Snot about Me

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Started a landslide in my ego
Looked from the outside to the world I left behind.

– U2

Fire burns brightest when the darkness comes from within.

Last weekend, I was sprawled at the epicenter of the perfect storm. I was sick–couldn’t breathe, nose running several marathons at once, head pounding like Grond at the gates of Minas Tirith. I was also feeling quite sorry for myself. Had there been any worms on hand, I would have been popping them like Skittles. All in all, it was a fairly lousy few days, headspace-wise.

And then, the little metaphorical light bulb went on, and I had a moment of blinding (and in no way Benadryl-related) clarity:

It’s not about me.

Four words. Simple as that. It’s. Not. About. ME.

Over the past week, this has become for me a mantra of sorts. I have never felt more free. Free of myself; free of everything that sets me apart from others and builds walls between us. I can see clearly and to great distances. Once we realize that the horizon is only really the shadow of Self, there is no limit to the power of sight.

This is not to say I’ll never again stumble into the Slough of Despond, or that reciting those words will always keep a smile plastered across my face. I will be depressed, from time to time; I will allow my own pettiness to cloud my awareness of the claims of others to my time and attention. Sometimes, there will be tantrums; other times, there will be inaction lost in the fog of self-pity and doubt. Rajas and tamas go hand in hand.

But if I am to accomplish anything, I have to let go of the Vance-centric state of mind. You may not have noticed, but the word “advancement” has me built right into it. It’s too easy to let that thought dominate my thinking, to become all I am about. Ad-VANCE-ment.

The world is pain individualized. But only because we accept the false premise of individuality. We are not many. We are one. Humankind: a word defined by what kind of humans we choose to be.

I can only make something meaningful of this life I’ve stumbled upon if “I” am no longer involved.

It’s not about me.

10 thoughts on “Snot about Me

  1. I think it’s about both, which is why we have two hemispheres and a corpus callosum to connect the two. The left is “I am” and the right is “we are”. It is an illusion that the brain is one, but it can work in unison. Without you there would be no us. 🙂

    Hope you’re feeling better, my friend. 🐻

  2. Of course, because it’s all about ME!!!

    You are my hero Vance Woods, and I want to be just like you when I grow up!! Well except for the facial hair. I’m trying to avoid that.

    1. No worries. I’ve been avoiding actual facial hair my whole life. :0) I believe it was you who once told me that it made me look like an adolescent trying to look like a grown-up…

  3. My dear, advanced friend,

    You’re quite right. I think I may need to go on a Benadryl and worm binge to turn my tamas to rajas.

    Thoughtfully,
    Your friend whose name only includes madness

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