Give to Receive: Part Two—Surrender

When I moved from one house to another
there were many things I had no room
for. What does one do? I rented a storage
space. and filled it. Years passed.
Occasionally I went there and looked in,
but nothing happened, not a single
twinge of the heart.
As I grew older the things I cared
about grew fewer, but were more
important. So one day I undid the lock
and called the trash man. He took
I felt like the little donkey when
his burden is finally lifted. Things!
Burn them, burn them! Make a beautiful
fire! Make room in your heart for love,
for the trees! For the birds who own
nothing—the reason they can fly.
–Mary Oliver, “Felicity”

Surrender ≠ Loss
Surrender is not loss.
Instead, it is a refusal to identify with something as my Self.
What I surrender may still exist in me, yet I no longer engage with it.
I am still aware of every stitch in my patchwork Self—every need, nagging worry, neurosis, doubt—yet I am not that.
And if I am not that…
                                          …of what am I to let go?
If I identify with nothing, what’s left for me to surrender?
More to the point: if none of those are me, then who does the surrendering?
Agency (any part of me assuming control over the “letting go” process) taints the act of surrender with a motive: fear.
“I” give something up because “I” am afraid of it—or of what will happen if “I” don’t give it up.
If “I” surrender worry, doubt, or fear, it’s because “I” am terrified of being overwhelmed by it.
Really, it’s just one of “my” many selves scrambling to maintain control.
The need to control fuels all these machinations.
True surrender, then, is threefold:
  1. I become aware of my need to control.
  2. acknowledge my need to control.
  3. release my need to control.

It is a letting go of the need to control anything—including the process of letting go.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Vlad Skaletsky, Jr.

A Photographic Journey

Sara in LaLaLand

Welcome to my world.

Killing Me Softly: Emotional & Psychological Abuse

Now that physical abuse is in the limelight and punishable by law, abusers have resorted to more insidious forms of control. The effects are just as destructive, more enduring, and more difficult to overcome.

Musings from the Soul

Writing for conscious living


"A Dream Within a Dream"

Deep Purple

"A Dream Within a Dream"

Robert Harris

"A Dream Within a Dream"


"A Dream Within a Dream"

Damn You Auto Correct!

Funny iPhone Fails and Autocorrect Horror Stories

To The Blogmobile, Robin!!

"A Dream Within a Dream"

%d bloggers like this: