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Muddy Lotus

I can see it. The new blossom that exists in the mud that is struggling to push its way upward toward the sky, waiting, waiting, for the day when its tiny head cracks the surface of the water, released from the muddy hold and blossoms into an airy light. The days that come after, an unfurling of its full glory, alight on the surface of the water, with such presence and completeness that the muddy days before seem distant and far away.

And yet, the mud is always there, the fertile ground that gave the lotus life, without which there would never have been a blossom to behold. The mud the origin of all that comes next. The mud, while dirty and lacking the luster of the later journey, most essential in all that comes next. The mud being a foundational necessity for the blooms that spring forth in the airy light.

That is how I feel now. I am down there in the mud, and I have enough awareness to see that the light is coming but I am not there yet...I am still beneath the surface wanting so much for my muddy internment to be over, and to spring forth into the airy, sunshiny life that awaits. But I remain tethered to the muddy bed, being held in abeyance, choked back, withheld from all the blossoming I want to do. So much prettier to be a flower in bloom than a nascent bud mired in the muck...

But I can see that the time spent below the surface is just as important as the time spent above. In fact, I am beginning to realize that perhaps this muddy escapade is more important, and my struggle to leave the mire, a bit precocious and naive. Perhaps, I need to know what the lotus knows all too well. That if I rush any part of the process, I only hasten my ultimate end. The journey of my life is metered, I do not know how long in the mud and how long in the sunshine, but I do know that my demise occurs after I blossom if I am granted a full life cycle...

So why hurry toward that end? Why not instead learn to love the mud? Holding my breath under the surface, stretching my roots deeper into the watery earth. Finding my center, allowing it to sink deeply within my soul. Trusting that my time to blossom and spring forth will come, when it is time. My incessant worrying and need to hurry, only brings me closer to the end. I could, instead, learn to savor the process and not only wish for the beautiful parts...I could instead learn to love the mud because I can see and believe that I am a lotus from the beginning, not just the end. I am no less beautiful beneath the surface, in another form, than I am when I fully blossom in the light. The lotus is always the lotus, its muddy roots take away nothing. Perhaps in fact, the nutritious mud is the best part of the lotus journey, one that is missed because its dirty and underwhelming comparison to the lotus in full bloom.

Perhaps, just maybe, I can learn to enjoy my current mud soaked locale and stop demanding an instant flowering into the sunshine of the day. Perhaps, I can be content where I find myself in the process of it all, mud be damned. Because without the muddy, murky start, the bloom cannot ever exist...and I am not sure why I failed to notice that before. And I won’t let my arrogant belief that the only important time exists in the days yet to come, I will instead reflect back now and accept that there is a lot to be learned in the mired muck, perhaps even more than the time spent in flower. And the mud, just may have its own beauty I have overlooked, yet again.

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