My Test on the Journey Home
By Nancy, Alberta, Canada
In 2015 I experienced a big change in my outer life. On February 4, I was let go from my job after seven years. My first reaction was to prove my value by finding another position immediately. When that did not happen, I began to doubt my value. I was no longer contributing to the household, and over the summer doubt and fear crept in. Only my spiritual exercises kept me from falling into despair.
In the spring I had a strong urge to read two ECK books, The Tiger’s Fang and How to Master Change in Your Life. Normally I read a book quickly and go on to the next one. This time it was different with both books. I read them slowly, absorbing every word and sentence.
As time passed, I noticed a peace and stillness entering into my life—something that had been missing.
Slowly, over the course of eleven months, I was changed by the experiences that entered my life. Gratitude for all that I have replaced the need to fill my life with things that never truly satisfied me. Before I was let go from my job, I had asked in contemplation for help with discipline and detachment. Learning to live on a smaller income, setting up a budget, and having the time to work on bringing balance to my health have been the gifts of being between jobs. The year that has started I am calling the Year of Simplicity.
Reflecting on my previous job, in contemplation I sought to understand my role in the problems that occurred over the seven years. In my dreams and during the day I began to see moments when I did not handle a situation with love. My words and actions were harsh. I expressed strong opinions certain I was right, and did not see the other point of view. It was like watching a movie. And as it moved forward through the years, I understood my role in the events that led up to my departure. I came to understand that ego and impatience got in the way and caused many problems.
Accepting responsibility for my actions made me uncomfortable. I was looking into the mirror, and it has not been easy to see the truth. It was, however, necessary. And I began to feel love and patience with myself as Soul. Through this experience, I was able to let go of the past.
As the year drew to a close, I felt an urgency to go through my clothing. I began filling bags with clothes that no longer reflected who I now was. I understood that another way I had set myself apart at work was in my choice of clothes. I dressed more formally than my coworkers. Now, as I looked at the clothes, I understood I had outgrown them, and it was time to let go. When I went shopping, I was drawn to clothing that is softer, more relaxed—the hard edges have softened. The hard shell I wore to protect myself is gone, and my smile is genuine and filled with love. Joy fills me, Soul, and as I go through the day, I smile and see beauty everywhere.
The other day, I stopped to pick up the mail on the way home. And on the top of the mail stack was an invitation—a pink slip for my Fourth Initiation. The past year has been a wonderful journey of discovery and growth. During the low moments I cried out in pain to the Mahanta, and he was always there. I felt the presence of the ECK Masters giving me love. The challenges were blessings. And I understand more fully that growth does not happen when life is going smoothly; it occurs when I am being tested. I sit here writing, filled with a love so pure and deep for the Mahanta and the ECK Masters who have helped me throughout many lifetimes.
And now I journey home to Sugmad, having found my way to the path that will take me home.