“Sadness is related to the opening of your heart. If you allow yourself to feel sad, especially if you can cry, you will find that your heart opens wider and you can feel more love and more joy.” ~ Shakti Gawain, Reflections in the Light …
We rarely think of sadness in a positive light. Often times, when we see someone who is sad or grieving, we tell them to “cheer up,” or to “get over it.” But as Shakti points out, there is no reason to rush or avoid it, for it is often very helpful and beneficial for us. Sadness is a natural emotion that helps us to cope with our hurt and our grief, to understand it and deal with it in a deeply spiritual way. In much the same way as our body must heal a bruise or a cut physically, our souls, too, must heal through the opening of our hearts to sadness and grief.
When someone is grieving or dealing with sadness and we demand that they get over such feelings, we fail to acknowledge the importance of the deep emotions of their eternal soul and the suffering that it is going through. What they are doing is healthy and natural, and we have no purpose to ask them to change that. Always remember: to everything there is a season, including sadness, and it is simply unrealistic for us to think that we can make it through all our days in life without ever feeling it.
In addition, sadness also seems to introduce upon us two more problems: the obscurity we are faced that tends to cloud our sight of the beauty and wonder of the world we live in, and the issues and hardships that those around us encounter as a result of our sadness. But just because it may be difficult for others to deal with our sadness does not mean that we should hide it away or not allow ourselves to feel it, or else we will have to haul all of our excess baggage of sadness along with us as we strive to move forward in life.
During our seasons of sadness, we should strive to allow ourselves to open our hearts up to fully experience our feelings. But if we find that we are becoming stuck in the company of sadness too long, we should look to those who love us and are close to us to offer us compassion, understanding, and a healthy perspective that is perhaps more objective than our own. Because although there is a season for everything, there also comes a time when we must move on from sadness and begin to “feel more love and more joy.”
If you experience sadness today, allow yourself to truly experience it, cry if you must, open your heart to it.
Questions to consider:
In which ways can sadness be a powerful force in our lives?
Why do so many of us tend to see sadness as a negative emotion?
Why is sadness often an attractive state for us to stay in?
For further thought:
“Life is not all sadness,” Old Hawk continued. “Yet, without sadness we would not yearn for joy, and strive to find it, and treasure it when it comes. It is also a fact that neither sadness nor joy is with us constantly. And how often one of the other is part of our journey is not always within our control. We all want joy more than sadness and rare is the person who wants sadness at all.” ~ Joseph M. Marshall III, Keep Going