Friday, October 5, 2018

The story

He's opened a box, deconstructed and flattened it to write on the inside of it. He holds his makeshift sign to tell passersby that he's HIV. The story on the box says Hello, I'm John, (I'm not using his real name to protect his identity) I'm HIV. He goes into details about his circumstances–homelessness, poverty, illness, hunger, addiction. He asks for help. He's John HIV.

John is many things, but he's not HIV. He has it. He's not it. He's been made to believe that he is a disease. He lives true to his belief that he is HIV and an addict rather than believing that he has HIV and an addiction. This belief keeps him hopeless, helpless, dependent, sick, and in the dark.

A few years ago a man told me that I was not a writer. He suggested that I say that I wrote rather than say that I was a writer. My ego was hurt. His intentions were unkind and small-minded, but he was right, even if for the wrong reasons. Yet, at that moment, I didn't understand the wisdom in releasing my self-concept from my external condition. Once I realized that who I am is not what I do or what I have, I found a thought that I could go to to ground myself, recalibrate, put things in perspective and discern. As Abraxhamanu would say, It's a cliché because it's true. We are not our circumstances.

Who we are is easily forgotten when we are reminded and remind ourselves of the choices we've made, what we have accomplished or not, the mistakes we've made, our perceived limitations, our shortfalls, what we own or what we have not attained, what we have been convinced of, our past conditioning, and how we compare to others and their standards. What if today we reminded ourselves of our true nature? Today is a good day to remind ourselves that we are, by design, everything that is good, peace, beings that can flow in the confidence of the gracious expression of the Universe. If we take time to be still and breathe, we find calm, rest, consolation, relief, joy, equanimity and ease. We find a sense of order. We tap into the deeper knowing of our purpose, that of spirits living a human condition. What we do or don't, what we have or don't, helps others create a story about us, but it is not our truth. Today, we remind ourselves of that.

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