Guy: (after waiting an extra 45 minutes because the doctor was flirting with his nurses)
“I keep getting this pain in my eye, like, every day. It’s like clockwork.”
Doctor: “Tell me about it, guy”.
Guy: “Well, it’s really painful. It’s like this stabbing pain, this searing stabbing pain that hurts like hell, and I want it to stop hurting. Man it hurts.”
Doctor: “You say this happens every day?”
Guy: “Yeah like clockwork. Every morning I’m getting this horrible ache in my eye.”
Doctor: “Tell me your morning routine”.
Guy: “Well I get up and, you know, I have to “pee”, and then I putz around and look for the paper. And I make myself a cup of coffee; strong, not this pussy coffee you buy at these crappy chain places that have like mounds of cream or foam or some shit. But I do put SOME cream in my coffee, ok, sue me, I don’t have much hair on my chest. Christ. What was I saying? Oh, so I put in some sugar too, ‘cause like I said, I make it pretty strong, and then I stir it up and slurp it down, and then I get this horrible ass headache”.
Doctor: “Try taking the spoon out of your cup”.
Ok, so that’s my version of the story, but you’ve heard it. What’s my point?
I’ve been reading “The Secret”, and many other books that are similarly minded. Good stuff if you’re into that kind of thing. Stupid if you’re not, I suppose. One of the books I’ve been reading lately is dealing with relationships, and how to make them better and stronger. Much good advice in this book. But also some advice I have to leave in the book, and not carry around in my head. The book has a specific religious slant that I don’t agree with, and it amazes me how I feel after reading it. I find I’m really buying into this whole idea that you vibrate on a certain frequency. The whole “birds of a feather flock together” thing. So the way you are is great, you’re awesome, and you gravitate towards other things that vibrate on your level. These things may not all be similar to you, but you are on the same frequency level, so you are compatible, or compliment each other, or match somehow. And I’m finding this true in many aspects of my life; even books! Because despite the fact that this book has some much needed information for me, I certainly don’t match its frequency for the most part.
Take, for example, “Click”, which I recently wrote about. After reading this book, I felt energized, excited, motivated and hopeful. Immediately after reading the book – and actually half way through it – I began sharing the concepts of the book with others. Siblings, friends, strangers; it didn’t matter who you were, I wanted to tell you about the book. I started quoting and recommending and blogging about the book. It helped me learn more about myself. It made me feel like I had purpose. It made me send an email to the authors and write a gushing thank you for this wonderful, life changing piece of work. In comparison, the book I’m reading now – though chock full of good information I will remember and utilize in my relationships – makes me feel bad. Its focus is on complaining, and whether you are complaining too much about life, and lovers, and situations. Complain less, is the motto, which is wonderful. I want to do that. Look at my blogs, I complain all the time. So after reading this book I feel like I’ve been doing things wrong. I’ve been questioning my direction. I feel guilt about maybe being a bad person, even though just this morning I decided I’m going to make some cornbread for a perfect stranger just because the old man mentioned he loved it when we met on my morning walk today. Or maybe I feel guilt because I am complaining too much about life? Or maybe I’m guilty because I don’t feel love, and don’t seem to get it? I get anxious, and nervous, and start to cry. I feel confused and at odds and discouraged. Yes, yes, some of the information is good. I already said that. Otherwise I would have stopped reading a long time ago. But the book doesn’t make me FEEL GOOD.
And here comes The Secret. If it doesn’t make you feel good, stop doing it. If you aren’t happy in the center of it, get into the thing that DOES make you feel happy. So I appreciate and receive the good information from the book, but then I have to put it down. Because really, we all have our own ways and beliefs, and this way and belief has helped all kinds of people all over the world, according to the author and the review on the cover. But it doesn’t match MY frequency. I find it fascinating that organized religion seems to have this effect on me. Makes me squeamish, guilt ridden and worriful just being near it. While it makes others I know happy, full of love and grateful, it just makes me exhausted. I don’t want to focus on complaining, and counting how many times I complain, and noticing when and how and why I complain.
I want to focus on LOVE. I want to let love IN, and let love BE, and let love flourish all around me. I want to GIVE love and RECEIVE love, and LIVE IN LOVE. I want LOVE to be my focus. Not complaints.
And so, I must leave aside religion. I notice and take up what bits make sense to me, and continue my journey in love. Because that is what I want to fill my life with. Not condemnation. Not judgment. Not the attentive eyes of people who tell me I’m doing this wrong or failing to do that right. I want love in my life. I want acceptance, and peace and happiness. And religion can give that to some people. But not me. And so, like the good doctor would recommend, I must take the spoon out of my cup.
I won’t be beaten into submission by a God that is afraid of my emotional outbursts.
I won’t be tricked into complacency by a religious system that prefers numbness to the powerful and electric moments of raw feeling that occur in the NOW.
I can’t be forced to relinquish my passion, my drive, or my intense longings for love, beauty, or oneness with my fellow man.
And I don’t think I should have to give these things up.
I refuse to believe that spiritual enlightenment comes at the cost of my emotional self.
I fiercely believe that any God, Being or Universe that is worth being worshipped should be able to handle the divine, explosive, caustic, curious and intense soul that is me.