Purpose: How to live with mystery.


How to live with mystery

The soul’s slippery.  You know it’s there but can’t see it.  You can feel it and then it darts away.  It recedes quickly when the body/mind is hurt. Soulwork is where we delve into the mysteries of life.  The soul loves surprise and revels in mysteries, large and small.  It is at home with paradox.

This is where we get comfortable with mystery, where we acknowledge and learn to abide with the unanswered questions that reside in our heart.  Was cancer a wake-up call?  I pondered over this question during my year of treatment.  It was one of the mysteries I lived with.  It would be a good question to work with in this section.


Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves like locked rooms and like books that are written in a very foreign tongue.  Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them.  And the point is, to live everything.  Live the questions now.  Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.

Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet 



Have your computer/pen and paper handy.

Close your eyes and concentrate on your breath. Inhale, exhale. Inhale, exhale. At the end of each exhale, relax your body. Start at the top of your head, and slowly move down your body. Relax your neck.  Your hands. Your belly.  Your legs, feet. Everywhere.  No rush.  Then, when you have finished scanning your body, bring your awareness to your lower abdomen. This is where mystery resides. Inhale, exhale. Relax. Keep your attention there.

Then, when ready, in one sentence, briefly describe the question that resides in you, the unresolved mystery at this moment. The big question.  Who am I? Why am I? Why do I act in a certain way? What is my life about? Where is my life directing me? Why aren’t I able to trust? What am I missing? Should I leave? Should I stay?

Now, close your eyes again.  On your inhale, ask yourself the question.  On your exhale, think to yourself, “I don’t know.” Repeat this five or so times. This will keep your mind out of it and give your soul, that voice that whispers to you, a chance to answer.


Where does this lead?

Write down what comes up, whatever it is. It may be an image, words, or more questions.  Maybe some answers. Be compassionate, your soul wants you to know something. Receive it gratefully.