Aging and Taking Charge of Your Life: that’s the current title of my webpage. I chose those words when I was leaving my marriage of 54 ½ years. Determining my own path and living the life I wanted loomed large in my mind. Clearly I was determined to take charge of my life.
A year and a half has gone by since I struck out on my own. I’ve faced many challenges I’d never have tackled as a married woman. Deciding where to live and signing a lease, negotiating a loan for a new car, dealing with the bank and making major decisions. All of these were shared tasks when I was married. As a single person, there is no partner to help carry out the chores and decisions of normal adult life.
Interestingly, the title Aging and Staying in Charge of My Life no longer feels meaningful. I’ve changed. That’s why I need a new title. I am no longer of the opinion that taking charge is right for me. In fact, my current life path teaches me not to wish things were different from what they are. “Things are what they are,” goes the wisdom. We are part of an energy that pervades all beings and all life. It’s not our place to decide what should happen. Trying to order our world so as not to stir our innate fear of living makes no sense. What we need to change is what’s inside us: and this happens by relaxing, not by striving.
My awakened awareness came last winter when I visited San Miguel de Allende in Mexico. Naturally, I headed for the local yoga centre where they were offering meditation classes. I signed up and headed for a comfortable couch in a circle of a dozen other meditators. The particular practice was called Non-Dual Meditation. Listening to the lectures, I found myself taken back to a very old place where I’d been when I was in my 30’s and Swami Radha was my spiritual teacher. These were her teachings, but this time I was listening with the ears, heart and life experience of an older woman. This was exciting!
Non-Dual Meditation reflects the findings of Quantum Physics. (Nothing is fixed and solid, including us humans. We are all connected through the same universal energy.) Insights and ideas scrambled furiously in my brain and in my memory. My fellow Unitarian Universalists refer to “the interconnectedness” of all beings. Eugene Gendlin describes Focusing’s felt sense as: Your physically felt body is part of a gigantic system of here and other places, now and other times, you and other people – in fact the whole universe. This sense of being bodily alive in a vast system is your body as it is felt from the inside.
All my beliefs, understandings and practices were coming together in this whole new path. I was excited!
Since returning home to Canada, The Untethered Soul: the journey beyond yourself by Michael A. Singer has guided me in this new stage of my journey. It is a straight forward guide to living life more fully through mindfulness and letting go of self-consciousness. I’ll tell you more about this in future posts.
Meanwhile, I’ll make you an offer. Whoever sends me the winning title for my webpage will receive – free – a copy of this remarkable book. I’m looking forward to your suggestions and, as always your comments on what I’ve written.