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Free to Just Be

Author: Tom Rhodes, MFT
It’s been a little while since I’ve written a blog here. I’ve been experiencing a bit of what you could call writer’s block. I began to get curious about what was happening there, so I decided to sit down and inquire into that experience, not from the mind, but just dropped the question down into my body like a rock into a well and sat quietly until if and when an answer would come. What came was not anything new, but nonetheless a potent reminder of what it is I value most; freedom to be just as I am, and to support others in doing and being the same.

I realized that I’d been very subtly leaning away from getting curious about this experience of writer’s block, and thus getting more deeply entrenched in the quicksand of it, the sticky stuckness of it. Writer’s block can have an insidious quality to it, like you don’t realize it’s even there until you sit down to try to write something, or scan the brain for an idea. What I realized as I sat in silence, after having dropped the inquiry down, was that I was sitting already in absolute freedom to be just as I am, neither zoning out nor zoning in and ‘getting down to it’. I realized how immensely free I am to not actually write another blog ever again if that’s what I really wanted! However, interestingly, on the coattails of knowing in my bones that I was this freedom to just be here unobstructed and without agenda, you could say ‘an agenda showed up’. This blog showed up. Apparently, finally and only when I had released entirely the requirement for it to do so. You’ll find it in my blogs again and again, because it’s true! This being that our fundamental truths, both very personal and impersonal, are repeatedly laced with paradox.

Perhaps it is obvious at this point, that writer’s block is only the entry way into what this blog is really about. It’s really about the often direly avoided experience of just sitting and letting oneself be, no agenda, not even to sit and meditate. Even that is too much doing for what I’m speaking of here. As I mentioned earlier, something alchemical and bordering on magical happens time and again when we hang out in that space between zoning out and zoning in, between subject and object. Right here before any impulse or movement at all, right here in just radically being still. This stillness isn’t stiff, not ‘right’ or ‘proper’. In a way, it’s quietly dancing with fluidity and movement sometimes, when that’s what is needed. A fundamental tenant within this stillness is the full allowance of a deep trust that if something needs to show up, it will. And if just being still and open is what serves the greater good, then the shape-shifting into an idea will not show up in that moment. This trust of our inner flow, somewhat strangely, can’t really be learned or unlearned, only invited via being what we already are, that awake, silent, and empty space just pregnant with fullness and that dancing quality that can only be known, again and again, through seeing through what we are not, and resting as what remains, what is always abiding in us, as us.

Tom Rhodes

Tom Rhodes

Tom Rhodes is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in private practice in the Noe Valley neighborhood of San Francisco. He specializes in working with people who suffer from anxiety or whose very identity is being called into question by the current circumstances of their life.

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