“Very little grows on jagged rock.
Be ground. Be crumbled.
So wild flowers will come up
Where you are.
You have been stony for too many years.
Try something different. Surrender.”
(photograph by me)
Our solid, rock-like defense system, whether jagged or smooth, helps us be “strong”, “protected”. If we are strong enough, protected enough, we can keep things from getting to us, or breaking us apart. Familiarity is a part of this rock-like defense too. Even when we feel we are hurt, suffering, unhappy, lonely, the pattern of hanging on and just surviving the current emotion/drama is “safer”, for some of us, than trying something different.
Rumi reminds us to try something different. To surrender. To take a risk and allow ourselves to be ground up ( just a little is ok, it only takes a small crack in the surface), to crumble apart just a little. Something new, and beautiful and full of possibilty might begin to grow—a wild flower, or….?
Sure, growing “flowers” might be unfamiliar to us. We might have to learn something new. Face new disappointments. Solve different problems and crises. Different doesn’t mean “bad”, “wrong”, “impossible”, “not worth it”. Different means, or can mean, “possibility”. We might end up with a beautiful “garden”.
I’ve come to a time in my life where I am not only allowing some crumbling to happen, but I am also looking for ways to facilitate it.
Little pieces of me are cracking and crumbling in a good way. Sometimes it is very hard and even scary because now I am also asking other people to look at me and respond to me differently, because I am looking at them and responding to them differently. By making changes in myself, I am making changes in relationships….and that’s a pretty big risk…..what if the other person doesn’t want to change? What if they don’t “like” the way I have changed?
I am finding strength in being fragile, vulnerable. The little pieces of me that were so jagged, barren and unwelcoming, are crumbling and softening. New thoughts, ideas, observations, interpretations, solutions, are growing. Patience, stillness, and listening are the rain and sunlight that allow and support this growth. I’m not always successful but I am working really hard at letting fear, doubt and worry go….trying even to prevent them from getting a footing. I’m working really hard on being aware of the fertile, fictional stories my brain floods me with and insisting those story lines of drama, worry, or unrealistic fantasies fade away so I can instead marvel at the blessings, beauty and wonder of the moment at hand.
I suppose there is a purpose and place for being jagged in life, but right now it is of no interest to me. I’d rather surrender, crumble a bit, and grow a wildflower.
(photograph by me)
(This offering is an updated version of a post on my previous blog, Potentiality, called ‘Rumi and Crumbling’)