Anything you lose comes round in another form.” Rumi
I would SO love to tell you, “Yeah, don’t grieve. It’s not spiritually necessary or enlightened. We are transcendent beings. . . “
Most of us are not there and many give lip service to those kinds of messages if we are honest with ourselves.
We hurt when we lose something.
We really hurt when we lose someone.
We have deep connections with the person we loved who died.
They co-create our world with us.
Sometimes they gave life to us (or we to them) and then we created a history, a storyline, a relationship, a family, a network of friends, etc.
We derive meaning and pleasure from our connection.
We sometimes sustain wounds and hardships in those relationships as well.
But they (the person and our experiences with them) are as much a part of us as our arm or leg and there is pain when someone dies as there is when we sustain a physical injury.
What I have come to learn, through my experience and the experience of those around me, is when we acknowledge the presence of the pain, (the upheaval, and the sense of being distraught) and can hold it in our awareness, even if for moments, healing occurs.
We do more harm, expend more energy, and suffer longer when we disavow the pain.
I think we can get to a place of understanding that others really “never leave us” because we get in touch with our interconnectedness with them. But when we don’t touch the pain and allow it to be, it is harder to connect with more transcendent concepts.
This is one of the reasons why practices like mindfulness are beneficial to our “grief work.” The practice teaches us to be present, moment to moment, and to accept rather than to fight off.
We then have the energy to live with what “is” and to have compassion for the situation as it presents itself.
So, I don’t think we need to throw ideas like Rumi’s out altogether. I think we just need to practice a lot of compassion on the way to having a lived-bodily experience of what it truly means.
And without that experience, those words can be hurtful and harmful to someone who is still defending from their pain.
~~As a side note, today is my dad’s birthday! I can’t be with him today but I am NEVER far away from my thoughts and heart. Happy Birthday Daddy! Thank you for all of these decades of love, support, and lessons.
For more information about learning to allow pain and sorrow, check out Stephen Levine‘s work Unattended Sorrow or The Grief Process CD/Audio.
- Compassion for Ourselves in the Face of Pain (mindfullyhealthy.wordpress.com)
- Q & A: Still Grieving??? (namasteconsultinginc.com)
- “What hurts you, blesses you…” (bipolarmuse.com)
- Rumi (bnish.wordpress.com)
- “Forgiveness is not a mandate” (namasteconsultinginc.com)