Truth? It’s 10:30 as I begin this. The St. Louis Blues won tonight, and the Cardinals just finished their win. I wasn’t paying as much attention as I usually do because I was listening to a writer’s seminar — (a little ADD, anyone?). Before I started this, I walked the puppies for the night. The truth is I feel like just scrapping this. You know why? Because I spend about six hours a day to get something like 60 likes on the five social media platforms where I publish. Yeah, I’m aware I could do it better in terms of knowing the context of each platform, but I have been doing this for nearly fifteen months with what currently looks like decreasing returns.
I suppose I have been stupid in many ways, but it doesn’t matter. I have lived and worked my Heart. I suppose it’s just somewhat discouraging, especially when I’m exhausted, because when I taught in the classroom, I knew I impacted students positively. Whether students or readers, my motivation has been love. It’s discouraging, as lovers spurned know, when you care so much but it seems to mean so little.
And the above are examples of reasoning that results from Ego-input. These are things I really feel, but thankfully, because of my own Heart, eternal Spirit within me, I can face these emotions, knowing they are borne of Ego, and figure out wtf I am going to do from here on out.
One thing I know I will do is continue to share poetry for a couple more days to the end of National Poetry Month. I thrill at the way Spirit and the laws of the Universe work, because the needs I have are met by the things upon which I am focused, especially in my writing work.
My focus has been Walt Whitman and his poem “Song of Myself.” Walt, too, faces Ego working and grows apprehensive in tone as he realizes and allows the opinions and actions of others to sway him in some ways. However, he turns to Heart, recognizes the duality of Ego and Heart in him, embraces both, chooses Heart as his operating system and moves into realms that many don’t choose.
The conflicts Walt and I experience bring us to decision and recognition points. These represent times when we must make a choice: Do I continue in this beautiful life of Purpose, Happiness, Contentment in unity with Spirit, creating Vision and consequent blessing? Do I cave to Ego and say, “Everyone and everything seem indifferent and unaffected by my work. Maybe I’m stupid. Maybe I’m crazy. For sure I don’t seem to be fulfilling others’ visions of what I should be?” I can either face that negative Ego-energy by reassessing and creating Beauty through Heart-generated energy, or I can quit.
Walt Whitman felt such conflict of those around him who would bring up his past and the inability to answer to the bigger issues of his time like slavery and the Cvil War, but ultimately, he created Beauty and inspiration by recognizing and embracing himSelf and choosing to see and process and relate to all through Heart: “Trippers and askers surround me,… // These come to me days and nights and go from me again, / But they are not the Me myself” (“Song of Myself” Sec. 4). In between the first line and the last couple lines of Section 4 we find those from the past who would question what he is doing, scientists confronting him because of his observations, socialites not approving because he doesn’t measure up to their standards — all of these make him doubt, but he grabs hold of his personal truth about all those doubts: “But they are not me Myself.” Acknowledge and recognize what is going on internally, but grab hold of Heart.
He stands amused at the interplay and jousting of Ego and Heart, of societal expectations that cause doubt, but he discards in detached curiosity: “Both in and out of the game and watching and wondering at it” (Section 4). He does not know the ultimate outcome of the doubts of others or the doubting of his own Ego. The crucial fact remains that he recognizes all this is going on, as I have tonight, and he says about himself, his Heart-energized, -evaluating, -processing Self, that “I have no mockings or arguments, I witness and wait.” Patience, self-love, and celebration and song of that Self allow him to move forward and keep all in perspective.
Keeping life and the vicissitudes of all we feel from our experiences in Heart-perspective can do the same for us. We need not be master poets, master anythings, to do this. Oh, except masters of our own Ego and understanding our basic composition. Walt has no qualms about embracing the duality and making no excuses for it; he just says here I am. I’ve dealt with Me, and you can, too, if you have such a mind.
He wouldn’t degrade or denigrate his imperfections, only accept himself as one to be celebrated. He acknowledges his Heart as his primary operating system while respecting his Ego self, too: “I believe in you my soul [Heart], the other I am [Ego] must not abase itself to you, / And you must not be abased to the other” (Section 5). And he goes on to revel in the totality of his being.
And that is what I need to do. Sometimes, though, I really would like some encouragement. Oh, Walt did, too, so I don’t apologize or condemn myself in any way for that — just acknowledge it.
Blessing in continued celebration and singing of yourself!
Questions to consider:
How many times have you asked yourself or simply thought about the following questions?
Who am I, really?
What is my truth?
How do my actions reveal what I really feel and believe?
What would I do with my life if I could do anything?
What is my passion?
Why am I here?
How can I discover answers to any of these questions?
If you have considered any of these questions, I hope that my experiences and writing will give you some guidance. Please read my blog and comment and share your thoughts. I would love to hear from you!