Posts Tagged ‘the secret’

By N.B.Cardoso

I have been thinking on this topic for a while but conveniently, putting it aside. Who, in all honesty, wants to think, or the least, write about their uglies? But then today, on my daily reading, I got a glimpse of what Thich Nhat Hanh reminded us:

“Our own life is the instrument with which we experiment with the truth.”

Then, in the silence of the morning today, I knew, the time to face this singular topic had come.

ego 1Each day I strive to be a better person, and without a doubt, in the last few years I have had a 280 degrees of transformation. Yet, I am far from perfection. I am, sometimes, not an easy person to deal with. I can be stubborn, strong-headed, opinionated, ungrateful, even mean I believe.

There are days when I see the long arms of the old me emerging from the deepness inside, trying to hold on to something, to anything really, that can give it some leverage, so it can emerge again.

Sometimes I feel the old ego screaming for attention, for acknowledgement. No, my ego is not dead, and it is not at all my intention to kill it, but its voice, can sometimes be too loud.

I have learned along the way,  how to subside and appease its demands, not giving too much importance to it as I did in the past. Ego is one of those necessary evils in our lives. Sometimes however, we get too entangled with its needs, giving too much power to it, letting it control us instead of us controlling it, and then things gets all messed up. Ego gets what it wants, we are happy for a mere minute before we realize that, in order to keep ego happy we have lost more precious things: people, relationships, friendships, lovers, jobs, etc…Yes, I know, I am no exception…sometimes I let myself get convinced that I am ‘that special’, that I deserve ‘all that glitter’, the ‘how dare you?’ comes all too easy…

However, while learning to live in simplicity, I have understood that it is also letting the ego quiet down. It is not all about me but the communion of me and others and the universe around me. It is understanding and accepting different opinions and visions. Even tough I have acquired this knowledge along the way I still, sometimes, fall into a trap and go back to a vicious cycle that I am trying to eliminate.

ego 3The moment to “experiment with the truth” is the next step on my journey. Recognizing the moment this ego, this impatience, this need to be ‘my way or the highway’,  the need for immediate response and satisfaction comes lurking, usually when I am not too aware of it, is the one thing that still tricks me. I can feel it when it happens, however it is usually too late, some damage has already been done, and I have already acted on it. My goal is to feel it coming, and prevent of showing its ugly face.

When I read Jack Kornfield “A Path with Heart: A guide through the perils and promises of Spiritual Life”

“We must make certain that our path is connected with our heart….When I ask ‘Am I following a path with hearth?’ We discover that no one can define for us exactly what our path should be. Instead, we must allow the mystery and beauty of this question to resonate within our being. Then somewhere within us an answer will come and understanding will arise. If we are still and listen deeply, even for a moment, we will know if we are following a path with heart”

ego2This, I discovered, is the mystery of my journey. To understand and acknowledge the needs of my ego, which I believe, is by far the ugliest part of me. I have, like we do with a spoiled child, to listen to it, to comprehend the why of its demands, to be able to see the insecurities and fears  hidden beyond its actions, and then – in an internal monologue – explain why it cannot be, why there is no need for such silly behavior, or why it can’t behave the way it, sometimes do. Then, when it finally understands that there are no threats, listens to what I am looking for, it can wait, without much fuss, and let me tap into the resourceful power within. To reach and follow my path with heart. It will, like a child do, try to show off again, when you least expect, when you finally believe it is under control, it will come to show you it isn’t. It is, I find, a daily exercise, and like so, some days I am more successful than others.

“Each one of us possess an exquisite, extraordinary gift: the opportunity to give expression to Divinity on earth through our everyday lives” – writes Sara Ban  Breathnach on her book “Simple Abundance – A Daily Book of Comfort and Joy”.  It is never too late to reclaim our gifts, to resuscitate a dream, to create an authentic life with its beauty and in the mean time, embracing its ugliness as well. ego4

In the end, I believe, it all makes part of the patchwork we call life. When we admire the finished work, there will always be a little piece, lost somewhere, that seems out-of-place, those little pieces do manage to always catch the attention of an interested observer, we will look at the beautiful work and wonder :”What was the artist thinking?”

Discovering and learning to walk ‘the path with heart’, demands me to be honest with myself and see that my life is not all made of flowers, fireworks and lady like behavior. There are thorns, there are weeds, there are many wholes and a dark sides in me that are far from what one would expect from lady. There is much beauty but there are also much ugliness.

Once I have the courage to face them, to be truthful with and to myself, I know the ugliness will, almost magically, lose its power to scare me, to intimidate me, to make me feel uncomfortable. I will  find within, the answer and finally understand the beauty and purpose of my journey.  The ugliness and the beauty of me becomes exquisite nuances between the light and the shadows. One, as important as the other, and with that, I create, one stroke at a time,  my own unique masterpiece.





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