The poet Rilke encourages us to put our trust in the healing power of transformation. He asks, “From what experience have you suffered most?” Even what tastes most bitter, he assures you, can be transformed into sweetness. So: What bitter experience you are struggling with? Even if an experience crushes you, can it not serve as a wine press that releases an unexpected sweetness? Is there some way in which it allows you to reclaim a part of yourself that you’d forgotten? Did it release courage, compassion, a deeper awareness of what matters? Ponder each of these qualities and see if you can find them in your own experience: courage (take a moment for this); compassion (for whom?); a deeper awareness (of what?). And can you name other sweetnesses that can flow out of the grief that crushes you? Pay attention to the faintest taste of sweetness. (A certain distance from the experience is necessary for this process. You may have to wait until time creates that distance and then come back to this practice.)
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