The Taste of Freedom

Just as we can know the ocean because it always tastes of salt, we can recognize enlightenment because it always tastes of freedom.
– Buddha

I have been having a lot of trouble lately letting go.

After we found out that we would be going to Maine for the summer, I decided to clear out my life to get it down to the essentials–only those things that feel like freedom. I have so many interests and so much STUFF for each of the interests that sometimes I feel like I’m drowning in it. I want to use this time to limit all that stuff and get to the things that bring me joy.

Martha Beck calls this Shackles ON Shackles OFF Annie, from the Tarot Professor, talks about using this test in a real-world way. I like her take on it. We need to be realistic when we are using the shackles test.

Get rid of your shackles!

I want to eliminate my possessions to get to only the things that bring me joy and feel shackles off. The problem is that I still keep too much stuff. I really want to live lightly on the land. I have always dreamed of having a hippy caravan, going back in time, and attending Woodstock. So, I imagined that I got that VW with the daisy decals all over, a little kitchenette, and mattress in the back. Can you see it? I’m wearing my bellbottoms with smiley patches that cover my bare feet, a long flowing shirt over top, yellow tinted, round sunglasses, dangling peace sign earrings, and lots of love beads. Give me a lava lamp and shag carpet on the ceiling, and I’m all set!

I will name her Daisy Jane! : )

OK–I have my van. What will I take with me?

Well, since it is 2023 not 1969, I need my laptop. I like to blog and create on the computer, so getting rid of it or any technology is not practical and feels like shackles on. I could limit my computer time, however. I also want to bring my phone because I have many books on my Kindle app. Both technologies don’t take up much space and are useful to me. There is not room for my extensive physical book collection. This is a problem. I collect books and rarely look at them. If I need anything, I can get it on the Kindle. Just typing that gives me a different perspective on them. I will look through them all and only pick the ones that are useful to me. –That was just a breakthrough.

Another thing that feels like shackles on is all of the materials I’ve collected for art. It is too much! Because I have so much, I don’t focus on one thing. That leaves me feeling scattered and stressed. I will always create, so what should I do. If I go back to my VW image, I need to do something that is small and portable. That is watercolor, colored pencils, and ink. I keep saying I want to just do that, but I get confused and distracted when I try to limit everything.

This weekend, I am going to tackle my studios-upstairs and downstairs. I will keep things that will help me with my focused art. Anything that doesn’t go with that will be sold, given away, or thrown out.

I’m putting on my bright sunglasses, hopping in my VW, and making room for only the things I need.

Watch Facebook posts for the progress of the clear out.

See you in the next post!


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