Are You A Deep Sea Diver?

Living from the inside out and revealing our authenticity to the world, courageously and unapologetically.

In early 2000, I was drawn to a book by Oriah Mountain Dreamer entitled The Invitation, which begins with a poem by the same name. Her poem lassoed my heart. I remember reading it over and over as I contemplated the meaning the words had in my life. For the first time, I found someone who felt as I did — that every encounter is a sacred encounter no matter what the circumstance, and that each moment is ripe with potential to dive deeper into ourselves as we meet our true self in other people. It is about living from the inside out and revealing our authenticity courageously and unapologetically.

It takes courage to deep sea dive into life. My childhood was so dramatically explosive that I had no choice but to meet it full on. Life was real every day. I couldn’t remain on the surface; those waters were too rough. I was forced to dive deeper, to see what was underneath the surface, to find meaning in the insanity. Ironically, the insanity of our lives is usually what forces us to jump into deep waters in the first place. As Oriah writes:

It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living.
I want to know what you ache for,
and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.
It doesn’t interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love,
for the adventure of being alive …
It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand in the center of the fire with me
and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you, from the inside, when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.

The Invitation coaxes us in by using a language we can’t ignore — images and symbols that lift our spirits and open our hearts. It invites us to dance with our soul by cutting past the inauthentic part of us that declares we’re not worthy, we’re not smart enough, we don’t belong. If we dare to dive into life, we may very well lose our cloak made of words and stories, the one we hide behind. We may find ourselves like the emperor with no clothes. Jump in anyway! Do it now before you lose the courage! Be naked! Be vulnerable! It is when we dare to be truly human, unprotected by our defenses, that we meet ourselves for the very first time. And in that moment, I can see who you truly are and meet you on the high dive.