In my own life, I have experienced how a seed of possibility must be protected in order to grow. Protected from my own doubts, or fears. Many a time have I had a dream in which I was shown something new. But the real work comes after such a dream. Just to hold, each day, each night, this possibility in the face of outer appearances. If what we do is to be in service to Life, then we are given a certain strength to hold a situation, a friend, a partner – our world.
From my new book, Finding Home: Restoring the Sacred to Life:
Holding. This is not an easy concept in our collective understanding. We may hold a dream that comes at night. The next morning we might not understand it, but it has startled us awake. It has meaning that will unfold only over time. This is how we hold a dream.
But to hold a difficulty, to sit silently with it, and not to prematurely ‘fix’ it, this is something else. Like carrying a child in the womb, in the darkness. We sing to the child, but she or he remains hidden. This knowledge of holding new life in women’s bodies whether or not we ever have children. We can do this for one another.
One day a woman came to the circle, and said, “Is this one of those places where we have to be positive? And everything we say has to be upbeat? Because that just didn’t work.”
“No,” I said. “This isn’t one of those places. You just need to be yourself.”
She paused, and then said she’d stay.
Later, after the meditation, she spoke first. “I’ve had so much stress. But in the meditation, it started to move down from my heart. I could feel it move down my body, to my feet. And then the stress just left. I was able to cry for the first time in a year.”
There was an opening that takes place in our heart, and this opening is our saving grace.
I believe that we are given the wisdom we need in a situation. Sometimes, however, it is so simple that it barely registers in our mind that this is something of value. Several years ago, in meditation, I heard these words, rising up from my depths: Move in gratitude. Yet how would this help in a difficult situation?
But over time, I saw that it was a way of being that could, that does help in a profound way. Like an orientation of the heart, where a certain singing to life can take place. I believe, this is what our lives desperately need. And, as we are not separate from the world, this also touches the sacred web of all life.
This we can learn to hold.