“Very often, when hurt or depressed or anxious, we encounter powerful feelings like ghosts without a body, trying to pour themselves into us, trying to dominate our lives. They seem to gather in the cave of our pain, stoking our wounds like stones in a fire that keeps them warm. After years of struggling to let my painful feelings out, I’m learning that the other side of this, which is just as essential to my well-being, is not to let the hurt or depression or anxiety set up camp inside me.
I must confess it has taken me all this way to fully understand that the purpose of surfacing these powerful feelings is to continually empty my heart and mind of its sediment, so that new life can make its way to me. There are dangers to not letting such feelings out. But once felt, there are dangers as well to not letting such feelings move on through. For just as our lungs must stay clear for the next mouthful of air, our heart must stay unobstructed for the next feeling we encounter. There is no freedom until we dance the ghosts from the chambers of our wounds, until we pile our wounds like stones at the mouth of our quarries.”
Mark Nepo, in “The Book of Awakening”
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