A good friend was struggling with a difficult transition in her life
and asked me for some idea of how to deal with it.
This is what I told her:
First Freeze Water
When a sculptor wants to make an ice statue
the first thing they have to do is freeze some water.
The liquid water has gotten used to its liquid state and really likes it.
It enjoys the flowy, free, soft nature of liquidity.
It enjoys the speed and waviness.
It likes being able to fit into and mould with any container.
When it starts to freeze there is a panic. It is slowing down, hardening and this is not pleasant. In fact it’s painful. Suddenly it cannot flow, it cannot wave and it cannot mould into containers.
Wants to Hold Onto the Past
It suffers this change and wishes to remain liquid.
The cold creeps in and it feels unfair, painful.
The water feels it has not done anything to deserve such treatment.
When it is finally ice it feels so ugly,
corners, edges, hard and cold.
It’s Not Fair
Then the pain just gets worse.
The sculptor comes and starts scraping, chopping and cutting.
What new pain is this, added to the other pain?
Why after all that suffering does this new suffering have to be added?
It’s not fair.
The Beginning Of Art
As the work of art begins to take shape…
the water can see the beauty of its new form
and starts to appreciate it
It can see the wonder and artistry in its new self
and soon it falls in love with this new state of being.
When the ice sculpture looks deep within
it realizes that it is still water.
From This Perspective Suffering is a Gift
Then, when it looks back on all the suffering
it recognizes it as a necessary element of change.
Part of the process
of the Great Artist
creating Its Great work of Art
Then the pain seems more like a blessing.
Of course, in the middle of the freezing and scraping
it doesn’t feel so
Try and Remember
But perhaps if the ice sculpture remembers the blessing,
then the next time it goes through something similar
this awareness can ease the pain of the process
and even add a sense of looking forward to the next work of art
through its existence.