I am intrigued by mysterious doorways, those where we can see only a glimpse of what lies behind or maybe we cannot see anything at all through the portal, only darkness….the mysterious unknown.
When we are at a significant juncture or crossroads, where life is calling us to transform ourselves in a profound way, there is most often a tendency to pause at the threshold with caution before we consider stepping through. And we may choose to not step through at all because the unknown is quite often frightening to us. Change is frightening for humans and we usually make ‘sea changes’ only when we are forced or pushed into them by life itself.
It is at this threshold or edge where we pause and fearfully tremble while we contemplate whether to step through or not. And rightfully so.
When we even slightly move toward the unknown and make those first little steps, a pantheon of inner demons and monsters, inner critics surface telling us among other things that we are not good enough, not strong enough, not talented enough, ad infinitum. Just plain not enough, period!
To choose to enter a portal into the unknown requires great courage. In Indian and Balinese temples there are terrifically frightening figures which are considered ‘Guardians at the Gate’. These sculptures are strategically placed before the entrance to let people know they are about to enter a sacred space. And, we should be shaking in our boots if we are aware of how being inside that sacred space may cause enormous transformation to occur, if we allow it to be so. As we step past the Guardians, we are entering dangerous territory because our ‘shadow’, the parts of ourselves we consider negative, what has been buried in our unconscious will come up to be seen, worked with and hopefully accepted and integrated into our hearts, minds, and souls.
Pausing at the threshold, respecting and contemplating these edges is essential. It gives us a moment to reflect, honor, and realize the magnitude of what we are courageously willing to move toward. For those of us who feel compelled to expand our journey, to allow the unseen to be seen, to become more aware, we truly don’t know what we will find on the other side of the portal. But, not stepping through keeps us from finding out what treasures may lie on the other side of the known.
All paintings by Robin Sierra unless otherwise indicated