Friday, November 28, 2008
Life's a story
By Ed Moy
The more I think about it, the more I have come to realize life is just one big story we tell ourselves and each other.
That's why people around the world love books, movies and television.
We all want to see, hear and read stories.
Stories give our life meaning. Stories help to shape our reality. Stories define who we are as human beings in this physical reality that we all share.
Without a story, we'd be nothing. We'd be a blank canvas. We'd be forever living in the "void," which in and of itself is neither good nor bad. The "void" is simply that "emptiness" from which we can create our stories -- and the lives that we experience.
This rationalization dawned upon me on Thanksgiving Day when I visited a dear friend, who practices various forms of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and meditation.
I'd just encountered several "upsets" over mixed perceptions and projections with a friend.
As I climbed a ladder onto the roof of my TCM practicing friend's home, I found him patching leaks on the rooftop.
I had come to share my "story" that had happened to me involving our mutual friend, who insisted that I "tell the truth," which is also subjective because we each live our own "truths" and "realities" based on those perceived truths.
Anyway, I began telling my "story" of becoming angry or upset because of an emotional attachment that was not reciprocated and led to a "neediness" for having someone in my life that was not expressing the same kind of interest in being involved in an intimate or loving way.
But in my TCM Practitioner friend's presence, I found myself entering the "void" or "emptiness." I was at peace and serene in that moment.
In that moment, I found that the "story" I was telling had no meaning in the space and time my friend was occupying -- and that my "story" was only useful in that it created something into my life in order to learn and grow in relating as a human being in relationship with other human beings.
Was this an enlightened moment? Was it my TCM Practitioner friend's energetic presence? Had he helped me to suddenly become conscious and present?
As a journalist, freelance writer and screenwriter, I've been helping others tell their stories for nearly 10 years.
You could say my whole life has been about telling stories.
In fact, my own life is just a story.
As a journalist, I was recipient of the 2000 Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's National Print Media Award for Excellence in Journalism.
I earned that honor by writing a series articles about their Team in Training fund-raising programs. It was an enlightening experience for me to meet all the wonderful people involved in the programs working towards a unified cause.
The stories were always filled with drama, turmoil, redemption, hope and the love of family and friends coming together to support each other.
But with my TCM practitioner friend, all of that goes away. We sit and drink tea. Hours pass. Life goes on. In his presence, friends, colleagues, clients and family are "healed."
This "healing" is really just a sense of being present in the moment. A conscious awareness of the "void" or "emptiness" from which we came.
Some call it that "Space Between."
Whatever you may label it. (My friend always prefaces his remarks by saying that being anything is just a label, i.e. Vegan, Vegetarian, Raw Foodist, Guru, Healer, etc.)
In any case, it's words that allow us to define something or somebody in tangible physical world terms.
But in that "Void" we are all "Oneness." There is only "Peace."
To me all stories are justified because the individual telling the story is valid in their beliefs. That is their experience. So in that sense, it is "real" to the one telling the story.
I do not choose to judge or take sides. My whole life has been about being as neutral, unbiased, and impartial as possible so that I can see both sides of the story.
Of course, often times I have to take sides in order to tell the most compelling story. And that leads to creating a polarity and conflict.
At that point, there are no easy answers or choices. You simply make the best choices you can based on what "feels good" or "feels right." Hopefully both are the same choice.
But I preface that by adding that doing what "feels right" doesn't always result in "feeling good" for everybody involved, including the person making the choice.
So as an old saying goes: "Choose wisely."
What is your story? What are you choosing to create?
I'd love to hear from you. Please share your story.
May you all receive peace, love, light and blessings.
You are all beloved friends in my life.