Devoted to Pathwork
Recent days have been stressful and anxious for me, times of depression, confusion, anger, frustration. So I found myself drawn back to my recording project of the Pathwork lectures. With all going on, I rationally did not have time for working on these recordings, but was nonetheless drawn to it.
The Pathwork Lecture I was recording was #4 titled Life Weariness. I had to smile at that, for “life weariness” was what I was feeling. But on a deeper level I noticed that I was simply drawn to these Pathwork lectures, perhaps like an artist is drawn to painting, or a musician to composing music or playing an instrument. I was not reading them to learn their concepts intellectually or as a means to improve my life or find God or whatever. No, rather I was reading them simply because I was drawn to read them. Their words enliven me, encourage me, support me. I cannot exactly say why, but it is true. And I recognize that this was somewhat similar to my reading the Bible so regularly in my 30s and early 40s, though then I think it was more from a sense of duty, or “ought to” than from the sheer joy of doing it that I experience with the Pathwork lectures.
As I sat with this experience of working with Pathwork Lecture #4, the word “devotionally” arose in me. Yes, I was reading the Pathwork lectures devotionally. Just letting the words penetrate me and feeling myself nourished by them, like eating a rich chocolate brownie with ice cream and savoring each bite. Thus I was taking in the Pathwork lectures.
When I look up the definition of devotion, the dictionary offers words like: profound dedication, earnest attachment to a cause, person, etc. And I would say that this indeed applies to my relationship with the Pathwork Lectures, and to their application to my life in the various practices they offer — daily review, meditation, helper sessions, etc. Even doing Pathwork homework and discussing same with my Pathwork friend Jenny fits here, as does my nearly daily coffee time conversation with Pat, always tapping into Pathwork wisdom at some point. So I find myself devoted to Pathwork on several levels. It occupies so much of my time, my thinking, and my reflection time. Pathwork provides a framework for my life. And the Lectures are a profound source of inspiration for me. Yes, I am devoted to Pathwork.
Then last night in a meditation session with Mary’s EmbodyBeing group, I shared my relationship with the Pathwork lectures, how I read them devotionally. Mary integrated “devotion” into her teaching. She was speaking of being devoted to life — willingness to be completely there in whatever is there in life — including reading Pathwork lectures, or being in a primary relationship. She went on to say that devotion is about surrendering all expectations, in fact in devotion we are free of all expectations. She offered that we could be in a state of devotion — irregardless of how we were feeling in the moment. I want to pause to take that in.
I feel joyful and enlivened at this realization that what I am experiencing is my devotion to Pathwork. I can just leave it at that. I do not have to know why, or make it work, or whatever. As a meditator keeps coming back to his or her cushion, or an artist to his or her canvas, so I keep coming back to Pathwork — a major source of vitality in my life these recent years.