The Paradox of Choice

If you think about it, there’s actually very little we get to choose.

We don’t get to choose our mothers or fathers (or their absence) or the tribe or religion or culture we’re born into. We don’t get to choose our early childhood experiences, or our interpretations of them. We don’t get to choose our bodies or faces, plastic surgery aside (and even then, we’re limited). We don’t get to choose who loves us or who is drawn to us. We don’t get to choose our innate talents and gifts. Basically from the start, it’s a control issue. And we’re on the losing side. Think about it too much, and you’ll drive yourself insane.

Or I should say you’ll drive your ego insane.

I actually believe we choose these things before we arrive here, on Earth. (Stay with me here.) I believe we sign up for our human experience, like a college course of study. I’ll take that elective (let’s say body issues) and that elective (let’s say money issues), but this, this is my true major, the one the electives are all, inevitably, supporting. This usually being worthiness, or the lack thereof.

But all of this is very esoteric and while it can provide the comfort of a wider lens, it’s only so effective in the daily grind. Because we’re here and we have to deal with the hand we’re dealt.

Life is not fair. We know this and still we rail against it, consumed by jealousy or rage. (A select few gloat, smut in their good fortune.) But it doesn’t help. It’s human, it’s real and sometimes it cannot be avoided, but it doesn’t help.

So what do we do?

First, we recognize our desire for control. After all, it’s the master addiction. There is so much we cannot control so we fixate on the ones we can. Or think we can. So often, we end up trying to control those closest to us. But that, too, is a losing proposition. Because we can’t. And if we do, it’s short lived and backfires.

Truth be told, the only true thing we can control is ourselves, our reaction to our experiences. Everything else is an imitation, an attempt to get at the real thing, which is, in and of itself, ephemeral. Because underneath all of this riff raff, the arguments, the fears, the insecurities is, you got it, a sense of unworthiness. We’re here, so we must be bad. It’s the origin of nearly every mythological story, the Gods banishing us to earth.

Co-creation, or creating with Spirit or the Universe, is a conversation, it’s a dialogue. We have an idea of what we want or need. We put that idea out there and scramble or wait, each anxiety-provoking. But we rarely think to build a relationship with the dream itself. We’re scared to touch it, communicate with it, this perfect Eden of ours. And this keeps us tethered to the dream, rather than rooted in the reality of it, which is that we don’t have control over when or how it will arrive. Nor do we have control over what it will look like.

What we do have control over is our relationship with the dream itself, or our side, at least. They key to co-creation is realizing it’s a collaboration, that nothing ever exists in a vacuum, that we are forever rubbing up against the world, our ego (often egregiously) sandpapering itself into action.

But what if everything: our parents, our tribe, our form, and even our desires are just opportunities for letting go? What if it’s about surrendering to being here, to coming to Earth, to incarnating at all?

I’m not saying don’t dream or have goals or ambitions. That’s part of being alive.

What I am saying is: dance with it. Let the Universe lead sometimes. Trust in your soul and it’s higher wisdom. Trust that it’s guiding you. That you have the syllabus you’re meant to.

And then ask your dream, what is it I have to do in order to be with you? What is it I have to let go of?

And then, be willing to listen to the answer. It may surprise you how much control you actually have.

 

Artwork by Michelle Favin of Whys LA for Poppy & Seed. Connect with her @whyslosangeles.

Danielle is available for one-on-one spiritual advising and astrological counseling. To learn more visit her website at www.daniellebeinstein.com or email her at danielle@poppyandseed.com
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