It was just another night where the heaviness of my life weighed on my chest and I felt like I couldn't breathe. I was up at 2am writing poems and trying desperately to find a way to find people like me and when I look back at that time I can no longer imagine the overwhelming lonliness that was my day to day. Do you know that feeling when your life seems to be suffocating you? It had me hook line and sinker and at that time I couldn't see a way out. I think sometimes that my only saving grace back in those days was my own stuborness. My mum says I've been determined to my own thing in my own way since I was born. Apparently I even fought her to try and put my own nappy on. I do have an independent spirit, so much so that I think it may have overshadowed developing interpersonal skills but either way it's been both a blessing and a curse. Mainly a curse because I tend to walk wide eyed and bushy tailed into situations that have the capacity to demolish my life and a blessing because I have the capacity to pick myself up and out of them. We often talk about life having a “rock bottom” but to be honest I think we go through many rock bottoms and I think they are intelligently designed to see who we are in that moment. During my last one I learned something intrinsic to my being, something that has become a founding principle of my life, that I am a man of faith.
I pray about 4 or 5 times a day. Sometimes the prayers are long and involved, sometimes they are just short blessings. I pray over people who I feel guided to pray over and I pray over myself to stay in the space of light. Most people give up on praying because they believe that praying doesn't work. They see the Universe as a catalogue in that way, that you pray to “get things” and if the things you want don't turn up then you switch off. At one point I thought that way too. When I pray these days it is primarily to find the space of prayer itself. Once you are in that place you can ask what to pray for and you have the insight and clarity to hear it. I think of prayers as doorways to the space of prayer itself. It's a place where you build a relationship with your inner being. It's a place where you connect to the energy of grace and once you are there you have a greater ability to sink into the purposeful moment of your existence. It is there you can access the plans and dreams that would best suit your life.
As you know I bleat on about a meditation practice all the time ( 15 minutes a day covers a multitude of inner chatter ) but if you've been doing that for a while why not try to add a prayer practice too? Start small and traditionally. Pray for the well being of your family, pray for your greatness, pray to be guided by grace. The more you habg around in that space the more you are likely to slip into the mindset of the sacred. I don't really have the language to describe the space of prayer other than once you are there you know, you KNOW that you are in the presence of the divine. I was lucky enough to have an experience where I was actually thrown into this space and I managed to stay there solidly for about 6 months. It was nothing short of transformational. It was a deep crisis that lead me there but you don't need one to find that special sacred platform within you. Get there step by step, day by day. There is a real power in prayer. It has lifted me out of every rock bottom I have ever been to and helped me to climb even higher into understanding. No matter where you are right now, commit to a prayer practice and watch how the quality of your life begins to shift.
Thank you for reading,
Ryan James x