Much of that pain, I’m sure, comes from losses experienced while growing up during the years following WWII, brought on by lack of decent food, disrupted family structures, living hand-to-mouth, and unkind treatment at home and school. A Kind of heartache Stephen Levine calls “unattended sorrows.”*
What struck me most was people’s abiding anger and bitterness, a feeling trapped in quiet agony, waiting for something or someone to make it all better.
John O’Donohue** writes that —
Sorrow will remain faithful to itself.
More than you, it knows its way
And will find the right time
To pull and pull the rope of grief
Cast in the role of trusted outsider I was told about words said and things done in anger … and of longing for sins to be forgiven and peace restored. What would it take, I asked? Can you see yourself reaching out, take that first step?
Listen to Rumi —
Out beyond the ideas of wrong-doing
there is a field
I’ll meet you there.
And you, does any of this speak to your aching heart? Is there someone who did you wrong, or you them, not sure how it all got complicated?
Think of it as part of your meditation practice: extending loving kindness toward yourself and others. How could you extend the olive branch? And do so without conditions or expectations.
Keep it simple. May you be blessed with humility and generosity.
* Stephen Levine. Unattended Sorrow: Recovering from Loss and Reviving the Heart. Rodale, 2007.
** John O’Donohue. To bless the Sace Between Us. Dubleday, 2008, p. 118.
Image credit: http://arunaszilys.com/