We will all experience loss in this lifetime, this is inevitable. This can be the loss of loved people in our life, the loss of trust, faith, an old yet destructive habit or even aspects of our identity; who we believe we are.
The aftermath of loss, while initially can appear quite bleak, can be strangely surprising and can, in the right circumstances, drawing deeply from our past, provide a quite unique and dependable foundation for our futures. And it’s mostly not that easy – that is why we suffer and grieve.
Many religions and traditions postulate there is life after death. Scientifically the likely hood of this is remotely unlikely yet there is the complete mystery of how our universe began and this may point towards a spirituality ( not religion ) we can’t ever know about in scientific terms. Is there life before death? Is surely a better exploration for us all.
I am attempting to put loss and grief into a context for positive transformation and at the same time completely honour and acknowledge the pain and suffering which will almost surely go hand in hand.
I have very recently been to Create and following a tour to Knossos there was a short sight seeing which was concluded at the very spot this photograph was taken.
This is the grave site of Nikos Kazantzakis. Probably best know through his writing Zorba The Greek. Nikos travelled for most of his life and although a citizen of Crete he did not die there. If you read Greek or can translate the words in the photo it is very close to …
“I Hope For Nothing, I Fear Nothing, I am Free.”
This is one of the most inauspicious tombs I have ever witnessed directly. It is also one of those experiences that will stay with me as long as I live.
Kazantzakis’s words are short and full of a deep and profound wisdom. It is akin to a very central way of being in Buddhism.
When we lose someone, something or even ourselves there is a honest and great potential to grieve and that means feel great sorrow and pain for our loss. And this is a perfectly normal and as far as I am concerned complete human emotion.
A question I asked myself in my early 20’s was, would I rather have not experiences love, delight and connection at the expense of not feeling pain, hurt and loss?
When I was much younger there were many times when this would have been an affirmative YES! Early love affairs, early ideas, hopes and dreams. Times when the pain of loss was so awful that I would rather have not been alive.
As I age and realise the gift of life more fully and there is a very full spectrum of emotions I am able to both feel and accept, my answer to my question, for me is a certain and definitive NO.
How does anyone go about discovering meaning and purpose in life after a great loss? One story I heard provides the light of hope and although this is one man’s story and most likely not relevant to most people; put yourself in this persons shoes and perhaps you can begin to discover there are ways to both follow your wound and follow your life.
A man, married for decades wife died. He was inconsolable and very very depressed. Imagine being with your partner and soul mate for the best part of a life time and then at some point they are no longer there. Gone and that really is it. The memories live, the associations are there every day and everywhere.
He was looking desperately to stop hurting, exploring religions and spirituality to answer his question ‘Why am I here?, what purpose is there to continue?’.
His therapist asked how his partner, his wife and best friend would have dealt and coped with the situation where he to have died first. His answer was direct ‘She couldn’t it would have killed her.’
He found some purpose in his continued existence. In serving as the one who could go on, just about, and not having his love experience the loneliness and pain he did at that time. I understand he went forward for well over a decade helping people that had experienced the loss of a life partner.
If you would like a free consultation regarding moving on from loss in your life, call me. 0770 481 8467. Thank you for reading.