For those constantly trying to let go of the many inner tendencies, attitudes and thought patterns, Shivratri is an exciting time! It is a time to focus on destroying, removing, letting go! And a “difficult situation”, one that takes us out of our comfort zone, can help us see ourselves more clearly.
“I can look back over my life and see the tragedies, the difficulties, and I have to say that I learned a great deal more from any of those than I did from many of the joyful experiences. Then which one was good for me?” – Swami Kriyananda
Ofcourse when we’re in a difficult situation, taking it with this spirit is a lot harder than it seems! This year for Shivratri, I had the opportunity to visit the land of Shiva, the city of light, Varanasi! So, like many others at this time, I too prayed to understand more of what was going on within me. And for help to remove the clutter and be freed! I feel this time brought a perfect situation to see something in myself and to work on. So without too many details (which aren’t important anyway 🙂), I wanted to share this with you.
I spent a few days in my “difficult situation” avoiding it, blocking it, and finally reacting. It never works to confront or react, does it?! It just makes us more upset and the situation more muddy. A little disappointed with myself, I went off to finish a painting I had set a deadline for. A short time into the painting, I finally felt much better, more centred and calm. And when I went back to deal with the situation, my voice and energy with which I now offered a suggestion (instead of thrusting an opinion) was completely different. Small lesson, but what helped?
I feel that in choosing to paint, I created a positive space for myself, bathed in Swami Kriyananda’s transforming music and had a chance to process the possible lessons from this situation I was in! I could see and deal with myself more clearly. Interestingly, I was even able to take advice and let go of a part of my painting, which I think has opened it up and created space! Here are a few pictures of the painting process (it is still a work-in-progress):
So Shivratri is a time dedicated to churning out all the things we are hiding from or which we can’t see in ourselves! To let go of the negative, we need to churn – meditate, chant, paint, go for a run, dance, do anything to move energy. And if we offer it up to the divine, we draw His grace to lift us up!
It is a great blessing when we get to see something in us that we need to let go of.
Art can help us process what we see in ourselves. To deal with it. To accept it. It gives us a chance to reflect and then do something about it with the right energy, and from our centre! And then we can appreciate the “challenging situations” for the blessing they bring. They show us more of who we are and what we have to let go of! Jai Shiva! 😀