“Right now everything looks so strange to me, as if I don’t belong here. It’s me that’s out of place. And the worst thing is that I feel there’s somewhere I do belong, but I just can’t find it.”–seen this morning on a thread.
My all-time favorite movie serial is “Captain Marvel”, with those wonderful practical-effect flying scenes that still look astoundingly good, and Billy Batson saying “Shazam!” and turning into (basically) Superman. Great stuff. The villain is “The Scorpion”, and the “who is it?” is a fun mystery as the original members of an expedition are killed one at a time, until only the bad guy remains in the last episode. All the chaos revolves around seeking a statue with six movable arms, in the shape of (wait for it…) a scorpion. Each arm holds a lens. If they are all lined up properly, when sunlight flows through them various mayhem results, including explosions and melting solid rock. It is a super-weapon, but also a great metaphor: line up the elements of your life perfectly, and you release an energy unknown.
Most people are at best “focused”. Focus can burn a hole in paper. But when you align all the aspects of your Self, you are more like a laser. And lasers can burn holes in diamond.
I returned home last night, after flying to North Carolina, driving 500 miles roundtrip to South Carolina to spend a couple of hours with the wonderful kids at Mama G’s community center (and having a chance to play with her. Hey, instead of zero to countless, my score was a ferocious one to six! Vast improvement on my part…), get back to Chapel Hill to talk Afrofuturism to a roomful of brilliant students with high-level bullshit detectors, and getting to the airport for my trip home.
Home. Where Tananarive and Jason and Django and Ginger live. Home. Where I wake up and go to sleep, where I recharge for another day of work and play.
It is where my heart lives. I take it with me wherever I go, so that any time I want I can line up the energetic “lenses” of my humanity: survival, sexuality, power, emotion, communication, intellect, and spiritual commitment. Boom. Any time I do that, I’m totally awake, totally present. My survival energy rises through all the ways it manifests in the world, and I’m a live wire.
The trick is to get the first four together. Survival, sex, power, and emotion. Do that, and the rest take care of themselves. The mistake is to try to “think” your way through your life. That ends in a ball of confusion. The Instructions on how to get out of the box are written on the outside of the box.
To get out, you either just bang your head bloody and hope a wall fractures. You can wait to outgrow it, and hope you don’t strangle in your own waste products before the box pops…and deposits you in a shiny new (but larger) box. Or you can find an ally, someone who has already grown beyond a similar box, and ask them to lend you the keys.
There are two basic ways out. One is to start with the physical. Develop the skills to care for your body and survive in a career contributing honestly to your community. Learn to satisfy your sexual desires with integrity, creating a “nest” that could provide for a mate and children (even if you have no intent to HAVE kids, it is wise to learn to have the adult resources to potentially provide for them. Something the “Incels” often fail to understand). And open your heart, so that that (potential) mate has a safe place to open THEIR heart. So that children would be safe and nurtured with you.
That’s the core survival wiring, and that path just flat works. People who feel lost, depressed, scattered…can re-connect in one of a couple of ways.
- Move their bodies. We evolved to move. When we move enough to trigger growth responses in our bodies (by pushing through aerobic limits, mobility limits, current strength limits) we trigger a kind of focus that takes us out of “first world” problems and into the animal. Their problem was that they weren’t in their bodies. When you aren’t…it is easy to get lost. They don’t know “what is true.”
- Connect with their hearts. They don’t have the answer to the most basic and important question for thinking feeling beings: “who am I?” the partner to “what is true?” Here, meditation techniques of various kinds are wonderful. My favorite is Heartbeat Meditation. Second favorite is The Ancient Child, which I perform every day, centering and bringing my life back into focus.
Both of them can and should be incorporated into a daily Morning Ritual. Just…what you do first thing in the morning. You learn to line up all your “lenses” so that every action, every breath has meaning. THERE IS NO WASTED TIME. NO WASTED EFFORT, WHEN YOU KNOW THE MEANING AND PURPOSE BEHIND EVERY ACTION.
I am SO happy that more of you are trying this. Blending movement with thought and feeling. It may feel awkward at first, but you can change your entire life if you stick with it.
“Right now everything looks so strange to me, as if I don’t belong here. It’s me that’s out of place. And the worst thing is that I feel there’s somewhere I do belong, but I just can’t find it.”
We lose touch with ourselves, our hearts, our place in the world. Love yourself. Belong to yourself. Own your life. There IS somewhere you belong. Everywhere. But most essentially, within your own heart. Have that, learn to focus and align it, and you can make the most out of whatever energy you have, at whatever stage of life you may be.
Billy Batson just wanted to survive, but found himself in the midst of a great adventure, everyone around him plotting and planning to master the power that controls destiny. Killing and cheating and stealing and lying and pretending to be things they were not.
But an old wise man taught him that if he just chanted an affirmation he would have the wisdom of Solomon, the strength of Hercules, the stamina of Atlas, the power of Zeus, the courage of Achilles, and the speed of Mercury. He would have what all the others sought, and the power was right within him, to be unleashed by courage and commitment and the urge to help those he loved.
That power is yours. But first…love yourself. That’s where it starts.
(The Morning M.A.G.I.C. for Writers program is finally available. For more information just go to www.morningwriters.com!)