Daring and Perseverance
A talk from an online sitting, January 2018
Daring and Perseverance is one of the “Four Alchemical Ingredients” described in the Trillium awakening orientation course. The other three are Transmission, Greenlighting and Radical Embrace.
I started exploring this in the dark days of mid December, when tiredness and the cold, wet weather left me wanting only to curl up in a warm place with a book. But there was also part of me that felt that my body needed to exercise and be stretched out of its sleepy state.
Greenlighting the desire to rest has been an important part of my Trillium Awakening experience – I am something of a workaholic, often driving myself forward to the point where my body gets overtired. But I can also find it difficult to truly rest. I’d also reached a point then I know, deep down, that there are also patterns I needed to change, but wanting to do this in a way that was respectful to sensitive sleepy place calling for me to stop and rest.
In reflecting on this, I felt drawn to idea of “Daring and Perseverance,” secretly hoping that there might be an instant answer or “fix” that would solve the problem. What it told me was unexpected:
Daring and Perseverance
- Vulnerable self-expression: daring to speak your truth, even when it might be unpopular or shameful
- Coming out as all that you are, letting others see your tender, shy parts—which are often expressions of your authentic (unconditioned) self which has been in hiding until it felt safe enough to show up
What this seemed to suggest was that I need to go further into exploring both sides – the part which wanted to retreat, hide, cosy up and be tucked in, and the part that felt discontent when doing so.
I suspect that many of us are tussling with similar feelings at this time of year – and the desire to push through it all with a good bit of hyper masculine “will power” is a strong one, especially as we feel the rebirth of the new year – and are bombarded with health advice on every side.
However, exploring what was going on without going down the hyper masculine route does appear to be helpful – i.e. applying the daring and perseverance formula to what is going on under the surface. This brought to light some parts of myself which I hadn’t previously faced up to. It also led to the awareness of how far contradictory feelings can live alongside one another. Like embracing the core wound of infinite consciousness and finite humanness, embracing this (rather less fundamental) contradiction proved useful.
For example, when I go into the resting or “tucked up” mode, I often distracting myself with reading, watching TV (detective dramas!). This helps push away another part which is feeling dissatisfied or a bit guilty about things I haven’t completed or which are running late. On the other hand, when I push myself to ‘get on with things’ mode, then the desire for withdraw or rest is often present as a sense of resentment or resistance, at least until I get fully engaged with whatever it is.
It can be hard to stay with, and acknowledge, both simultaneously. Going deeper into the sense of frustration, irritation or dissatisfaction when trying to rest, I began to see some of the judgements going on around this: whether this or that was “right,” appropriate and justifiable.
Staying with the sense of judgement, but without judging this, was particularly difficult, but took me to an area of discrimination that I hadn’t explored before – between easy, habitual judgement, and the judgement that arises from a deeper sense of ‘rightness’. A sense of self judgement can often have a truth inside it that I’m trying to ignore : because I was judging this as “hypermasculine” or just “unacceptable” to myself (and potentially other people).
This took me into the second part of the “Daring and Persevering” element:
- Daring to express emerging aspects of your awakening, bringing further clarification, deepening, and integration of your unfolding divine nature.
Inside the dissatisfaction can often be a genuine sense of something else emerging, wanting to change, but this might take a while to become clear:
- Persevering means hanging in there, even when there is little visible progress.
I also noticed that I was still looking for a formula for getting out of the discomfort – an instant fix, some formalised activity, rather than allowing a genuine inner movement or change to emerge.
So where does this leave me in relation to being ‘tucked in’ versus getting out there – to engage with others, get some exercise, be more active? Firstly, I am getting a little more comfortable in acknowledging my desire to “distract” myself when wanting to rest and to stay with this feeling, rather than reaching for the TV remote. Allowing myself to full rest, without this distraction, often leads to my just getting on with things after a while, without having to force myself to do so.
On the other hand, I’m also learning to give more space to feeling the desire to stay snug (reach for the TV remote, eat some comfort food) AND at the same time, choose to do something different and break the pattern. It is quite s surprise to find how easy it is to go for a swim at the same time as acknowledging that my body would prefer to stay warm and snug.
It’s a start and I look forward to watching this unfold further.