We often navigate life as if it were a linear path, a constant march towards the sunlit peak of happiness. But what happens when the shadows lengthen, and darkness descends?
Do we stumble in fear, desperately clawing for the lost light?
Or do we learn to sit in dark times, noticing the deeper rhythm found in the ebb and flow of life?
Consider this perspective: that light and darkness are not opposing forces, but two sides of the same coin – a complete circle.
Woven into the fabric of existence, our lives hold both the radiant light of joy and the quiet shadows of pain. To truly thrive, we must embrace this duality, not as an inevitable unraveling, but as something we can cloak ourselves in.
Ignoring the darkness is like trying to erase half of the circle. We may chase pleasure and strive for constant happiness, but this one-sided pursuit leaves us vulnerable, forever teetering on the edge of fear and disappointment, dreading the inevitable “other shoe dropping.”
Instead, let us choose to acknowledge that pain is inherent. This isn’t about wallowing in negativity, but about balancing our expectations. When we accept darkness as a natural part of the journey, we liberate ourselves from suffering. We no longer fear the shadows, for we recognize them as companions, guiding us through valleys and canyons, leading us to unexpected beauty and the depths of resilience.
This acceptance literally means we must surrender to the complex nature of life and find our way through the middle with balance. This balance, is the essence of true peace. It’s not about a perpetual state of euphoria, but about sitting amongst the shadows and noticing the light of joy in the present moment. It’s about savoring the handwritten card, the genuine compliment, the small acts of co-creating goodness in the world around us.
The power lies in this shift of focus. Instead of succumbing to the narrative of life’s hardships, we become active agents in creating our own rhythm. We acknowledge the darkness, not as an enemy to be vanquished, but as a catalyst for our creativity, resilience, and compassion. When joy explodes, overwhelming and intense, infuse it with celebration and gratitude, knowing its fleeting nature. And when exhaustion arrives, seek solace in rest and quiet reflection.
As we close out this year, let us find center not in perfection, but in the graceful acceptance of life’s full spectrum. Let us infuse our days with intentional joy, knowing that even the darkest nights hold the promise of a radiant dawn. Remember, the circle is complete, and in the acknowledgement of its wholeness, we not only find balance but the power to illuminate the world around us.
Please contact Rachel Gordon if you have questions about Buddhist psychology and integrative, holistic techniques to address mental health issues and promote total body wellness. If you live in the Denver/ Castle Rock area and would like to learn more about what Rachel has to offer through Humble Warrior Therapy, please call (303) 688-6698 or click here to schedule.
Tags: Balance, Buddhist Psychology, Buddhist psychotherapy, Castle Rock, Life Balance, Mental Health, Mindfulness, Wellness