In a Call to Courage
Courage is a word I don’t hear that often in the spiritual communities, in bodywork circles or psychological settings. Yet it is what we each specialize in when we dare to embrace a path of awareness; when we dare to face the unknown, face our shadow, face our shame.
Courage is what we leap into when we turn toward what we fear and begin to walk in the direction of what we have previously walked away from. When we begin to be led by what we are trying to avoid, it is courage that allows each step to complete and take with it the movement of the foot following from behind. And it is courage lifting the behind foot, carrying it through the air, placing it on the ground one step closer to what it has avoided all this time. Courage fuels that momentum. It fuels the first, second, third, thirteenth, thirteenth hundred, thirteenth thousandth step we take toward our awakening.
The courage to step toward our discomfort is the courage to meet a fantasy produced in our mind. The courage to see what actually happens is the courage to see through what we have imagined and instead survive a real experience. Courage slays the dragon of our unconscious; slays the chatter of the voices in our head, the passion of gripping fear, the attachment of desire.
Will what we fear be more or less painful than avoiding it has been for all our life? Courage answers the question—it is the movement, the substance, the vehicle. The transporter of all movement toward the unknown is courage.
Courage is a word we could each say to the other more often. With a little attention to the concept we begin to see the people with whom we share our lives through very different eyes. In seeing the courage it takes for our friends to experience their pain, to reveal their hope, to confront their fear, we might also begin to spot it in our own lives, for it is everywhere around us and within. The courage it takes to be sick, to be devastated, to be strong, to be weak, to be confused, to be lost, to be playful, to be lonely, to be alive. When you look around you see courage at work everywhere: the courage to go back to school, to start a business, to leave a home, to take a chance, to quit a job, to ask for help, to speak the truth, to begin something, to complete something, to partner, to parent, to change; to save a life, to save your life, to save mine.
To take the word courage into our lives, to recognize it, to speak it, is to bring a place of compassion and recognition to the little places in which we are each struggling to be present. For me, to point out a place of courage is the great high-five, for there is celebration in each view of it I recognize.
Courage is an agent of freedom in this bound world we witness each day. It is courageous to speak up for what we believe. It is courageous to take an action to support that belief. It takes courage to think a new thought, to speak that very thought, to act in support of this unique and wondrous thought—of peace, of triumph, of beauty, harmony, survival, change, transformation, hope, action, helping, giving, participating, holding still, holding dear, holding a space of knowingness beside knowing nothing at all. Whether the thought is a pipedream, an attempt to remove us from danger, an impulse to make a difference in the world, a need to help a child, a village, a country, a planet we hear crying, see dying, feel helpless to affect, it is courage that keeps the thought present in our mind, not forgotten, but rather thought, and then spoken. And then maybe, just maybe there is a first step toward it—just a little baby step that the foot behind also feels and so also moves toward, in the sweet momentum of the now named, now recognized, now activated, stride of courage.
© Copyright 2006 KD Farris, Ph.D.. All Rights Reserved.
Read KD's Past Columns:
Oct-Dec 2005 - "Pausing For Breath At The Threshold of Consciousness"
Jan-Mar 2005 - "Tuning In - Turning Within"
Oct-Dec 2004 - "Experiencing Loss as a Gain"
Aug-Sept 2004 "Sometimes to Move Forward, We Have to Go Back"
June-July 2004 "Soulful Practice: Spiritual Practice--Soulful Nature"
Jan-Feb 2004 - "Making Our Dreams Come True Is Living A Truthful Life"
December 2003 - "Graceful Living - Confessions of a Professional Speaker"
October 2003 - "Serenity: As Calm, As Clear
May 2003 - "What are Your Needs?"
April 2003 - "Techniques for Clearing the Space for Communication" - Part II of II
February 2003 - "HESHE & Clearing the Space for Communication" - Part I of II
January 2003 - "Body & Soulful Living"
November 2002 - "Getting Into MESHE with Your Home Through Minor Adjustments"
October 2002 - "Being in MESHE with Clearing Clutter"
September 2002 - "Discover Going on Retreat"
July 2002 - "Build Your MESHE - Seek the Space: A Process for Reclaiming the Shadow"
June 2002 - Revisiting: "The MESHE Concept - A Path to Soulful Living"
May 2002 - "Bodywork 101"
March 2002 - "Being Present Within Your Prosperous Life"
February 2002 - "HESHE and The Third Bird"
December 2001 - "Manifesting Your Perfect Partner with Personal Truthz"
November 2001 - "Remembering What We Already Know"
September 2001 - "Be Led By What You Are Trying to Avoid"
August 2001 - "Draw Your Way to Clarity, Health & Balance"
June 2001 - "Tending to the Negative Mind"
May 2001 - "Gentle Conscious Living"
April 2001 - "MISON and The Moment"
March 2001 - "The MESHE Concept - A Path to Soulful Living"
KD Farris, Ph.D. is a successful counselor, healer, and bodyworker. For more than twenty years she has taught
extensive workshops based on MESHE, HESHE, MISON & ORBIT as well as many other self-discovery topics.
KD began developing her integrated bodywork and counseling techniques in 1983 under the tutelage of many prominent doctors and healers throughout the United States.
Her education into the spiritual and physical aspects of the human experience served as the foundation for her private practice and the development of a new philosophy. She combined her techniques into four guiding principles, which she shares in her book, MESHE, HESHE,
MISON & ORBIT: What My Grandmother Taught Me About the Universe. She teaches a companion workshop series, where she creates an interactive environment demonstrating the material from her book with tangible, life altering effects. In these workshops, individuals discover a
deepening of their relationship to self, others, and life itself.
Through individual counseling and group workshops, she has taught her results-oriented programs to many different types of people including those confined to mental institutions, substance and food abusers, and generally, people in life transitions, struggling with intimate
relationships, or who lack direction in their lives. Visit www.kdfarris.com.
KD is currently touring a new body of work, Talking About People in Transition, Also Known As
Liminal Space. She will be writing about liminality and its relevance to day-to-day living in upcoming issues of Soulful Living. For more information on this new and exciting topic, or to learn about more her private practice, workshops and lectures, visit
Contact KD at: info@MESHE.com