By Suma Varughese April 2006Going through situations rather than attempting to bypass them unfolds the meaning of our life.All of us at some point or the other have experienced deep frustration with a relationship, an activity or job and been tempted to throw it over. Many of us do so, in fact. We quit jobs and sever relationships for emotional reasons.But somehow, quitting never seems to work out. The job we take next or the relationship we settle for on the rebound, are as unrewarding and as far away from the ideals we long for, and we wonder why it is that our path does not seem to open up and why we are as far away from fulfillment as ever we were.The truth is that life gives us situations that we need to be in and if we terminate them abruptly, we cease to extract what we are meant to out of them, and are therefore condemned to repeat the situation. There are times when we may even discern what we are meant to do or how we are meant to live, but even in that realisation there may be a process involved that we must respect.For instance, I was working with a lifestyle magazine many years ago when I had my spiritual epiphany. I realized vividly that what I wanted to do more than anything else in the world was to heal people of their misery. Yet, how I was to do this and when, remained a mystery. I realized that I was meant to go through the job I presently held, in order to reach wherever I was meant to. It took me another five years (years that were rewarding and fulfilling, incidentally) before I arrived at the realisation that the magazine and I were no longer compatible and I left. That realisation was a peaceful one - it was a deep inner knowing - and acting on it facilitated my transition to Life Positive in a miraculous manner.In contrast, a friend threw over his job as soon as he got his epiphany and looked for something more compatible with his interests such as HR. Unable to find one after being jobless for close to nine months, he returned to accountancy. Recently, though, he applied within his own company for a shift to the HR department and he was granted it - an easy painless transition because the time had come for it to happen.Since then, I have held on to this concept of going through things rather than bypassing them or jumping over them. And it has served me well. Even when it came to relationships. I have hung on to them with an almost inhuman determination, no matter how high the level of frustration, until the time came when I was released from them. Then the parting was always easy and effortless, with little pain on either side.Over time I have learnt never to make important decisions based on emotional reasons but to bide my time and wait for the decision to be revealed from within. This can seem like a passive strategy but let me tell you that it is the hardest thing to do. I have particularly understood that it is always darkest before dawn. When it seems we can no longer hang in there and we have no option but to quit, we need to hang in there. An insight or an understanding or a fresh layer of growth may arise.Recently, I went through a hard time at work when I felt unsupported and alone. The tension mounted and I felt dangerously tempted to throw in the towel. That's when the veils parted and I realized that all I really needed to do was to focus on the moment and stop fastfowarding into the future, anticipating calamity. The realisation has given me a new equanimity and acceptance and made my job much easier to handle.When we thus learn to abide by the cycles and timetables of life and respect the processes involved, our lives will open up and a path will be paved for us to walk on. We have to do nothing at all.We merely have to walk on each step without fear or doubt, as it appears before us. Then we will progressively grow through every situation, and each will lead us to the next step.
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