Positive Spirituality
A Spiritual Path

I'd wanted my first blog to be something special, but I'm packing up my computer in two days, putting my belongings in storage, and setting off on a new adventure. So instead, I'll share some thoughts that came to me today while working with a client.

I recently began working with a wonderful man, a friend of a Pilates student of mine, who is in the beginning stages of Alzheimers. He enjoys being in the pool, but never learned to swim as a child. So we meet four hours a week in the pool where he lives. A couple weeks ago he finally succeeded in momentarily lifting both of his feet off of the bottom of the pool at the same time. For me that was an amazing rush! Today we tried something new -- putting our feet up on the side of the pool and then pushing off. Over and over, as I effortlessly pushed off and glided away from the wall, John (not his name) sank down instead. And, when we use floating devices, John pushes down on them in fear, rather than allowing his body to be supported.

What a perfect analogy to how we often run our lives -- assuming that the more effort we expend the better the outcome will be, when often just the opposite is true.

I used to approach the concept of Surrender as if it were a dirty word -- something you did when you'd given up, like waving a white flag at the Universe. More recently, however, I've come to understand that Surrender is not for sissies, but for the brave of heart. Brave because we still may have many fears, but we do it anyway, because we trust that if we let go, we will somehow be supported.

Granted, it helps to have some experience of this under our belts. What I have that John does not is my absolute knowing, from having done it so many times, that if I stop desperately clinging to the side of the pool, that I will float. The catch is, there has to be a first time, the time that we have nothing to go on but Faith and Trust, without the actual experience to back us up.

A friend of mine who studies at the Kabbalah School told me once that the parting of the Red Sea was such a scenario. Apparently, the people were neck deep in water before the sea finally parted and I'm sure there were a lot of them yelling and screaming that it wasn't working and it was time to head back to shore. What pulled them along? The love and faith they had for the others who continued to move forward? Knowing that the fate waiting for them back at the shore was worse than anything that could be waiting beyond in the unknown? It's something to ponder, isn't it?