"It is never easy to relinquish the safe harbor.”
This is how the second part of my conversation with a wise being named Bean, a pug, started. His person, Kailyn, was concerned about how he might be taking her decision to release him into what he termed "All That Is" because of his worsening health issues. He is looking forward to it.
He was assuring her that he understood how conflicted she was feeling about her decision. He wanted her to understand why it is a good decision for both of them.
His use of that word, harbor, reminded me of John A. Shedd's comment, ”A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.”
Bean nodded. “Exactly. All of us are boats carrying the soul. Humans see the boat and invest all their emotion and commitment to the boat, and want to make sure the boat is safe. But boats need to leave the harbor. I need to leave the harbor of her physical home, and she needs to realize that she has sails ready to fill with new air, and in sending me out into the wide expanse of All That Is, she releases her own vessel to experience the wonder of life’s fullness.”
I asked, ”Is there anything else you would like to pass on to Kailyn? Or to me?”
He became very solemn. “To both of you I say, spend all you have on what brings happiness and the deepest, fullest joy possible. There is no other cause as important as your joy. No other.”
His advice is not new to me. When I send up to receive guidance from my link to my greater self -- my Greater Self -- I often receive such advice. At fist -- more than 40 years ago -- I resisted, feeling that to focus only on what made me happy was not ethical, not responsible.
But the advice was never and is not now to focus on what makes me happy, although the word 'happiness' certainly is there. The emphasis is on what brings me the fullest joy. And I take particular note that "There is no other cause as important as your joy. No other.” is a general, not a specific statement. All of us need to open to our joy, for it is joy that creates wellness, harmony, and dissipates fear.
Even as we shelter at home, venturing out only strategically and then masked against evil particles, we can choose to live joyfully. We can look at the harbor we may be clinging to and imagine how we might feel in a wider or shallower harbor and even out in the open water of possible life scenarios. I have heard from more than a few friends that they have used this time to re-evaluate, recraft, and redefine plans, and have found some old patterns and habits drifting away. In our boats, we are not just bobbing, anchored. We may not realize it, but we are all at sea. Joy makes a fine and trustworthy rudder.
With gratitude to Kailyn for her permission to use both her and Bean's real names.