It Has My Name On It, See?

I have a day job, and lately it has been kicking my ass.

I’m not complaining – I feel very blessed to not only be employed in this economy, but to be working for a good company with great people with whom I actually enjoy spending my days. I am extremely fortunate and I don’t take it for granted. But this last couple weeks, my plate has been piled high with tasks and projects that are making my  head spin.

I had an e-mail exchange with my friend Steve today. I had made a comment about being overwhelmed with work, and he reached out to me to ask if I wanted support. Steve is a beautiful man who has touched my life deeply, and when a day came last year when I thought I was saying “goodbye” to him, I wrote the poem “two crows fly away” that is posted on the Poetry page of this blog. Happily, it was not “goodbye”, only “see you later”. I am grateful for his presence, for his sage counsel, for his loving spirit.

I told Steve that I was okay, and pointed out that I get overwhelmed when I’m getting grandiose and think that I “should” know everything and I “should” be able to handle anything at the very moment it is given to me. It was a great opportunity to remind myself that I don’t know everything, and I don’t have to handle everything at once.

“The overwhelm is just an indicator that I’m trying to take control of everything,” I wrote in reply, “and I need to do a bit of surrender – a bit of letting go.”

Steve’s response was open and, as usual, questioning the various sides of my statement – the light and the dark, you could say. “Letting go,” he wrote, “a difficult thing to do easily, or an easy thing to do with difficulty? Hmmm?”

And as usual, Steve’s comment made me think. One of the things I love about him is that he usually says stuff that makes me pause and consider things in different ways.

“I think it’s the latter” I responded. “An easy thing to do, but made difficult by me.” And it’s true – “letting go” is a fairly easy thing in itself; I’m the one who makes it difficult. 

I was reminded of the story of the man carrying a giant rock on his back, a huge rock that weighs so much that it has made the man bent and crooked from years of hauling it around. The man is just worn down from years carrying the weight of this rock, and he carries it with him everywhere he goes. And one day another man, who has seen him burdened with this massive weight for a long time, approaches the struggling man and says, “Friend, you don’t need to be carrying that rock around – look what it’s doing to you! It’s destroying your body, and wasting your life – think of all the effort you have to put in to lugging it around everywhere! Why don’t you just put it down?” And the man replies, somewhat annoyed, “Because it’s MY rock!”

I’m continually amazed at how long I will hold on to something that doesn’t serve me. Inner peace is available to me any time I should seek it, but it is conditioned upon my willingness to surrender whatever I’m holding on to.


An Offering at the Temple of Flux

A canyon is where I received it, and a canyon is where I let it go.

I make the pilgrimage to the Temple with my offering in my bag. My hope is to achieve a symbolic release, to let go of the past, as that is basis of the message I have been receiving for the better part of the past year: let go. Everyone has advice for me on how to deal with divorce. Many have walked that path before me, and I find myself seeing them in a new light. I am grateful for their counsel, even if some of it (“Man, the best way to get over one woman is to get under another one”) is not exactly pearly wisdom. I know they mean well.

The sun is low in the afternoon sky as I make my way across the desert floor to the wooden structure known as the Temple of Flux. Upon seeing it for the first time, I am reminded of canyons: it rises from the playa in a whitewashed swirl of plywood, rounded and uneven, natural lines and rustic shapes that do, actually, look like canyon walls.

The name alone speaks to me, for I am, indeed, a man in flux. The canyon-like appearance, though – that is just too much to be coincidence. A canyon is where I received it. This does not feel like random chance. It seems to be a message to me. A message that came down from the eye of the Universe in a flash of light, straight to planet Earth, hurtling towards the western portion of the North American continent and the rugged Nevada desert to come to a silent, peaceful impact in the middle of a prehistoric lake bed, waiting for my dusty boots to carry me down the temporary street to the space where this man-made canyon sits awaiting my arrival. I am one of thousands of others here for similar purpose, and yet this Temple holds a message just for me. A message of light from Beyond that tells me, “This is the place. This is the place where you can go through.” Read On