Buddhist….and human

the path of learning, being, and growth


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In doing some reading today, I got to wondering something.

I was reading about awakening. Becoming conscious, and mindful. And I wonder.

Maybe awakening, becoming mindful, isn’t a conscious thing. I know, that sounds like a contradiction. After all, in awakening, we become conscious and mindful. But what I mean is this.

Maybe the process of awakening is not a conscious thing. Maybe it is more gradual. I don’t think we just all of a sudden become awakened. One session of meditation will not do that. I don’t think that it’s like this lightening strike, and boom, we are all of a sudden mindful, like, immediately. I think it’s more of a process.

Especially after a lifetime of not being conscious and mindful.

And I apply that to my self. To my search for and striving to reach that compassion I believe I hold inside of my self, both for my self, and for others in this world.

I have been meditating regularly for some time now. And over the weekend, something happened with me that I never thought would happen.

I have used cutting as a coping skill, off and on, for years. Last year, I went through a particularly horrible period, right before I got so extremely depressed, where I was cutting, at times every day.

My therapist and I went back and forth for the longest time, her trying to get me to get rid of the tool I used to cut, and me, resisting anything close to even thinking about throwing my tool away.

It was my security blanket.

Even after I stopped cutting last fall, I could not part with my cutting tool. I saw it as my security. My life would almost stop and end if I got rid of it. I could not imagine life without it.

Partly, it was a security blanket. Strangely, it made me feel safe. And, partly, it was an object of control. It was one thing I could control in my life. If I had my cutting tool, I could control my pain. If I needed to, I could give my self the pain I thought I deserved. I could be the one to bring pain to my self. I was in control.

This past weekend, I threw my cutting tool away.

No hesitation. No second thought. Just a moment of inner strength. And maybe some clarity.

I believe that through meditation I have had that clarity to see that I do not need a tool of self destruction in order to live. I don’t need to hang on to that old way of coping. I do have some strength, somewhere deep down inside of my self. Strength to get my self through tough days, tough moments. To get me through being triggered, through the long nights when I have those nightmares. To get me through my depression and anxiety and anger.

I have a long way to go on my journey. I am only at the very start on this new path in my life.

And I have no choice but to continue.



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