The Notched Wing

Helen Tara Hughes – Poetry, Fiction, Film, Phantasms

Courage & Transformation

From “The Way Of Transformation” by Karlfried Gras von Durkheim.

The woman or man who, being really on the Way, falls upon hard times in the world will not, as a consequence, turn to that friend who offers her refuge and comfort and encourages her old self to survive. Rather, she will seek out someone who will faithfully and inexorably help her to risk herself, so that she may endure the suffering and pass courageously through it, thus making of it a ‘raft that leads to the far shore.’

Only to the extent that we expose ourselves over and over again to annihilation, can that which is indestructible arise within us. In this lies the dignity of daring.

Thus the aim of practice (life) is not to develop an attitude which allows a person to acquire a state of harmony and peace wherein nothing can ever trouble her. On the contrary, practice (life) should teach us to let ourselves be assaulted, perturbed, moved, insulted, broken and battered — that is to say, it should enable us to dare to let go our futile hankering after harmony, cease from pain and a comfortable life in order that we may discover, in doing battle with the forces that oppose us, that which awaits us beyond the world of opposites.

The first necessity is that we should have the courage to face life and to encounter all that is most perilous in the world. When this is possible, meditation (being with life) becomes the means by which we accept and welcome the demons, which arise from the unconscious.

Only if we venture repeatedly through zones of annihilation can our contact with Divine Being, which is beyond annihilation, become firm and stable. The more we learn wholeheartedly to confront the world that threatens us with isolation, the more are the depths of the Ground of Being revealed and the possibilities of new life and Becoming opened.


Author: smallboy

Helen Tara Hughes is a writer, producer and actor. An award-winning theatre performer, she cut her teeth in classical and new work at major theatres across Canada, including the Stratford Festival. Her first taste of documentary work – a POV radio documentary for CBC’s ‘Outfront’ – gave her the documentary bug, and in 2009 she transitioned into Producing with the feature documentary, Goodness in Rwanda. As a writer, she has been published by, Eros Digest, and TWISI, and has a book of short stories that will be published in the fall of 2012. As a filmmaker, she creates short films based on poetic writing. She moonlights as an Asst Producer and Coordinator for documentary, factual, and independent films, and is developing a slate of her own media projects for 2013.

Comments are closed.