Thursday, 28 June 2012

Ashes To Freedom

A few years ago I bought a ceramic vase from The Wicker Emporium. I was positively enamoured with it. I thought it added such earthiness to my décor. Of course, my materialistic bubble was quickly burst when the first question out of my friend’s mouth was, ‘why do you have an urn?’ It’s not an urn! I said indignantly. Its décor! Of course, I suddenly couldn’t see it as anything else. This perception was also reaffirmed by my brother who came over the next day, lifted the lid and said, ‘hello grandma.’ Clearly, I had bought an urn under the guise of style.

As time went by, the urn collected dust. It just sat in the corner being unproductive.  I debated on throwing it out several times. But, somehow, it persisted as a regular feature of my apartment. In fact, when it came time for me to move, I took it with me. Even though, it was heavy as hell and reminded me of a funeral parlor I had grown attached to it. For some reason, I felt it had purpose in my life. When it came time for me to move again, the Buddha in me said why are you keeping this object? Let it go. But, I just couldn’t. I lugged it AGAIN, my travelling urn.

Then, just the other night, as if someone had suddenly turned on a light; it became clear to me what I had truly bought all those years ago. I had bought an urn! A fire pit! A place for all my sadness and worry and pain! How did I not see this before?! I joked about it but I never really got my own joke.  It can be for me exactly what it’s always wanted to be – an energy re-leaser! A vessel of ash! I can throw things in there and burn them! What an epiphany! The purpose had finally been revealed after years of mockery and I couldn’t ask for better timing.

And so, in my own private living room, I took all my private thoughts that had been ruminating in my private heart; wrote them down on a piece of paper and lit them on fire. The freedom! The release! The impact of this ritual was astounding.

From ashes to freedom, I had found my style after all. 


Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Stopping to Smell the Roses

I'm a nature buff. I've always been. Not in the camping, sleeps on the ground kind of way but in the way that makes me appreciate nature's magnificent intricacies. I tend to fall in love with every leaf; every flower blossom, every blade of grass. Now before I start getting cracks about being a tree loving hippy, I need to explain my devotion to the natural world. There is such truth in it!  In fact, there are not too many problems out there that can't be solved by smelling a flower. Ok, ok, that may be a little untrue when suffering is great BUT the principle of the moment is true; the small act of taking the time to pause and sniff IS a moment of clarity.
I came to this realization the other day when I found myself walking through campus. I was carrying a bag of sorrow (metaphorically speaking) which distracted me immensely. The button on my pain channel was stuck and no other outside stimuli would penetrate EXCEPT one. I was distracted by one thing. Rose bushes.
You see, I always have to walk by these beautiful pink and yellow rose bushes to get to my car. They are lush and gorgeous and the fragrance that emanates off them is quite hypnotic. I wanted to ignore them. I wanted to bathe in my pain and self indulgent sadness but they drew me in. I couldn't help myself. I HAD to stop, touch and smell. Where am I going with this you wonder (or not wonder) is this, I had a moment; a small, quiet, painless moment. I couldn't believe it! For a whole minute, I was NOT thinking about pain - I was thinking about joy! I was thinking about beauty and texture and life, all because, I stopped and smelled the roses.
With that being said, I think it's important to just stop, touch and smell once in a while. Not to be confused with stop, drop and roll which also can be fun when it's in the grass, not when you're on fire - obviously. But my point is that even if it's brief and seems silly, stopping to smell the roses can make all the difference between what your heart feels and your mind rejects. It can provide solace in times of strife and surprisingly creates small, quiet moments of happiness. Little natural ninja assassins as I like to call them. So let yourself BE a part of nature. Indulge in it; even if you want to be sad and miserable, take a moment. It may actually help with the healing process.
- Namaste