I now rest comfortably in that liminal space between Being and Becoming.
It was a space that didn’t exist in the spiritual practices of my youth. Becoming. We were always Becoming. No doubt the careful framing of our religious language allowed for the muted outline of loving ourselves as we were–but our brokenness was a persistent theme. Carnality. Moral listlessness. The destructive power of sin that would ravage our fragile constitutions if we weren’t ever vigilant. Aware.
Wednesday evening services existed as a spiritual filling station between the expanse of Sunday sermons. The natural consequence of a missed service was the slow, exhausted crawl to the next one. Spiritually barren. Exhausted. We required an infilling so we could face down the terrifying specter of a world ready to destroy us with the degraded whispers of sex, rock and roll, and alcohol.
The signposts of my youth would eventually transform into the iron shackles of my adulthood. Though they’re beginning to fall away, there was comfort in those shackles. Their icy, cold weight a reminder of my need for protection. Unfettered, with the world as my playground? Inevitable spiritual and physical destruction.
My journey has been illuminating and disorienting and unnerving–yet valuable clarity has emerged:
Becoming is impossible without first learning to Be. The exhausting, siren song of Becoming often leads to self-loathing. Posturing. Inauthenticity. Fear. And after the persistent reminders of your inadequacy, how fertile the soil for the promises of religion.
Convince people they are incomplete. Offer them completeness.
To be clear, I’m still Becoming; pursuing aspirations and goals while striving to become more unified with my moral system. But I do so from the comfortable resting place of Being, refusing to view myself as unwell, unwholesome, and undeserving–without the old constructions of Becoming lurking just beyond my reach.
I now rest comfortably in that liminal space between Being and Becoming. The world is my playground, where I move freely–and morally. The shackles were unnecessary all along.