The easy way or the hard way?

A number of people whom I care deeply about are currently getting their asses kicked by – choose your preferred semantics – the Goddess (Momma), the God (Papa), the Universe, Divinity, their Higher Power, etc. (for me, it’s usually the Momma).  I have been in that space before.  Hell, I set up home there for a while shortly after beginning this Path in earnest.  I know what it’s like because I have lived it.   My beloved and I have talked previously about the way in which we choose to (or choose not to) learn our live’s lessons.  We have talked about how usually, the Momma will give us a few tries to learn a lesson the easy way.  Some people pick up on that pretty quickly.  I was not, when I first started, one of those people.  If we don’t opt for the easy way, we get the hard way.  Enter Kali.  Kali is one of Momma’s many faces/aspects, and She is a harsh Teacher.  To put it in the most straight forward sense, She basically comes in, finds everything that you’re holding on to which is a load of bull shit and takes it away, usually making you absolutely miserable in the process until you reach that rock bottom point when you have no other option than to walk through your shit and get it on straight.

I was one of those who required Kali’s appearance.   Ever since I took a non-western mythology course in undergrad where I learned about Hinduism, I was fascinated with Kali (this is certainly not a requisite of Her manifesting in your life).  Many people who know anything about Kali are usually scared of Her (at least initially, and if they aren’t, they probably should be) with Her big ass tongue, Her necklace of severed heads, Her waist garland of severed human arms, the wild expression usually depicted on Her face.  Most people know Kali as the goddess of destruction, yet, She not only destroys, and She certainly doesn’t destroy just for the sake of doing so.

I subscribe to Exotic India’s newsletters which get sent out once a month, I think, and regale bits and pieces of Buddhist and Hindu thealogy.  The most recent newsletter is all about Kali, and I see this as no coincidence when I look around and see all these people in my life who, whether they know it or not, are currently dealing with Her. Though I had known that Kali’s destructive workings were for the point of making room for rebirth, I had never realized She was a triple goddess, but the newsletter clearly states She is.  She is death, birth, and life.  The newsletter aptly describes Her saying,

“The dark-hued Kali, who represents
in her being darkness, suffering, death, deformation and ugly, is
the most potent source of life, light, happiness and beauty – the
positive aspect of the creation. She destroys to re-create,
inflicts suffering so that the delight better reveals, and in her
fearful form one has the means of overcoming all fears, not by
escaping but by befriending them.”

I see Kali’s long tongue designed to lick up the blood spilled when She cuts away at the illusions in people’s lives.   Her necklace of severed heads taken from those who cling to false ideas and realities.  The garland of severed arms taken from those who were constantly reaching for illusion so that they may only now reach Truth.  Her darkened skin representing the darkness from which all Life must come.  In all this, She not only destroys, but tends and nurtures and brings back to life. The newsletter makes a beautiful point in recognizing that a journey that begins in lightness terminates in darkness, but a journey that begins in darkness will always conclude in endless light.

Sue Ann over at Always Embraces All Ways recently wrote a fabulous post in which she makes the point of delineating the difference between Compassion and sympathy.  Sympathy stems energetically from a victim mentality while Compassion stems from Love.  When my Teacher is acting on Momma’s behalf, kicking my ass, and confronting me with the fact that I don’t have my shit on straight (an act of supreme Compassion), and I say that it sucks or that it’s hard, her compassionate response is some variety of, “Yeah, so?” or “And your point is…?” That is Compassion.  Fierce Compassion.  If she were to say something more saccharine like, “Poor you – I feel so bad for you, etc.” she would be doing me a disservice.  Sue Ann and I shared comments about how the Divine Feminine is active, not passive.  Her point for us is to move through our lives, to grow, to change, and that is antithetical to receiving/giving or wallowing in sympathy or self-pity.

Sue Ann also made the point that most of us don’t understand what Love really is, that our society has purported a definition of love that is conditional, that confuses love with need, and I agree.  It stands to reason, then, that most of us would similarly confuse and misunderstand Compassion, which stems from Love, as only something that is fluffy and soft when it is not.  My experience with Kali was one of ultimate Love and Compassion, and I can tell you without a doubt that it sucked ass until it was over.  And then it was amazing.  Then, I could see it for what it truly was.  Then, I was beyond grateful to have had the experience that helped me grow, change, and become more of my True Self.

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9 thoughts on “The easy way or the hard way?

  1. Thank You for your Blessings Aerolin. I accept the Honor you extend in Gratitude and Appreciation.

    I delighted in your description of Kali. She’s my kind of gal!

    ‘Lilith’ was said to have gone off to consort with demons. Isn’t it *odd* how different religions dress up the Divine Feminine in rather UNattractive fashion? I understand the symbolism but like in the movie “The Matrix”, why does disconnecting from our illusions have to take on such a ‘dark’ look?

    You’ve written so beautifully here, of the process of self realization and being pushed out of our comfort zones. In much the same way as any momma bird kicks her chicks out of the nest eventually. So they know what the experience feels like to soar!

    I compare us to Humpty-Dumpty. A lot of energy is wasted brooding about our reality cracking up and going to pieces. Something happening to us, that “all the king’s horses and all the king’s men, can’t put back together again”.

    And if we simply focus on the idea of being “Hatched”, the ride is much ease-ier. Humpty’s shell fell all to pieces because it was time for him to hatch.

    Eggs that never hatch are the ones that end up on McMuffins.

    Try *this* idea on for size…

    Maybe there is NO such thing as *Destroy*?

    Maybe there is only Recreation? You know, Gods at play.

    Taking Creation and re-creating it over and over again? A Living Universe of Eternal and Infinite Possibilities?

    A Womb with a View?

  2. You are most welcome, Sue Ann!

    Indeed the Divine Feminine has been dressed up unattractively for a very long time. The Crone becomes the hag (a word to which we have attached a negative connotation), Witches (wise women) become evil sorceresses, the nubile Maiden turns into a deadly seductress, etc. Lilith is another one of my favorites! I have a thing for the fiesty faces Momma wears.

    I think one of the complicated pieces is that our society has equated darkness with evil and negativity. I once held this view before I had done some deprogramming. Now, I relate to darkness on a whole different level. It reminds me of the womb – a dark place indeed – from which we all come, from which all things are birthed. I love your “Womb with a view”!

    I also love the humpty-dumpty analogy – it’s been a while since I thought of humpty-dumpty, and this perspective is fantastic, particularly coming from my path in which eggs signify fertility, potential, etc.

    No such thing as destroy…there’s something for me to chew on! Perhaps we use the word destruction because we are so terrified of changing, of growing, and so we view the process in a negative light. We focus on the loss, instead of recognizing it as a simple shift. Is it really loss at all? Especially if what’s leaving is falseness, was it ever really truly a part of us? Certainly not of our True Self…

    I love your comments and welcome many more!

  3. I love the stories and the tales, too. I haven’t been doing much ‘blogging’ because I’m putting something together to upload. “Hera-kles.com”

    Notice the spelling? “hera-kles”

    The name actually means “My Souls’ Glory”, for “Hera” is the name of the Divine Feminine.

    At the beginning of the story of the 12 labors, ‘Hera-kles’ says, “I Am Hera-kles!” And Momma answers him, “That has yet been proved.” The 12 labors are the 12 steps we all dance in reconciling our two aspects, being both divine AND human. Being BOTH a child of man and a child of god at the same time…

    the essential duality of Life: Romulus & Remus, Cain & Able, Christ & Lucifer, God & Man, etc. I am human and I am God, also.

    And so is everybody else

    {{{hugs}}}

  4. Laura~ Welcome! I saw that my post had automatically generated a link to yours – always lovely to meet another who knows Kali! Thank you for the blessings! Many to you as well, and I look forward to seeing you around here again 🙂

    Sue Ann~ Indeed, Hera is one of the Divine Feminine’s many names! I got a book over the holidays called Goddesses in Every Woman. Hasn’t been time to read it yet, but I’m looking forward to it!

    Are you at all familiar with transpersonal theory? I think you might enjoy reading about it if you’re not, as it speaks to the dualities that each of us must resolve on numerous levels before we can reach the level of Mind where we recognize and live that All is One, and nothing is separate. I look forward to reading your writing on the new site! Hugs to you, lady!

  5. Hi, Aerolin 🙂

    What an interesting discussion. And my heart goes out to your friends. (sorry. didn’t mean to sympathize ;-)…)

    I simply can’t imagine what it would feel like to believe that Godd was the author of all the turmoil in my life, like some abusive Parent, doling out ‘love’ with one hand, and a slap in the face the the other. It reminds me of the old expression that a house divided will surely fall, and feels a little too much like MPD. As a parent myself, I couldn’t imagine – say – putting my baby’s hand under boiling water to teach it not to touch something hot.

    But that’s just me…

    That being said, I do believe that we can experience great turmoil for a number of other reasons – Whether it’s ‘real’ or ‘illusionary’ or “projection”, as some claim, we do appear to be living in a world that is filled with so many dangers…and enemies to the soul. And the nature of life itself is cyclical – birth, death, rebirth – seed time, growing time, harvest time – over and over again. We go and grow through the seasons of life, just like all living beings.

    And I do believe that we are instructed and guided by God all the time. We just may not be paying attention, or willing to do the work. 🙂 Been there, done that myself!

    I always find the conversations on the different Goddesses so interesting. Thank you for sharing what you know and understand about Kali!! That’s one dame I hope not to meet! LOL

  6. Hey, Grace 🙂

    The point is that Godd/Divinity/Whoever is NOT the author of all the turmoil – we are when we are resistant to the lessons that we need to learn in our lives. We are the ones who are responsible for making ourselves miserable by avoiding, trying to escape, ignoring, or rejecting the things we need to learn. Every time that Momma has kicked my ass, She has always first given me several chances to learn my lessons the easy way and I either wasn’t listening, was ignoring Her, or was resisting it, just like you’ve pointed out in terms of being guided all the time but not paying attention or being willing to do the work we need to. In my experience, when Momma is kicking my ass, and I’m crying my eyes out because it sucks so bad, She’s crying right there with me because She wants nothing but Joy and Happiness for me and She hates to see me in pain. In this regard, it’s not the mother sticking her child’s hand in boiling water to teach a lesson, it’s the mother shaking her head in sorrow and crying in pain when she sees the poor choices her child is making and suffering the consequences for.

    Your reference concerning MPD (more recently re-termed Dissociative Identity Disorder or DID) hits one of my buttons. This may well be the topic for another post, but I feel the need to comment here. I know 3 people who, as I put it, ‘have people’, (i.e., they may qualify for a diagnosis of DID if they went to a therapist and received an assessment) and what I interpret that you’re insinuating is not only NOT the way it works for all individuals who fall under this umbrella (the three people I know who have people all lead fully functional lives), but not the way it works with the conceptualization of Divinity that I’ve discussed here either.

    I can fully appreciate your not wanting to meet Kali! Keep your shit on straight, and you won’t need to worry 😉

    Hugs to you!

  7. ahh….sorry about that. I didn’t realize that my smartassiness might push a button, and wasn’t intended to speak to the actual disorder. What I was trying to convey – not very well, obviously – is that all of the ‘faces’ of God – be they male, female, animal, etc. – through all of the different cultures and religions…when taken as a ‘whole’…provide (to me) more complexity and confusion than real understanding how the Divine works.

    Because I don’t believe that God is a person…and that we humans have created these more humanlike qualities (archetypes, even) for Her in our attempt to understand Her….I really have to keep “It” really simple, because I am simple 🙂

    God is love to me. Love is God.

    So please forgive me for offending you. The term is one my friends and I have occasionally used in jest, to describe those moments when we feel one way, act another, then switch to something else.

    Not uncommon for a bunch of women of a certain age. Menopause could easily be defined as a ‘mental health’ issue in our books! LOL

    Yeah…I’m not worried about meeting Kali. Not that I can keep my shit on straight..it’s just that I believe Grace is enough to fill in the gaps.

    Namaste, Aerolin 🙂

  8. Thanks, Grace, for your apology and sensitivity to my buttons! I can appreciate your confusion. I don’t see Divinity as a person either (that is to say, human). My conceptualization of Divinity is panentheistic in that I believe Divinity is imminent in everything and yet also transcendent of it. Thus, Divinity is also a Being as well as being present in all the world around me. I think our being called human beings reflects our nature of being human and yet also Divine. If you believe that humans were created in the image of Godd, then some parts of ourselves are reflected in Godd’s nature. Love (true Love which is unconditional) is not static, it’s dynamic, and it doesn’t always look all soft and fluffy. So for me, of course the Divine is complex and confusing for me to understand given that It’s so vast and being human, there will probably always be parts of it, at least, that are beyond my comprehension. For me, recognizing the many aspects of Divinity is one of the ways in which I connect to Divinity, but what works for me won’t work for someone else, and that is a beautiful thing for, though we are One, we are all different. 🙂

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