The body holds deep sadness.
- The loss of people you love: those who have died; lovers and friends with whom you have fallen out, or lost touch; children who have moved away.
The loss as you grow and move on from childhood … from youth … from young adulthood … from middle age … from life: a favourite tree or pond; a loved room; a home; a neighbourhood; a place of work; a relationship; a profession.
The ache of mistakes you have made and the consequences in your life: the follies; the choices; the hurt.
The changes as this body becomes less mobile, energetic, free, robust; more painful, fragile, vulnerable; the teeth, the tummy, the hair, the eyesight, the hearing.
The sadness of this body when you absent yourself from incarnation – when you turn from being yourself (as you do daily, hourly) to fit in, to be liked, to keep the peace.
And the moment by moment sadness of breath: each in-breath a welcoming; each out-breath a farewell.
This is the way of all beings. Even the mountains. Even the stars.
Sadness dwells deep in this body.
How do you respond? With regret, with anger, with fear? Do you cling on? Do you seek to hold back time, to hold your breath, try to stop this sadness? Do you embrace amnesia? Bereave yourself of bereavement?
But what if there is nothing wrong? What if this is it? Sadness is.
Can you, eventually, having worn out the alternatives, respond with tenderness – to this body, to yourself, to your sadness?
Only tenderness will ferry you from sadness to joy.
[N.B. indicates an update since this was first posted.]