David Whyte: Confession is a stripping away of protection


Confession is a stripping away of protection, the telling of a truth which might once have seemed like a humiliation, become suddenly a gateway, an entrance to solid ground; even a first step home. To confess is to free oneself, not only by admitting a sin or an omission but to profess a deeper allegiance, a greater dedication to something beyond the mere threat of immediate punishment or the desolation of being shunned. To confess is to declare oneself ready for a more courageous road, one in which a previously defended identity might not only be shorn away, but be seen to have been irrelevant, a distraction, a working delusion that kept us busy over the years and held us unaccountable to the real question.
– David Whyte, from Readers’ Circle Essay, “Confession”.



What do I not want to see?

What do I know that I hesitate admitting to?

When I make myself stressed, those can be helpful questions.

Here are a few things from recent gratitude lists:

I am grateful for mentally holding onto situations it wouldn’t make sense for me to return to.

I am grateful for mentally make this process into something noble and spiritual, while I really don’t know. More honestly, it’s just my messed up parts surfacing.

I am grateful for sometimes using my blog as a way to feel I have a foothold while I really don’t.

I am grateful for sometimes using spirituality as an escape. (Inquiry etc.)

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All-inclusive gratitude practice


An all-inclusive gratitude practice can be powerful, whether it is saying thank you as a prayer or mantra, writing and sharing all-inclusive gratitude lists, or just allowing experience as is – in appreciation.

This helps me notice resistance and beliefs, and inquire into these. I get to see where I take positions at odds with reality, their consequences, and what’s more true for me.

It is a question. What happens if I find gratitude for this?

It’s a reminder that I can shift into different perspectives, and experience the world from that perspective.

It helps my view, feelings and actions to reorganize and align more with what is.

And it’s an invitation for what I am to notice itself.

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Projection of awakening


Whatever ideas I have of awakening, can I notice they are images – reflecting what’s already here now, alive in awareness?

What are my ideas of awakening? What images of awakening do I put “out there” in the past, on others, in the future? What do I hope it will fix in my life?

It is better to awaken. I need to awaken. Awakening will take care of my problems. Awakening will give a deep sense of rightness. Awakening will fill a hole in me. Awakening will be an exiting adventure. Awakening will facilitate my development. It is possible to awaken. It is possible to not awaken. It is possible to be awake. It is possible to not be awake.

Some of these feels more true for me, such as a few of the last ones. Others don’t feel as true, but they are still good to explore further – also because they are common in our culture.

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