He kept asking me over and over again, each time I saw him, “Can you take me home?”
Even though he was actually home, living in a beautiful house where he was tended to by a loving family.
Today is Easter, the day that Jesus resurrects, the day we celebrate the return of spring, the rush of fertility to earth. It is the day that the sun wakes us from our slumber of the winters eve.
Today I stand in gratitude at my own heart’s ability to resurrect. During the winter solstice I wrote to you about healing, and today, at the spring equinox, I am here to write about being home.
The cycle of healing begins with a split; that split can seem like it is between two people but in reality the split is always within your own self. Places where you have engaged in self betrayal, places where you don’t tell the truth because you think or believe there is too much to lose if you were to say what must be said- those places, all of them, sooner or later, must split.
Those splits, those self betrayals, if you are lucky, begin to fracture, to create wide gaps and foundational faults. The cycle of healing takes you to the absolute crumbling of the foundation. If you are even luckier, you don’t rush to build something back up. You take a look around you at the landscape, empty and barren and burnt of rushes and woods.
You spend some time in those fallow fields, in that place of absolute solitude and dark.
I do not know any road map to home that does not go through the dark side.
When I would see that man who kept asking me to take him home, over and over again, what I often thought was that I was looking at a man who had never found home inside of himself, ever, not ever in his long life, and now that dementia had erased his ability to edit what he said out loud, he was saying what he had been asking inside himself for a very long time.
“Can you take me home?”
Are you brave enough to take yourself home, regardless of what might have to be lost along the way?
It’s a good practice to lose things in life, big things, little things, all things really because the truth is that we will lose everything sooner or later. The self betrayal we engage in is due to our fear of losing the things we believe keep us safe. Think of all the subtle and not so subtle ways that people self betray in order to stay inside of relationships that clearly do not work.
If you are willing to lose whatever is not true, if you are willing to not self betray, no matter what the consequences are, no matter what the cost, then you will know true home.
Home is within yourself. It is the absolute intimacy of spirit, of self knowledge. Home is juicy, powerful, and stable. If you are lucky enough to have walked all the way home within yourself, then you will know that you have fulfilled your destiny. Your destiny is to know who you truly are.
And then the field begins to grow again. Those burnt and fallow grasses sprout, and the field blooms. Seeds tempered by heat grow into sequoias. This is the way of nature, of the great force of life that surrounds us.
This is the secret story inside the resurrection of Christ. This is the meaning of Easter, the invitation of spring. Only by the fire can the most tender of green emerge.