Founder and co-owner of Levity Publishing. Author of I Choose; A Life I Love Living. A student of the dynamics of the human experience. A dedicated explorer of the inner world of emotions, thoughts and the roots of choice.
Maurice's Inspiration for Transformation
Why I choose to transform my experience.
My life growing up in community supported me to be aware and connected to my feelings and needs. Yet in my life being aware of these sensations was only part of the process to a self-realized and peaceful existence. The intesity of emotions in community life and then the delicate and confusing social games of American culture, began to manifest in my body as a weight on my heart. So, from a young age I was coping with not only my own emotional uncertainties. I was attempting to respond to a world of other people’s emotions and reactions coming at me in unconscious and often irresponsible ways. This lead to my personalizing other peoples anger, feeling shame and guilt for the pain I observed in the world. And though I armored myself against such suffering, I never completely stopped feeling it.
In my late teens and early twenties I began to embrace adulthood along with the personal and cultural responsibility that comes with that stage of life. When this happened all the suffering I had hidden as a child came back into sharp focus. The shame caused by not understanding confusing social games. The guilt from inheriting responsibility for a world plagued with such a violent and irresponsible human culture. The anger that arose within me when I tried to disassociate myself from these feelings and blame the world for its inadequacy. Yet as I struggled with these feelings they became fuel for my transformation. I realized that these were not the sensations I wanted to base my life on and that it was important for me to get to a place where being with myself was comfortable and pleasant. As a result I have endeavored not to run away from my experiences and to investigate what comes into my life and learn from its teachings. Though not always easy or successful, this work continues to motivate my process of self-awareness and helps me breathe with love instead of sorrow when I lay down at night.
Maurice Legendre lives in Asheville, NC. Though raised in a loving family he still struggled with anger and sadness. Believing there must be other possibilities he studied, traveled and wrote this book.
HOLD ON JUST A MINUTE! . . . Since this whole literary project is about self-connection and personal honesty, I feel inauthentic impersonalizing my own story here. I would like to share my background with you directly and in my own voice. I understand that it is a little long. Yet if you want to know where I’m coming from and how my book might help you, here it is.
Born in San Francisco, I was raised in a communal environment for most of my childhood. From California, the mid-west and ultimately to Virginia, I lived in variety of rural family sized communities. Being home schooled by my family taught me how to ask questions and explore topics of interest and meaning for myself. As the communities and people changed continually I was exposed to many different types of people. I have witnessed all my life that we each have different ways of dealing with choices and challenges. These different approaches sometimes clashed and at other times worked easily together, and decisions were often resolved by coming to some balance among the extremes. Most importantly though I realized that a solution can be reached, not by establishing right and wrong for the group, rather by each person involved finding the root of their truth and presenting that in a way that allowed each to express something meaningful, to feel heard and accepted. Through this awareness I have realized that I can take the same approach to my own inner conflicts and challenges. In fact it is by achieving my own inner resolution that I pave the way for an external solution.
In my teens and twenties I became more and more acutely aware of self-judgments, doubts and fears. While my external experience of High School and College went smoothly and generally enjoyably, I suffered internally with feelings of intense confusion, disappointment and a sense of “not enough.” These feelings of deep dissatisfaction continued on after college and I started changing my internal questions from “why, why me?” to “how do I change this” and “I really want to change how I experience life.” A series of experiences prompted me to dive fully into my frustrations in search of an answer. I realized that my past experiences had helped me make choices and create beliefs that I continued to live by even though they perpetuated my own suffering. As I peeled the layers back to find the source of my own personal pain, I began to understand that many of the layers were shared human dynamics. I began writing I Choose: A Life I Love Living as part of my process and as an aid to others on the path of self-awareness. The writing, editing, experiencing, and now offering of this book has been a huge part of my own personal transformation. Even though I still encounter challenges in my life, my process of dealing with them is radically different. I’m grateful for having challenged myself to push through my old fears and having the opportunity to share what I discovered with others.
I strongly feel that as we each develop self-awareness and acceptance it makes us much more capable of dealing compassionately and wisely with the challenges of our world. We can learn to face anything from social injustice and environmental destruction to economic imbalance and dysfunctional family dynamics, with a courageous and peace focused perspective. The prospect of doing what I can with the awareness of the challenges we face, scares me in ways I don’t yet fully understand. With no small amount of passion and fear in my heart I am choosing offer what I have learned and continue to do what I can to create a thriving, loving and wise human culture. My deepest gratitude to all people who courageously choose to know and love themselves.