Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Obligation v Commitment or Heaviness v Groundedness


I think the title of this piece says it all, but I will spell it out.

Obligations are things we do out of a perceived notion that we must.  That we are somehow forced.  We think that life or another person demands this of us and we are in no way in control of our own time, space, body, energy when faced with this demand.

Obligations feel heavy, because they weigh us down.  They make us, eventually, feel bitter and angry.  We perform obligations with heavy sighs.

When we back out of an obligation, we feel guilty but it is a non-productive, icky kind of guilt.

There is, actually, in this life, a productive, purposeful sort of guilt.  A guilt that is alerting us to something important.

That is the kind of guilt we feel when we miss a commitment as opposed to an obligation.

Commitments are choices that we have freely made for our own good.

They can be difficult to maintain, but that is point.

Things that are worth our effort are often quite difficult.

Commitments are spiritual practices of will.  They are the path we walk.

When we miss a commitment or let go of a commitment for a while, we feel the good guilty.

The guilty that says, "Hey! You are totally off track here! Get your ass back to it!"

Part of growing wiser is learning to distinguish between commitment and obligation.

Part of growing wiser is learning to stay committed to the things we say are important to us.

Part of growing wiser is making the time and the space in our lives for these things that sustain us.

Part of growing wiser is learning that giving up momentary pleasure is worth the joy that comes from commitment.

And this is totally related to my post about taking responsibility for your pain body; you must completely commit to your healing. There is no halfway.

Do it or don't.  Period.