Drawing, Rick Beerhorst
The greatest and most important problems of life are fundamentlly unsolvable. They can never be solved, but only outgrown. -Carl Jung
Yesterday I reread the book Falling Upward by Richard Rohr. I love this book for the way he develops the idea of a life having two distinct parts, the first half and the second half. In the first half of our life we are all about defining our identity by striking hard boundaries for success and failure, in and out, us and them, who are friends and who are our enemies. The second half of our life is supposed to shift towards inclusion of everything. When we are able to make room for paradox and unsolved mystery our life becomes so much larger as a result. It is no longer about our team winning but having our eyes opened we begin to understand that we are all in this together. We began to touch the unified field, we become part of the great web of life.
Rohr is quick to point out that most of us stay in the first half. We choose to live our entire life with out ever a transition into the second stage where we could become a wise sage. This is because most people go on living their lives on a sort of auto-pilot and remain unconscious that they are actually living out of a false self (which is of course not really living at all). Usually there comes in our life, somewhere in our 40s (though it may happen much earlier of later in years), a stumble we don't ever fully recover from. We come across some kind of deep failure which has the potential to become our invitation in to the difficult task of dismantling the false self. As the false self is deconstructed we move into the discovery of who we really are and what is at the seat of our deepest desires.
Here is a beautiful excerpt from Falling Upward;
The ancients right called this internal longing for wholeness "fate" of "destiny", the "inner voice" or the "call of the gods." It has an inevitability, authority, and finality to it, and was at the heart of almost all mythology. Almost all heroes heard an inner voice that spoke to them. In fact their heroism was in their ability to hear that voice and to risk following it --wherever! Sadly, such inner comfort is the very thing we lack today at almost all levels. Our problem now is that we serious doubt that there is any vital reality to the spiritual world, so we hear no life changing voices-true even for many who go to church, temple, or mosque.