It is our suffering that makes us cause suffering in others. It is our pain that makes us hurt others. We all want the suffering to stop. Some of us think that the suffering will stop if we all obey Allah, some of us think the suffering will stop if everybody can say what he wants. But regulating our belief systems will not free us from suffering and fear. The only thing we can do is challenge our belief systems. I can’t stop others rejecting me and I can’t stop others rejecting others but perhaps I can grow unto a point where I accept myself wholly and completely.
Injustice is so incredibly hard to swallow. Reading Eric Garner’s last words make you realize that this was a desperate human being who reached his breaking point. He was tired of the harassment; he just wanted to be left alone. At the same time he couldn’t find the tolerance in his heart to cooperate. Humiliated one time too many, his need for dignity was stronger than his fear of a beating. He appealed to the humanity of the police officers, hoping that if he dropped his mask, they would drop theirs.
Pema Chödron is perhaps one of the most appreciated spiritual teachers in the world today. She is a very evolved human being. She is trained for many years by her teacher Chögyam Trungpa, the famous Tibetan master who brought us the Shambala Warrior teachings. So it is save to say that Pema Chödron is one of the most evolved warriors on the planet. And even this lady can disregard an appeal to her warrior persona, only minutes after having a profound experience of wanting to help others, mind you!
I want to give you two examples of remarkable thickness that happened to me this week. Not sure if there is any wisdom to be found but perhaps it is entertaining.
At the beginning of this week I broke the key of my chain lock. In Amsterdam you need such a lock to attach your bike to a fixed object, like a bridge or a streetlight. It was not the key itself that was broken but the top part so it was like I was holding a thick toothpick instead of a key.
I haven’t been writing in a while. It has to do with me trying to find a new tone or a new voice. I don’t know what that voice will be and I am not sure if I am ready to own that new voice. It all has to do with the new face that this website will receive, hopefully quite soon. The website will receive a new look and feel and will be more professional. The idea is that Basic Goodness will grow up.
So right now I am in transition. This is a difficult phase, I feel. I don’t know how it is for you but for it is a phase where you don’t identify with the old anymore but the new hasn’t arrived yet. What is inside the cocoon? Is it a caterpillar? I don’t think so. And it is not a butterfly either. I wonder if there is a word for it.
In the article I found an interesting piece of information regarding the changing perception of what PTSD is. It says: “For decades the model for understanding PTSD has been “fear conditioning”: quite literally the lasting psychological ramifications of mortal terror. But a term now gaining wider acceptance is “moral injury.” Writing something thoughtful about that would probably reach more people and possibly reach psychologically or spiritually wounded people who could really use some healing. I know I can do it. Do I take up that responsibility? Is it wrong if I write about something more mundane? Both topics are on my mind right now, they are both just as real. And then I am not mentioning the fact that I also found out that my posts about the gym and my body transformation get a lot of traffic.
For some reason I felt I had a good chance. She looked like a girl that is so pretty that she doesn’t care that much about looks anymore. I felt I only had to prove to be able to overcome the obstacles. I felt as if she was waiting. She didn’t make it hard on me. I only had to figure out how to get to her. But I did not pass the test.
Since we haven’t spoken a word my image of her is still untainted. By now she has grown in my mind into this warm, loving, sexy, smart and sensual woman who is a wise and funny conversation partner, a great lover and cooks as good as she dances. Now that I think of it: she probably would be a great mother for our children too.
I am back. I decided to be back. The last couple of weeks I was avoiding writing somewhat. I felt bored with writing about myself, the struggles and the little insights that may or not come. I had to deal with a major disappointment and as we all know entering an introspective process when feeling all screwed up and betrayed are very favorable conditions for insights to be dug up. This time I dealt with it old-school: I told nobody and just hid inside my bedroom for a day, watching Breaking Bad as therapy.
I must admit: it was insightful.
Last Tuesday I was about to spend an enormous amount of money on a coaching program that promises Visionary Business Owners That Have Dreams Of Making A Difference to break through the obstacles that limit them reaching a bigger audience, finding the right clients and create the cash flow that gives space to breathe or – in their words – is in alignment with their purpose (a 6 figure income is suggested). I heard great things about the program from trustworthy people who had a first hand experience. The problem was that with every call I had with the male coach I was feeling annoyed, manipulated and pushed.
A couple of years ago I found out by accident that I might have something like ADD or ADHD. If I remember correctly the hyper activity doesn’t come out in a very physical way when you are smart but (my theory) creates a fast moving mind instead (which is called ‘creative’ or ‘original’). I still don’t know if I am ‘officially’ ADD and I thought I had good reasons not to find out. But on days like this I can see my behavior and restlessness very clearly and it frustrates me. And when I found out that these things were ‘symptoms’ of something like ADD I recalled going through this battle almost daily for so many years. I would spend hours and hours not doing my home work as child. This is the reason why I can juggle, balance a broom stick on my nose, do keepie uppies and let the ball drop dead in my neck: skills I developed while avoiding my home work.