It may be a room in our own home (self) but it is not cozy, peaceful, or truly happy.
I say fear (in all its forms) is the most expensive prison cell. This prison cell has a window and a mirror.
It is the most expensive cell because the cost is high for maintenance and the sentence seems to be life without parole.
The window is there showing us possibilities. The window shows us how others are free, their lives may not be perfect, but, they are living with more choices than we seem to have.
The reality is that this expensive prison cell even if it is unfair imprisonment has become our very cramped yet comfortable space. The window is there but sometimes we are too comfortable to even look out. Looking out reminds us of all that we once either had or had hoped for.
The possibility of freedom is scary. In the expensive prison cell we seem powerless, because we do not have to be responsible.
Freedom is terrifying. There are many more options with freedom.
Options mean choices and decisions about what we really want. If we get what we want, it means touching the depth of despair. Despair and sorrow emerge over the true fear. The real fear is believing we are unworthy.
If we get what we want, then we have to feel the pain of not believing we are worthy of having our desires. If we don't get what we want, it confirms our belief in our unworthiness.
Rather than go through the pain of unworthiness, we look away from the window. Why escape through the window, we would get caught, right?
We believe we can prevent rejection, but, that is false control or power.
We hand over our freedom to authorities of our own making. We give up responsibility for our life. It is too painful to see what we've done to be where we are and to forgive what's been done to us. In this high cost prison no one else gets hurt, so long as we are locked up.
The only adversaries are the prison guards, the shadows and ghosts of our past. These adversaries are the mirror if we are willing to look.
The benevolence of the Universe reaches this compact prison cell.
These adversaries are there to help us look within at those aspects that we rather not admit live within us. These aspects are disowned behaviors within us that we judge harshly in others. We cannot see that these aspects are our shadow which is neither good nor bad.
Sometimes we also get visits from those who reflect our pure nature, but, we cannot believe they see anything good in us.
The healing doesn't have to be all work and no play. We can dance with our shadow.
Once, I was a prisoner of all my disowned parts or shadow.
For instance, I didn't like being resentful. I would throw my hands up in the air, metaphorically giving up. I often told myself that with all the years of counseling and at my age, I should have made more strides. More inner work seemed like too much when I had already "suffered" and struggled enough. Thinking like that ensured I remained in the comfort of my cell prison.
It was until I was willing to embrace where I was and feel the pain that life didn't seem like a struggle or unbearable.
Embracing where I am is setting myself free without changing anything.
Embracing what is, is a space of non-resistance. I may have been lost but I was never incapable of finding my way.
The truth is that we are scared of getting what we want. Getting what we want means being responsible for what comes into our lives.
True freedom is being responsible for our lives.
The beauty of life is the continual encounter with all that we need to melt into the grace and power of the Universe within and all around us.
I'm working on finding full-time work that will allow me to take more responsibility for my life. For now, I am grateful for all that has been, what is, and what is to be.
What I know is that peace emerged once I began to love, that which I loathed, disliked, feared and couldn't even look at -out of shame.
Do you dare look in the mirror and escape through the windows of your expensive fears?