Thursday, March 16, 2006

A riddle...

Riddle: What do you say when the Universe hits you in the head with a "clue by four"?

Answer: Ouch. Thank you. May I have another?

Synchronicity. Timing. Things happening in such a way that there can be no doubt that something is coordinating the events. Affirmation that evolution happens in the micro as well as the macro. We evolve in tiny increments all the time.

My friend Lynnette is busy preparing an Ostara ritual for our little group. She sent some questions to get us thinking and help us prepare for the celebration. She talked about balance, naturally enough, and drew a distinction between static balance - "...stand with outstretched hands holding the same amount of 'weight' on each..." and "... balance experienced as a flow of seasons, cycles...".

Her words evoked an image of a curved line, a wave that curves deeply to one side, then gradually swings toward the other, crossing the center point before curving wide to the opposite side, like a continuous S-curve.

My life is like that, and it's been brought home to me lately so very clearly. I've been living in a wide swing toward ideals that I embrace happily and that, at their core, serve me well. But the curve can't stay that far out, that far from center, without throwing the wave out of balance. Like that line, there are aspects of my life that need to curve back toward center.

Here is an example, one that currently occupies a lot of my thoughts: I am a very accepting person. Acceptance is a part of my personality, but I've also worked hard to cultivate it in my life. I've conciously nurtured the part of me that takes people as they come and sees good in just about everyone. The problem is that I've also developed the habit of ignoring red flags, warnings and danger signs. It's not that I don't see them. If I'm honest with myself, I have to admit that I do, indeed, see the red flags waving. I just ignore them.

Why? Because I think I might be wrong. Or because, for some reason, I have come to believe that saying, "I don't like her" is just...wrong. It sounds so arrogant, so self-centered. What do you mean, you don't like her? What makes you so special that the universe should care whether someone pleases you or not? Why are your likes and dislikes more important than the other person's right and responsibility to be who they are? That's a person, not a flavor or a color. Focus on the other person instead of yourself for a change. People act on what they believe. Look at the reasons behind the actions instead of weighing everything in the light of whether it pleases you or not.

So I allowed myself to develop the habit of ignoring things because I was convinced somehow that I had enough understanding of human nature to see beyond the behavior to its cause. Once I knew the cause, I could ... I could...what? Change the behavior? Disregard it because I knew why they did it? That's more likely, I think. I just overlooked a lot of things because I thought I knew why they were doing them. It didn't make them any less annoying, dangerous, or unhealthy, but I could just be the bigger, more superior person and rise above it all.

Hogwash! I've been ignoring red flags and it has cost me. More important, my ignoring my own instincts contributed to friends being hurt. No...I'm not trying to take resonsibility for everything in the world...but facing the fact that, had I listened to certain instincts, raised a question when I observed things that weren't quite right, or just spoke up and said, "Hey, I know BS when I see it and that was some of the S-iest B I've seen in a long time!" is just facing the truth. I've been so focused on not being self-centered that I forgot to use common sense and simple self-preservation, practicing a special brand of self-centered, cleverly disguised as acceptance and other-centric living.

Though the reasons were very different at the time, I have been ignoring warnings and flags since I was young. I got married twice under a fluttering, flapping, sea of garrison-sized crimson beauties. I knew it wasn't right but I chose to ignore them. Why? That's a whole 'nother subject for a whole 'nother time. Regardless of the reasons, the behavior was the same. Was the pattern being set even then? Maybe.

So...lessons learned...and being learned...again...still. I feel the curve turning and flowing more toward center, away from the wide arc too far out to the side. Of course, the curve continues, and I'm sure I'll swing wide again on some other issue...or the same one, though I truly hope not.

I am still an accepting person, and I don't want that to change. I like that part of me and I'm glad I've cultivated that trait. What I do want is to accept my own right and responsibility to listen to the warnings.

It doesn't do much good to be a very intuitive person if you ignore your own intuition, does it?

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