I’m one of those people who likes to get things done quickly. (Once I start that is. I can make my confessions about procrastination another time.) For instance, I like to think I can get everything in a particular house project done in a day. So when I set out to dig up some old roots in by back yard, of course I wanted them all done in one day.
These particular roots were really trees. Being near the fence, they had not been mowed down in their tender youth. Being at the back of a woodsy garden area of the yard, they often got disguised by other bushes. They had years to develop a rather impressive root system. Having lopped the tops off for years, my goal was to finally get them rooted up.
In other words, to get to the root of the problem, rather than keep working at the surface of the thing.
I wanted to prepare the soil for other plants.
In the midst of the battle that ensued, it occurred to me that what I was doing was a good metaphor for spiritual work or personal growth. It really seemed to explain why it takes so darned long to get clear of a problem (if ever.) The main massive roots were attached to other roots. The secondary roots could be considered main roots in their own right, and were helping keep the emperor root in place. A particularly impressive feeder root seemed to go about 6 feet in a pretty straight course towards the paved alley.
It took me 45 minutes just to disconnect one of the strong feeder roots, that was attached to the main root. About three or four hours in, after my arms had already passed the numb jelly stage, I asked myself:
What person in their right mind would want to do this in one day?
A neighbor who stopped by to lend his baby chainsaw, told me he never even bothers with those type of roots. He’s satisfied to leave keep the battle to the surface I guess. As long as he doesn’t see it, who wants to do all the work to get the roots out?
I think that all of us who are busy doing our spiritual work, should keep this in mind. When you come from a family that only examined the surface of issues, then the underlying problems have had a long time become embedded in the foundations of the family structure.
Many of us are not working to address a problem that only we created. We are trying to uncover roots that have been growing in our family for generations. We get frustrated when it seems like the tremendous amount of work we put into rooting out one emotional or spiritual problem, doesn’t turn out to be the only source of a problem.
Didn’t that work I just did count? How could it be that I haven’t moved past this issue yet!
Its not just that the work can be hard. I think some of these issues require time. If we rooted them out too quickly, the shock of the energy shift might be more than a normal person could deal with. Giving ourselves the time we need to work on a complicated root system, is a loving thing to do. How quickly we get something completely done, is not a very good measure of progress.
The fact that roots are buried under ground, means that you can’t understand the scope of a job when you decide to stop working on the surface and instead go deeper. Ancestral issues are a system of issues, that don’t exist in isolation. The core issues, are fed by a network of supporting behaviors and belief systems. These “feeder roots” can be significant all by themselves.
Every time you get to the root of an emotional issue, its an accomplishment, even if there are more roots waiting to be done.
I am adding this additional note (March 2018.) I have often thought of passed on issues from ancestors as ideologies, coping mechanism, emotional dysfunctions that are passed on through learned behavior. This article discusses how an event of trauma can pass down to children and grandchildren, creating problems that you can’t find the source of because the trauma didn’t happen to you:
Lauren Torres – Lansing, IL
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