Letting Go is a concept most of my students are familiar with. And confused or frustrated about. I used to grieve over this as I had trouble letting anything go. I WANTED to let go of so much, yet things haunted, gripped and snagged me. One day I was in the dojo with my karate Sensei, and he was getting kind of cranky with some of the guys who were all stiff in their bodies when doing the kata moves, and he was saying with increasing volume ‘let go’ and then tried tried to tell them ‘relax, softer softer’, none of which they were doing. I could feel their frustration and disappointment at not being able to understand and apply the concept. So he grabbed a piece of timber, and asked everyone to gather around. He held it above the ground then dropped it. He said ‘what happened’. We were all puzzled and started saying ‘ you dropped the wood’, and ‘it fell to the ground’ etc and he sighed and said ‘watch again and tell me what is the principle that is happening?’. He dropped it again, and we all got more descriptive, ‘ you released your fingers first then the whole hand then it fell to the ground’, and he now was getting frustrated, paused, and said slowly ‘WATCH, then explain’ and dropped it again.
Someone finally said ‘gravity’, and he sighed deeply with contentment and said, ‘yes, gravity, working with the laws of nature. When we are tight and controlling, nothing flows. I cannot throw this on the ground and get it to go faster, but I can let it go and it will fall all on it’s own, with minimal effort from me, and the same outcome if I understand the laws of nature’. I had a complete epiphany due to two things. Firstly, when we work WITH the flow of nature, with the universes intent, things are more seamless and control and force is not helping but actually just exhausting us, this I had understood but now saw a physical example of. Secondly, the piece of wood was still on the floor. Now I know this sounds a touch mad, but I held onto an idea that ‘letting go’ would mean forever removed. When in actual fact it means still there, but just not in my grip. I was so busy trying to let go, and then controlling what the letting go looked like, and then hiding things under imaginary rugs, in emotional shoeboxes etc, and then attempting to ignore them that the whole process was unbearable.
The key thing is that letting go actually involves allowing it to still be there. It’s about working with the flow of nature AND letting BE what needs to be still present. Nothing ever entirely disappears. We leave a job yet the workplace still remains. A company dissolves yet the people working within it remain, even if working somewhere else. A relationship might stop functioning, yet the two people still remain though not in contact. People pass away, drop their bodies, yet their memories remain in those around them, and their footprint on earth. Nothing is ‘forever removed’, and so goes with our experiences, our emotions and our thoughts. The key to letting go is not to remove entirely, but be okay with it, expand big enough to hold it also.
So I was able to completely reframe letting go. The truth is we can expand our consciousness and my heart to take it all in, it can still be around, but we simply don’t cling. And we work with the laws of nature to make this more seamless. I just sketched this little drawing to help it all make a bit more sense.
I hope this helps a little, do let me know if so.
Sent with love,