I saw myself on a white horse, in full battle armor, lance in hand, walking on a long dusty road, presumably between battles. We were both tired. It seemed to be our lot in life - going from one battle to the next. We didn't know anything else. We didn't question it. And then, without warning, without any thought or analysis, we stopped. I dropped my lance, turned my horse around, and headed home. I was done.
Many of you who have worked with me have experienced images or visions that emerged spontaneously, as symbolic out-picturings of the energy that's being released. Several years ago, during one of my own releasing sessions, I had this one and haven't been the same since.
Before I met this warrior within, met him where he lived, as energy stored in the bodymind, I couldn't have known how much I was seeing and operating in the world through his eyes. Chronic tension, scanning my outer life for potential problems, and bracing against my own feelings were so familiar, such an integral part of my inner experience, that I didn't realize how much he was running things and at what cost, until I felt the difference.
Resistance is a tricky thing. Whether we're resisting our own internal experience, our own feelings, or something or someone outside of us, resistance is so second nature that it's mostly unconscious. We believe on some level that our bracing warrior stance is protecting us from feelings we don't want to feel, experiences we don't want to have, and truths we don't want to face. It helps us maintain an illusion of strength and of feeling safe and in control and separate. It can masquerade as "just the way I am" or as self-righteous, defense-worthy spiritual truths.
Our current political climate, to me, is a powerful example. The popular slogan "Resist," which I assume is in response to our current political leadership, is not one that I'll ever get on board with and here's why: resistance to the other, any other, only makes things worse. It creates tension in your own bodymind, making you less effective and less open to creative solutions and possibilities. It also gives the "other" more to push against, thereby amplifying your respective you're-the-enemy-and-I-must-fight-you positions. Whether we're talking about politics or your relationship with yourself and your own feelings, resistance just creates more resistance. Pushing-against just creates more push-back.
Does this mean you shouldn't have or feel your feelings? No. Feel your feelings. Acknowledge and welcome your feelings. Allow them to flow through your body. And when you learn how to acknowledge and welcome the resistance to your feelings that's also inevitably present, your feelings will release, along with the resistance.
Does this also mean you shouldn't take action? Does this mean you'll be complacent? Of course not. Releasing resistance doesn't make you passive or complacent. Write letters to your representatives, sign petitions, vote, and take any other action that you feel led to take. But if you can, whenever you can, release the resistance first.
Take it from an old warrior who has seen way too many battles. Fighting doesn't change a fucking thing. It doesn't change the other. It only makes you tired. The only fight worth fighting, the only battle you can ultimately win, is the one inside yourself - the one between you and your feelings, you and your beliefs about who you are, who the other is, and the way it should be. And one day, if you're really lucky, you'll get tired enough to stop, see the feelings and beliefs - the fight, for what it is, and you'll take a breath, turn your horse, and head toward home.
From one tired warrior to another with love,
“I will never attend an anti-war rally; if you have a peace rally, invite me.” Mother Theresa
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