Walking on the Dark Side

Enter at your own risk
Enter at your own risk

I admit, I used to be part of the ‘think happy thoughts’ crowd.   I did it all – meditation, tapping, affirmations – -I was so intrigued by the neurology, physics and spirituality of ‘your thoughts become your reality’ that I jumped on the bandwagon with no thought of asking where it was headed.

Don’t get me wrong – I believe optimism, hope and faith are strong allies when our world is turned upside down.   I can swear under oath that when I “Let Go and Let God”, miracles occur in my life that I cannot explain in any other way.

But there were also many times when it didn’t work –  putting on a happy face and thinking nice thoughts not only didn’t bring about the requisite happy spirit, but actually seemed to bring about more hardship and suffering  – –

(Remember, class, “Pain is inevitable – Suffering is optional” – – who thought that one up?!?)

And I really didn’t like that all of life’s woes started to be laid at the door of, “Well, they just weren’t thinking right – they brought misfortune upon themselves by negative vibrations.”

I started to question….

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I’m a big fan of “Whatever Works” – which means I switch bandwagons frequently and without remorse.   If it’s not working, I’ll keep looking until I find something that does.  And if walking on the dark side keeps me going without destroying my fellow man, than I’m in.

For the past few years, I’ve noticed a disturbing trend – – walking on the dark side is not a socially popular choice – acknowledging and Wallowing (I mean Wallowing!) in those emotions labeled as negative is not socially acceptable – nor is it of any worth until such time as you have Overcome and rejoin society in order to share how you defeated the beasts. At $39.95 a pop….

Which intrigues me – – I consider my tutelage under the less than pleasant aspects of my human condition some of the hardest walked, yet best rewarded parts of my journey.

And yet, I still don’t see an embracing of the ‘dark side’ by society in general.

I want to know why…

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Is it fear that the dark might draw us in and we never find our way back?    Is it a cultural pendulum swing or is it a survival instinct to avoid leaning over and looking into the abyss, for fear we fall in and never make it out?

Perhaps it’s just a ruse to sell more tranquilizers and happy pills…

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I cannot understand the resistance to explore our less than stellar sides and share about it.

Yes, I’ve been hurt by sharing too much about what I really think – but I’ve also helped another along in their dark moments and found many who consider me a safe, non-judgmental harbor – –

And those who were aided far outweigh those who tried to use my self-confessed imperfections against me…

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I personally believe there to be a wealth of information available from those who are part way through the journey – – the ones we aren’t sure are going to make it or not.

I could be wrong, but if you are that depressed and you still chose to get up and meet me for lunch, maybe I could benefit from something you have to share.

But maybe, today, I can’t bear the pain of you on top of my own pain – –

I’d just really like to see a social construct that made it okay to say, “I hear you are struggling – I’m sorry, but I’ve got enough of my own stuff that I can’t deal with you today.”

Instead of,

“You need to quit being so negative – it’s no wonder your life is crap – you need to change your attitude….”

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When I’m in pain, Lord knows I do not have nearly the patience and fortitude I should – pain wears you out, ya know…

But I still believe our walks on the dark side have gifts to bear…

That our greatest strength comes from these walks and that denying these journeys take place until we’re able to show up with our happy face again does not serve our fellow man as well as we might.

But, as always, I could be wrong – – check back in a year or two to see if  I’ve changed my mind.

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