The journey is not about returning home, it is about the journey as such. This is where you grow, this is where you live; and as long as you are on your intended path, you can come home wherever you are.
Like the knights of the round table, every quest makes them wonder, challenges them, and endangers them, in order to make them stronger, bring them wisdom, and make them more resilient.
It is not about returning to the castle of King Arthur, but about being out on their journey. This is where they grow. Moreover, whenever they return to the castle, they don’t really return, because they will have changed, and so will have the other knights, and the castle maybe even as such.
This is why to me the hardest part of travelling isn’t leaving, but going back, because nor you, nor the others, nor your surroundings are still the same. Life has moved on while we were on the move.
This is Growth
Sometimes we all move in the same direction, but sometimes as well, our roads separate, and we notice the fellows we hoped to find back aren’t there anymore, physically, spiritually, emotionally or psychologically.
This is growth, this is what is intended. We outgrow places and people, careers and purposes. We can try to hold on to what once was, and resist the change, or we can let go and go with it.
This as well is what is intended. This is how we grow, closer to ourselves, and eventually we can only develop our full potential, and contribute at fullest to society, when we are true to ourselves. Close to ourselves.
The Ever-Changing Track
Every person has their talents, their share, their role to play in our society, and only by picking up what we are intended to be, what we are, rather than what we think we are, we can contribute the most, to ourselves, and to the world.
All of this can change: our talents, our skills, our role, as well as the society around us. It requires courage to change with it, to abandon the beaten track, or the track we are used to run, even more so when we don’t know yet where else we would walk.
It is comfortable to stay on the known track, to stay where we are, even when it doesn’t serve us anymore. However, slowly but surely our lives will become vain and dissatisfying when we keep on walking the track we are not intended to walk.
The Unbearable Gap
We start feeling lost on what once was so familiar and known to us. The worse part of it is that we start feeling lost, but cannot explain our feeling because we hadn’t changed anything.
We are still on the track we knew, still in our old habits and rites, however it all feels so strange and unsatisfying whole at a sudden. We start feeling empty while doing what used to fulfill us. Precisely in the lack of change lays the explanation for the unhappiness.
If we would have changed our lives in accordance to our inner change or the changes of our surroundings, we might have stayed on track, we might have stayed true to ourselves.
However, our longing for comfort, for the absence of change, and the presence of the status quo, has now driven a wig between who we are and who we are intended to be, not because we changed, but precisely because we didn’t change.
We forced ourselves – mostly unconsciously – to stay on a track that wasn’t ours. We mended our track to keep up with the mainstream, or with the expectations of others, or simply with the longing for comfort.
But eventually the path isn’t ours, and the wig becomes as big that it becomes unsustainable, unbearable.
Align or Numb
There are two options now, either change the path and align it with what was intended; or numb the pain, numb the feeling of emptiness, being lost, and angst.
Some might choose the latter, looking for distraction in drugs or alcohol, or any other addiction like obsessive working, working-out, or any kind of obsessive behaviour.
In the short-term, it is the easiest way. Moreover, mostly the nagging is hard to explain and to identify, which make it harder to act accordingly.
However, most feelings of anxiety and emptiness arise precisely in the gap between who we are and the person we pretend to be, or who we are forced to be due to circumstances or certain people, from peer pressure and social acceptability to outright violence and suppression or repression.
In a nutshell, we continuously have to be aware of the changing track, the never-ending quest, and the changes we undergo due to or thanks to the challenges on our journey. By doing so, we can minimise the unbearable gap, and we can genuinely come home.
As long as our intended path is the path where we’re on, we can come home wherever we are. There won’t be an unbearable gap where anxiety and emptiness grow. We don’t have to come home within the safe walls of Arthur’s castle, but within ourselves. When our path is aligned with our intended path, we can come home wherever we are.