Recently, on my way to the park with my dog, recorder in hand, I was feeling very close to tears. Going to the park was an attempt to be with my dog in nature and to experience the beauty and goodness of the day. There was an awareness of all the heartbreaking content in the world with the outbreak of a brutal war in Ukraine, global warming, and some content with loved ones, health, and aging. And lately, with such intense content, it has seemed more difficult to find peace, to keep custody of the attention, and to find center.
So turning on the recorder to talk about it all, what came out was a very long prayer. And with this, the tears began and the prayer put me in touch with all the sadness, the love, and the grief I was holding so tightly inside. Until I switched on the recorder, I hadn’t realized that I’d been “trying to hold it all together” which is ego-code for “keep it all inside, stay tense and tied in knots, don’t look at it, don’t express the grief, and no matter what, keep it together.”
On this day, the recorder was the doorway into that sacred and safe place of expressing it all, of not having to keep it together, of feeling heard and witnessed. The prayer was to Buddha, to God, to Life, to the Universe and literally anything and anyone who would listen. It was a deeper prayer, more like a chant, and included everything and everyone that was tugging at my heart from the war in Ukraine, to global warming, to not wanting my 97 year old mother to suffer, and to not feeling well myself. It all came tumbling out. It was very detailed and asked for peace, and love, and help for all beings. It felt like a cry for help for the whole world.
Even though I didn’t intend it, the prayer turned into a two-handed recording with the right hand holding the recorder while the long prayer, uncensored, was expressed. And then, when I listened back with the recorder in the left hand, there was the wisdom, love, and compassion present and the experience of the prayer being heard and witnessed. And then there was a loving response from the mentor. Although the content wasn’t changed, it was all brought into acceptance and unconditional love.
And I remembered that I am not in control except for how I choose to be with myself when facing difficulties and being open to Life’s guidance. As I’ve continued to record and listen about these difficulties, I’ve been more relaxed, more accepting, and Life has been dropping in small steps for me to take to be of assistance. For me, recording and listening is teaching me how to move into the place of unconditional love and acceptance; it assists in ending suffering.
I will be forever grateful for this beautiful Awareness Practice we have.