OH! SO YOU THINK YOU ARE FREE DO YA?
Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6 Part 7 Part 8 Part 9 Part 10 Birthday Intermission Part 11 Part 12 Part 13 Part 14 Part 15 Part 16 Part 17 Part 18 Part 19 Part 20 Intermission No. 2 Part 21 Part 22 Part 23 Part 24 Part 25 Part 26 Part 27 Part 28 Part 29 Part 30 Intermission No. 3
One of my greatest blessings in life was unfolding in front of me, allowing me to witness up close and personal those who came to the Garden of Eden. Most all were searching for ways out of typical mainstream societal thinking, but none knowing how to take the leap. I acknowledged and accepted that we are all wherever we are, dealing with and overcoming (or not) the obstacles in our way. Layers upon layers we peeled back in getting to really know ourselves, with the help of each other. Not only were most of those who came challenged by our reality, but I was also being deeply challenged as I delved deeper into my own layers of illusion.
I witnessed people DOING their lives, focusing on making money to provide shelter, struggling to maintain or rescue their health and to educate, clothe and feed themselves and their families. Few could even fathom saving for eventual retirement. Many had come from investing 40 hours a week at a minimum (double that for a two parent working family) to accumulate enough wealth to feel secure, regardless of the cost to their health and family, or themselves in the bigger picture. Most all had admitted that they wouldn’t have done their “job” unless they were paid to do it. Their lives continuously provided great perspective for amplifying love for my own life.
Since I was in my mid to late twenties, I have not had to have a job. I was incredibly blessed to stay at home with my children every single day and was superbly supported by my was-band in doing so. Still every day I am grateful for that priceless gift. Not only did I stay home with my kids, but I also had the freedom to do whatever I wanted. I was frugal by nature, so wasn’t a big spender, but I was free to invest our money in ways that I felt benefitted us, or just for the enjoyment of it. I was free to travel, free to spend time with my friends, free to house and feed others, free to redecorate, free to do art, free to go to the theater, free to grow a garden, free to buy the most decadent of foods….oh so free!!!
There was however a price to pay for that freedom. My was-band spent much time away (likely years when all totalled) earning this money to support our family, being the provider he wanted to be. He actually loved the adventurous side of his job, though almost none of it would he have done if he hadn't gotten paid. I told him many times that I didn’t need this big house or any of these things, and encouraged him to leave his work to travel together with our kids abroad. We almost made the leap once and put our house on the market to go sailing. His father got sick, and then mine too. After returning home from caring for them the for sale sign had blown away. We were so happy to be home that we took our house back off the market, returning to our family life in Arlington, Texas, being together, and often alone.
I continued doing as I pleased too. At least I thought I was doing as I pleased. It wasn’t until I began living with and truly watching Quinn that I began to see huge cracks in my illusion of freedom. I began to realize that freedom wasn’t what I thought it was at all. DOING freedom, the way I had been DOING freedom, was way more freedom than experienced by many people I knew, however was sadly nowhere near the freedom that Quinn exhibited. I realized that though I felt I was free in my body, I was definitely not free in my mind.
Witnessing those who came spurred another one of my mantras--”I’m so grateful to be me!” For decades I hadn’t been tied down to a life of 9-5, I saw through the mainstream educational system, removed television, newspapers, low quality food, and chemically treated water from my life, and had no yard watering schedules or HOA rules, or the like.... But I, like others who came, was actually doing a lot of things out of fear that were so normal I didn’t even realize how scared and controlled I really was, and how much my attitude toward these things dictated my experience.
Witnessing the contrast of confinement of those coming in, and the freedom exemplified by Quinn, I began examining some of my deeeeep seated fears I had yet to address. Many of them were personal, but there were also many big ones that were society based. Though I didn’t recognize them as daily limitations at the time, I did realize and acknowledge how squished I felt inside when I even thought about certain things.
Aargh - normal again!!
I was feeling confined!!
Where did my freedom go?
I never understood why humans would make life so complicated. But alas, long ago I too gave in and had been playing my role, behaving so as not to get into trouble, irregardless of how I felt inside. I dumbed myself down to numbness so I wouldn’t have to face my disempowerment of these things that seemed so much bigger than myself. After all, though I had free will to stop eating chemically laced food and engaging other toxic realities, I didn’t know what to do about social constructs such as laws against feeding the homeless, collecting rainwater that naturally fell from the sky, the obligation for paying for a permit to put up a fence on one’s own land, thousands of codes that even disallowed nature’s growing plants to be over 12” tall and growing food in one’s own front yard, paying taxes which were used for things I felt were unconscionable with no accountability. I even had latent fear when I would see a policeman on the side of the road with his radar gun even if I wasn’t speeding. My heart would beat a little faster and sometimes I would just automatically step on the brakes--as did others on the road with me. (I apparently wasn’t the only one in fear!).
I finally became aware that the fact that these and a bazillion more limitations existed with force to back them up, were more about keeping the system afloat and people in line rather than actually helping people they were ideally intended to serve. The deeper I dug into my fears the sadder I felt, and the more apparent it was that I was letting myself be controlled by these invisible, yet enforced rules as part of the foundation of my existence. I questioned if there was anyone born on this planet who was allowed to just simply be?
I was reminded again that freedom isn’t free. To be free we must be responsible. To some that means doing as everyone else does and following the rules, whether you like it or not because that’s just the way it is. To others, it means standing up for what you really believe in, and daring to make a change.
I had lived my life following the rules, not realizing that the things that didn’t feel good were red flag indicators for me to be aware that I was thinking and doing things that really went against the core of who I really am - my soulful self. Once I realized I was being dishonorable for ignoring my own truth and participating in things against my values, I could no longer live with myself. Something seriously had to change inside!
One of my favorite of Quinn’s many quotes is
“Contrast is essential to experience!”
Wow, was I ever receiving contrast.
The quiet, simmering, disgusting feelings I had hidden all these years showed me how complacent I had become. Holding it in and dishonorably going along with it kept me in my own La-La Land. My greater awareness and acknowledgement of what I was beginning to see was really going on gave rise to instensely feeling responsible for doing something about it.
Gratefully my opportunity was already underway with what we were building at the Garden of Eden. I began to step out of dishonor and move into solutions.
Another of my favorite Quinn’s quotes is
“There are no problems, only opportunities for solutions!”
At the Garden of Eden we were building a reality based on the foundation of love, cooperation and conscious awareness of infinite possibility. If anything was possible, and I was beginning to see that it was, there was a much better feeling alternative than the life based on accumulation of wealth, control and fear. Thanks to Quinn and his vision, we were already doing it! We were holding space for moving out of complacency and into creating the world in which we wished to live.
My work had just begun, but the solution already existed.
I more deeply embraced my Master Training.
Giant leaps, and also baby steps!
Go with me on the journey toward Unconditional Love!
Stay Tuned for Part 32