How strange we humans are: we have the incredible gift to experience life, yet we are so scared of it.

Our choices are often just an attempt to keep everything under control, and to feel as little as possible.

Most of us would just be happy to go through the day in the same way over & over again so to avoid unpleasant surprises.

As if Life could ever stop to surprise us at all.

Running away from Life

A long time ago, a young man who’d had enough of the world, decided to retrieve in an old and remote temple.

He traveled many days and many nights determined to leave it all behind.

No more heartache, worries, or doubts.

Most of all, no more humans.

He was ready to barter his own humanness for a safe life.

When the young man finally arrived at the temple, he was summoned before the old master right away.

Good, good – he thought to himself – this is going to be quick & easy!

“Master, I have come a long way to learn from you.

I am ready to give my life to God and be of service to all the other monks.”

The master had his back on the boy, and never looked at him once.

After a long time, the master spoke.

“My boy, God does not wish to have your life, nor He’d ever ask you leave it behind. Sorrow awaits those who run away from themselves, for joy can only be found in accepting life as it is.”

“But Master, I’m not interested in joy, I just don’t want to suffer anymore.

Here with you, I will feel safe.

I will work hard and learn to commune with God and feel whole again.”

“Why can’t you feel whole just as you are, dear boy?”

“How could I? I have these horrible thoughts going around in my head all the time, and life is just so hard out there. There is so much noise, anger, despair. Human beings are often not nice and I just feel so scared and lonely, master. Please keep me with you, I promise I won’t be in your way and I shall learn fast.”

The old master finally turned around and looked at the young man straight in his begging eyes.

“You only serve God when you are in life.

Go now and only come back when you have learnt that to be human is to be God also.”

Be in life.

We often are like the aspiring monk.

We all look for something that will make our existence more bearable.

Whether it’s medications, alcohol or even meditation, in the end our choices aim to numb the pain to be alive.

We think that if we take one more pill or sit with God long enough, than the grief in our heart will just go.

It’s the grief of not knowing what the future holds and the belief that what we are is not enough.

We simply can’t handle being human because we don’t know that we are God also.

When we see that the safety we search is just inside of us, then we are not longer scared to be alive.

There is nowhere to go, no one to hide from, nothing to be scared of.

Life just becomes a continuous experience that allows us to grow and open a bit more each time.

And so it is,

Antonia Lyons

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