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Finding Innate Okayness Amidst Suffering

Lately I've been contemplating two seemingly disparate concepts: (1) the idea that we will never not have a certain amount of suffering and discomfort in our lives; and (2) in the midst of this, we can learn to foster an innate sense of “okayness” that transcends our circumstances. How can these two be merged? Let’s explore…

I was reminded of the first truth by one of my mentors, Katie Silcox. In her book, Glow Worthy, she introduces us to the Hindu goddess, Akhilandeshvari: “she who is never not broken.” When we embrace the energy of Akhilandeshvari, we allow for the pain and heartbreak of life to be felt and experienced. We recognize that suffering is a part of life. We don’t push it away; we don’t make it wrong. We allow space for the shadow aspects to be present, and we trust that by doing so, in time they will naturally be transformed--and so will we. Miraculously, we find that it is our suffering that cracks our heart open and allows the Light to enter. (As Rumi so aptly put it, “The wound is the place where the Light enters you.”)

Once we truly embody and trust in the above process, we can begin to embrace the second idea of “innate okayness.” This was a term shared with me by Dr. Cat King (founder of Primal Trust Academy). I have found that this innate sense of okayness (or Primal Trust) can emerge when we recognize that our vessel will encounter many storms throughout this life--however, we are not the storms. We do not have to be defined by them. We are the ship, and when we are anchored in that truth, the storms cannot shake our core sense of okayness. We become, as Dr. Cat likes to say, “imperturbable.”

A wonderful metaphor for this duality can be found in the Japanese art of Kintsugi. With this method, broken pottery is repaired by mending its cracks with golden lacquer. The result is a piece that is more exquisite and valuable than it was before the break. With Kintsugi, it is the very imperfections that give the vessel its beauty and strength. 

In essence, embracing Akhilandeshvari (our inherent imperfection) alongside our innate okayness is about holding the tension of the opposites. It is a beautiful and mysterious paradox that as humans on this physical journey we will always be both broken and whole. The important question to ask ourselves is, “Can I hold space for both?”

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Very nicely written and a beautiful reminder that self judgement can trap us and cut us off from our own healing powers.


I appreciate this and it was perfect timing for me to read it. I like how you mentioned that the wound is where the light enters. I've been trying to deny the difficulty and stay positive for too long. These techniques are going to allow me to be more authentic and release a lot of expectations and fears. Thanks Abby!

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