Of Truth, Response and Consequence...


Right now I’m defiantly staring at the dark, windy city below my writing desk window. I impatiently ache for summer.  But winter lingers on as if to ask if we have had enough yet.  “Ugh”, I scoff.  In that moment of hopeless disgust at something as simple and uncontrollable as the weather, I remember why I decided to write a book. It’s subject is gut wrenching at times and asks us to look unabashedly, unashamed, and with the clearest of seeing at the deep truth of things, using none other than stories of my personal life and the concept of the uncontrollable nature of life itself.

Sometimes there’s an emotional recoil to the truth. It’s as if we so desperately need to cling to our deep seated patterns of knowing, are so attached to our individual beliefs, that we fail to see any other possible response to what crosses our experience. Now add to those engrained patterns and neurological narrative the fact that we really just can’t control anything at all and so what are we left with?

“So why are you writing this book anyway?”, one of my closest friends asked over a much postponed dinner we finally managed to do through the various complications and business of our daily lives. I paused. Our friendship deserved a much better answer than the usual one I have been giving, which really wasn’t giving away much at all.  After I explained my reason, she just looked straight into my eyes as if to set the precise depth and aim of her response.

“It’s just your belief, maybe not anyone else’s. It could possibly turn off a lot of people.”  Damn, she was right.  But I knew that I had to think on it more before responding; our friendship deserved the reservation of my defenses.

So here I am, staring out at an uncontrollable storm, writing about an uncontrollable world, and taking a deep dive into recounting my emotional and sensual responses to "circumstance" that have played out in the story of my life.  A common tool used by life coaches is to ask their clients to plot their experiences along a timeline and then describe their responses and outcomes to each along the way. In this simple exercise you can see whether you have improved the lot of your life, or you may find that, for prolonged periods of time, you have cycled through the same - as we say in the yoga world - “suffering”- the insanity of negative patterns repeating.

To me the truth of the matter is that we have a choice. Choice is the cornerstone of our human experience.  It is the fuel that prompts the question of our very existence-in-motion asking “what next?”.  For me the what next was to write my story, to use the experience of my life as an example of the courage to choose responses in a conscious way.  

For most in “my circle” these are trying times, and while I truly would like to refrain from adding any vitriol to the mix, I still acknowledge all of it.  The good, the bad and the ugly play out in every day little and big things.  This pivotal time in our lives is no exception. So my friends, choose wisely.