By Reggie Smith
When I was young, I had a minimum of control of my emotions and behavior. At home I threw tantrums when I didn’t get my way. In school I got excellent marks in academics, but always unsatisfactory in behavior. My issues were that I was very sensitive and had a disdain for authority. I did not know, or could not identify what I was feeling so I often expressed myself inappropriately. I only did that with people I thought I could get away with it though. There always seemed to be some trauma at the core of my behavior, but I did not know the cause. As I matured, I learned to cope by suppressing my feelings and controlling my environment as much as possible. Over time, I have learned that people pleasing to avoid conflict is a shortcoming. Ultimately I became more authentic and comfortable with myself, and continue to find balance. We all should introspect and heal the traumas of our past if we want to live to the fullest, shouldn’t we?
It seems that the purpose of life is to learn the lessons necessary to satisfy our souls, but there is so much that our minds will try to hide from us, right? Religions, governments, laws, and various social norms are the guardrails that try to help society operate. Without order there would be even more chaos than there is now. When man-made rules are used to the extreme though, they can also be obstacles to our ability to really “know thyself”. The fear of being able to manage and control our future can prevent us from exploring the unknown. We don’t know the future, yet we often seek to control how it will manifest. Instead of rules, we humans might evolve more effectively if we focused on spiritual principles rather than rules and personalities.
Before our birth we were connected to the universe without the distractions of this world. We have access to all knowledge until we leave the womb. From the moment of birth, the experience of mortal life conspires to strip us of our intuition. Our minds have been our best friend and our worst enemy. Seeking knowledge should not deter and dissuade us from experiencing our feelings. Manmade rules ought not scare us to the point we are afraid of what we don’t know, should it? After all, we don’t know what we don’t know, but if we seek we will find the answers to the many tests that life presents us with. As long as we are living, life will test us and give us opportunities to make known the unknown.
The more I know, the more I know that there is so much that I don’t know. Many would say that the most important thing to know is God. Some would say that God made woman and man so that the Creator and created could know themselves. I would say that makes us gods too. Our test is to grow through our experiences by using spiritual principles to the best of our ability. None of us are perfect, yet each of our lives is exactly what we need to evolve as individuals and a human race. Spiritual principles of faith, hope, integrity, honesty, trust, forgiveness and love should be our guides, not rules. The greatest of these principles is love. I trust that by using all these gifts as best we can, we will pass the test called life.