Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The Trust Beneath Trust

When fear swirls through our minds, we look for something to trust. We reach into our backpack of inspirational quotes, phone calls to reassuring friends, the stillness of meditation, faith in the soul, and many other things. All of them are meant to soothe the turmoil of facing the great unknowns—food, shelter, love, disease, death, the survival of the planet. Sometimes it works and sometimes the fear rages on.

While the mind searches for trust amidst a whirlpool of dread, there's another trust that doesn't come and go at the whim of the thought-stream. This trust permeates the cells of the body and the fibers of trees. It rests within rocks and glows through sunlight. It doesn't look for evidence to believe or facts to prove. It doesn't rely on words in a book or a posture on a yoga mat. This trust doesn't depend on your faith in it or the consensus of a community.

So what it this trust beneath trust? It is life being what it is beyond any human preference. It's water tumbling down a mountain to the sea without worrying if its the right thing to do or the right way to go. It's your body swallowing food and digesting it as best it can without fretting over whether or not it is on your diet. This trust runs through every grain of existence. It is the earth breathing incomprehensible totality without scurrying about to make sure everything is in order and everybody is happy about it. It's life sticking with its miraculous process of birth, growth, decay, death and renewal no matter what.

So, when your mind swirls with anxiety, panic, or some vague distress, reach for your favorite Rumi quote or your version of rosary beads and soothe your aching thoughts. Also remember, beneath the thunderstorms of your aching heart, the entire earth is permeated with a trust that does not change and is always firm. It's life being life, existence existing, no matter what.


  1. Tony, I can feel these words in my chest. They ring with truth. Your point reminds me of something I wrote once, which is that faith is what catches you when you fall past what certainty. To me that sounds similar to what you are saying, which I interpret as a layer of trust that goes beyond logic, beyond rational thought, beyond our minds' ability to understand. For me the challenge is to believe that it's there, even though I've been caught and saved by that trust myriad times. Thank you for such gorgeous writing.

  2. Lovely post that has particular meaning for me today. Thank you.

  3. I agree with your post about trust in life always being there. I trust in the Creator God, trust that no matter how dark the night the Sun will rise once again in the morning. It is in the very fiber of life, of nature, of existence behind first attention and surface appearance.