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Wednesday, September 13, 2006

The Impermanent Self

Rychlak said that the self is as impermanent as the weather. It changes daily and transforms completely over time. At first I found this hard to digest, as a believer in a more permanent self I call soul. But over time I have seen Rychlak’s assertion come to pass. And, as it was upon first hearing, it is disturbing. But maybe that’s because I am sentimental. I try to cling to the past for those brief moments locked into imperfect memories that bring the illusion of comfort in the present.

I look at myself from a distance at times and wonder how did I get here? Why don’t I do this anymore or that? I am reminded of the “this and that’s” as I go through all of my belongings and every nook and cranny of the house searching for things to give away, throw away and organize. For too many years I have carried around about 50 pounds of clothes I never wear, books I feel pressure to read when I see them, but don’t want to read, items I feel obligated to keep but only remind me of unpleasant events. All of it, and I do mean all, has to go. And go as soon as I can get a charity to come to my door and take it. That day, for a three boxes and a bag is tomorrow. Hurray!

It was surprising however as I went through things the memories they brought back. The person I was. There were many old love letters and some blow off letters. God, if I could tell my 18-year-old self what I know now, none of those letters would have hurt at all. But that is the ever-changing self as well as the developing mind.

It’s been 3 months now that I have been self and clutter clearing. The big purge as it were. In doing so, I feel lighter and have more floor space. My mother, monitoring the inner channels only mothers can, simultaneously decided to clutter clear as well and brings me a new box each time I see her. But I must admit, the antique china and cut glass candle holders that were my Nana’s wedding gifts are way better than anything I have given away. And now I have somewhere to put them – kind of…

But that’s how it goes. Clutter clearing is good Feng Shui or as my husband pronounces it – Fang Shuueeey. In giving away all I am open to accepting the new. In accepting the impermanent self I am allowed to imagine a better self. So I am imagining a fantastic self: who is not afraid or uptight or stressed, who looks in the mirror and sees beauty all of the time not just in rare moments, who is full of abundance of heart and expects an abundant life, who is capable of living up to her highest potential and exercising daily her many gifts. Thanks Rychlak!