Living an Organic Life: Worthy Goals for 2017

From what I’ve gathered these past few months, 2016 has been a terrible year for most people. Not just globally, but in our individual lives. I found this surprising. It’s interesting how the world can experience turmoil as one in this way. It makes you wonder about the true nature of our reality, and just how deep our connection to one another penetrates. We’re all on the same ride on spaceship Earth whether we can feel it or not.

I was one of the many unlucky souls apart of this massive wave of destruction. In 2016, I graduated college into a fruitless job market, had my father diagnosed with a severe brain tumor after a very sudden grand mal seizure, experienced the death of my last grandparent, and had to deal with an onslaught of family drama concerning alcoholism, codependency, and people refusing to pull their head out from under the sand. It has been one low blow after another, my goals once again put aside so that I could handle the daily traumas that ensued. With all of this happening, it’s at least comforting to know that I’m not alone in all of this, and if you had a similar year, know that you’re not alone either.

I don’t know what will come of all of this as it is not yet over, but I can say one thing with certainty. I’ve never been so determined to cut out everything that I don’t need in my life, and to base all my intentions on the highest good. I’m no longer living for myself, and in some strange paradoxical way, this feels like living more on my own terms than ever before. Living at home at the time my father developed his illness was the best thing that could have happened, and I’ve done everything I could to help my parents so that my mom didn’t have to quit her job and my dad could possibly live a little longer with my cautionary advice, but now is the time for me to start my life. My start has been long overdue, as most get theirs when they graduate high school or enter college. There will always be something standing in the way, and it is time to cut the chords and take the leap unhinged. I’m writing about this personal experience because it might be relevant to anyone reading this, especially if they were also apart of the transformative shit storm that was 2016.

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The Death card in the major arcana of the Tarot stands for profound change. Death teaches us to let go of outgrown ways of thinking and move forward. This is the perfect card to meditate on when you want to break free from old habits or circumstances. It’s a time to cut out what is not necessary in your life. For a new life to be realized, we must release old energy. When Death rides in, it is on the understanding that change has been sought after on a subconscious or spiritual level.

I’m entering into the New Year with a very important detail that I haven’t seen emphasized on social media and fellow blogs. Yes, we’re entering into a new year that will bring us into a new cycle and a different path, but despite this, the change is not going to be as sudden as we want it to be. Just because I’m writing a 7 instead of 6 at the end of the date does not mean that my father’s health will suddenly turn around, or that people will start making better life choices, or that a job will fall from the sky, or a place for me to call home will emerge. These things take time and they will remain unchanged without my will and determination.

What can any of us do to move beyond our obstacles?

A healthy diet can surpass food alone, pervading all things that include relationships, how we spend your time, and any aspect of life that we have control over. If there’s some feature of your physical environment that you don’t have control over, such as a job, finances, and home life, make it a life quest to change this, to work with it. The year of 2017 may not be the year that it all happens, but it can be the year when you begin to push up against a wheel that wasn’t turning before, one that will slowly gain momentum the harder you push and the more time you spend trying to move it.

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The Wheel of Fortune welcomes a change of course. The Wheel is always turning, and so where you are on it now will not be where you are forever. You should not simply stand still and accept what life hands you. You can actively work towards improving your situation. Remember to remain optimistic, keeping in mind that when we’re pushed into a new direction, it leads to somewhere even if you don’t know where it is. This is better than stagnation. Meditate on this card in times of powerlessness, and when you wish for fate and destiny to be in your favor.

For some of us, this will mean an organic diet of meaningful relationships, fulfilling activities, practical information, and daily actions based on sheer life purpose. You will have to cut out harmful people like you cut out sugar. You will have to shape your day on the basis on how everything you do is contributing to your goals. It will require the airy fairy essence of faith, and the solid grounded character of grit. All in all, just know that when one understands the illusion of separation, there is always a way out of the fire simply waiting to be realized.

Thank you Marci Stern and Joe Milians for becoming a patron for Metanoia!

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A few nights ago, I awoke at two in the morning covered in sweat. Uncomfortable enough to do something about it, I went upstairs to turn on the AC and stumbled down the hallway, the urge to get back into my bed overwhelming as always. But this time, as I walked past the back door, I was abruptly drawn to go outside and look at the stars.

Despite the strong pull, I had to stop for a moment. Was it safe out there when I was home alone? It is easy for me to feel alone in the middle of the night, even with someone sleeping close by. What was lurking in the dark? Ever since a nightmare I had years ago of a mysterious, malicious man coming at me in the night towards my house, it was difficult to not be scared of being in that doorway, let alone walk through it.

Once I shook myself out of the dazed sleepwalk, I quickly became aware of how silly this was. It was a beautiful, clear night and I’d be a fool to not enjoy it, if only for a moment.

I sat on the deck stairs, the air soft from land that emitted heat of the summer sun. I live right behind a highway, and it had never felt as still and quiet as it did then. I could feel the world sleep, and for the first time it brought peace instead of loneliness.

Suddenly something caught my attention, a flash of light in my left field of vision. I turned towards it, thinking it was a shooting star that I had missed, and I saw it again, this time as just a flash. “Hi!” I called out happily. Right then, a huge meteor flew across the sky. I laughed with a giddy lightness, and smiled at the thought of a small, grey alien with those giant characteristic eyes casting a stone across the waters of Earth’s sky to meet my salutation. It felt a lot like Interstellar, when Cooper tries to deliver a message to his daughter across time and space through a medium that surpasses all realms of our current understanding. Whatever was out there, I felt warmth and company in the light-polluted dampness of night.

  Upon reflection of the moment, the feeling of soft support and company was strange, given that it was scary to go outside alone in the dark in the first place. Once coming back inside, I realized my basement was more spooky than my backyard. The yard had a horizon that I forgot about, a backdrop with pinholes of light from other worlds calling out. It was a cramped space that I hid in that made me feel safe. Outside, I felt love and wonder. I questioned if people would change if they were forced to sleep under the night sky again. It’s strange to think that although we’re afraid to go out there due to exposure, it is actually more embracing and kind than the box we keep ourselves locked up in for comfort.

Contact with boundaries internal and external are necessary, breaching thresholds that harbor love and wonder, the sky a symbol of the frontiers of our minds, our psyche. External boundaries may even mirror internal ones, and so crossing one reciprocates the other. As they say “As above, so below, as within, so without, as the universe, so the soul…”  –Hermes Trismegistus 

It is not just about putting ourselves out there just so we don’t excessively shelter ourselves. It is about making contact with the divine, whatever that may be for each of us. It’s about looking out and wondering what is looking back, and what they see. It is about feeling the softness of our frontiers, not just their occasional harsh, unforgiving nature. Despite whatever lies in their crossing, the ultimate is love and compassion.

I walked back down stairs to my bed, forgetting to turn on the light to the staircase, holding on tightly to the railing when I judged the last step. When I got to the bottom, I felt it level, and walked off onto trustworthy ground.