The Call

Your grief for what you’ve lost

lifts a mirror up to where you’re bravely working.

Expecting the worst, you look and instead,

here’s the joyful face you’ve been waiting to see.

                                                                            Rumi

 

 

You may have been wandering within the Forest of Illusion for a very long time, attempting strategies, life recipes, remedies of various kinds, but, as if in a labyrinth, you find yourself back at the same point, and nothing has fundamentally changed. Then suddenly, out of nowhere, a situation arises that is beyond your control. It may be an illness, a job loss, a divorce, or a natural ending, such as the death of a loved one, a child leaving home, the start of menopause. This loss opens the door to a grief so wide and deep that it feels as if all the losses and disappointments of your whole life are present there. In this tidal wave of grief, you fear you might drown, but it can’t be suppressed. Something has been unleashed, and you are floating on turbulent currents of emotion. Your familiar habits for creating stability, normality and order are no longer effective. You may have known for a long time that you don’t fit comfortably within your life and that change is necessary, but now, the vessel has broken, and you can no longer pretend that things are fine as they are. Rather than being a niggling concern at the fringe of your awareness, your disquiet and lack of direction has become your main preoccupation.

The vessel is broken, and no longer serves, so you must seek a new way of being in the world. Lost and confused and cracked open by grief, you must use your inner compass to navigate. You begin to perceive in a slightly different way, and you notice things that you might have ignored in the past. For example, when the same name, image or message appears before you not once, but even two or three times, you wonder if it “means something.” You are noticing synchronicities, and once you begin to give attention to this form of subtle guidance, you strengthen the tendency, and it will happen more frequently, even leading to the feeling that someone is trying to tell you something. Besides synchronicities, guidance can appear in other ways. You may have a dream, and you decide to mention it to a friend or colleague. The process of giving attention to your inner life helps you to discern the voice that was once obscured and buried by life’s incessant demands.

It is hard to explain this to others, as there are no words to describe it, but you feel like a hunter following the scent of a prey. You feel alert, awake, aware that you are on a journey. You reflect on this, and consider whether you should actually travel somewhere. Many people go on physical journeys to ‘find themselves;’ should you embark on a cruise ship or pack your life into a camper van? Every day, you notice more clues to the puzzle; memories, feelings, yearnings, impulses. It is as if all the pieces of your life were scattered to the winds, and now you must find them and carefully gather them back together. You have no map or satnav, other than your own inner guidance, which is the voice that comes from deep within you.

She is gently insisting that you should prepare to leave the familiar realm. Gather the qualities that you will need on the journey – your inner compass, including your intuition and instinct, and don’t forget your sense of humour. You are going to cross the threshold to meet the Inner Wise Healer. She is calling you home to your Self.