I cannot say, yet, it ever fully goes away. The logical part of the consideration of suicide, to end this iteration of suffering and resource consumption.
I can say if you make it through your first moment of feeling that there is nothing inside you and nothing outside you, if you make it through the gray, the nothing, to see some tiny flame…if you survive through weeks and months of people who love you watching too closely, years of therapy and remembering and facing and learning new ways to feel and express…if you make it a decade?
You have a chance at knowing joy.
There are plenty of good reasons not to be here. We are sliding down into the hot chaos reaped by misunderstanding how to manage our shared home. We ravage each other physically, emotionally, politically, willfully. We get bored and restless and faithless. Reality gets scarce with the basic things, food, shelter – we think we are separate…and its hard to be seen as ‘lesser than’ in any mythology.
There is only one reason to stay that I know of. But it’s so magnificent to experience that it that it actually holds its own against the nothing. So good that if you find yourself alive after a decade of wondering about the wisdom of continuing, and it comes, you will learn how it feels to experience gratitude that will not fit in your mouth.
Joy – the particular joy of liberation that comes with being your self, utterly, often induced by or immersed in love. And often only possible through the inner transformation it takes to de-condition, de-program the socially acceptable self, to see past the shame. To be, without persecution or struggle, not tolerated or patronized or worshipped, but met in your actual self, seen and true simultaneously.
Kim English sings, ‘Joy, unspeakable joy, cause they did not give it they cannot take it away!’
Because it is not determined by external conditions. People without joy cannot comprehend it, we have to make it more accessible. It’s what we are born with, look at the babies.
Khalil Gibran says our sorrow carves out the space for our joy and vice versa.
I am beginning to understand, the sorrow was carving me out, making me empty. We cannot be guides through and out of nothingness if we have never visited, been carved to emptiness and left to fill up.
I see sacred vessels everywhere, conduits for joy, easy because they have suffered. When joy conduits through I notice light bursting out, from the eyes, mouth, through the skin, palpable and transient and perfect. Energetic, I know it when I feel it, grace all scarred up, of the earth and barely touching the ground. Messy and working it out but practicing being present, and thus able to slip into joy.
Millions of people slipping into themselves, into their joy, form constellations in the pattern of our collective existence, and constellations give us guidance in the nothingness, to anywhere. To next door, to freedom – in the desert, on the sea, there is a language of stars and its the one we all know. To emit light against great darkness – that’s our common ancestral gift as beings of stardust.
What is coming is a time to be resilient, to celebrate that you saw the darkness and you stayed, feeding tiny slivers of palo santo to the flame. We are not supposed to celebrate in spite of the suffering, but up against it, a frontline against it, joy our weapon.
‘banish the word struggle, do everything now in the spirit of celebration’ (hopi elder speaks).