Sunday, September 13, 2009

Love's Threshing Floor

The signs of fall are building.. green is shifting to the colors of warmth.. reminding us of the passing summer's heat as we ease into the beauty and quiet of fall.

Big change is in the air... on more levels than one.

My romantic heart hums with recognition of the alignment of life in larger and more intimate ways.

As I recognize these external seasonal changes I acknowledge my own internal rhythm shifting. As if in perfect alignment with the universe, I find myself separated from the man who has been my partner since March. We have had our cycles of learning and now find ourselves returning to our separate worlds.

One can never really know the rhythm of the universe.. or that of another heart. We assume changes will occur that do not and assume a stagnant immovable pattern will hold only to find it too has its own, unexpected fluctuation in due time.

Nothing in life is static.

The seasonal shifts always remind me of this. It is the ebb and flow in all things that keep our lives ever changing, fluctuating into and out of experiences, offering a chance to grow and expand. While we may retract temporarily in a fashion that soothes or feeds the soul... in due time we reach out and effort again at opening ourselves further to the powerful flow of life around us.

When it comes to love, whether it is toward a human partner or an animal friend.. challenges surface that require our attention. These moments of challenge can bring about a punctuated moment of change.

Do we react? Do we have the where with all to respond mindfully? Do we try to tuck life into some "safe" box and avoid risks? How long can we hold the balance of clear assessment and conscious response without our past hurts, our fears snapping us into reactionary mode? In those moments, if we are doing well, we measure and weigh how we feel about that experience, that individual or ourselves... and hopefully choose a path that helps to expand the opportunity for vulnerability and further growth.. and a deepening of love and understanding.

It is of course a worthwhile challenge, risking love. Like all the unknown aspects of this life experience it requires that we make a choice and often, do so blindfolded.. not knowing the outcome. "Leap and the net will appear", ancient Zen wisdom reminds us of the value of risk. When it comes to love, if we are to truly invest, risk is an inevitable part of that experience.

I am reminded of Kahlil Gibran's "The Prophet" when he spoke of love.

"When love beckons to you, follow him,
Though his ways are hard and steep.
And when his wings enfold you yield to him,
Though the sword hidden among his pinions may wound you.

...For even as love crowns you so shall he crucify you.
Even as he is for your growth so is he for your pruning.
Even as he ascends to your height and caresses your tenderest branches that quiver in the sun,
So shall he descend to your roots and shake them in their clinging to the earth.

Like sheaves of corn he gathers you unto himself.
He threshes you to make you naked.
He sifts you to free you from your husks.
He grinds you to whiteness.
He kneads you until you are pliant;
And then he assigns you to his sacred fire, that you may become sacred bread for God's sacred feast.

All these things shall love do unto you that you may know the secrets of your heart, and in that knowledge become a fragment of Life's heart.

But if in your fear you would seek only love's peace and love's pleasure,
Then it is better for you that you cover your nakedness and pass out of love's threshing-floor,
Into the seasonless world where you shall laugh, but not all of your laughter, and weep, but not all of your tears.

Love gives naught but itself and takes naught but from itself.
Love possesses not nor would it be possessed;
For love is sufficient unto love..."

I am filled with immense appreciation for the man who has been my chosen partner since March. And find in the memory of those shared experiences great growth and and expanded sense of self. He is a lovely soul, whose personal challenges suited mine in such a way that I can see myself more clearly now. For that I am thankful and optimistic that new realizations will follow because of the risk taken on both our parts.

It is a bit of a strange feeling to know that I am approaching the 1 yr mark from the time I purchased the RV intended for my year on the road. And I know there are those dear to me who see this summer as a waste of my precious time.. a distraction from my important trip. Knowing there were challenges intertwined with that lovely man does not make it easier for those who love me to feel supportive of my choices. If we think of Kahlil Gibran's words it is easier to consider the value of facing off with such powerful experiences where love is involved.

I have no regrets. My heart has been devoted to following my intuition since Attah's passing last year. I have done exactly that and find purpose in every step along the way. The fact that the picture of my journey continues to shift in its timing and its nature no longer disturbs me. I have given myself to the flow of the stream that knows more than I could know in its course. And, I recognize that my inner journey is the deeper part of my larger journey.. it informs me of the next bend in the river.

If you want to know.. ask me about the dream I had about the frog and the snake the night before it all ended.. that whispered to me the coming of a big shift.. snakes and frogs both speak of transformation.. the dream was so powerful it woke me at 3:30.. I was wide awake.. sat and contemplated the impact of the dream and drew the threads between the dream and my waking life.. and feel comforted by the alignment of the dream with my magical life.

Until next time.. take to heart Kahlil Gibran's words:
"And think not you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course"

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