessions, end-of-life preparation & transition support, bereavement, home death, funeral, and natural burial guidance, and laying-on-of-hands for comfort care and pain release. Analisa joyfully celebrates weddings and memorials, according to your faith or secular tradition. She is available to private clients, small groups, and for public education. Find out more about her by clicking here.
'Li' lives and works in Mill Spring, NC, a stone or two's throw from Asheville, NC and Greenville/Spartanburg, SC. She also works globally via phone and zoom. You may reach her by phone at 828.429.0096 or write to her by clicking here.