Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Discovered Wisdom

We don't receive wisdom; we must discover it for ourselves after a journey that no one can take for us or spare us.
Marcel Proust French novelist (1871 - 1922)

All the real wisdom I possess was earned by brutal lessons. I understand pain, because I have suffered it in so many varieties. But I grew stronger with each separate wave of agony overcome, which opened my consciousness to the suffering of other hearts and minds. I recognize it in eyes I meet. I hear it tremble voices and see it in words typed on a stark screen. I absorb it like a sponge, sharing pain to ease the ache when it touches my space.
There is much I do not know, and more that I know, but wrestle with practicing. Old habits die slowly sometimes, yet each day I travel some steps forward on my journey, letting things I learn internally lead my footsteps as often as possible.
I cannot walk on water, but I am capable of fire treading when necessary. I do not get across the flames unharmed, often getting burned bone-deep by the time I reach safety. The licking wounds exercise that follows always contains long solitary thoughts which search bravely for even a hint of new found wisdom to make the journey easier. When I find the lesson scar tissue forms on wounds suffered during battle. Wisdom earned then shared makes a solitary journey much less lonely. And letting go of familiar agony leaves room for unexpected joy. The past, no matter how painful, can earn enough wisdom to capture a future well worth the trip there.