I was attending the graduation speech at Naropa university in Boulder, Colorado. Pema Chodren was giving a speech to the graduates when she said something that struck me, hard.
“Some things can’t be fixed, they happened and can never be undone.”
Stopping to consider this phrase had me take a deep breath and a painful peek at myself. How many things had occurred in my life that I wished hadn’t? And how much was I holding on to some possibility that I could find some way to reverse these things?
I discovered that there was a lot. That huge portions of my attention was oriented towards fixing aspects of myself and my past. Parts of my physical body, parts of my love history, parts of my life choices all wanted to be fixed and done over.
Now having returned from what was, to me, a turbulent journey in the USA where many of my inner demons took the opportunity to come out and play I am seeing that there are more things I am sitting with wishing that I had chosen some other direction and resulted in some other outcome than this one I am having now.
These decisions, these ‘wrong’ turns cannot be unmade. I cannot go back and choose again I am where I am because of the intentions behind the choices I made when I made them. This is karma. The repercussions of my intention behind my actions. My actions at the time, I can see now in retrospection, were reactive. An unconscious and, I think, unhealthy pattern crept in and took over and as a result I made choices that I do not think were aligned with my highest values. It’s a regular pattern and it has shown up repeatedly in my life in various forms and guises.
As I dwell on the feelings resulting from seeing that I made choices that I see now as being wrong turns, I notice several responses arise within me.
Firstly is a voice that finds reasons for why it’s ok, that justifies and placates the decisions by finding fault with the conditions around my choices. This is the voice that was loudest while making the choices and when I look more deeply I don’t trust this voice. Even though it hurts to acknowledge the anger and regret I feel knowing that I deviated from the way I most desire to walk, I am reluctant to soothe that away. By doing so keeps this voice alive, it gives it the fuel to continue to pop up and sabotage the show in it’s drama loving ways. Wallowing in the hurt, however, equally feeds this aspect as our unhealthy ego-mind loves suffering. It is drawn to unnecessary suffering like flies to shit and will nudge us in the direction for the creation of suffering. Repeatedly.
The next voice is the New Age and Spiritual voice that often say things like “everything happens for a reason” and “things worked out the way they were meant to”. I find that I am equally as suspicious as this voice. In some way this is also placating, it is an excuse for our unhealthy ego-mind to create as much havoc as it likes all in the guise of “it was meant to be”.
What if the truth is that things actually happened because I indulged the unconscious self. What if in those moments it is more that I aligned myself with an unhealthy set of values such as trying to be the person that I think will have me be attractive in a way I most desire? Rather than being moved by a higher intention to serve the evolution of consciousness on the planet. This intention doesn’t care how I am seen and to be aligned with an intention such as this would not create any repercussions of suffering.
So whenever I suffer it is that my intention has become self-serving and driven by an unhealthy ego. The choices made from this place will inevitably lead to a karmic outcome that is less than desirable. The solution here is to go in and find the patterns. Find the unhealthy voices and their intentions and remove them from our attention. As we shine the light of awareness into the dark places in our mind we see them and when we know where they are we can choose to move our attention towards that which truly serves our evolution. The unhealthy aspects of mind wither and fall away if we refuse to feed them.
Some things can’t be fixed yet if we are diligent, intentional and unwavering we can change the outcomes of tomorrow, today.
How committed are you to your own awakening? How ready are you to live a life free of suffering and drama?
For me I cannot see any other point of being alive.