Please God, that we avoid the land of denial, and advance into the ocean of acceptance, so that we may perceive, with an eye purged from all conflicting elements, the worlds of unity and diversity, of variation and oneness, of limitation and detachment, and wing our flight unto the highest and innermost sanctuary of the inner meaning of the Word of God. (Bahá’u’lláh, Kitáb-i-Íqán, p. 160)
There’s a lot of things we can be in denial about but when I read this quote, I think about my acceptance (or avoidance) of the effects of my childhood abuse on my present. Much of my Bahá’í life, I’ve chosen denial, wanting to look like and even be a “good Bahá’í”, teaching the Faith or finding ways to be of service. I’ve used work and service and busyness compulsively as a way to avoid dealing with my feelings or accepting the realities of how it’s effected me. So this quote reminds me that accepting what is, is not only Bahá’í-like, it’s also Bahá’í-approved! This isn’t to say you’ll find approval among your fellow Bahá’ís, but that’s a topic for another day.
On the days I can look at what happened and see how it continues to rule my present in ways that aren’t pleasing to God, I do wing my flight to a higher plane. Here’s an example: Because I was so beaten down as a child, I learned to confuse love with abuse, so as an adult, because no one else was beating me up, I had to do it to myself. This was not only abasing, but fed my anxiety and depression. Once I came out of denial about what I was doing and why, it became much easier to stop. It also helped me see this behaviour in others, which drew me closer to them as I recognized our common experience or oneness. I was able to name and defend other people’s behavior and educate others, all because I was willing to face my own demons.
Knowing I can learn to accept myself and others by coming out of denial, I am grateful!
What jumped out for you as you read today’s meditation? I’d love it if you would share so we can all expand our knowledge of the Writings!