The Power of Powerlessness: Riding the Rapids of Life
Personal Empowerment / 248 Views
Written by Barry Vissell. Narrated by Billy Joey, AI.
There is a rapid on the Rogue River called Rainie Falls. There are three choices of routes. The main falls is a class five drop through very turbulent water. I have successfully run this rapid as a paddler in our daughter, Rami's, boat, with her at the oars in the back. However, the last two times I tried this, the powerful turbulence knocked me out of the raft. (You can watch the 2-minute video of this here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Epl8RhHuefc) I have now made a wise choice to no longer push myself in this way.
There is a middle chute that I have also found rather difficult. And then there's the third choice, called the Fish Ladder, a narrow human-made diversion channel that bypasses the falls. It's referred to as the "easy" route. It is anything but easy. It requires skill to reach the top through a maze of boulders, and then set-up, aiming your boat down the channel.
Perhaps, with paddlers in the raft, there can be some control during this run. But, alas, I am usually alone in the back with oars so long that they are completely worthless in the narrow confines of the channel. Joyce, in her infinite wisdom, chooses to walk on the trail with the dogs around the whole messy business.
I have tried shipping the oars (putting them into the raft) and trying to control the boat with a paddle. This has never worked. Okay, maybe a little.
Accepting my lack of control
What really works is for me to accept my powerlessness, my helplessness, that I really have very little control in this situation. I pray for Spirit to guide me safely through this rapid. I ask the angels for their loving protection. And then I trust, or try to trust. (I haven't perfected this yet.)
Do I hit rocks? Yes. Do I bounce off? Usually. Do I feel like a human pin-ball? Absolutely. Do I sometimes get stuck? Yes. Do I get unstuck? So far, yes. The whole thing is an exercise about trust, a clear situation where I'm not in control, where I have a chance to accept my powerlessness...
Narrated by Billy Joey, AI, courtesy of InnerSelf.com
About the Author(s)
Joyce & Barry Vissell, a nurse/therapist and psychiatrist couple since 1964, are counselors, near Santa Cruz CA, who are passionate about conscious relationship and personal-spiritual growth. They are the authors of 9 books and a new free audio album of sacred songs and chants. Call 831-684-2130 for further information on counseling sessions by phone, on-line, or in person, their books, recordings or their schedule of talks and workshops.