Uh oh—I’ve caught myself red-handed in the act of doing it again. I succumbed to the avoidance of all things unpleasant by escaping into Netflix instead of doing something worthwhile with myself, like picking up a book or a pen, or helping a friend in need. Darn. Is that because there is so much unpleasantry swirling around these days that I’m desperate for an escape route to help block out the misery? Well, at least I haven’t sunk low enough to get caught up in watching a continuing plethora of depressing news. Thank goodness for that
A blog by Donna Guillemette, Learning Discernment – A Crucial Skill, inspired me to stop and look at my recent failure and listen to my inner guidance. It’s hard to listen to my gut with headphones blaring external noise in my ears. There is a Voice in my head that says, “This isn’t the best use of your time.” Right. I know that. But I ignore it and turn up the volume on the headphones. I guess I’ll just keep on avoiding until I can’t stand it any more, or until I can no longer abide the idea that I’m wasting precious time on something that serves only to help me stay asleep. But still—who can blame anybody these days for wanting to do whatever it takes to avoid the ugliness going on in the world?
How many escape routes exist for our avoidance pleasure? Hmm—let me count the ways. Movies, addictive TV series, reading, food, partying, smoking, thumb sucking/space staring (my personal favorites), hobbies of all sorts, alcohol, drugs, gardening, exercising—you name it. There really isn’t any activity, no matter how apparently healthy or unhealthy, that cannot be used as an escape mechanism. Trust me, I know. I’ve employed darned near all of them throughout my decades on the planet. Oh—except physical things that risk bodily harm, like scuba diving, mountain climbing, parachuting, and hang gliding. I never said anything about not being a coward.
To quote a friend, “Anything worth doing is worth overdoing”. But when the “doing” reaches a level of becoming harmful to body, mind or spirit, it is time to wake up and listen to the whispers. My spirit is crying out for liberation from headphones and asks instead that I listen to the oh-so-trusty and reliable Voice in my head that speaks Truth in my ears. The whispers invite me to turn off Netflix, put down the remote, turn on the computer, and start writing again. My faithful Voice never scolds, admonishes, judges or threatens. It lovingly suggests. How I respond is up to me.
Today I finally decided to listen. This is the first blog that I have written in nearly two months. Why? Because I was in pause mode, wondering what I could possibly have to say that is new, different, or better than what anyone else has already said, or who knows more, or is more experienced, wiser, or smarter than I am. With libraries filled with thousands of volumes on the same subject, why bother? What I have to say hasn’t already been said hundreds of times before?
Again, my true-blue Voice speaks up and suggests that there are others who feel the same way I do, and would be comforted by knowing that they are not alone. As I exchange my TV remote for my computer mouse and write my Truth, perhaps others may find their way past what they believe is true in the world, and into the awareness that the only Truth that exists lies within the sanctity of their own soul.
Running away into the fake shelter that hides behind a TV screen does not provide the peace, happiness, and joy that can only be found within the quiet comfort of the soul. That sense of connectedness with my Self comes only when I step out from behind the screen and acknowledge that I need something more. I need to find my soul, and do whatever it takes to get myself back to the Truth within. Sometimes “whatever it takes” can be the start of a long inner journey that may seem daunting; it takes great courage and determination to set foot upon the path of personal growth, but the end result is worth the trip because a contented soul is the ultimate reward.
The following quote from Facebook (apologies to the unknown author for lack of acknowledgement) says it all: “I am not a body, I am not this skin. I am the soul that lives within.”
The journey to the soul gives new meaning to the phrase, “Wake up and smell the roses.” As each new soul awakens, a new petal of the rose unfolds and the world becomes a more beautiful place for all.
The world is awaiting the call of your soul. Please listen to the whispers, wake up, and bloom into the beautiful Self that you truly are. There is a galaxy of souls cheering you on and supporting you on your journey.
A sanctuary for my soul is A Tree of Light http://atreeoflight.org, and your soul might enjoy a browse through my soul-searching book, Voices: Who’s in Charge of the Committee in my Head? available on Amazon.