First, if you’re in a hurry or short on time, don’t start this letter. It’s long. I got started and the conversation I was having with myself expanded. It needed to as I was looking for answers. There, you’re on notice. So….
Are you able to stand off and observe yourself? Become the Watcher, the Observer of your thought and actions in a detached way? It is very possible to be this although I’m realising, and assuming it is an ability we all have, very few ever make use of it.
Be the silent watcher of your thoughts and behaviour. You are beneath the thinker. You are the stillness beneath the mental noise. You are the love and joy beneath the pain.Elkhart Tolle
It’s something I find myself doing without thinking about it.
So today I was walking on the beach in the rain and watching the waves. I was reflecting on my recent feelings and the fact that I was not finding peace in my spirit. And there I was, one of two people out there in the weather, taking stock of my mental and emotional state and realising it is at the moment somewhat fragile. I think an early warning sign comes when I start to question myself and my actions, normal everyday actions such as parking the car. Have I left enough space for the other drivers, am I close enough to the curb, is this a safe place to park, and as I walk away the questions will haunt me? But you get the picture?
As I stood watching the waves and the gulls began to land, having got use to my presence, I became the Watcher, seeking to understand the journey that has brought me to this point. I’ve been here before so it’s not totally unfamiliar, however, this time I have determined to make a positive step up from it. Step by step I believe we heal ourselves and there are occasions when just one step is an immense achievement, would you not agree?
Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go they merely determine where you start.Nido Qubein
A good friend recently said to me that I try to save the world. That I’m driven to help people with their challenges and feel a need to bring balance and peace into the lives of others and perhaps my friend was right. Often I find I cannot be an observer in a situation but will get involve in an attempt to better things, rightly or wrongly. I find it a challenge to watch people struggle be it with a simple task or the experiences of life to this point. Couple that with a strong knowledge that everyone has potential, many still needing to understand this and realise it, I can be a man on a mission.
But to be this and fulfill these drives I need stability and a place I can go to be safe at times. A place where there is space, space to balance emotions, spirit and process what is going on. Of late, as you know, I have not had that place, having been without a home for some five months now and sharing other peoples homes and spaces thanks to their good grace. Whilst these are all good people their spaces do not have that particular, unique, peace that we create in our own places. Can you understand that?
Every home has a spirit, if you like, a vibe, energy that is created by the people who dwell there, the things that are done there, the objects brought in, and things as insignificant as the books that populate the shelves, the music that is played, the programmes watched. The list goes on.. But everything in that home contributes to the energy. So much so that some practice a science around it call Feng Shui. So I am responsible for the feeling of my home and have, in the past, strived to create a very particular type of peace. I’m not there yet.
Our surroundings shape our consciousness, it impacts how we think and feel.Annette Kurtz
Now can you understand why being continually away from this may impact on my mental and spiritual wellbeing? Some say we should carry our peace with us wherever we go and I would agree, but I need to recharge that peace. Particularly after a time of being continually amongst others for months in what are unusual and unprecedented times.
As I observe myself I am beginning to realise that my mental state has begun to become ragged. I don’t know if that’s a correct word to use but it describes what I see. Like a favourite coat worn too often and fraying around the edges, the shape beginning to be lost. As such the weather can get in. That sort of describes what is happening in my thoughts. Things that would, at one time, have been kept out are now finding ways in. And in seeing this, albeit in my very simplistic way, I can understand how others become troubled and afflicted with mental uncertainties.
The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
The answer seems to be for me to take time to allow my mind to mend itself, to do a stock take, to rest and give up struggling both for me and more so for others. We all need that space, that peace, to retain our personal well-being I am now understanding. I know, as said, we should carry our peace with us where ever we go but that peace needs to be fuelled and is maintained by drawing on a force greater than us, a force found most strongly in silence and stillness.
I’m sure I’ve known this forever, but I forgot. I’m sure we all know but we all forget, are easily distracted, find importance in things of little consequence. So our thoughts and our minds spin off in myriad directions and our mental health is strained and occasionally broken.
Pogue, may I encourage you to create a place of peace and go frequently to it, and you, you encourage others to do the same. It’s a health thing.
Yours, reading Feng Shui,