They say insanity is repeatedly doing something the same way while expecting a different result. If that is true then I have tangoed with insanity many a time, but thankfully it has been a long time since insanity and I joined hands for a trip around the dance floor. That was until an old angry bear came out of hibernation and into my life and I was reminded that it's best to let sleeping dogs (bears) lie and to part ways with insanity for good.
Sometimes we forget how far we have progressed, how much wisdom we have learned from experience after experience; and for just a second we re-engage with old habits. We engage with ego, be it our own, or indulging another’s. Old habits die hard as they say, and we are always learning, but I knew better. I should have listened to my wisdom and I must say that as soon as the bear roared I knew that time had not healed it, time had not softened it; and I knew that the intuition I carelessly ignored had been spot on.
It's not easy to calm an angry bear down once it's on it back legs, but I knew this was my last tango with this particular bear as soon as I stepped to the edge of the dance floor. In fact, I had been praying for this bear's heart to be filled with love for the preceding month or two, praying that love would take hold and transform it for the benefit of everyone. That compassionate action went a long way in me being able to remain at peace while the bear hurled criticism and judgement at me.
It is almost utterly impossible to be angry (ego) or scared (ego) when you are able to step back and view a situation as an observer. So there I stood, at the edge of this imaginary dance floor, detached from the growling bear pacing before me, lashing out and goading me to step in and take part. Detached, I reminded myself this was nothing more than the bear's old wounds rearing their ugly head, nothing more than a re-direction of pain. I reminded myself I had already forgiven this bear when I had visualised them stripped of all their drama and saw only their inner light. There was nothing else to forgive. There was nothing else to say. It had all gone before and beating the same drum expecting a different sound is, well..insanity also! This last tango would be nothing more than a quick turn on the dance floor for old times’ sake for me if I was to take part and I found myself smiling as I thought of the insanity that was at play. This was a dance that did not entice. Then came incredible clarity. Just when we think are free, just when we feel there can be no higher level of freedom, we find ourselves reminded by the Universe there is even more to be experienced.
This last tango affirmed that I was no longer affected in any shape of form by whatever could be said or done by this bear ever again because in being able to remain at peace when criticised, I felt Divine confirmation of the enormous growth of inner confidence that I had experienced. It was confirmation that my foundational beliefs and values were strong, thus resentment and anger knew no place. This was an entirely new level of freedom. Can it get any better I asked myself? ‘Yes’ was the intuitive response.
If we develop a deep level of self-confidence, born from faith rather than ego; and think compassionately of others we will not only be able to remain at peace when criticised by others, but we will also be able to cast off the shackles of the ego which takes its form in defensiveness, resentment, fear and anger. “Be afraid of nothing, you have within you – all wisdom, all power, all strength, all understanding”, writes Eileen Caddy in the Dawn of Change. Yes, we do indeed. I have danced my last tango with an imposing roaring bear and have left insanity well and truly on the dance floor as the lights go out on that chapter of my life. Permanently.