“Self-censorship is not just self-betrayal and self-abandonment (which would be bad enough), but soul-betrayal and betrayal of our Muse, our inner voice, our highest self.”
Ralf Waldo Emerson
I find these words from Emerson so powerful and challenging.
They resonate so deeply with what I have been asking myself again and again over the past few months. They bring to the surface a multitude of questions that are so difficult to answer.
Why is it so difficult to bring thoughts, words and actions into alignment? Why is it so hard to fully express all of our thoughts and dreams? Why do our words freeze up when we are on the brink of uttering things that would set us free?
I have watched myself closely all through my life and seen how I have carefully put some of my most intimate thoughts and desires in wraps away in some dark closet in the recesses of my mind again and again and again. These abandoned and suppressed packages have piled up on the shelf, refusing to die off. Their low-level moaning has been barely perceptible over the years and yet their call always remains audible amidst all the other noise and distraction that constantly circulates in my life.
I am truly a master of self-betrayal and abandonment. Betrayal of my soul and higher self.
It begins with being questioned by those around me – How are you today? – Instead of replying that I am feeling so out of touch with myself and would love to travel to distant shores and fill up my tank with loving experiences and people, I reply that I’m actually okay and getting by.
And what about those moments I am asked what I think about something. Instead of saying that I find it totally unacceptable and I feel dishonoured, I reply in a watered down way, saying that I need to have a think about things and that it’s not all that bad.
And then there are the days I spend doing all those things that don’t make my heart sing. But I do them and sit quietly pretending that it was okay and that I will find time the next day to do the things I would really love to do.
Then there are the years spent doing work at a job I don’t love, the times spent prioritising what others want and swallowing resentment, the lifetimes feeling unappreciated by those near and dear and just accepting it although it doesn’t feel true.
How deep does the self-betrayal go? What would I love to do with my life? My higher self whispers continuously, like a recording on repeat. Each time the volume goes up just a fraction, making it harder and harder to drown out.
It’s not enough to be doing some things. To be responding to some of the promptings. To selectively ignore others that seem harder to satisfy.
Soul betrayal means not truly honouring who I am. It means disregarding my sacredness and ignoring that wisdom deep within me that knows without a doubt what my calling is. What will make me whole.
Soul betrayal means hearing that wisdom but not taking steps to unravel the tangled mess of denial.
And so here I am, open to acknowledging that I cannot be whole and vibrant and live a truly inspired life until I fully open to allow every aspect of my being to find expression.
Part-time honesty and authenticity does not count.
I read somewhere a while back that the extent to which we are in pain is a reflection of the amount of love that we withold. That love is the love for ourselves. On soul level.
And so I am setting intention to allow myself to enjoy a way of being that lets my heart sing whenever I get up in the morning. And I am also setting intention to allow that song to radiate out and touch others, giving them permission to do the same.
No one said it would be easy but I am so willing to take the challenge.