Here’s a wonderful reading from my favorite book of Marianne Williamson 🙂
Our wounds have been brought forward, not to block the experience of love, but to serve it. It is in the forgiveness of our weaknesses that we are healed of them, and the tenderness of a forgiven heart is a tenderness that will ultimately heal the world.
Can the purpose of a relationship be to trigger our wounds? In a way, yes.. because that is how healing happens; darkness must be exposed before it can be transformed. It’s not a place where we can hide from our weaknesses, but rather where we can safely let them go. It takes strength of character to truly delve into the mystery of an intimate relationship.
Of Space Captains and Angels…
“I came for you, I came for you, but you could not see me. I swam the seas, I traversed the coals, I died a thousand deaths for you. I found my way, I did, I did. But when I got there, you had fallen asleep. You had drunk their potions and I could not wake you. I got there in time but your eyes were closed.”
Oftentimes, we pray for something and then miss the miracle when it actually happens. Many have said. “I wish I could have a great love,” while blind to the fact that it was standing right in front of them.
Sometimes, love arrives as though it were a spaceship landing in the back yard. The captain comes out of the ship and says to us, “Hi! I’m here to beam you up! Come on! We’re going!”
Yet so many times we reject him, saying, “Uh well, I cant just leave here so fast. Actually, I cant even believe you’re here. How long do I have to prepare my things?”
And he says, “You have no time at all. Your entire life has been spent preparing. Now, we must go quickly. If you wait, your eyes will adjust and you will no longer see me. Ive just landed for a bit, to pick you up. You have an hour max. You can make further plans from the ship.”
The captain sees that we are bewildered, but so is he. “Haven’t you been asking for this for years?” he asks.
“Well, yes,” we say. “I have. But I guess I didn’t think you were coming…. I sort of made a life for myself here, in the meantime.”
“Not that much of one, judging from your prayers at night,” he tells us. “Let’s go, if you’re coming, I can’t wait forever.”
And then we say, if we say it, what is ultimately the most tragic thing we will ever say, and that is, “No, thank you.”
No, I don’t choose the ride, even though I want it desperately. No, I don’t want to beam up now, even though its a living hell down here. No, I don’t choose the path of wild and radical and authentic love, even though I know I am dying without it. I think I’ll just settle for “good enough”.
Angels are on board those spaceships, appearing everywhere now, often in the guise of loved ones holding the torch that would light our way through darkness. On the other side of that darkness is the light in which dreams come true. But there are demons in that darkness, to be sure, and we can feel them. They almost paralyze us with fear. All those unloved parts of ourselves are there, ugly and twisted and ready to destroy. They live in the darkness, on the other side of which is paradise itself. Even though the only way to paradise is through the darkness – and even though the fire of the angel’s torch will burn the demons up, not us – we do not trust that. We lack faith. We are staunch and calcified in our refusal to choose love, and so we say to the angel, “No, you go ahead. I’ll stay here.”
The angel looks at us in disbelief; the refusal of ecstasy is unknown to heaven. The space captain can scarcely believe his ears, but NONINTERFERENCE IN AND RESPECT FOR THE CHOICES OF ANOTHER HUMAN BEING (free will), is a must on the enlightened path. Not that you can force anyone onto a spaceship anyway. One only rides on the wings of an angel if one is seriously committed to the experience of heaven. The lure of hell is so real here.
Still, as the ship takes off, the captain looks at the angel on board and notices that there are tiny sparkling rivers of water, falling from her eyes.
Back at the headquarters, the angel reports to higher-ups.
“He chose not to go“.
The superior is silent, witnessing the angel’s pain. The angel continues. “I can hardly believe it. He chose not to go.”
“Do you think he understands the consequences?” asks the superior.
“I don’t know.” says the angel.”I think he thinks that staying there is the more responsible thing to do.”
“Responsible… to whom? To what?”
“I dont know. Its strange. He’s not ecstatically happy there, but he thinks it’s his duty to stay. He feel its an adult situation and he lives in fear that he is not one.”
“Yes, of course. We’ll weve seen this before. They choose psychology over poetry. We keep trying to evacuate that realm before the storm hits, but people refuse evacuation.”
“You prayed for him, of course.”
“oh, yes. with all my heart.”
“Well. Job well done. Sorry if your heart was a little bruised on this mission. It’s one of the risks, you know. It can happen, of course.”
“Still, they’re touching creatures.Contentious but touching.”
The angel was trained for love, she was disciplined for love, but her tears still flowed.
“You’re excused. You may go.”
As the angel turned around to weep, her superior called her back.
“I say one thing…. Do remember – you’ll see him again someday.”
“Will I really master? Will I really?”
“Of course you will. You must cling to your own faith at times like these. How else can you convince them of theirs, if you don’t?”
FOR MANY OF US, its not that we don’t want the spaceship to come and get us, so much as we are completely taken aback by its form. We expect angels to have a different look. We don’t recognize a gift from heaven, and how could we, when we have not truly believed that heaven exists? We don’t quite compute what has occurred until often it’s too late.
We didn’t think this love would be human. We’re thrown off by his/her profession, or his/her freckles and warts, or his/her past. We didn’t expect love to awaken our biggest fears and insecurities and doubts. We thought it would bring more immediate comfort. And so we wanted it, but we didn’t. When you’ve lived in a dungeon for a very long time, the light, when you see it, actually hurts your eyes.
The arrival of a soulful love often comes quickly, like that spaceship in the yard. There is little time to prepare before the flight takes off, just a window of opportunity, a cresting wave and then its over. There will be little time to pack one’s bags, so its best to travel lightly through life. There will be people you know you should have said good-bye to long ago. We are living in the end times. New beginnings are upon us now.
We cannot burst through the old earth’s atmosphere without another at our side. It takes two to make a spaceship. We can;t generate the power to fuel the ship until we download the forces that only love can burn off. We must be fearless, as only love can make us fearless. We must be tender, as only love can make us tender. We must be fierce, as only love can make us fierce.
How weak we are when we are not yet ready to let love rip us open.
Is this thought – that a woman’s love cannot transform a man, that a man’s love cannot transform a woman – really to be heralded as some kind of wisdom? It is not wisdom. It is a poisonous emotional pesticide that kills the fruits of love. It is a denial of the deeper regions of the heart, a resistance to the experience of freedom.
The miracle of love is expressed through other people. When a beloved is sent from God – and no one can tell you if they are, but the spirit within you – then they do hold the key to your soul’s liberation. God has given it to them. They contain, in every touch and sigh, the information you need, the miraculous power to alchemize your weakness and turn them into strengths, to dry your tears and turn them into genius, to release your chains and set you free to be your passionate self at last.
Woe to the one who does not yet know enough to say a deep and robust ” Yes” to such love, to bow before its truth, to be humble before its power, to surrender to the gales of wind that storm through lovestruck hearts.
How tragic it is when we are too arrogant to defer to love, to put all small considerations and say, “I am going there.” How stupid it is to say no to the power of God’s loving choice for us. How sad it is to think so little of ourselves that we cannot believe that he or she stands before us, sent by God, is an angel come to give us wings. We have so little awe these days before the mysteries of the universe.
Yet if we are in the habit of denying God, then of course we deny His angels, too. And they hold, like pietas, the bodies of our unchosen loves. Angels weep – because their hears are open – and I think God weeps as well to see such joy denied. And you continue to pray for what you’ve already received, and will one day realize that what you let fly by was a miracle intended to heal you. You might even say so, but by then.. it will probably be too late.
Angels only come to pick up passengers, to fly away with them to paradise. Everything else is so ultimately silly and everything else is so sad. There is one more thing to know about the angel who came for you. The angel who came to fly you to paradise in reality had only one wing. She needed the angel in you to come forth, to be to her what she was willing to be to you. Thus your need for, your dance, your flight with each other.
Together, you would have had one set of wings.
Next time she comes – whoever she is – perhaps you will not deny her. Next time she comes, be humble before God. Next time she comes, admit your pain. Next time she comes, come forth yourself. Next time she comes, let go your resistance. Next time she comes, be brave.
I dont know if we can hold onto this, you said.
Why couldn’t we? I asked. I could see you slipping back and it scared me.
We can’t be this way, and stay responsible. We cant be this way.. and I dont know.. I just dont think we cant be this way.
Then you can’t. But I can. And then I swam away.
Its hard to show for someone else when you don’t know how to show up for yourself. how can you give of yourself when you don’t really think you’re anything worth giving? Sometimes we block the flow when we think that we personally have nothing to give.
What love does if it is allowed to, is to combine people’s energies in ways that lift their lives to a mode of divine right order, where new ideas, new possibilities, and new opportunities for growth emanate directly from the heart of God. Our job is not to abort the process.
The challenge of our generation is to move from me to we. That is the maturity we assume when we wish to learn to love each other from a healed and holy place. Narcissistic people are lonely. Narcissistic people misunderstand independence, often mistaking the commitment to aloness for psychological health.
We were taught to go after things that we could control. Love, of course, drives you, and not the other way around. Most of us both, men and women, are terrified of merging our hearts with another. We say were not, but we are. Even when we are in relationships, we avoid their mystical power. We turn lovers into roommates, butlers or maids. We avoid the real light and were afraid it will swallow us up. And that’s because it would, and it does! Overwhelming our sense of separateness is in fact love;s spiritual purpose. A career, you can control. Love, you can’t. Terrifying news that, but wonderful once you get the hang of it.