Our darkest moments can be our greatest teachers.
For a year now I’ve been paying cautious attention to the events of my waking life and observing the stories I tell myself as though I were recounting a dream. This dreamwork on the human waking dream has given me some powerful insights into the messages embedded in waking reality.
But, as often happens, I have fallen off the wagon on many of my practices, and this one was no exception as of late.
After a few months of navigating muddy territory in the marshlands of my inner psyche, I was blessed with a brutal awakening last week when I was hit my a pickup truck while crossing the street, walking home from work.
Amazingly, not only did I survive the impact, but I escaped with no broken bones, no concussion, not even a sprain. I was off the hook with surface damage in the form of scrapes and bruises, but was shaken up on many other levels of the more subtle parts of human anatomy – my emotional and etheric bodies no doubt were the most impacted.
The events that transpired caused me to reflect greatly on my plight. This truck not only hit me when I had right of way, but cut its turn much too tightly and found itself in the lane of oncoming traffic when it hit me. It had no business being there at all. It was certainly somehow a part of divine order that I would be hit.
But it was also meant not to hurt me, rather to shake me up, ground me into my internal reality, and encourage a very firm wakeup call to some of the automatic behaviours I have been engaging in over the past months.
I was forced to rest after the accident, exhausted and emotionally depleted. I had very little energy or motivation to pursue activities that would normally bring me joy. I’ve ben shutting myself in, and instead of pursuing all the things that allow me to escape my inner turmoil, have been sitting squarely with all of my inner demons as they emerge.
This dark and murky space I’ve been in for the past few months is clearing. As I confront the muddy reality of these inner swamps, I realize that the only thing keeping me from passing through is my own fears of treading unknown and swampy waters to get to the other side of this passage.
Metaphorically speaking, I cannot see the other side, but knowing that I am facing my depths, I know that if I cross in this dark space I can emerge into the light that I am seeking. The wakeup call is a reminder that the longer I stay in this swampy land waiting to take the first step, the more this mud can settle around my feet, and each step will of course rustle long-standing sediment, disturb creatures who have been lurking in these depths for a long time, and produces sights and smells the likes of which I had forgotten my inner being was capable of holding.
But, moving forward one step at a time, accepting the cold, dark and damp reality of swampiness, I move back towards the light, remembering that its warmth will be a sweet reward for this endeavour.
As I cross, in the dark, the light within will guide my path. The light without which there is no path.