For many of us, saying yes when we mean no is a way to escape the pain of rejection. We smile and grin when the pain of not belonging scares us into submission. Slowly we ebb into abysmal spiritual and psychological impoverishment, hopeful that those we acquiesce will reciprocate. Mostly, this is never the case. There is an Igbo Nigerian proverb that asks us to” Were ire gi guo eze gi onu” …use your tongue to count your teeth…do your own assessment. Digging in further with what does not yield your personal or collective good ultimately brings you inner pain.
No amount of makeup in any form will heal inner pain. To please and not to disappoint slowly becomes your mantra which always ends badly. How many times have you said” I do” in front of smiling and excited friends and family when you meant no? How many times have you had that extra piece of pie when your friend says it’s okay when your heart said no, and you spend all day checking your weight as if the effect registers immediately? How many times have you made hurtful statements only to wish you could take the words back? How many times, once trained in self sacrifice, do you have the opposite conversation with yourself: our passion for life saying… yes, yes, yes…and your natural guardedness…your CHI… saying don’t do it, this is wrong, you’ll be sorry, be realistic, it will never work, its best to protect your interest?
As you get coated in your inner conflict, you ultimately come to realize that your true friends would always embrace you without your thinly veiled self defeating trajectory. Your friends expect you to be no other than what and who you are to be loved by them. There is an African proverb that states “Anu amara na onya ejighi anya ya ahu uzo”…a trapped animal fails to see with its eyes. The lesson is that when you find yourself ensnared by conditions you can avoid, it is because you failed to do your own assessment. When you succumb to circumstances, or agree to demands and requests that are contrary to your natural state of being, the end result is a debilitation of the inner core of your being. In spite of what you perceive as rewarding in the middle of your self disapproval, your CHI…our chord to Divine Mind Chineke…grows weary, a direct result of your engagement in activities that are inherently contrary to your nature, a recipe for the weakening of your connection to Chineke.
Those of you who choose to begrudge yourselves the supremacy of self love and appreciation, those who seek water from outside the Niger tributaries, those who seek to hold on to mental and spiritual miss-truths and half truths, should ultimately know that when your soul’s river flows improperly, when your mind’s capacity to think ebbs, the tributaries of inner spirit dries up, leaving you withered, befuddled, and without a true spiritual core and care.
Breathe in leisurely and invite your spirit to speak succinctly when next you are challenged to be other than yourself
Otito Nile Diri Chineke