Scars

Musings by Chris and Photos by  Chris, Kai, and Others

Scars. We all have them. They are reminders of times past – both good and not so good. They run the gamut of the medicine wheel – physical, emotional, spiritual, intellectual. They hold us steadfast and true, or they break us in two, or they explode out of the confines of our heart, or they lock us forever in a place of isolation.

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Scars can be an impetus for change. Sometimes our scars require heroic efforts to become someone we never thought we would be. An individual we never considered being with a health opportunity that would forever remind us of our place within a limited vision of mortality. Causing us to become vocal champions for campaigns for the cure. Seeing us rowing in dragon boats, running cross finish lines, hobbling and stumbling around obstacle courses while donating for a cause. And yet other scars propel us through Olympian hoops of stamina while conquering medals on behalf of those of us unable to get off the couch as we cheer them on.

Some wear their scars proudly as a badge of courage. Others hide their scars with newly discovered fashion statements wishing the nightmare away. And some have internal scars contained within their physical form or hanging from a colostomy bag or feeding tube genteelly hidden beneath their clothing, shyly protecting a newly formed bandage for life. Scars can be so varied and monumental that we rarely pause long enough to imagine another perspective or alternative state of being, all the while being urged to focus on the abilities rather than the disabilities.

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And then there are those scars we think we have hidden deeply but escape from the corner of our eyes trickling down our cheeks as ever present reminders of circumstances and situations where pain doubled us back into ourselves. There is a shadow streaking cross our faces and a cloud that hovers above our hearts. Everyone knows and yet never reaches out and says, “I see you. I’m here for you.” For those who live their emotional scars incognito, such blatant disregard is both a relief and a regret. A relief because we don’t have to share what is too painful to admit and a regret because therein lies a lost opportunity to connect and feel an empathic touch or understanding glance upon our weathered brow.

Are scars just a manifestation of our ego and the strength or fragility of it? Regardless, scars become our identity.

“She’s a victim of a crime/accident/illness.”

The scar takes precedent over your personage and you run the risk of adopting the label and living it rather than your life. And just when you momentarily forget the scar, someone stares longer than necessary at you, and you begin again to be your scar rather than you.

“All that we are is a result of what we have thought. What we think we become.” ~ Buddha

Kim McCann, author of a recent Elephant Journal post suggests:

  • We are not our thoughts,
  • We can discipline and control our thoughts, and
  • By being mindful of our thoughts we have power—indeed we have the responsibility—to determine how to act, react, or behave in relation to them.

We can perseverate on our scars. We can imagine what others are thinking when they see our scars. We can obsess over the possible thoughts of others and believe that our scars are first and foremost on the minds of everyone.

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Or we can get a grip and realize each one of us is entirely preoccupied solely with ourselves. That’s it. In truth, we really aren’t that important. All our personal obsessions are just that – thoughts that perpetuate myths we’ve built up about ourselves allowing our ego to manifest a story that is only that and nothing more. We have developed our own personal narrative that, quite frankly, gets in the way of just living. It becomes a comfortable crutch from which to retreat and make excuses.

“I teach one thing and one thing only: suffering and the end of suffering.” ~ Buddha

We really are much more than this form within which we find ourselves. It is our essence that either speaks to others, or not. What contains our spirit is just limited to this time and place and an inconvenient subtext to who we really are.

Continue to massage your scars, because we do need to feel as comfortable as possible with what we are left with. But also realize, that beyond this present moment, there will come a time when your scar is just a gateway to so many more teachings and acceptance of eternal joy and self-love.

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And as a wise shaman said this week, “Don’t worry. Be happy.” It goes a long way towards healing.

Recipes

Summer is the time for lots of fresh vegetables and fruits. Sometimes it is a wonderful treat to have some dips to enhance the natural flavours of your garden conquests. It also makes it easier for some people who are transitioning to a more live plant-based diet, to start off with dips that remind them of similar dips they may have had prior to consuming more live plant-based foods. These two are very simple and you can substitute different herbs or flavours such as cinnamon or cacao for the sweet version and curry and cumin or chili for the savory one. Have fun with these. But more importantly, eat your fruits and veggies.

Sweet Cashew Cream

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  • 1 cup raw cashews (or macadamia nuts) – soaked
  • 8 pitted Medjool dates – soaked
  • 1/4-1/2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Soak the cashews and dates for 30 minutes or more. Drain. Place in blender and add water and vanilla. Blend until smooth. Keep in refrigerator in a sealed container. Will last 3-5 days.

Onion Dip

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  • 1 cup raw cashews (or macadamia nuts) – soaked
  • 1/4-1/2 cups water
  • ½ teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder (can use freshly chopped – up to ¼ cup)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dill (can use freshly chopped – up to ¼ cup)

Soak the cashews for 30 minutes or more. Drain. Place in blender and add water and apple cider vinegar and onion powder and salt. Blend until smooth. Then add dill and blend lightly until mixed in. Keep in refrigerator in a sealed container. Will last 3-5 days.

 

 

 

 

 

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