Confusion and Conflict

This post is put together from a series of journal entries.  It shows how writing in my journal helps me process information.

Tuesday, March 10
Erica’s waiting room.  Feeling sad & discouraged.  Trying to understand what caused this.

I told her about my struggle with PETA — not liking their method but supporting their cause.  I told her about the statement that dogs were being skinned while they were still alive to make clothing.  I can’t bear the image.  I don’t want to pretend that such things don’t happen, but hearing about them is too much.  Erica said no, I shouldn’t give out of that energy.
She suggested: “I don’t want to hear any more” and I added: “Your manipulative strategy wrecks me.  I’m re-traumatized and I can’t do anything for you from that energy.”
I realized I was feeling guilty and wrong for not wanting to give to PETA even though I support their cause.  It looks like that’s the major reason for me feeling so bad.

Thursday, March 12
Went to the Church book group.  We are discussing “Eager to Love,” by Richard Rohr, which is about St. Francis.
We talked about the sentence: Francis and Clare “died into the life they loved” and so were not afraid to die.  I said I didn’t understand how you could die into a life you loved.  They started talking about fear of death.  I said I’d wanted to die so many times, that I looked forward to it.  Barry said death represents the end of suffering.  I agreed.  Someone asked What was I afraid of?  I said “never getting better” and burst into tears.  I didn’t think about it at the time but “die into the life they loved” means that they had a life they loved.  Most of the time I don’t love my life, it’s been so full of pain and struggle.  Every now and then I see it as wounded and feel compassion, to “love my poor wounded life because it needs love.”

Last night I said I was afraid of “not getting better.”  What I meant was being able to get to a place where I could enjoy my life, or at least feel some contentment and satisfaction.  I know that having more money, or a flashy car, or fashionable clothing would not bring me contentment and satisfaction.  Even an honors degree from Wellesley, the writing and publishing of a book, the development of the “slide show,” creating the “Dancing the Sacred Calendar” workshop, being part of Journey into Courage, building Neskaya, do not make me feel contented or satisfied.  Looking at my list, I see that, except for the Wellesley Degree, my achievements are “counter-cultural.”  But that doesn’t matter to me.  I could feel good about contributing to the betterment of the earth, strengthening the souls of a few people (or a lot of people?), and being in some ways way out in front of the culture in the direction of peace, equality and soul, if I really believed it.  If I could really “get it” that I have made a big contribution, that would help me feel that my life hasn’t been wasted.  On the other hand, if I could really get it that just as I am, without any of those contributions, I am just what god wanted, if I could trust that God, Spirit, the process of the universe, is moving in a good and meaningful direction, even if I don’t know what it is, then I could relax and be OK with how I am.  I suppose I would go on trying to heal, I do still see that as my vocation at the moment.

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