Living inside out.
(Not the same as upside down.)
The well of well-being flows from the inside out.
Imagine a well. Its job, or nature if I may, is to be full of water. Now where is this water going to come from? Obviously from the earth inside it. When said well is full of this good water from the ground, people, animals, birds come to drink from it. Because the world needs, and survives on good, clean water.
But when the well is empty and barren, people throw stones, slippers, and all kinds of garbage into it, treating it like the empty receptacle it is.
Well is equal to You
Now imagine that you are this well. And the water in the well, the elixir of life, is what all humans are essentially made of. Literally, of course, because we are 75% water, but metaphorically I’m talking about goodness, peace, love, kindness etc. Positivity to put it simply, and I will go as far as to say, a sense of knowing. And when the well is full, you, and everyone around you is fulfilled. And you are doing the job you were made for. Providing the world with water.
The well cannot be (ful)filled from the outside
What happens to most of us is that we expect this well to be filled from the outside. We seek our water or fulfilment from financial net worth, fame, accomplishments at work, sport, from the people around us in the form of praise, love, adulation, facebook likes etc. And when this stops or doesn’t happen the way we expect it to, our well is empty. You could have a great job one day making tons of money, and get fired the next, with no severance and a huge mortgage over your head. You could meet the love of your life after years of waiting, and find that they make you utterly miserable. And when things like this happen, we feel empty and broken. If we, the empty wells are waiting for the world to fill us up, it is easy for us to be hit by negativity, the garbage that the world throws at us, and we allow it to hit the core of our being, because there is no water or positivity to shield or insulate us.
Is it wrong to seek or desire praise, love and adulation from the world? Absolutely not. Accept it with open arms, embrace it, embrace it hard. But if our sense of ‘self’ or fulfillment depends on it, it is a problem. And it is possible for a well to be filled from the outside. Maybe people are throwing buckets of water inside you, or it has rained heavily for a few days, and you feel good, like your well is filled with water. But that water is shallow and will not last. A few harsh days of summer and the well will dry up. And all the garbage that was thrown at you, will be sitting at the bottom, dried and desiccated but still there, visible for all the world to see.
In order to be full and complete, we need to dig and find the ‘realness’ (I’m shying from saying ‘truth’ because it sounds bombastic) from inside us. And this takes work. This is not sitting around waiting for someone to pour buckets of water inside you. Or waiting to be hit by a particularly good monsoon. This requires us to really dig deep. And trust me, the water is inside there. And if you’ve been digging for a while and it’s not there, it simply means you are digging in the wrong place.
Where is the water? A.k.a. Alignment.
In which case, move yourself, dear well, to a different part of the earth that is certain to have ground water, root yourself there, and tap into it. I call this being in alignment with your true self, or that pure part of the Source inside you for the spiritually inclined. Because your true self has all the water you need. It is MADE of that water. Like the musk deer that searches its whole life for the enchanting fragrance that without knowing it came from inside it.
We are that fragrance. We are nothing but love, kindness, peace, power, energy and strength. Strength to withstand anything the outside may throw at us, and let it float away. AND with the capacity for fill the outside world with all the goodness it needs. So when we are in alignment, we will attract those who are in true need of our water. Those who seek our positive energy and goodness, those who are in alignment with us, those are the people we should be surrounding ourselves with. In millennial lingo, Your vibe attracts your tribe.
How to align yourself?
I’m not sure I am qualified to answer this, but I have a clue. This journey is different for each person. It is often confusing, sometimes going one step forward two steps back. It usually takes an interruption in one’s life for us to even recognize that we are not in alignment with our true selves. It could be an illness, death of a loved one, heartbreak, depression, just about anything.
To be able to recognize this interruption as a sign that inner work needs to be done is the first step. And the work and the journey towards alignment is also varied. We could form a connection with our true selves through work, through sport, art, meditation, spiritual practices, religion, breathing techniques, through travel, through love. There is no one size fits all, and it is a journey that each of us has to go through individually. But the work itself is satisfying and fulfilling, bringing us closer and closer to ourselves. It’s like trying to get to know someone new, but only with ourselves. It can be an exciting and fun journey. Not easy, but fun.
Purpose: Being true to your original self.
The purpose of a well, is to simply to provide water and thereby, sustenance to the world around it. For what use is a full well that does not allow people to drink its sweet, cool water? And when you, dear well, share this water with the animals, birds, people who seek your water, nourishing them, helping them stay alive, you don’t become empty. Because you will realize that there is an infinite source of water that you can tap into beneath the earth, and that it will never run out. In other words, you will be a wellspring of goodness and positive energy, doing exactly what you are meant to do on this earth.