The first real crisis in my life came when I was 33, and my brother died. The ramifications of the downward spiral that ensued would carry on for years. He was my partner in crime, so to speak. We were going to be rock stars together and for a time I reverted to a very self-destructive version of myself. He was my big brother and he was supposed to be there for the rest of my life. I did become active again in music but it was in a very negative way at first. This represents a crisis of adjustment.
Over time his loss actually prompted me to learn to play on one of his guitars. This would seem more like a Soul response growing out of the originally personality based reaction. I wrote a song about him that touches people deeply. I have written others about the growth we all achieve in consciousness at our own pace, and the loneliness that can accompany this journey. Taking a deep life altering experience as an opportunity for growth and the sharing of our lives is much different from getting drunk to cover the pain of loss. We find a way through our own experience to help the next guy get past the need to mask that pain by putting him in touch with what is really going on. The Soul not only makes lemonade from the lemons, but shares it with the world. This could be seen as a change in polarization.
The loss of my father 11 years or so ago represented another most definite turning point in my life and I have come to see it as a gift rather than a loss. I rose to new heights of accomplishment and responsibility. It was a feeling of weight at first because one of my allies and protectors was gone. I felt responsibility to him to produce the books from his manuscripts. I completely re-oriented my life to make sure that this happened. I may have always been destined to this life but I had not taken any defined steps in this direction. This was a crisis of re-orientation.
As I move into my mid-fifties I see a growing contact with my Soul and feel its expression through my actions. I have a book to share and it will be published this year. I am still playing music and learning more about it all the time. My body functions better than it did when I was in my thirty’s because I feed it well, and tend to my mental and emotional state with a detached, interested, and observant awareness. I haven’t had a drink in more than 15 years and don’t do any of the self-destructive things that were habits in my past. I stopped eating meat over a decade ago and eat an almost strictly Vegan diet. I feel I am poised for tremendous spiritual growth because I know I am just getting started. The events of my life have been tumultuous but I have stayed steady as I could under conscious exertion of my will. The so called facts as they present in the outer appearance of the circumstances of my life could be considered negative, and even lamentable. Through all of it I feel not only the growth in my patience but the opening of my heart.
The Tibetan Master Djwahl Kuhl said that “if you are not living eventfully, dangerously, or even painfully, then it is up to you to see that something happens in your spiritual life that will enable you to share in the universal crisis.” I can certainly say that my life is eventful, providing ample opportunity for growth. I see no signs of withdrawal and I believe the most interesting part of my journey lies before me. I have had to let go of some things that seemed very important to me and still feel a sense of loss, and simultaneously, acceptance. I know the things I have lost were never really mine. They were never really real. What is real I take with me on my journey. I need much less than I thought I needed. My life is happy and sad, full and somehow empty. There is much work to do and I think that empty space must exist for us to continue to strive. Contentment can be immobilizing. I am striving, not to get back what I have lost, but to move into my next phase of growth and being.