So in the aftermath of my recent emotional awakening experience I am left with this question. Do I really dare to live? Not just to be alive but to live fully, filled with life and experience to the brim, each day?

Most of us, myself included, opt out. We siphon life into small and manageable streams. Only taking in as much as we think is manageable, and so we censor life itself, we censor our life experience and put on blinkers not seeing, or feeling what we have decided would be “too much”.

How do you bypass? What techniques do you use to diffuse, anger, headache, sorrow, boredom, any and all emotional pain? Instead of actually feeling what life serves you. What do you detach from, not to get drawn in or hurt?

There’s this famous quote from braveheart: “All men die, but not all men really live!” It seems to me that bypassing our emotions, softening our experiences to avoid emotional or physical pain is dying before time. The ancient text Didache tells us that there are two roads, the road of life and the road of death. I know that I was preaching life but not really living it, just dipping my toe into the rivers of life. Tightly controlling how much life/emotion I would experience.

I think the time has come to let go of control, to live out of control, to live fully or like the dead poets embrace Thoreau:

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms.”

The question is: Do you dare to live, to really live? To feel all that life throws at you, to experience the fullness of life? To let go of the illusion of control and propriety, to let go of safety and comfort, to shed religous and societal norms. Will you do it with me?

2 responses to “Do you dare to live?”

  1. Andrea Figueroa Avatar

    Thank you for such a thought provoking post. I’ve been contemplating similar trains of thought lately I’m sick to my teeth of detaching to the point of not feeling anything.

    How do I do this Patrik? Without having an emotional awakening like you, how do I let go?

    1. Patrik Olterman Avatar

      I don’t think there are any shortcuts here. I think the only way to do this is to simply allow yourself to feel deeply, to observe your feelings and emotional responses and let them happen. And at the point where it gets uncomfortable, to not stop, not control it, not bypass it but feel it even deeper.

      Use the express and release tools! Moving the emotions to the forefront and just feeling them. The biggest problem is our unconscious attempts at control and bypass. We become aware of these by listening deeply to our bodies and to observe our minds as they sidestep and try to avoid whatever is going on. We observe and we accept that it is happening. Only what we accept is possible to change.

      As we become aware of our responses we can slowly choose to not engage in the bypass and therefore feel more.

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