Three of Swords with Queen of Pentacles

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At some point in our lives… actually, at several points in our lives, we will hurt. We will feel loss or betrayal or heartbreak, maybe heartache. Sometimes it’s quite literal pain, the klaxon of neurotransmitters doing their job to warn the mind of our physical welfare being compromised.

Funny how we deal with these different aspects of pain in different ways, although in the simplest of terms, pain is pain. Pain hurts. When it comes to a cut or a burn we’ll readily bandage it or ice it, with fleet of foot reaction and response. Yet for some of us it gets a bit grey as to how we deal with physical pain that’s not visually discernible. Perhaps we tell ourselves it will go away soon enough. In many cases we’ll slip ourselves an analgesic and bypass the option of examining the cause of the pain.

Then we get to emotional pain, which may be the trickiest of them all. This is where all the crazy-making occurs. We may deny we’re hurting. We may suffer our sufferings, wanting the heartache to simply go away. We might put on our best game face or pull up our big girl panties or nut up and soldier on, believing we are bigger than the personal ache. We may even lash out at every and anyone that crosses our path.

In all actuality, the healthiest thing we can do is regard emotional pain the way we would address physical pain. For this example let’s consider a pain which has as its source some physical trauma. The pain serves as an immediate identifier of the source and location, we then apply a bandage or ice or some other appropriate treatment to mitigate the injury and prevent the damage from exacerbating.

With emotional pain we all too often try to push it away. We don’t seem to regard psychological hurt and trauma as serving as a warning the way we do the throb of a cut or burn or sprain. Physical pain is an indicator that a part of our body needs to be addressed and rebalanced. Emotional pain actually serves the same function, but it is pointing out the part of our life that needs to be redressed.

Just like our body cannot begin to heal until we’ve treated the trauma, nor can our mental hurt and emotional injury heal without addressing the traumatized area of our life. The best thing we can do is to acknowledge the pain, look it square in the proverbial eye and own it. We need to see our heartache as serving a function, as a way of asking us to examine the source of the pain, to be okay with the emotional discomfort and anguish even though we may despise it.

Emotional trauma is one of our greatest teachers when we allow it to do so. As long as we acknowledge it we can let it be our vehicle for something rewarding on the other side. If we continue to try to push it away or force it to abate, it will persists and mitigate our healing. We don’t have to like it, we just need to accept it and it will serve us in a positive way that may seem contradictory, but is profoundly healing.

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The Tower

The Tower
Lightning strikes the crowned top of a lofty tower sending its inhabitants falling from the resulting inferno

As human beings we are endowed with the power of manifesting. Not only is it our birthright, it is our purpose. The time we spend on this earth is for us to discover the extents to which we are able to create.

Nonetheless, this garden of earthly delights has its trappings as well. As we manifest, create, and discover pleasures and comforts we can find ourselves becoming complacent in a life path that is easy and comfortable. In order for us to continue to learn the boundless ways we are able to create a life magnificent, we cannot afford to find ourselves stuck in a rut, unchallenged and uninspired.

There are times when the only way we can be forced out of our own ruts is through tremendous upheaval in our lives. A long standing relationship may suddenly come to an end. Perhaps circumstances have led us to moving to a different part of the country or another land altogether. We had been living in a pattern of which we had become all too comfortable, and for the sake of our own personal growth, self-discovery, and untapped potential our world has turned upside-down seemingly overnight.

This form of life change may seem outside of our control, thrust upon us, making us feel like a victim of circumstance, but it is the greater part of ourselves delivering a blessing in disguise. It is the train whistle rudely waking us up as we sleep on the railroad track. To take the greatest advantage of the apparent upheaval that has entered our lives, we need to allow ourselves to see the event as a gift, as an opportunity we would not have otherwise found if we remained in the  circle of comfort to which we had grown accustomed. The disruption can be quite painful initially, but there is invariably a fantastic gift which lies beneath the rubble.