In Greek mythology, the phoenix is a long-lived bird that regenerates or is reborn through a cyclical process whereby upon death (traditionally the legend cites death by fire), the phoenix gains a new life and rises from the ashes of its predecessor. As such, this mythological creature is often used as a symbol of rebirth and renewal. And when you think about, what great symbolism – to go down in flames only to rise again anew! Powerful imagery to say the least. But I also think it is symbolic of what many of us go through at various times in our own lives. We’ve all been there – something big happens in our lives forcing us to start over in a major way…to be reborn or renewed like the phoenix. Perhaps it is the loss of a loved one or of a job, maybe it is the loss of a significant relationship or prized possession, or possibly a huge financial loss. No matter what it was for you, it rocked your world…but, hopefully, you made the decision at some point during your healing process to pick yourself up and move on…to rise from the ashes and start anew. There’s no doubt, these kinds of life events leave their mark on you, but after you have overcome them you are able to look back and know you are stronger because of them.
Deborah Day once said. “Renewal requires opening yourself up to new ways of thinking and feeling .” How very true! In order to rise from the ashes of those significant life altering events, you will most likely need to open yourself to a new view, a different way of thinking or feeling about life as you know it. Easier said than done, right? Certainly, but definitely worth the effort. We are such creatures of habit and we get stuck not only in the way we do things but in how we think and feel about things too. Those stagnant thoughts and behaviors stunt your growth as a human being! And at no better time is that apparent to us than when we are “rising from our own ashes”. Hard as it is, be open to new ideas, new feelings, new interpretations, new ways of viewing your world. Trust me, it will transform your life. It really is all in how you view things. Choose to view your world in a positive light. Have an attitude of gratitude for everything…even the challenges you face, for they have something to teach you too!
And so as we work our way through our March theme of rebirth and renewal, keep in mind that we are all human – translation: we are not perfect, nor should we hold the expectation that we, or others, will be. Have love and compassion for yourself and for others. Be compassionate towards yourself as you emerge from your ashes and be a support to others who are rising from theirs as well. Rise like the phoenix and do great things!