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Day 332 - The Gift of Light

It will come as no surprise that I wandered in the dark for a long time. Most of my life was lived in the wee hours of mornings that had no distinct separation from the night before. My late teens and early twenties were just one long continuous night because the days were interminable. The days were where I struggled and toiled and where the light shed truth all over my existence.

So I avoided the light. I wanted only for there to be enough darkness to cover up all my issues. All of my pain. All of my less than stellar behavior. And the night was the perfect place to hide it. I surrounded myself with other night dwellers and together we made our lives worse, one black evening after another.

Getting sober was a piercing entry of light. In one day filled moment, as I sat in the back of a car, a profound and life altering lightness came over me, that for some reason I followed it even though I had no idea at the time what was even happening. I just sat there in broad daylight still drunk from the night before, and allowed this thought that surely did not come from my befuddled head, to crack me open. Looking back now at this moment, I can see where I bled the light all over the car that day. I can see that I just sat there and with one divine thought, changed everything immediately.

I have been seeking light ever since.

And I have found it. And I think, I have come to own it. This light no longer possess me, so much as I have become it. Day by day, night by night. I no longer dwell in the shadowy outskirts of living. I walk bare into the sunlight of spirit...every damn day. Somedays the light feels like a warm bath. Other days it feels a bit blinding to me. Regardless, I know where my life is lived, right there in the middle of high noon light.

This light has permeated everything I know to be true. All that I do, all that I am. At first, it cleaved me open. Painful and excruciatingly open. It felt like my guts and heart were just spilling out everywhere. But after a little time, the gushy insides of myself came back to where they belonged and I was able to move forward with a more permeable barrier to keep the insides inside while still allowing light to find a home in my chest.

In my morning meditation every day, I ask for the power to give the light I have to others. That I may bring some comfort and peace to those who suffer on the path. That I be able to hold my own light up so that others can see and be willing to share my light when their own dims.

“When we share our light with others, we do not diminish our own light. Rather, we increase the amount of light available to all.”

Master Sheng-Yen

This quote encompasses recovery for me. This is what we are all doing everyday, all day. Sharing the light we have been given so that there is enough light for all. I needn’t be concerned that my sharing of light will leave me in the dark because I have source light which can never be dimmed or diminished.

I am so grateful for that moment in the back of Roseanne’s car. I am so very humbled by the moment where everything changed and I stopped searching in the dark for what can only be found in the light. I am grateful for my willingness to continue to seek and share the light. I am grateful to be a light bearer today. No longer wandering the dimly lit streets in search of something that has always and forever resided inside.

I was shattered that day with the truth of my existence. And hope that I can forever allow the light to flow through to illuminate the path ahead for myself and those I meet upon life’s path. The gift of light immensely and forever altered my course. I pray every day that I am able to share it, reflect it and shine as only one who lived in darkness for too long can. Sometimes you have to accept the lessons darkness brings before you can ever truly appreciate what you gain by seeing the light.

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