Below is an excerpt from a recent post in my Whispers from the Cave interactive web series. Learn more about Whispers from the Cave below.
I woke up to twelve inches of snow this morning with likely another twelve coming. None of the roads have been plowed. Why should they bother when the snow keeps on coming?
I don’t need a reason or an excuse to stay home in the comfort of my cave, but this weather eases the conditioned and not-yet healed guilt that sometimes surfaces in the face of just staying home.
We’re conditioned to believe we have to leave the comfort of our home to be a contributing member of society. Work. Family. Friends. Social activities. All stand out as pressure to comply. We’re accused of being lazy or anti-social for simply wanting to be home.
Being called to contemplative/monastic living presents another option – a counter-cultural option. A big part of embracing this calling is all the work we must do around unconditioning. Coming to understand it’s ok to simply be. There’s nothing we have to do (except that which springs forth from our hearts) and there’s nowhere we have to be.
We find support for this unconditioning through community – through others embracing a similar calling. Without the benefit of community, we must find this conditioning on our own. Part of this unconditioning comes in simply choosing what’s right for ourselves. When the voices of guilt, shame, or self-doubt com in, however, that is when we must return AGAIN to our practice. Through our practice, we turn inward toward ourselves where we can heal and transform those conditioned voices.
How and where have you found support in unconditioning?
What spiritual practices have you found helpful in your journey of unconditioning?
Whispers from the Cave
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