Emotions can best be compared to the ocean. They run deep and while in moments they are beautiful, in the next they can take you away with their seeming rage!
If you look at the ocean, there are days of complete calm and just light ripples on the surface, while other days it is raging with waves and if you are not careful they could knock you off of your balance and you could be carried away with them.
Interesting, how you could replace the word waves here with emotions and the statement remains true!
Thankfully, respecting the water, it's beauty and it's power was a lesson I quickly learned when I visited Hawaii, thanks to my husband who has grown up with the Sea his whole life. This was my first trip here, and really my first encounter dealing with waters that had such a beauty, yet scared the crap out of me at the same time.
Anyone who has been to the ocean or the sea, and knows anything about the waves, you also know that they reside on the surface. And anyone who respects and understands the power of the water, also knows, that a) you never turn your back to the water and b) if there is a large wave coming at you, you can either try to stand your ground and be vigorously pulled toward the shore line, or you dive under the wave and simply ride it out.
Now the first time, my husband said just dive under it, I thought to myself, are you freaking kidding me!? but being in a new situation, and watching him then dive down under the water, I had 2 choices to make and really really quickly, as a wave about 4 feet above my head comes rolling towards me, about to break at any moment! I could blindly follow him under the water and trust his experience or I could try it my way and fight what was on the surface coming at me. Thankfully, I assured myself that the unknown below the water and following my husband who has experience out here, was a better option than getting plowed over by this four foot wave.
Imagine my surprise when I got under the wave to find that my body simply glided like a ripple as the wave rolled over us. I was astonished that what was roaring at us on the surface, picking up speed and strength, could be so very different just a few feet below.
I find that emotions are much the same. Our outward emotions are in reaction to the circumstances happening on a surface level around us. We either dance and move gracefully with our daily material and physical world, like the ripples in the sea on a calm day, or we dig our feet in and we try to stand off with situations on the surface which end up plowing us over (emotionally). Then we are left to lay there, licking our wounds, being upset or angry, and trying to pick ourselves back up, almost always being left feeling wounded.
So if emotions, are in fact much like the ocean, what if instead of staying on the surface level dealing with each circumstance as it comes at us, we went deep beneath it, as we do with the waves?
Could we in fact, go deep within our own bodies to a calmer state and allow ourselves that moment for the circumstance or situation to pass over us, as we do with the big waves?
If we nurtured a calm inside, deep beneath our own surface, it would then be there for us to safely retreat to in those times where the surface just seems too much to bare. A place where all we need to do is focus on our breath.