Photo Credit: Gilt Trip by Tim Walker

One’s adab or sound, true self is considered to be a living thing that we need to cultivate a relationship with. It is something crucial and inner, a seat of wisdom that we must stay in conversation with. Often, the health of this inner friendship and the clearness of that conversation determine if we experience meaning and how much time we spend in our aliveness or in our woundedness.

It’s a never-ending practice, and the difference between feeling alive or wounded just might wait in the fiery edge between being lighted and burning up. Is it the fate of being human to live in between? Too close to the Source and we vanish in the heat. Too far away we grow cold and fall asleep. Yet over a lifetime, we are used up anyway as the beautiful fuel of eternity. So, at best, a wise and long life may ask us to simply burn slowly so as to warm and light each other along the way.

-Mark Nepo, “The Fall into Life”, Finding Inner Courage, October 2007