From my book “Living and Dying”
My childhood memories include camping, summering at the lake, and playing in the neighborhood. My connection with my family was always strained by the memory of where I came from and the pain associated with it, but it was okay. I believe that somewhere around the age of five or six I found my direction in life. I took on the job of spiritual leader, or keeper, of my dad and the family as a whole. It felt like I was being offered the key to the kingdom. I felt true happiness, joy, and love. I can actually recall the peace and the feeling of connection I had at the age of five that has not changed over the years, but it has been clouded at times. In fact, if you look at a picture of me at five, you can physically see it.
A good exercise for all of us is to find a picture of us at the age of around five. Most likely you, too, will see yourself as you truly are, free of responsibility, fear, and judgment. We were all born into this. Wilma Rudolph (the Olympic athlete) is quoted as saying “Never underestimate the power of dreams and the influence of the human spirit. We are all the same in this notion: The potential for greatness lives within each of us.”
I had experienced this notion, but what eventually changed is what I did with it. I did the same thing that most of us do with it—we take it and make it our responsibility. We take it and try to manage it, control it, categorize and manipulate it. We take it and literally destroy its beauty, peace and joy. We make it our personal responsibility.
”Blessings on your journey”