Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Right Here is Beautiful

I'm a willow tree, you can't blow me over
And my roots go deep in anger
I wanna feel the wind as it whips me like a prisoner
I wanna be here
I wanna be here

No I don't feel like calming down, no I don't
I don't feel like hiding out, so I won't
I can't turn the volume down, so I sit here in this
Chaos and piss, watching the storm passing
Storms are beautiful, this life is beautiful
It is

This song by Pink has gripped my soul good and hard. I mean, Ive always had immense respect for her as an artist, her songs seem to either touch you right in the heart, or make you take a second look at certain situations and realize its not so bad after all. Shes used her voice and position often to bring light to certain issues and situations around the world, instead of just melting into her popularity and not rocking the boat.

So Ive been listening to that song of hers often and on repeat, and just observing the deepness of the lyrics. Really, in essence, the song speaks about finding beauty and peacefulness in the direst situations, which is something that Ive been pondering quite often recently. The idea that the NOW is beautiful, no matter what NOW entails, because of the human emotion attached to it, is not a foreign notion to me. Many years ago, when I entered my first retreat, it was a Buddhist retreat. Meaning that we followed (or closely enough) the daily schedule of Buddhist monks (meditation, mindful movement, light vegetarian/vegan eating with only water, complete silence at all times, etc) and those multiple daily meditation settings were often focused with a single message, and that was to focus on the NOW, perpetually and continuously, and to find peace and beauty in that NOW. Its something that Ive carried with me since then.

Of course, unless I became a nun, successfully finding peace in the NOW at all times is something that is incredibly difficult and near impossible. The daily turmoils of an involved citizens, including things like work place pressures and paying bills on time, are all deterrents to achieving piece of mind. Or one could say that the successful balance of said pressures IS piece of mind, I guess it all depends on what track your mind is in.

But beyond peace in the Now, before being even near completion of that onerous goal, comes acceptance. Acceptance of everything and anything that comes to you as something you cannot change in itself, but rather control the way you take it in and react to it. This comes in all shapes and sizes, pertains to all events in your life, from getting up in the morning to the death of a loved one. For example, when my father passed away years ago, I never accepted it, I never truly realized the depth of what that loss meant, and who can, really, especially at a younger age. But that refusal to accept caused years of emotional damage, and I am only now beginning to face what happened 13 years ago. Now how do I apply that buddhist concept of the NOW? By realizing that as atrocious as that moment (and all the others) was, there was a beauty in it. There was beauty in how many people came to the service. There was beauty in our joined sorrow and depth of our grief. There was beauty in the way my mother caught my hand and held on to it for dear life when we first entered the viewing. There was beauty in the intensity of raw human emotion. Despite the intense uglyness of the situation, there was beauty all around me. Its a sad form of beauty, terrible and atrocious and paralyzing in its intensity, as those who have lived through personal grieving and mourning for a loved one could testify. Nothing in the world can compare to that feeling. But there is also nothing quite as terribly beautiful as people sharing and upholding that burden together.

I believe that if I can turn my mind and thoughts towards finding that beauty in every situation, then healing will ensue. And after the healing process is underway, peace is just a few steps after that. And there is no worthier goal than finding that peace within oneself, because once it has been achieved, who can say the good one can do? Good to the world, good to others, and good to oneself.

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