I’m feeling quite philosophical today.
One of my favorite websites for the exploration of empowerment in my life is called The Good Life Project.
The founder of that website, Jonathan Fields, sends out periodic emails of his own thoughts as he moves along his personal path towards greater empowerment. This morning, he focused his email on the concept of “grace.” After reading it, I found myself sitting silently for quite a long time, pondering something he said.
Here’s an excerpt from the email that started my musing today:
I’m realizing this thing called grace, it’s not about ease or simplicity, hope, or control. Perfection can’t buy it. Happiness lays no claim to it. Nor does pain or suffering disqualify you from it. True grace, it seems, cannot come from the outside in. Nor can it be reactive or dependent. It almost feels like it’s a practice. A devotion. The cultivation of awareness on a level that allows you to disentangle your state from your status, and drop into a more spacious realm. (Jonathan Fields)
The specific phrase that stuck in my mind was that final one, “…disentangle your state from your status, and drop into a more spacious realm.”
Status is something we are all familiar with. We are constantly being asked to “update our status.” It’s all about the immediate moment – what you are feeling, thinking, doing, etc. The status is immediate and changes moment to moment.
State is something entirely different. State is a larger more comprehensive way of being in the world.
All too often, however, we mistake “status” for “state.” We assume that our immediate moment – happy, sad, joyful, busy, etc. – is who we are. We define ourselves by our momentary, immediate energy instead of pulling back to look at the larger picture.
When we are able to pull away and see ourselves in a larger context, we do enter that “more spacious realm” that the quote above mentions. I love the idea of examine that larger space. That takes a comfort with stillness and silence.
Today, I have allowed myself to sit in silence more than I have on any other day during this time of quarantine. In that silence, I began to feel micro-moments of peace – of infiniteness. At other times I wept, but not a sad weeping. It felt cathartic and cleansing. After the tears, I felt empty but not in a bad way. Simply quiet and attentive. In that void, as counterintuitive as it may sound, I began to feel connection.
Connection to what? I am not sure – perhaps to something larger and more spacious than I can actually comprehend in my logical mind. Then again, perhaps what I am connecting to is myself – the deep, hidden, quiet core that has been calling subtly all my life.
A quiet calling to stop, breathe, focus, and feel for truth rather than searching or reaching or striving for it.
For me, that is the meaning of “grace.” I feel an immense sense of peace and well-being. No matter what is happening in my world right now and no matter what might happen in the future, I know that if I simply allow myself to silence my mind and connect, there are deep wells of pure energy within me.
In the words of Jonathan Fields, I know now that I can always “drop into a more spacious realm.”
I love this feeling.
It’s only Quarantine if it comes from the Quarante province of France. Otherwise, it’s just Sparkling Isolation.