“It is one thing to feel loved… when our life is together and all our support systems are in place. Then self-acceptance is relatively easy. We may even claim that we are coming to like ourselves. When we are strong, on top, in control, and as the Celts say, “in fine form,” a sense of security crystallizes.
But what happens when life falls through the cracks? What happens when we… fail, when our dreams shatter, when our investments crash, when we are regarded with suspicion?
What happens when we come face-to-face with the human condition?
Ask anyone who has gone through a separation or divorce. Are they together now? Is their sense of security intact? Do they have a strong sense of self-worth? Do they still feel like the beloved child?
“This [brokenness] is what what needs to be accepted.
Unfortunately, this is what we tend to reject.
Here the seeds of corrosive self-hatred take root. This painful vulnerability is the characteristic feature of our humanity that most needs to be embraced in order to restore our human condition to a healed state…” – Nicholas Harnan
…Yet as soon as we lose our nerve about ourselves, we take cover. Adam and Eve hid, and we all, in one way or another, have used them as role models. Why? Because we do not like what we see. It is uncomfortable–intolerable–to confront our true selves…
“And so… we either flee our own reality or manufacture a false self which is mostly admirable, mildly prepossessing, and superficially happy. We hide what we know or feel ourselves to be (which we assume to be unacceptable and unlovable) behind some kind of appearance which we hope will be more pleasing. We hide behind pretty faces which we put on for the benefit of our public. And in time we may even come to forget that we are hiding, and think that our assumed pretty face is what we really look like.” – Simon Tugwell
…come out of hiding. No amount of spiritual makeup can render us more presentable…
“Over the years I have come to realize that the greatest trap in our life is not success, popularity, or power, but self-rejection.
Success, popularity, and power can indeed present a great temptation, but their seductive quality often comes from the way they are part of the much larger temptation to self-rejection.
When we have come to believe in the voices that call us worthless and unlovable, then success, popularity, and power are easily perceived as attractive solutions.
The real trap, however, is self-rejection. As soon as someone accuses me or criticizes me, as soon as I am rejected, left alone, or abandoned,I find myself thinking, “Well, that proves once again that I am a nobody.”… [My dark side says,] I am no good… I deserve to be pushed aside, forgotten, rejected, and abandoned.
Self-rejection is the greatest enemy of the spiritual life because it contradicts the sacred voice that calls us the “Beloved.” Being the Beloved constitutes the core truth of our existence.” – Henri Nouwen.
…To feel safe is to stop living in my head and sink down into my heart and feel liked and accepted… not having to hide anymore and distract myself… no need to impress or dazzle others or draw attention to myself, a new way of being in the world… calm, unafraid, no anxiety and what’s going to happen next… loved and valued… just being together as an end in itself.
…If we conceal our wounds out of fear and shame, our inner darkness can neither be illuminated nor become a light for others. We cling to our bad feelings and beat ourselves with the past when what we should do is let go.” – Chapter 1, ‘Come Out Of Hiding’, Abba’s Child, by Brennan Manning.
“Fear less, hope more; Eat less, chew more; Whine less, breathe more; Talk less, say more; Love more, and all good things will be yours.”- Swedish Proverb
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