Once upon a time, basically a few days ago, my idea and concept of Surrender was completely shattered. As a poster child of a type A personality, I envisioned the act of surrendering as an act of giving something up, of “losing” control. It seemed like a passive act and certainly not descriptive of an assertive, ambitious, go-getter individual, as myself. I honestly believed that if I surrendered, I would lose my drive, the essence of me, and my family and friends would find me, shaven head and all, sitting under a Bodhi tree. OK, perhaps not so drastic but you get my drift. Surrender was so elusive to me that it might as well have been written in Sanskrit.
Boom – The Universe smacked me outside my head!
Oh sh*t! Was I wrong. During my morning ritual on my elliptical, listening to Oprah Winfrey’s Super Soul podcast, I had one of my “aha” Super Soul moments and it hit me like a ton of bricks, like most “aha” moments do. Dr. Michael Bernard Beckwith, spiritual pioneer and founder of the Agape International Spiritual Center, was in the house. During the podcast he talked about many beautiful things but the one thing that pierced through my entire body and landed in the cockles of my heart, was the meaning of Surrender. The universe works in such magnificent ways, as this living, creating and nurturing energy and knew exactly what I needed to really hear. You see, and no surprise, surrendering is the hardest thing for me to do. I hold on to things, people, thoughts, stuff and resist and resist some more, to let go, to surrender, in spite of its damaging effects.
So, my flawed interpretation of this inactive, waiting for Godot version of Surrender morphed into an understanding, a knowing of something much more grand, magical, beautiful and powerful, yes POWERFUL. It turns out, there is POWER in Surrender, as “oxymoronic” as it sounds. As Michael Bernard Beckwith so beautifully articulated, Surrender is the conscious participation of your own unfolding. Voila! Wow, what a gift. Makes me want to cry. Surrender is an active state. You are the Michelangelo in your life masterpiece. The way I see it, it has two vital components: 1. The knowing, the feeling that life works for you and not against you. That life is inherently good. Using Arianna Huffington’s favorite quote (no surprise as it really says it all); “Live life as if everything is rigged in your favor.” – Rumi. Then 2. Allow life to express itself through your uniqueness, through the gifts that only you possess. As each snowflake has its own unique pattern and no two snowflakes are alike, so too are you and me! In that moment, in an instance of a flash, I got it. I felt as if someone uncovered the holy grail and in a way, that is exactly what happened. You see, this opens up a door to the infinite possibilities of humanity one person at a time. You set your intention and take active steps forward knowing that life is working for you and let things unfold. Adversity and obstacles will present itself but again you don’t resist, you do not try to change what is NOT in your control, you keep co-creating with life and through life, as YOU unfold. Life is you and you are life, not separate from it, so Surrender is allowing the ebb and flow of life to take place through you.
So the next time things may not be going exactly your way; you don’t get the promotion at work or you lose your job, or a relationship ends or you fall ill (all things out of your “control”), Surrender, which means you acknowledge these things and then you take action, take steps forward, knowing/believing that life is in your favor and allow the unfolding. Know, that your gifts work in tandem with the force of energy we call life and we co-create and manifest the landscape. It’s extraordinary and magnificent. Doors open, people show up, magic happens. And after all is said and done, be Grateful!