I’ve been tussling with some very core ideas for a while now; who I am, what I want, and what I want to achieve. What it means for me to be on this planet. The same as most people, I expect. And like most people, those ideas change from day to day. There are good days, on which I feel I’m capable of anything I should want to achieve and free of doubt, and there are bad days, on which everything feels pointless. Let’s not forget that I am a woman after all. I am a cyclic creature.
I’ve also been debating how much detail to go into about this particular phase of my life on this blog. I was worried it would be too negative. There’s enough negativity out there. We need more solutions, more optimism, more action, not more whinging (or “hating” as it’s officially known nowadays). But no, I thought. This blog is about my creative processes and my personal journey. And low patches are an inevitable, essential part of both of those things. So I’ve decided to write about it.
After arriving in Panama, I once again found myself losing energy and becoming angry, restless, frustrated, lethargic and generally sad. I can now see that several factors were at play:
-The inevitable comedown of coming to a temporary hiatus after an incredible year of adventure.
-I’m knackered. I’ve been sailing for a year.
-I honestly think part of me was like “Ah. Year of spiritual development done. Now I am a complete person. What’s next?” When I didn’t feel like this, I was annoyed.
After two or three weeks here, I was experiencing a major low. I was confused, scared I was on the wrong path somehow, utterly lacking in direction. As the month progressed, I watched, and listened, and started to feel the pain and injustice of the entire world all at once. I was furious with the world and everyone in it, convinced that we are all selfish and deserve any nasty fate that may be inflicted upon us.
I sat in Old Bank in Bastimentos and wrote a cynical, depressing article condemning the human race. No matter how many times I thought about the article and the problems it was addressing, I couldn’t think of a solution. I was done with it all. I was done with the world and the human race. I wanted to wipe my hands of it all. Go and live in a commune in the mountains.
I spoke to a cherished friend about it all and she said,
“You’re under no illusions. It’s a scary place to be.”
I continued to tell her that although I was so furious about so many things, and so sad, but the problem seemed so insurmountable that I couldn’t be arsed doing anything about it. She said:
“You, and 99% of the human race.”
Which is exactly the problem, isn’t it?
So many astounding minds, golden hearts and fearless rebels, and yet it never seems enough to turn the tide from apathy (or ignorance) towards empathy.
I’m not making revelations and being all like “hey man, listen to me: I went travelling and found myself and I’m totally realising things about the world that I don’t think anyone knows.” Finding articles like this one and this one and people like this fella who turn their anger into action finally helped turn the tide on this mother of all bad moods. Despite how insurmountable life’s unfairness and imbalance may seem, a bleeding heart is no good to anyone.
I think you have to confront the darkest parts of yourself, and your race, if you’re going to remain involved in this dialogue, this river of thought, action, weirdness and genuine love. There is a reason why it is called the “fire of self-discovery”. It burns everything, and it hurts, and time and time again you are left knowing nothing. But it is the one essential truth to being alive, and it guides away from apathy towards compassion, and a greater sense of who we are.
At root, what is needed is our moral development as a species and not more dazzling displays of cleverness funded by greed or desperate measures to correct the negative impact of on-going behavior that is essentially devoid of conscience. Moral development is not about petty strictures but about our greatest asset, which is harnessing the power of imagination in service to ideals worthy of those who truly care about the future. Life itself emerges from principles of order, beauty and truth and when we attempt to hijack those principles we create disorder and invert truth and beauty.
Consciousness is still our most spectacular resource which will open up more energy for our use than we ever imagined possible. But it is not for sale, its highest resources, which maybe limitless, are only available to those dedicated to serve, not steal from, the evolving story of life~ James O’Dea
You may notice this post lacks a conclusion. It’s because I haven’t reached one.