Photographic Art: "Fork In The Road, Thailand", by Butch Osborne © Copyrighted All rights reserved.

I open my eyes and greet another day of life, remaining in the silence of the morning and just being so thankful for the gift of another day.  I meditate on love and light and find an abundance of gratitude.  Yet, I haven’t always traveled through life along a road of peace and serenity.  In fact, for a good part of my 45 years of life, the road chosen was chaos and conflict, not to mention, often traveled behind a mask of smiles and “I’m fine’s”.  A path that included physical, as well as emotional, pain.  Pain caused by the thoughts, words and/or actions of others, or self.  My life’s journey has taken me up and down, amid mountains and valleys, wealth and poverty, addiction and religion, sincerity and hypocrisy, acceptance and judgment.

That is why every man’s story is important, eternal, sacred; that is why every man, as long as he lives and fulfills the will of nature, is wondrous, and worthy of every consideration.
(Hermann Hesse)

Each life experience has brought me to a fork in the road where I had to choose a direction to travel; either the “positive” path or the “negative” path.  I can also look at it as having to choose a path of “forgiveness” or “resentment”, “serenity” or “fear”, “love” or “hate.”  Shortly after the back-to-back deaths of my dear friend, Debbie, and my most loved mother-in-law, Patricia, several years ago, I found myself at the same fork in the road.  I looked down the negative path I seemed to always choose and saw sadness, depression, self-pity, blame, resentment, and anger.  I did not have it within me to travel that path, yet once again.  I then realized there was another path I had not yet taken.  I looked down that path and I saw a fog of the unfamiliar.  It looked pretty scary, the unknown.  Yet, I thought, what did I have to lose?  Could it possibly be more chaotic than the road I was accustomed to traveling all these years?  It was at that moment I chose to “take the path less traveled.”

I took the road less traveled by, and that has made all the difference. (Robert Frost)

I bet you are wondering where the “road less traveled” led me.  It has led me in a completely different direction.  It has led me to self-inquiry, meditation, and days filled with gratitude and serenity.  It has led me to freedom and the truth of the “I am.”  It has led me to realize that the Universe is a magnanimous, constant movement of life.  A vastness my human brain cannot comprehend, though my Soul knows very well.

Just as the highest and the lowest notes are equally inaudible, so perhaps, is the greatest sense and the greatest nonsense equally unintelligible. (Allan Watts)

Through self-inquiry I am learning that blaming others distracts me from maintaining the integrity of Self, distracts me from owning my own actions and reactions, albeit thoughts, words and/or actions.  I am learning respect for self and all living things.

My actions are my only true belongings.  I cannot escape the consequences of my actions.  My actions are the ground upon which I stand. (Thich Nhat Hanh)

Through meditation, I find peace and serenity by transcending to the Soul, where the Source resides; a place of love and light, no beginning and no end.

If you don’t realize the source,
you stumble in confusion and sorrow.
When you realize where you come from,
you naturally become tolerant,
disinterested, amused,
kindhearted as a grandmother,
dignified as a king.
Immersed in the wonder of the Tao,
you can deal with whatever life brings you,
and when death comes, you are ready.
(Lao Tzu)

Through letting go of labels and definitions attached to me by self and others, I am learning that I am more than this shell of a body, a body that has endured many storms through life.  When my human body no longer breathes, the Soul, the energy, the essence of “I am”, continues.

The words I am are potent words; be careful what you hitch them to.  The thing you’re claiming has a way of reaching back and claiming you. (A.L. Kitselman)

Today, I continue walking along the “road less traveled.”  It is a path that is not perfect, but it is path that is positive, surrounded by serenity, gratitude and love of self and others.  The map I take with me is the awareness that each and every experience in my life, each and every person, place and situation therein contained, whether perceived as good or bad, played a part in the evolution of who I am TODAY.  I shed the want to live yesterday, the want to live tomorrow, and instead embrace the enjoyment of making the most of my life today.  Today, “I am,” not “I was” or “I will.”  Simply and gratefully, I am.

Namaste _/♥_

Comments are closed.