Friday, May 27, 2016

delights you have not felt before

There is a line in 'Harley and Me: Embracing Risk on the Road to a More Authentic Life' that captured my attention. There are many lines that capture my attention in this book, but this one in particular stayed with me. It's a compelling part of why I want to practice facing my fears. Author Bernadette Murphy says, "Until this point in my life, I never felt a great affinity for motorcycles, never harbored the desire to learn. In fact, when my middle son Neil bought a motorcycle as a college freshman, I was apoplectic, utterly opposed. I railed about the dangers of accidents. But when I signed up for that five-day class and found myself sitting on an asphalt training range atop a 492-cc motorcycle, I experienced a kind of giddy delight I had never previously known. Ever." Did you catch that "ever"? That's what I want to feel, too. New things I never felt before. In the possibility of experiencing new feelings or new heights of them, there is not only the joy of heretofore unknown delights, but also the breaking of what I thought was possible, and the felt sense of the mystery of life. My small self likes to feel certainty and as much protection from the possibility of death as I can, and the bigger soul of me loves to feel the vast uncertain mystery. Breaking through into new possibilities feels something like practicing death. I know this is saying a lot, but I think all of this underlies our fear of and embrace of risk and aliveness. As I grow more fully into mid-life, I feel the call to greater authenticity more loudly and insistently, and I also feel a greater call to be of service. I still haven't pinpointed exactly what I wish to offer next as best I can, but it may have something to do with this - to help others experience heightened moments of aliveness, and also of love.

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