Do you feel lost? Sometimes the world can have so much influence and bearing on your life, it makes it difficult to know what is true for you. It is easy to be influenced by others, by stressful situations, and especially by what is expected of you. It can leave you feeling off track or confused. It can leave you feeling directionless.
Sometimes, with extended periods of being disconnected to yourself, it is difficult to know who you are. You might not know your passion or purpose in life. You might experience anxiety and/or depression.
In a poem called Lost by David Wagoner, he suggests when you are lost in the forest, stand still. The forest knows where you are, he says. You must let it find you. You must stop, listen, and breathe.
In a way, he’s right. When you don’t know where you are or where you are going or even how you got to this moment now, stand still. Come back again and again to this moment now and listen.
Returning to the present moment is a form of spiritual union. Stopping for a moment to hear your inner voice is a sacred union with yourself. Although we might have ideas or judgments about what it means to be spiritual, especially if we confuse it with religion, spirituality can be the simple act of returning to yourself. It’s a spiritual union of you and the breath, you and the pulsing universe around you, you and a deeper part of you who knows.
I remember when I was living in New York, working for the automotive industry. It was 1999 and I was depressed and lost. Today, as a writer, psychotherapist, and instructor of meditation, it is clear to see that I was about as far away as I could be from a true self. But the problem was then I had no idea who that true self was. I had no idea what I was passionate about or that I even had a true self to discover.
But, something changed when I stopped listening to everything around me and started listening to the rhythm inside, to the silent but beating forest within. Although it was challenging and I forgot again and again, I eventually found my way. After many detours and dead-ends, after many heartaches and headaches, I slowly became who I am today. Listening to myself, to the inner cry of passion was the spiritual union I needed to get me on my unique path.
Sometimes, being so disconnected to yourself makes re-learning how to trust the inner rhythm difficult. Everything will pull you away. All the outer voices – your kids, your spouse, your boss – will pin you down with opposing forces. For this reason, having someone to hold the larger vision of your life can keep you on track, even if you stray from time to time. Having someone to help build that trust inside can help transform feeling lost into fearlessness, feeling confused into knowing your path, and feeling disconnected to determined.
When you reconnect with what is naturally arising in you, you can find your own answers. By exploring the life that is already inside you – the dreams, aspirations, fears, images, feelings, emotions – restore your connection with yourself. And with that kind of spiritual union, your next steps become clear.
You might not always get the whole picture right way, but the forest knows where you are. Stop, listen, and breathe.
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