Tuesday, March 13, 2012


       Reflection should be empowering.  It should lead us to new insights and commitments.  However, hope as we might, this is not always the case.  Hence, most oftentimes the opposite occurs.  Reflection can also sometimes immobilize us.  It continuously reminds us of the gap between our willing and wanting and our acting, our desire and drive and our performance, our calling and intention and our achievements.

      Sadly, try as we might, this gap will never be totally eradicated or closed.  We will never achieve all that we would like to do.

      Like there are two stories of our life: the public and the private.  There is the story that is known to our close kin like that of our family and our friends and the story that we embroider inside our own heads.  These two stories do not always converge.  There can be the public success and the personal inner pain.  There can be the social persona of strength and the inner persona of anxiety, vulnerability and fragility. 

     It is not easy and perhaps never will be, to integrate the two stories.  Yet we must begin to hear its tale and listen to its pain and disappointment.  Integrating the two stories will mean that both have to change.  The story of strength should thus start to reflect a new fragility and vulnerability.  The story of fear and anxiety should then start to reflect new hope and optimism.

     Thus, in our attempt to integrate these two paths, it will bring about a new sense of wholeness and well being.  For in our journey towards maturity it entails not only integrating the light but also the dark side of our story.  Success and pain, strength and vulnerability thus weave a new pattern of being that paradoxically does not diminish us, rather makes us more sensitive and thus stronger.

     There is however a downside to our quest for integration, to become spiritually attuned persons.  We can become so concerned to hear what our inner voice or what the spirit is saying that we become sometimes more concerned with only listening than with carrying out the things we feel we must do.

       Moreover, we can also become paralytic by just wanting only to hear things explicitly when more often than not the spirit only whispers embryonic ideas.  Thus, from the inner voice we oftentimes do not get fully developed plans.  More often, we just get vague intuitions and as yet unclear suggestions.

        It is important therefore, that, we are satisfied with this and thus start to find ways by which we can express these undeveloped ideas.  Hence, the movement to praxis is not from clearly developed plans.  Rather, frequently it is the movement from the hunch to try things out, to a much clearer understanding of what should we be doing and how should we do it.  We thus need to put legs to our ideas, for it is only by working things out in the real world that our idea can become clearer.  The challenge to ‘do it,’ therefore, becomes an important part of confirming our thoughts, ideas, hopes and dreams.

     For setting our hearts on something involves not only serious aspirations, but also strong determination.  It involves not only prayerful consideration, but also purposeful action.  Since we frequently fall prey in setting our hearts on that which is only a vague shadow, hence, we need to learn to make faith practical by beginning to walk in that which is not yet wholly clear.

     Why this hardship in our quest?  For the more self-reflective we are, the more aware we become of our failings and imperfections even when others think that we are doing well.  It has nothing to do with living a lie or being inconsistent.  It is rather, a recognition of our humanity and the incompleteness that we all must acknowledge, face, accept and endure.

      This recognition however, need not and should not be disempowering.  It need not make us pessimistic and skeptical.  For it can also have the opposite effects.  Thus, it can make us realize that good comes out of imperfection, strength out of weakness, and blessing out of our fragility. 

     But this can only happen when even in the midst of our quest for wholeness we can see hope in the face of our imperfections.  Then we can truly ‘be there.’
Written by: Swiss Wenger
Email: swisswenger09@gmail.com


  1. We can always be happy even if there are imperfections, but what if this imperfection greatly affects our wholeness? can we still be happy? One solution was made by me in the midst of this problems of mine. "A Mask" i told myself, coz a mask will always cover the hatred inside any person who wears it. A Mask of smile will impose to others we are happy. Yes, I am physically happy, but, it is not a true happiness. Too much hatred cannot be eradicated by simple happy memories.

    A simple question from my curious mind: How can we truly be there for someone's hatred, if we ourselves doesn't experience true happiness?

    Thank you for this article author, hope to read more of your works.


  2. Thanks Eusethadeus for your comment! Please remember, you cannot give what you do not have. Which self are you really indulging into your different associations if in the first place you do not get hold of yourself? Wearing "mask" which we all do at one point or the other can be an easy fix, and being such it doesn't last. You will eventually get tired of doing such an "act" just to put up a show for the others just so you can be invited into their world and thus feel as if you belong. However, time will come that you will get exhausted, disappointed and frustrated because despite all your effort there is still that turmoil from within lurking and just waiting to get all proportions blown up. Moreover, the danger of this is that you might totally lose yourself in the process and forever be trying to wear the different masks so as to be finally appreciated, accepted and loved. The invitation is always for us to be authentic with ourselves and our journey. We just need to accept the fact that we are all limited beings and thus we are called to transcend and see beyond our imperfections that at last we can truly be happy with our own selves and with others whom we invite to share our world with.