Most of our lives we are taught about a version of reality. We are taught about life and the world according to certain theories, according to established norms, according to cultural values, according to our parents’ view of the world, according to our teachers’ knowledge, according to our peers’ understanding – and generally speaking, we are happy to accept that this is how it is and that’s that. What we don’t seem to notice, as we seemingly expand our understanding and knowledge of the world, is that we’re simultaneously limiting what we see, limiting what we consider to be possible and so limiting what we’ll allow ourselves to explore. Everything that does not neatly ‘fit’ the paradigm of ‘how the world/life works’ according to our understanding (the understanding that we ourselves built over time within ourselves) – simply does not compute, and so is labelled as impossible and banished to the realm of fantasy and fiction.
From time to time we’ll come across these anomalies, these stories and experiences from people that do not fit in our paradigm of the world, stories that ‘can’t be true’. And when it is only a few anomalies, then we consider that it’s quite likely the stories are just made up or that there are alternative explanations (we just don’t know what they are yet). The paradigm, however, how we understand this world to be and to function, remains intact. We are quite unwilling, really, to question our worldview, because to question it means, to question everything, to question the very foundation of what we consider to be real and true. To allow cracks in that foundation, would place us on shaky grounds inside ourselves, like we cannot trust what we’ve always believed to be FACT, SOLID, CERTAIN. We’d tumble into an overwhelming sense of insecurity, as though the world itself, the ground we stand on, suddenly cannot be trusted. We forget that it’s not the world itself that is changing, under question or unstable – it is merely our own view of it, our own understanding of it that is being challenged.
So, a few anomalies won’t do it – we’d call it lies or simply ‘odd’ and brush it aside with an attitude of if I just don’t look at it, it won’t bother me. It’s when we keep being presented, over and over again, with anomalies, with stories that don’t fit, with experiences that challenge and defy the limits we’ve declared around ‘what is possible’ and ‘what is not’ – that an opening exists to actually start asking questions, to actually allow ourselves to drop – even if just for a moment, for a split second – our own beliefs, our own convictions, our own so-called ‘certainty’ – and consider that perhaps… maybe… just maybe… there are aspects of this reality, of this world, of life that we haven’t yet understood, that there might be more at play than we have considered possible, that there may be more that is possible, than we had previously believed.
At first such moments are scary, because we just don’t know what would happen if we continue that line of questioning, we’re presented with the unknown, with the uncertain, with the untested – we don’t know what we’ll find out and if we’re going to “like” the answers to these questions we haven’t asked before. Fuck, it’s scary. It’s like being a baby all over again – having to figure out this life and this world all over again – NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!
Except… it’s not, lol.
Because not EVERYTHIGN IS UNDER QUESTION and not EVERYHTING IS ABOUT TO CHANGE – that’s more our fear and our mind talking (you know, that part of us that likes to dramatize everything, lol) – it’s more that there is space for growth, space for maturing, space for upgrading, space for specifying our understanding about different parts of life and of the world, and so ourselves and our role within it.
As we give ourselves permission to see the world with new eyes, the world itself doesn’t change. And what we learn about the world is not actually ‘new’ – it’s what has always been here, it’s only news to us. The only difference is, we’re now willing to see it.
We seem to be going through a time where a whole lot is happening, is being said, is being shared, is being shown, that challenges our view of this world, of life, of reality, of humanity, of what is certain, and what is not, and ultimately, of ourselves. And that’s not easy, it IS challenging, no matter how open-minded we consider ourselves to be, no matter how ‘enlightened’ we think we are, no matter ‘how far’ we feel we’ve already come – there’s more to be seen, to be considered, to be understood.
At times we’ve wished and will again wish that we hadn’t been exposed to what we’ve seen, that we hadn’t become aware, that we could go back to being oblivious, to the time when it was still possible to sweep things under rugs and pretend like we’ve got everything figured out, to the time we weren’t painfully aware that we too are called upon to take our place in this reality, or in a moment make a stand – even if we don’t yet see what that means exactly.
And at times we’ll drift too far in our uncertainty, giving in to the fear that ‘if this that I had never conceived to be possible, is possible, then what else is possible?’ ‘What about all those whispers and voices that have come up within me that I had shrugged off as irrational fears, are they actually real too?’ We may drift and teeter on the edge of paranoia in an attempt to protect ourselves, because all of a sudden, it feels like no one can be trusted. And in a way, this is so. We do not have access to all of each other, there is much of who we are that is hidden, that takes place in the secrets of our minds, and we are not privy to each others’ secrets. We can only work with what is shown, what is said, what is done, what is visible – and at times, that is inconsistent and contradictory.
It helps to remember that we too are in the same position. We do not even understand all of who we are. There are moments where we feel things and we don’t know where they come from. There are moments where we say and do things that we regret in the next. There are moments where we long for a part of ourselves that we seem to have misplaced or lost touch with, how do we even do that?
Considering how little we understand of ourselves, and considering how everyone is in the same position, it’s only natural that we cannot fully trust one another implicitly. Such trust between individuals can only grow as we start to understand and unravel the enigma we are unto ourselves, as we choose to see all of who we are, layer by layer in brutal self-honesty, as we unlock suppressed expressions, as we bring our demons home to be forgiven, understood and learnt from and as we realize it’s not enough to get to know ourselves, we have to actually create ourselves to be beings of integrity that can be trusted to do what is best for self and others equally.
In the meantime, unfortunately, there is no purity, there is no clarity, there is no perfection, there is no innocence that we can trust absolutely. There is only our heart and our courage to walk the path of finding out what it means to create and start living those expressions as ourselves in spite of that lack.
But I digress… let’s get back on topic.
As cracks start to form in what used to be our ‘solid’ world view/understanding of reality – we have the opportunity to learn. Some of the things we learn about will not be pleasant, some things will be downright disturbing, twisted and heart-wrenching. But we’ll also learn other things, about ourselves, about this reality, about what is possible, that shows the absolute potential for change and transformation that is available in every moment. As we renounce the tunnel as the limits of reality we had decreed through our minds, we realize there’s so many questions we stopped ourselves from asking, and so many questions that still burn within us, demanding a response.
As we pull the wool from our eyes we start to see what’s been created, accepted and allowed up until now – and much of it is not pretty – but we’ll also start to see, learn and be exposed to the nature of this reality and the extent that we create it in every single moment. We’ll start to see that ‘being the change you want to see in this world’ is not just a nice sentiment, but words to live by. We’ll star to see that we have in fact so much more ability than we give ourselves credit for and that there is so much more opportunity for healing and change than we had ever considered possible.
It will be tempting to want to choose to live in ‘one of these two worlds’ – the world of pain and consequence where you can further drown in your own misery or rage at the world – OR – the world of potential and possibility where nothing is too wild of a dream and a life of harmony and fulfillment for all seems right here within reach, where we can ignore everything else and try to just ‘love our way to life’. Unfortunately, they are not two worlds – and no, we do not get to choose – they are one and we live in both at the same time.
We have to go THROUGH the consequence, we have to face the trauma of the past and take responsibility for our part in it, learn from it, heal from it and create ourselves anew before we can be fully trusted with life and all it has to offer. It’s a process, it’s a journey and not an easy one at that.
If you find yourself at the precipice of the world you used to know and feel shaky in asking questions, or if you’ve renounced your tunnel and feel lost in one or the other extreme of ‘who to be and what to do’ – please reach out for support. While you are alone inside yourself, this is not a journey to walk all by yourself. We all need support at one time or another, it’s okay – reach out, we’re here.