Embracing the Unknown

30 Jun

Three weeks have gone past since my last post. A whirlwind of events, thoughts and feelings provoked a natural pause in any ‘creative’ activities. In the past three weeks summer arrived unexpectedly, friends came and went, I grew a year older, I gave my month’s notice of resignation, I was reunited with people who I haven’t seen for two years, I cut my hair shorter than it has ever been, I saw breathtaking sunsets, I cried from happiness on several occasions, I came across confusing and irrational conflicts, I prayed, I listened, I got unexpected answers from unexpected places.

I am once more at a time of the great unknown. Yet for the first time, I welcome the unknown like a friend. In the past few months, the unknown tested me, challenged me and took me out of my comfort zone. The unknown revealed parts of my character, both positive and negative, that I had never known; it revealed desires to which I had never admitted; and it made me stronger by showing me my weaknesses.

It is not in my perfectly planned and organised life that I learnt about myself, but it is in moments of uncertainty, of turbulence and of absolute incomprehension that I managed to grasp, even a little, at my true essence.

Our first meeting with the unknown is like our first meeting with silence. It seems like there is nothing but emptiness Footprints on Beacharound and no matter how loud we scream our questions, we get no answers, except for an echo, in return. Yet is is not from silence that we should expect a reply, it is being in silence that allows us to hear our own answers. In the same way, it is not the unknown that will guide us, but our inner guide that will emerge once we’re in it.

In today’s society, we’re used to receiving answers and advice from a variety of external sources, whether it’s a GPS, an agony aunt, Google or a phone call to a friend. We rely on other people to tell us how we feel, what decision to make and which route to take. Yet what would we do if we got lost in a foreign place with no street names, no map, no phone and no passers by to ask for directions? What if we had to find our way without any external help?

In the past few weeks I came across a problem to which I had no answers…about which I didn’t even have a clue. I needed help, advice, guidance, yet I couldn’t think of who or what could offer me help in such a situation. I felt that rationalisation, discussion and writing out pros and cons would not be good enough. This was not a matter that the mind could solve. This was a matter of the soul.

And so I prayed. I sat in silence and I searched for an answer deep within. And something unexpected, something that no one else would have advised, yet something that was so perfect for the situation came to me. My intuition gave me an answer that I couldn’t have received from anywhere else.

So today, I will rejoice in the unknown, because it is the unknown that makes me listen to myself, that helps me understand myself and that gives me freedom.

A quote has been running through my mind all these weeks, which truly captures the beauty of embracing the unknown:

“We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planed, so as to have the life that is waiting for us” ~ Joseph Campbell

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9 Responses to “Embracing the Unknown”

  1. Deborah the Closet Monster 01/07/2011 at 02:44 #

    Right on. The last few years have not been easy, but the life I had planned was so less full of wonder than the one I’m living now.

    • l0ve0utl0ud 05/07/2011 at 08:09 #

      It is wonderful that your hard times brought you beauty in your life. May the wonders continue filling your world!

  2. Barbara Rodgers 02/07/2011 at 21:07 #

    Love the Joseph Campbell quote. But even more I love what you wrote: “Yet is is not from silence that we should expect a reply, it is being in silence that allows us to hear our own answers. In the same way, it is not the unknown that will guide us, but our inner guide that will emerge once we’re in it.” It took me so long to learn this… Beautifully written post!

    • l0ve0utl0ud 05/07/2011 at 08:10 #

      Thank you very much. It is, indeed, a difficult thing to learn – I’ve only just discovered it and am understanding it more and more each day.

  3. sailingspirit 04/07/2011 at 12:27 #

    Brava, very well written! A most insightful post. I, too, have received many unexpected answers from the Holy Spirit and, once–maybe twice–a supportive angel. As you have said, the answers from “above” (within) are always a surprisingly perfect fit. It has gotten to the point where I no longer seek much advice from external sources because I tire of the disappointment. I very carefully select advisors now.

    The most unexpected answers are the ones that really challenge us to change, whether it be our attitudes, behaviors, or the ingrained thinking that lessens our ability to use truth powerfully. But, agreed, those still count as the best answers when you get on the far side of that change and are able to perceive the real wisdom and grace encapsulated therein.

    • l0ve0utl0ud 05/07/2011 at 08:13 #

      Yes, you are right. Most of the answers that I have ever received from within/above are answers that surprised me, because they contradicted everything I had been taught about ways of living. Yet these answers seemed so simple and the most commonest of sense! I look forward to listening to myself more often 🙂

  4. Leslie 05/07/2011 at 18:26 #

    Your words here have captured, with incredible accuracy, my feelings toward my own life at this point. I especially love this part: “It is not in my perfectly planned and organised life that I learnt about myself, but it is in moments of uncertainty, of turbulence and of absolute incomprehension that I managed to grasp, even a little, at my true essence.” That’s so poetic and wise. Well done.

  5. healingandliving 07/07/2011 at 23:11 #

    I dig this! Way to be listening to yourself! It’s very brave, and can be a tough thing to do sometimes, but I’m a firm believer it will always pay off. Great post.

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