Past few days, I have been feeling like I am on a countdown. As though the clock is ticking and I can hear it inside me, around me, everywhere. And I am left wondering – I don’t know how much time is left for this countdown to end. I sat for days watching the clock tick away. Watching regrets rise, watching fears take misshapen forms. Feeling the urge to fix things, repair things. Feeling the need to rush to loved ones. Feeling isolation, feeling separated, feeling desperation and the pain of not knowing.
And then I stopped watching. I can still hear the clock ticking away in the background. But, from anxiety the thoughts are moving to living. From fear it is moving to gratitude. From worry it is moving to action. From restlessness it is moving to stillness. No two moments are the same. And as different as it is, as unsettling as it feels, it also feels grounding. Like it is time to grow my roots deeper into myself. Into the things that really matter.
It is time to grow from being a helpless child, unwilling to step outside her cocoon, still wanting someone to take care of her, to a person who is ok not knowing things. From being a fearful, anxious, self-judgmental spiritual seeker to a being who is beginning to understand that though she knows a lot, she understands little and practices even lesser.
Now, this ticking moment, is a moment to do what I have never done before. What I have avoided, felt uncomfortable doing. It is a ticking reminder to be silent, to be still, to look inside and accept who I am. Flaws and all. But it is also time to give up useless conversations, useless thoughts, useless memories, a time to empty all the knowledge and create space inside for God. Or rather to remove the clutter, so I can find the real Self inside.
It is time to give away freely all that I have. A time to stop hoarding what I feel is ‘me’ and ‘mine.’ A time to break barriers. A time to strip myself of all adjectives, synonyms, similes and metaphors, to see what remains.
And the clocks ticks. Tells me there is really not that much to do. Stop doing. Be here now. Stay in the present. There is really nothing to do, nowhere to go, no one to be. Join with the ever-present stillness, peace and joy. If an action or emotion emerges, honour it. And that is all there is to life. Living it with a honesty. Living it with a simplicity. Living it without frills and fanfare because the clock is ticking.
The clock is ticking and I can see the Oneness in all there is. People coming together, universe sending support in unexpected ways. So much good and gracious in what could be the dark hours. All we really need is light. Inside us, if we can hold it. Or someone near us who holds it for us when we aren’t able to shine ours.
Red said it very wisely in Shawshank Redemption – Get busy living or get busy dying. I think I chose the former.