Soul on Deck
A line I heard on Jordan Peterson’s podcast has haunted me for the past few weeks. “If there is something divine and immortal about human beings and it’s our ultimate ethical responsibility to let that shine into the world…than heaven help us when we don’t manage that.”
That line, coupled with the recent deaths of several people in my community, has had me questioning — how am I managing my gifts in the world? And on my deathbed, what would I think of how I’ve managed myself thus far?
Speaking and writing about my experiences with a physical disability requires a vulnerability that can sometimes feel sacrificial. However, it is something I lean into because I recognize it is my unique gift.
My gift is physically going through life differently. I share this experience externally not because my differences need to be elevated more than anyone else’s, but because going through life in this manner has taught me a lot about what unifies us as humans.
And we are at a time in human history where we need to focus on what unites us versus what divides us. We are at a time where all of us need to let our gifts shine into the world because our gifts have the ability to heal one another.
The poet Clarissa Pinkola Estes wrote:
One of the most calming and powerful actions you can do to intervene in a stormy world is to stand up and show your soul. Soul on deck shines like gold in dark times. The light of the soul throws sparks, can send up flares, builds signal fires, causes proper matters to catch fire. To display the lantern of soul in shadowy times like these — to be fierce and to show mercy toward others; both are acts of immense bravery and greatest necessity.
Struggling souls catch light from other souls who are fully lit and willing to show it. If you would help to calm the tumult, this is one of the strongest things you can do.
Often we censor ourselves from sharing our gifts and showing our souls. I know I have.
In the past two years, I’ve worked extensively with a number of coaches and teachers to understand why I historically censored myself. One of the many reasons was that I had been afraid to “meet the moment” with my authentic feelings. My innermost circle of friends will smile when they read the phrase “meet the moment” because barely a week goes by where I seek advice on what I want to say, go off on my own, and come back with the response that “I appreciate the advice, but went another way because I needed to meet the moment.”
In last week’s blog post, I posed the question — is there hidden value in impatience? I also wonder — is there hidden value in meeting the moment? Are there times when we don’t “meet the moment” out of fear of being “too much”? Or from a place of self-censorship?
One of the things I’ve learned is that when I accept the negative stories others tell me (or I tell myself ) and decide to hide my gift, I diminish the ability of my soul to shine through.
Are you diminishing the ability of your soul to shine through?
Regardless of your answer, I applaud you for considering the question. I also invite you to continue reading the “Patience is a virtue?” blog series in the coming weeks, as I share learnings that have helped me and ask if your gifts could help me.