What central story is at the core of you, and how do you share it with the world?
(Author: Molly O’Neill)
For the past several months, I have been thinking about the future of Lisa-Unmasked.
During the Best Coaching Blogs contest, I was toying with the idea of shutting it down. In fact, I was well into the process of building an entirely new blog.
After being named a Top 10 winner, I thought it would be a perfect time to retire the blog while at the so-called “top of my game.”
I know now, I wasn’t even close.
What You Don’t Know
Over the past few weeks, I’ve become fascinated by the story of the goddess, Inanna. Inanna is the most important goddess of the Sumerian pantheon in ancient Mesopotamia and one of the many myths she’s associated with is the “descent into the underworld.”
The story goes something like this.
Inanna was worried about her sister Eriskegal, so she decided to visit the Underworld to see her. Eriskegal’s husband, who was the God of Death had recently deserted her. Though the goddess Inanna felt concerned about her sister, she dreaded the trip. After all, the two sisters had never gotten along very well.
When Inanna arrived at each of the seven gates of the Underworld, the gatekeeper would demand that she leave one of her garments and required her to leave her jewels, and even her crown.
When she finally saw her sister, the goddess stood before her, naked and vulnerable. And Eriskegal was angry with her, feeling that Inanna had not been supportive of her. Why she hadn’t even visited before now. So Eriskegal flew into a rage and killed her on the spot.
Inanna had been foresighted enough to advise her servant that if she did not come back, he should mount a rescue attempt. When she didn’t appear, he appealed to Enki, her father, who sculpted two tiny creatures from the clay beneath his fingernails and sent them into the Underworld with the servant and carrying magical substances called the Food and Water of Life.
Upon their arrival in the Underworld, the servant asked for Inanna’s body and the creatures fed the lifeless Inanna the Food and Water of Life, magically returning her to life. Inanna then requested that she be allowed to return to the world and her sister consented.
As Inanna passed through the seven gates during her ascent to the world, each of her possessions was returned to her. She returned home to resume her role as the Queen of Heaven with her crown once more upon her head.
Honoring the Call
The GoddessGift.com version of the story goes on to say this:
One of the Lessons of the Goddess Inanna: Just as Inanna had to shed a part of her identity—something that symbolized an important role or relationship in her life, so must we.
If we are to remain connected with our ‘true’ selves, our inner truth, we must divest ourselves of our attachments to the “outer world”, the face we show to others, and instead, travel inward to find the meaning of our lives.
I have never heard this story before and I was surprised at how much I could relate to it to the lessons of it.
You see, I’ve been to hell.
I have been stripped of almost every identifiable feature of a life that was 35+ years in the making.
The “losses” were endured over a period of SEVEN long years.
And during this time, Lisa-Unmasked was born. I have stood before you, naked and vulnerable, writing the words of my heart, which for me, were the food and water of Life.
It was only yesterday that I realized I have made my ascent. That the “crown” that was returned to me has been re-jeweled with pearls of wisdom and jewels of self-love.
And it was yesterday that I was told that sharing what I learned in hell must continue.
So, at least for now, Lisa-Unmasked will remain.
The central story of my life is about sharing the gifts of hell.
Whatever takes you into the pit, I’ll be there with you, because:
I know what it feels like when “they” are all talking about you.
I know what if feels like when the friends you thought you could always count on, no longer return your calls.
I know what it feels like to hurt so bad from crying, you can barely move.
I know what it feels like to not have a clue how you will eat tomorrow. Or where the next client will come from.
I know what it feels like to be drowning in shame.
I know what its like to wish for death because it feels life has turned its back on you.
I know you’ll make it out, too.
I know that whatever you’re being called to do and BE is worth the challenges you are facing.
It is worth whatever you are being asked to leave behind.
It is worth YOUR unmasking.
I look forward to being a part of your journey in 2011. Thank you for being a part of mine.
I love you.