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Believing is Brave

It’s about living and feeling my doubts and letting them co-exist with my faith.

Dearest Doodle Soupsters,

To choose to believe in something in this enigmatic universe, so much unknown, takes courage.

Knowing you could be wrong, acknowledging that maybe there’s no way of really knowing what this life’s all about, and choosing to make meaning of life, to love this existence anyway? That’s brave.

My friend Brooke told me a while ago that one brave choice leads to another.

It’s true. There are some things we do not even think of trying until we make many other brave choices first.

Regardless of what gives us a sense of connection or helps us believe enough to take leaps of faith, it can become the source for deep wells of courage, persistence, and determination that we didn't even know we had inside of us all along.

And just as it was always there inside of us, we also had to make the choices to unearth that power, to look at what scares us, to bring light to what hides in darkness and bring the depths of darkness into the light.

To me, it’s not about religion or fixed rules. And that’s okay.

To me, it’s about making space in my life and my head and my heart for curiosity, for doubt, for contemplating the mysteries of existence, for being in the moment present with my experience, for distraction and breaks, for rest, for boredom, for long walks in circles, for awe, for pain, for cultivating openness toward what scares me and makes me uncomfortable, for grief, for adventure, for hibernation.

It’s about living and feeling my doubts and letting them co-exist with my faith. It’s about feeling my grief (wordless aching that feels like earth-shattering pain) and my exhilaration too (oh how incredible it is that I get to be here!).

“Love to exist, exist to love” is one of my favorite tiny treasures I’ve made.

It reflects a conscious choice I’ve made … from digging underneath my surface and in-between layers and reaching into the center of myself, feeling all that goo and mush and hardened parts and reaching deeper anyway … to honor, prioritize, and value love as a central guiding force in my existence.

Love for this world in all its messy, heart-breaking complexity. Love for living. Love for myself. Romantic love. Friendship. Love for moments. Love for art. Love for simply existing.

And I’m learning not to force this approach toward life. Rigidity isn’t the answer.

The answers to my questions are more questions. And I’m learning to make peace with that.

To understand that rushing won’t get me there any faster. I might as well enjoy the process. I might as well take in the scenery. I might as well allow myself to just be here.

And I can feel my pain, anger, frustration, exhaustion … openness to feel whatever I feel and then openness to stuckness and resistance that comes up sometimes, letting it all be there … only makes my love feel more natural, more real, more free.

Today’s reflection questions:

- What does spirituality mean to you?

- What role does love (of any and all kinds) play in your life?

- How do you guide your existence?

- How do you approach the unknowns of being alive?

With faith and belief in myself and you too,

Nicole Sylvia Javorsky


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