Soulful people temper our tantrums by their calm, lessen our urgency by their peace, exhibit a world of options and alternatives when all the conversation turns into dualistic bickering. – Richard Rohr, Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life
I was struck by nearly every sentence of our reading in our centering prayer group on Wednesday, but this sentence especially spoke to me. After my post last week about how I hate to admit it but that I often enjoy the feelings of victimhood, I’ve found myself this week focusing on putting down my resentments as soon as I realize I’ve picked them up.
I’m not at the point yet of not picking them up at all, but at least I’m starting to realize when I start bending down – and I straighten up immediately. I’m not that person yet, the one who doesn’t even notice the resentments on the path, but I hope one day to be that “soulful person,” that one of whom Richard Rohr speaks.
I’m trying to get beyond dualistic thinking, of looking for a right OR a wrong, for something that is good OR bad, thinking I have to be happy OR sad, healthy OR sick, in control OR out of control. Those are all dualistic ways of thinking.
I want to be an AND person.
I want to be comfortable with betweenness, content in the liminal spaces – which are where, after all, the magic happens!
I had a dream this week that showed me pretty clearly my focus. I saw two lines. One was straight and went from Point A to Point B. The other was a U shape. It also went from Point A to Point B, but it took at least twice as long to get there.
My destination is Point B.
I too often want the first scenario. Point A directly to Point B.
But life lately has been telling me that there are various ways to get to Point B from Point A – and they aren’t necessarily going to be my favorite direct scenario. And that’s okay.
Because the whole point is to get to Point B.
I think soulful people know this. In fact, they probably enjoy the second scenario. After all, it allows for more scenery, more interactions with other people on the path, more experiences, more betweenness.
More AND, less OR.
I want to be one of those soulful people. I want to be a person of AND.
So I continue on the path, learning, letting go, following around the bend, AND trusting the way.
Learning to be comfortable with betweenness, that liminal place of magic. . . the place of AND, the place where soulful people are most at home!