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3 weeks ago · · 0 comments

What You Do Not Know

East Coker

by T. S. Eliot

I said to my soul, be still, and wait without hope
For hope would be hope for the wrong thing; wait without love,
For love would be love of the wrong thing; there is yet faith
But the faith and the love and the hope are all in the waiting.
Wait without thought, for you are not ready for thought:
So the darkness shall be the light, and the stillness the dancing.
Whisper of running streams, and winter lightning.
The wild thyme unseen and the wild strawberry,
The laughter in the garden, echoed ecstasy
Not lost, but requiring, pointing to the agony
Of death and birth.

You say I am repeating
Something I have said before. I shall say it again.
Shall I say it again? In order to arrive there,
To arrive where you are, to get from where you are not,
You must go by a way wherein there is no ecstasy.

In order to arrive at what you do not know
You must go by a way which is the way of ignorance.
In order to possess what you do not possess
You must go by the way of dispossession.
In order to arrive at what you are not
You must go through the way in which you are not.
And what you do not know is the only thing you know
And what you own is what you do not own.

(from The Four Quartets)

Psychology teaches me that, if I want to sustain lifelong zest and passion, I must be open to novelty. But to let go of the familiar is, as in the words of C.G. Jung, the “opus contra naturam” (literally, work against nature).

May I, in this coming New Year, open my heart and mind and soul to newness. Might I be granted courage to let go, when necessary, of what I otherwise cling to: the routine, the tried-and-true, the old standby’s.

Here’s to a New Year for us all — truly new — where we stretch into what we do not know, all for the sake of living a genuinely creative life — to become our “original face before we were born,” our birthright as unique individuals put here for one reason, to help evolve the planet!

Categories: Addiction, Calm, Creativity, Forgiveness, Gratitude, Happiness, Healing, Life tips, Meditation, Mindfulness, Nature, Philosophy, Recovery, Self-Compassion, Shame, Spirituality

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