Friday, February 19, 2010

An Inside Look at My Bliss

(Orange snack on apple green desk.)

Last Friday, I got a comment on this post that I starred in my inbox. I knew I wanted to respond but was not sure how. Then yesterday, I had this crappy thing happen and the way I handled it was so completely different from how I would have handled it a year ago that I knew then that I was ready to write about this comment from Bethany:

Love how you put into words what I'm only just starting to learn.

I've been reading fewer blogs lately, exercising in the evening. But the other night before bed I clicked on one of yours. I was so tired I couldn't read it through. But I woke up in the morning, asking you this in a dream:

"What does it feel like inside your bliss?"

The way I define Bliss on this blog, as I've said so many times, is the way Joseph Campbell meant it. I think of my bliss, your bliss, as that thing that you were born to pursue (and yes, it can change for some of us over our lifetimes; for others, it won't). Bliss is a concrete thing. It is your Path.

It is not an emotional state.

This is not the same as defining yourself by some external. No. It is not putting yourself in a box or limiting yourself. It is merely a path, that you are compelled to walk. The path and the walker are not one and the same.

Do not, as they say, mistake the map for the territory.

If you are not walking your path, you will have this gnawing feeling in your tummy. You probably know just what I mean. Or you will become angry. Look at our wider culture -- all these angry, walking dead. They have not acknowledged or refuse to acknowledge their paths and so they walk around stuffing themselves full of empty calories -- cars, bigger houses, whatever they can get their hands on -- because thet won't fulfill their purpose for whatever reason -- severe depression, being a common one.

Severe depression has long been my block to a happy and fulfilled life. I was refusing to live, and when I stopped dancing, it was my final and most deadly temper tantrum.

Nothing else could do what dancing did for me. I tried to replace it, but you can't replace your spark.

What does it feel like inside my bliss?

In the morning, it feels like I want to get up and go because I no longer lay there startled or even frustrated that I have awakened. So many mornings, I would wake up and feel disappointed that I had.

I appreciate this life now, there is no other way to put that.

During the day, I am on fire with this appreciation.

I am Exhilarated. I am Challenged. I am Radiant.

No matter what.

Our cat, sweet Rosie, passes away, but I know all is well.

Someone tries to steal some thunder from my work, but I know all is well.

When that crappy thing happened yesterday (and it has to do with ethics and a lack of them), when that happened, I wrote that person a polite email. A year ago, I would have ripped that person six new ones and I would have done so in a very public manner.

For the past 15 years, I have been surrounded by love and beauty but I was still refusing to dance, still refusing to walk my path, and so I was still confined to a Prison Cell of Anger and Self Hatred.

I have flown out of that cell door that was open all along, as Rumi puts it.

The door in the center of my chest has flown wide open and the most amazing, sparkling things are flying out. Things I did not know I had in me.

When I dance, this is when it's most obvious that I have changed myself. By walking on my path, by saying Yes to the life I am meant to live, I have changed on a molecular level. I am a different person. I am the person I was born to be and not the one that was twisted and distorted by circumstances.

When I dance, I fly. There are no words to describe what it feels like in the eye of this bliss storm.

I fly. I am free. I am out of my body and completely settled in my body at the same time. I am a localized expression of this Giant and Beautiful thing called life.

I am fury; I am rage; I am joy; I am rapture; I am ecstasy.

I am prayer.

I am.


Linnea said...

The post I hope to get up today is going to have some common themes, but it's approach will be totally different. Just wanted you to know so you didn't think I was snitching your ideas. The synchronicity of life sometimes blows my mind. (Of course, my post will show how much further you've progressed on the journey.)

I know all about that ripping six new ones. I'm still learning. Glad I have a wiser friend out there.

Lisa said...

Hi :)

Just taking a short break from my unplugging to check in with you. Lovely post. SO powerful.

It's great to see how far you've come. What an inspiration!

Happy Friday :)

Brooks Hall said...

This is great, Christine! Really good stuff... I identify with what you have shared. There could be a transition time between seeing it, and convincing yourself to 'go for it' with how you live your life. Like it might just be easier to stay in the old ways until you just can't live that way any more, and then choose Bliss...

Jeanne Klaver said...

This is the kind of stuff I'm constantly working on. It's so good to know I am not alone.

Susanne said...

Okay . . . I just read this and burst into tears. (Yes, I do know what it's about.) I discovered your blog about 18 months ago & you touched something deep & needful in me then, and almost every post is what I need to hear exactly when I need it. Your courage & honesty in sharing your path with us all is such a gift. Thanks you (and Marcy & the four-foots)! You really are making a difference.

Susanne said...

Jeepers, I'm sorry to keep yapping away here taking up room on your blog, but I wanted to add that it was originally your definition of Bliss -- what it is for you, and what it isn't -- that hit me so hard those months ago. It helped me make a profound shift in how I live my life because it's true, isn't it: bliss really is a daily moment-to-moment sequence of choices. I must say this a dozen times a day (a hundred dozen, some days!): "I choose, in this moment, to find the Bliss." And, wow, does it make a difference!

Bethany said...

This made me bawl, in a happy way, how you described it. I needed to know I think because something is waking up in me and I don't want to run from it.
Thank you for this look inside.
Beautiful. Love how you described it.
I want this too.
I know it's there.
I mean I FEEL it all of a sudden, this SHIFT.
I'm going to print this out.
Thank you.

Susan said...

The Awesomely, most amazingly and wonderful place to be is to simply be. What a perfect description of the peace and serinty that we see was always there simply and silently awaiting to be acknowledged. I love the way you have described bliss. Thank you.

Susan said...

After hitting "publish" I noticed the typos With a bit of a blush-on my phone tiny keyboard Nd readers missing in action!

Lisa said...

I just wanted to echo what Susanne said...I usually lurk here, but decided to comment on this one and let you know how lovely it was...I have found my bliss also in the last 2 years, and it is wonderful...

JOY said...

This is the most beautiful birdsong to me, your words. Not only do they nurture me but I want to absorb them and make them real for myself. This post is something I need to read every day. You inspire me. I danced in the kitchen this morning, not something I do often. But I hear you. And it felt good.

Christine Claire Reed said...

OH! How delightful to have people who de-lurked for this post! Thank you so much. :)