A peace without pictures.

I am accustomed to extreme bouts of mental unrest, and far too many events of staggering confusion in my disease of Paranoid Schizophrenia.  At times, my mind becomes the battlefield of a war that seems to never end and the carnage is the deep wounds of a fractured psyche and phobias that resonate with the call to arms in a futile attempt at control.  

In recent days I’ve been reading the spiritual teachings of a Buddhist monk, and it has placed ideas in me about learning to accept the confines of my mental torture and seeing the grand space that incorporates not only the psychosis but also the world and me in it.  There would be no battleground if I wasn’t focused on the problem and resisting it with all my energies until I have no more left and feel defeated time and again. I know it is a battle I can’t win, yet I get pulled into the mental gymnastics so easily, like I’m programmed to put up my defenses as soon as I realize I am entering into another episode.  During these times, which can last a long spell, I find it difficult to rest, difficult to relax, difficult to determine “what is real.”  I often get caught up in very intricate and dramatic scenarios that twist me around in circles and lead me down paths I would rather not go, because I’ve been down them so many times.  They always end the same…they are enigmatic and happy endings are often the ruse of the torment, and after the trauma is endured once again their is always the deep depression waiting because that is how wars end for the wounded and dying…tragedy.

I’m purposing to put into practice little steps of my own non-aggression philosophy and let my mind know I’m a pacifist and conscientious objector to the fighting now.  The turmoil may be there in form but my participation is to be redefined in a broader scale than that of victim…to be a captive but free; to know my boundaries are close and not feel them at all; to be aware of the story outside my story and even beyond that One.  It is a fanciful dream but I know my approach to my dilemma has never proved fruitful and I’m tired of fighting insanity with insanity, expecting this time will be different. I am learning this as I type and planning this as I feel the rounds of ammunition being loaded into their psychotic artillery and the drum of marching ghosts parade the outskirts of my mental perimeter.  I know what is coming and I have to let it come, let it be, and remember to pause, allow a  moment of reprise in the onslaught to occur and find the space that is around the whole event and me.

This is an answer to prayer, because it is the first time I’m trying to see my delirium from another perspective that allows for the ability to not just survive but to coexist with my part of the story.  It isn’t surrender, because surrender doesn’t take my focus off my captor, it is acceptance and compassion on the one who has endured; I must show this soul a new beginning, not so much a clean slate as new view of the story that allows for more than just tragedy to be Present, not a change of circumstances, but rather a change of view to allow more than this little spec of this moment to be the whole universe.  My turmoil is just one line of a topic in an act to a play that is larger and more spacious than I have ever allowed myself to see. It is the most realistic hope I’ve embraced going into tribulation I’ve known….I’ve been a survivalist for so long I don’t remember another way ever being open to me.

I don’t see an end-game, because the win or lose approach is exactly what I’m purging from my internal responses and so I am looking for something different, but I won’t be able to define it until after I am already within it, and then if all is as I suspect it will be well beyond what words can hold…space is exactly space because the undefinable essence of what is there and yet not there is indescribable.

Let go of a need for answers; stop looking for reasonable explanations for the the bits and acts throughout the whole theater of the production; accept that I can’t change the enemy, only my response to the conflict.  I hope I am able to write an experience and more from the perspective of one that is …. nothing more, definitely nothing less…just me able “to be”.

It is both simple and complex, simple to imagine and complex to learn.  I must unlearn my automatic responses to allow the new to become the dominant program.  I imagine it is similar to learning to walk without legs, to take care of myself without my hands, to become functional and versatile in my world while handicapped from any previous way of interaction.

Well….[deep breath, long sigh], it feels good to approach this at all differently than before, so enough with hurdles, enough with the race at all, their is existence beyond the struggle for control.  I will use my mind as I have need and let it be, and see what I shall see.


8 thoughts on “A peace without pictures.

  1. The liberation I found with Buddhism is what you describe: seeing my life and my life circumstance (no matter how painful) from a different perspective–one where I am not in the center of things and can step back and observe with some compassion and neutrality what is happening without getting all caught up in the drama of it.

    Letting go of my need to control a specific outcome and learning to observe my life moment by moment was so freeing. I found joy where before I only found sorrow or pain. That’s the gift of the dharma. At least it is for me. But it is perpetual journey with set-back after set-back.

    This journey is not about a destination, it about how we travel and what we learn along the way. I have to keep reminding myself of that each time I falter. And I falter a lot… 😉

  2. thank you for that. I find that very useful.
    I just read your post after this one:
    What I like about yours, that add to this, is that if we are thinking of an end game then we are engaging in win-lose thinking and we will lose. If we let go of the end game, and ride out the turbulence, we will see the future unfold together.
    That is extremely relevant to a number of situations I am facing at the moment. But damn, I want to take control of the end game!!! {throws toys out of cot 🙂 }

    Peace and blessings.

  3. Pingback: Let go of the “end game” « In the company of hysterical women

  4. I wish you the best of luck. I used to fight myself constantly and my mind was more often than not at war with itself. Looking back on those years, it was awful.

    Each person is different, so the details of what my mind was like will probably differ from the details of what your mind is like. But I eventually found a measure of peace through what you are suggesting — I stopped fighting with myself, allowed myself to just simply be, and when internal wars came I tried to find a way to accept all sides and negotiate a lasting peace between sides, instead of being a bystander who was caught up in the carnage that always found a reason to repeat itself.

    So, if you are going through that too, or possibly something much worse than what I went through, then you have my deepest sympathies, and I do sincerely wish you the best of luck.

    As davidearle wrote, peace and blessings.

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