Poofy and fragrant.
I can be joyful while there’s suffering in the world.
Some would have me believe that no one should be happy until everyone is happy, but Buddha was right. Suffering is the basic condition of humanity.
It’s my obligation to find joy exactly *because* there is suffering.
On this day, my joy was a shiny ring of my own making and the first cutting of eucalyptus.
For most of my life, I snubbed all things spiritual. “No chanting in my yoga classes, please, I’m here for the pushups” kind of deal.
The idea of God made me squirm. Oneness and faith were for delusional hippies; I was after progress and a raise.
I hurt all the time with depression and anxiety, but I was achieving all the “right” things and so I told myself that my pain was wrong.
Pain is never wrong—only the stories we tell ourselves about it. In fearing and dismissing my hurt, I fed it. When I decided to honestly confront my nature and my wounds, I found something bigger and truer than my idea of “me.”
My faith doesn’t come from being told what to believe. It comes from swimming all the way to the bottom of my hurt, opening my eyes, and looking straight at letting go.
If you are eager to dismiss your pain, reconsider. Your ideas about its sources and meanings might not be right, but the pain itself is never wrong.
To heal, I had to let go of what felt like everything, most especially my precious ideas and pride. Faith rushed up to fill the space, and I’m not looking back.