Lessons We Didn't Want to Learn from Teachers We Didn't Want to Know...
Ouchie. This is not going to be an easy topic. Really the list is endless. Truly endless. My whole life has been a series of lessons that I didn’t want to learn mostly proctored by people that I did not want to learn things from...
Yet here I am. Still here on this globe spinning in space learning shit. Well on good days. On the bad days I am just complaining.
Ancient wisdom informs me that when the student is ready, the teacher appears. And I have to say that I don’t like this. I do not like knowing that the universe is just waiting for me to fuck something up so that some divinely guided soul can come my way to give me my comeuppance. But that my friends is just how life is.
I did not want to learn about heartbreak...truly. I have not wanted to love someone with all that I am only to be pried apart from that person and have to walk through the aftermath. No, I did not want to learn about any of that.
I did not want to learn about divorce...I really liked being on the professional side of that with only theoretical and legal knowledge of the process.
I did not want to learn about recovery...I really did not want to hit a bottom and have to begin a spiritual path.
I did not want to learn about sacrifice but I became a mother anyway...with almost no knowledge or understanding of what would be asked of me.
I have not ever wanted to learn about letting go...I seemed to be born a hangeron’er and that was just fine with me.
I have not wanted to learn to show up everyday and just do the work in front of me. Somehow in my younger years, I thought it would be more glamorous and I would be more exotic in my execution of the daily grind.
However this has all unfolded, I can say that I was not excited about any of the above lessons or the related teachers. In fact, I actively avoided learning many of the above lessons which just caused the universe to keep sending me more teachers that I didn’t like or want to give me the lesson again...and again.
Am I particularly hard headed or am I just a pretty mundane human being that is just living life? I really have no idea. Observing those around me, I am given lessons which are not as easy or simple as some I see but in many ways so much better than some others' lessons and teachers.
After some reflection, I can see that most of my suffering comes from my resistance to the lesson and/or teacher. I want it to be different, easier, less demanding, given by someone I like more or less, shorter in duration, longer in duration, easier to see, easier to know, easier to walk through.
I resist the lesson and the teacher and just make harder terms for myself and some of you in proximity to me (sorry about the collateral damage). I am really trying to not be an asshole and to take what is given to me and be grateful. Some days this is easy, some days this seems impossible.
I read a book recently that postured that we can just remain open, it is all this closing down to what is occurring in our lives that causes us the most suffering. It is the closing and the re-opening that makes life so hard. Remaining open is really the easier and preferred method of living...To this I say bullshit! If it were easier to remain open all the time, we would all be doing that! We would not be running around shutting ourselves and others down in an effort to provide ourselves some feeling of safety, security and protection from life. We would not compulsively gamble, drink, shop, eat, diet, exercise, drug, or otherwise check out if staying open all the time was really a viable option.
However, I have begun seeing everything and everyone as a teacher (many of you I am delighted to learn from, others of you, not so much - you know who you are). This has caused me to really reflect on this whole staying open thing. I can now not un-see it. I am constantly and continually aware of the hundreds of times in a day where I am given the opportunity to open and close. I can’t always stop the closing down but I am aware of when I am doing it...painfully aware.
Some days it is just too excruciating to remain open. Some days the teachers in my life are too demanding and mean and I just can’t walk into the blades. I won't. Regardless, I can’t stop noticing that I am forever making the same decision over and over and over again...to open, to close - to resist the desire to close myself off to life, you, more teachers, the moment. What I have learned is that I am really just a frightened child who believes that the shutting down will provide me some relief. I am coming to the conclusion that the shutting down just gives me more work to do and makes harder terms of my life.
I am coming to a place where I can see the universe, creative intelligence, God or whatever you want to call it, showing me on a minute to minute basis that I have a choice. All the time, the choice is mine. To accept the lesson/the teacher and stay open or shut down. The choice has always been and will always be mine. The novel idea is that staying open all the time is an option. Before this moment right now, I did not really believe that was possible. I felt on a granular level that my whole life’s purpose was to shut down the hard, the painful, the irritating, the anger producing. I thought that was my life’s work: shut down and off when unpleasant, hard, challenging or awful circumstances came my way. Wrong again it seems.
So my latest teacher, Mr. Michael Singer, has shown me that my most fundamental lesson is in being able to decide if I can remain open all the time and thereby free up a great deal of the energy I am wasting and put that previously wasted energy to a higher purpose. Initially I thought “Hell yeah! This is going to awesome!” But like every one of the lessons and their accompanying teachers listed above - Mr. Singer’s lesson falls into the deeply worn grove of me feeling like it is just another lesson that I didn’t want to learn from a teacher that I didn’t want to learn it from...the difference today is that I am just going to open to that thought and move on with my day.