A couple of weeks ago something happened. Something adrenaline rushing, scary and potentially life threatening.
But before I tell you what this is, I have to tell you about the day before.
It was one of those evenings. There was no power at my place, my laptop had died, so had my phone, so had my Kindle and so had my torch. With no light, what else was there to do than to meditate, right? So I did.
I wasn’t particularly in a peaceful state of mind. I felt kind of fed up with all the promises that come with meditation. “You will discover all the mysteries of the universe, God will speak through your pen, you will find everlasting peace. Blablabla really. Yes there are moments that I feel part of this. But what about these times that I don’t. What am I doing wrong? Am I even doing something wrong?
This time I would find out the truth behind it all. No more excuses, I would face anything I have to face to discover the mystery of the universe.
I have said this to myself many times before and I have come close to feeling perfect bliss. But then it gets blocked. Blocked by a fear that I feel I bring about myself. It is the fear of dying. Not just dying in general, but there is a specific scenario that usually arises in my mind.*
This image of death is the scariest thing in my mind. I am so afraid of it that I dare not even say it out loud. In fact, I am not even sure if this image actually is about death, because the image comes with such an intense feeling of fear that I push it away and never looked at it in detail. I merely glanced at it.
Man was I fed up with this cycle: I ask for a sign. It arrives, but I don’t have the balls to face it. “Not now” I say, “ I’ll deal with it next time”.
Not this time though. I said to myself “I will face that image, no matter how afraid I am. If this is what I’m supposed to see and deal with then let’s get it over with.”
Nothing happened. I was waiting for fear to arrive, but it didn’t. I had gone a step beyond where I had gone before, but a little voice in the back of my mind still quietly said “Not now”.
The next day that fear became reality. The detail was impeccable, apart from one thing: I didn’t die.
I must say this was all quite overwhelming emotionally. The build up, dealing with the fear in real life and the aftermath. It is in these emotions, though, that I recognised something: the exact same feeling I had a couple of years ago when I decided to back my bags and move to Zambia.
Back then, for the longest time I was too afraid to accept the fact that I did not want to fly for an airline. It took me months of focused meditation to face this inner truth, but then when I finally did, WOW! How amazing to finally give in to this inner feeling, to let go of limiting thoughts, to finally face that fear and see the beauty beyond it. I said to myself that from now on I will always listen to and trust this inner feeling. This was harder than it seemed.
Now why and how did this all happen and how is it linked to a three year old experience is the question.
The way I see it is simple.
It began with a thought in the form of a question: I asked for a sign that show me what direction to take in my life. Initially I suppose this was a subconscious question. Slowly, I became more conscious of this thought and soon a scary scenario began to appear in my mind when in deep meditation.
This was the sign I quietly asked for, but I refused to accept and face it, because I was too afraid. But I still kept asking the question “What to do next?” The more I asked the question, the more the signs showed u in life. At the same time I ignored the signs and they only became more frequent and intense.
You know what happens when you fuel thoughts with intense emotion: your thoughts turn into physical reality. The more I refused to face this fear, the stronger the emotion became until it became a reality, forcing me to deal with the fear head on.
You ask, the universe provides. Without fail.
Let’s talk about death
Death, for most of us a scary thing we don’t want to talk about.
All this time I assumed the image in my mind was about me dying. The image turned into reality and I am still here, so apparently I assumed wrong.
Now that I finally looked that fear in the eye, I see that it was more symbolism than anything else. The question I was truly asking was not so much what to do next, but more so if to leave Zambia is the right thing to do. I see now that it is.
I tie so much of my identity to what I do here. The greater part of my adult life has been focused on the adventure I am living right now. If I stop doing this, what is left of me? Am I still me? I do, in a way, die when I choose to walk a different path. I am letting go of a piece of me. I am letting go of my life here. It is the death of the ego.
With that death, a new part of me is born at the same time. A new beautiful extension of my consciousness that grows out of the “me” that I left behind. The me that died.
Fear is not something to be afraid of. Where there is fear, there is a lesson. To me it just seems as an intense emotion, compacted energy that shows the love that it is built out of when you give it the attention it requires.
* I wish I could share with you what this scenario is, but I decided not to out of respect for other people involved and because it does not add to the essence of the message.