There’s always been a darkness within me for as long as I can remember to choose the wrong path, make the bad decision which will lead us down the rabbit hole into a world of pain. I’m not sure if we are born with it but the person who plumps for the morally correct alternative 100% of the time is more than likely telling pretty little lies. Why do we do this? The large majority of us know right from wrong, we understand the basic moral codes that society teaches us from an early age.
Today’s obsession with self was never more evident than this weekend when unseasonably high temperatures drew thousands to beaches and parks despite being warned of the ongoing risks to their health. Many people hate being told what to do, be it by their parents, peers or parliaments. The need to satisfy their own desires which overrides any default setting within that their actions are not for the greater good, they are not in the public interest.
I used to blame others for my own failings. I used to blame alcohol or grief or anything that seemed reasonable and apt at the time. Yet, at the end of the day, it was all of my own doing. I was not ‘out of my mind,’ it wasn’t a case of ‘he doesn’t know what he’s doing.’ I knew exactly what I was doing and my actions were those of a sane, rational man. Selfish actions originate within the self. It’s not a team game, just me, myself and I glibly ignoring the quiet, calm voice within. The voice saying ‘no.’
The voice that says ‘no’ is often drowned out, it’s washed away by shiny, pretty trinkets which entrance and enamour us. It could pout, it could sulk, it could pack its bags and hit the road. Yet it doesn’t. It hangs around and toughs it out, waiting for those quiet times, those moments of clarity when all is still and we are prepared to listen. Then it speaks with purpose and poise. It does not shout or apportion blame. It simply highlights what we already knew. Deep down within. It is our soul speaking to us.
It will always be there, no surgery or exorcism can fully root it from our bodies. It is a light, a beacon, an ever present second chance that will never turn its back on us. It is change, it is hope, it is revelation. It’s the escape hatch, the emergency chute which we can utilise at any time. When we hit that button the light will flood in, drowning out the other voices which constantly seek to preoccupy and disorient us. All we need do is say ‘yes’ to the voice that says ‘no.’
It costs nothing, yet is priceless. It is life, illuminating the wreckage of the world around us and our role in that destruction. Society is on its knees as disease and disorder threaten to subsume all that is good and right. Death walks amongst us, it prowls and purrs with pleasure as the flames burn bright against the night sky. It is all around us and reigns within, yet it fears the voice that says ‘no.’ It has met its match and it knows it.
I am currently rewiring, realigning, stepping back from the brink and attuning my senses for the voice that says ‘no.’ At first I hear nothing bar the screeching static of decay and excess, but persevere and there it is. Barely audible at first, yet gathering in pace and volume as I draw nearer to its soothing rhythm. No, No, NO. Be a better person, lead a better life, choose to breathe and believe there is another way. The way. That is how it all begins. We are shown the way and must choose our path.
I’m learning, back to basics but picking up the pieces as I feel my way again along the path. The babble of voices is no more, those who knew best, who sought to stymie and silence me. I walked away and there was nothing but a void of bitter debris left behind. Strip it down, tear it out, break and build again. The voice that says ‘no’ is the most precious gift you will ever hold in your hands. It is free and it is yours. You need only say yes.