One of the things I love about Ahsoka Tano is she turns her back on the Jedi when her integrity requires her to do so.
Someone in my life I love and admire very much did that recently – completely went against what societal convention and pressure dictated, made an extremely difficult decision, and faced the fallout of people potentially not understanding, jumping to conclusions, attacking, etc. What admirable courage of heart this took! Not many people can seize their lives like this.
I was often vocal about my support of – choose! Choose your own life and truth every day! But when the choice wasn’t what I wanted, I hit a wall in which I couldn’t completely live in that ideal. I wanted to, but I was grieving. I went through my own journey of loving release, then deep hurt, then back to acceptance and now – complete admiration – for this person’s choice. This person has my full support, gratitude, and I completely celebrate now, that they are living their fullest life as they need it to look. It wasn’t cut and dried for me- because their fullest life involved a future without me in it.
I try to be an evolved human, but emotions are things that have to be allowed. Hopefully, allowed in a way that doesn’t hurt others… but I can be messy.
And the messiness brought me, in the roundabout way “meant to be” things seem to occur, to myself. To getting to know and belong to myself in a way I didn’t know was possible. By doing the hardest thing and living their truth fully, this person gave me the deepest gift! They gave me MY truth, as well.
Incredible. I don’t think it could have happened any other way.
This is a part of the Grey Path too, I think – loving one’s self in the moments one doesn’t live up to the Jedi-Hero ideal, and also trusting that even though the decision may hurt deeply (if you’ve seen the scene where Ahsoka refuses her padawan braid, this is a prime example,) it is the right way to go, and there will eventually be even more beauty, more abundance, more fully LIVING because of it.
And this is Ahsoka. How easy it would be for her to just slide back into the role of Padawan, about to become a fully fledged Jedi. But
“I am no Jedi,”
she says. One of her most powerful moments.
Walking the grey path (neither all light or all dark) requires us to check in with our motivation, pause before reacting, and choose from the wise place of deep knowing, rather than choosing from “shoulds,” habit, or a desire to please others, or a fear of others’ disapproval.
What else are we here for? I wish to come to the end of my life and know that I lived MY life. That my mistakes were mine, and I fully stood in my truth as much as possible, and allowed others theirs.
Which brings me to day 3. My morning’s training was “what have you learned from your failures?” It was about how failure is good, is important.
And I realized: I haven’t failed at anything lately, (except perhaps the relationship I mention in the beginning of this post- but, though I risked and dared absolutely everything for it, I don’t count that a failure at all… it feels like a victory in so many ways, for both of us- I just don’t know why or how, yet.)
I’ve failed at nothing. Which tells me I haven’t been risking enough, in more years than I can count. I can’t remember the last time I failed, except for physical stuff like double-unders or pull-ups.
This realization was a bit of a punch in the gut.
I need to get on the field again. I need to risk, and I need to fail.
Failure is extremely important.
Have you failed lately?
Check your path. The safe way is to go along knowing you’re all light or all dark – and how do you know? Because you follow those in front of you. There’s always someone in front. There are always a lot of people around you on those paths, because approval is the way people on those paths stay safe. They know they’re right, because Yoda or the Supreme Leader gave a nod of approval. Because all the others approve and agree. How safe, how comforting …how utterly devoid of questions.
What happens if a person starts questioning, weighing whether things are in alignment with their individual truth, with their core values?
They risk causing disruption on the extreme paths. They fall into Grey.
Sometimes, scoundrels and non-Jedi need to walk alone-
and I would far rather strike out on my own knowing I was fully living my truth, than feel a deep core loneliness in a crowd because I wasn’t being honest, wasn’t being myself.
This is the heart of Ahsoka. She can’t remain detached, because sometimes her sense of justice causes her to get involved. She can’t follow the rules, if the rules don’t make sense.
She is one of my heroes.
And today at the gym, I worked so hard I was actually making a thin sort of keening noise at one point (thank goodness for loud music), and crawled over to get my bag, but had to lie down in fetal position on the way there.
I didn’t bench press a very heavy weight, but it was a good step for me. I didn’t deadlift the heaviest of everyone there, but I was strong in my form and felt good. I didn’t row the fastest by any means, (in fact, of the day, I came in at a lowly 5th) but I worked as hard as I could.
I didn’t do the highest number of bicep curls, either, but I did more than I thought I possibly could.
Today was an AWESOME day.
Sometimes, you wind up on the floor. But if you’re on the floor having given all you’ve got, that’s an incredible feat of courage, and a big step forward.
Now. Let’s all go fail more. Risk more, leap more, fall more, risk all, be messy, apologize, try again, lose our tempers, learn from it, grieve, be “extra,” miss a dance step or two, laugh too much, throw our hearts toward our dreams, turn our feet toward the path that is our truth and let people have their reactions- that is their story to live.
Walking the Grey Path isn’t easy – but it’s worth it.
“In my experience, just when you think you understand the Force, you find out how little you actually know.” – Ahsoka Tano