Love it all

Then let go

Sunset, Lion's Head mountain. Cape Town, South Africa. 2016.

Sunset, Lion's Head mountain. Cape Town, South Africa. 2016.

“Even after all this time the sun never says to the earth, 'You owe me.' Look what happens with a love like that. It lights the whole sky.” — Hāfiz

 

We cannot hold onto a sunset. All we can do is appreciate it as long as it lasts, then we let it go. Appreciation, gratitude, and letting go are the secrets to everything good in life.

Someone commented to me on Instagram how she could never hope to create expressive art, so I told her that (a) yes, she could and (b) the secret is to let go. Let go of expectations. Be like the sun and let go of the need to be appreciated, acknowledged, or validated by someone else. Just be in the moment and have fun, no matter the outcome.

Soon I will be doing the same. As of this writing I’m getting closer to allowing the next artwork to come through me. The previous artwork that came through me was SERENITY, which is about my feeling open, grounded, and in balance. Prior to that, GRACE expressed that I now trust myself and my life, UNITY told me that I accept myself, and I AM HERE said I accept my past with all its messy twists and turns.

My art reflects where I am on my path; it shows me that my life has been an upward spiral into ease, acceptance, gratitude, and letting go. This next piece to come through me feels like a clean slate — like no thing. It feels like an empty vessel that is content to be empty yet also freely able to receive.

To reach this space within me, I've been stepping out of the wounds from which I operated — those places buried deep within where pain roosts. Pain would have us believe that it is a part of us, yet it is not. Disconnecting from pain enables me to become that empty vessel so I no longer fight or struggle.

"Find a place inside where there's joy, and the joy will burn out the pain." — Joseph Campbell

 

Pain wields its power like a sword and holds you hostage.
Holding on to pain hurts you. It makes you contract and be tight and rigid.
Worst of all, pain tells you to fight.

Know this: loving and fighting are on different points of the compass, so the only way out of pain is to love. One cannot be an open vessel if one is in a state of contraction, tight, and rigid. To be an open vessel, one must let go.

Stop fighting. Especially stop fighting for love.
Forgive everything. And I mean everything.
Start loving the process of opening up and becoming vulnerable.

"Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it." — Rumi

 

To reach a place of love within yourself, which is where your true strength and beauty reside, you must empty your heart of pain by forgiving everything. Accept that your journey is how you arrived at this present moment. Speak the words that need to be spoken, do the things left undone, and make things right to release your pain. This is how you bring closure.

Closure is something you must give to yourself. No one else can give it to you. As Jennifer Hoffman wrote, "We have to arrive at the place of serenity and peace, we have to be done and not wait for others to give us what we need to feel better about our pain."

Love your journey up to this point on the proverbial mountain instead of cursing the path you took.
Love your having fallen down on difficult paths leading up that mountain.
Love the cuts and bruises when you fell on sharp rocks.
Love the scars from those cuts and scrapes.
Forgive it all.
Love it all.
Then let it go.

“The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong at the broken places” — Ernest Hemingway