Like a bee from a jar

Having just finished reading “Set Free: A Life Changing Journey from Banking to Buddhism in Bhutan”, I realise suddenly that finding others people’s stories like this is terribly important to me and I am actively looking for more like this. Perhaps it is a sign that I am ready to “join up” with other people, even if only so far as noticing similar patterns in our experiences and smiling quietly to see those patterns in motion. I make a particular point of saying this because, at the end of her book, Emma Slade its author describes how she hesitated to write it, for fear that it was “egoic” to share her own story like this…which is the very same wobble that often gives me pause when I write my intimately personal blogs. Yet, thankfully, her lama gave her the unequivocal go-ahead and I, too, over-ride my own self-doubts…repeatedly…to keep going along this track of speaking out (a trait of the sacred feminine) since it feels to me that sharing the journey of awakening could be the most important thing that I am doing with my life (apart from taking the journey itself…). As above, I really hope that increasing numbers of people are prepared to hold their spiritual journeys somewhat less close to the chest in order to share since I suspect the time has come when we really need the encouragement of each other. We long to sense that we are not alone on these very intense personal journeys and to notice the patterns; for in those patterns, and the making conscious of them, we give even more wind to our collective sails.

For in this personal account, though I have been through nothing so dramatic as its author (who was held at gun point in a hotel room in Jakarta, Indonesia on a business trip during her banking career, catalysing her transformation), I found so many patterns of my own journey. Most interesting of all, I notice so many similar timings, which I can’t help observing match the incoming rhythms of the Eighth and Ninth waves coming in (as did my own breakthrough events); that evolutionary pattern that I keep writing about as per the book “The Nine Waves of Creation” by Dr Calleman. Because, if we are really in a new wave of creation as of 2011 (preceded by another potent wave that arrived in 1999) and that wave is evolving us as rapidly as some of us believe, compared to previous waves, then we can expect ever more breakthrough stories like mine and Emma Slade’s to rise to the surface.

The seminal event at gunpoint that started the process of forming cracks in the corporate life in finance that was Emma’s occurred in September 1997, during the pre-wave of the Eighth Wave (about the same time that my own life was mid free-fall triggered by a series of emotional traumas and abuses, including the deaths of both parents, a rape and a pretty life-eroding longterm relationship; in fact my mother’s cancer was diagnosed that very September). For Emma, the death of her father had served as another awakening of sorts, a sort of pre-wave of her own, forcing upon her the consideration of what death is; perhaps also a certain amount of misgivings about how we handle death in western culture, not to mention how we handle love (these words could be mine: “As a family we were not very verbally expressive and certainly the L word was not bandied around”). These considerations rocked my world too, beginning the process of feeling like a misfit in our society in a way that formed subtle but important fissures in the calcified rock around my heart…only waiting to be prised wider to let even more light in. I think its fair to say that one way or the other, by the end of the 1990s (shortly after the activation of the Eighth Wave in 1999 – marking the return of the sacred feminine) many of us were unwittingly poised for the door to fly off its hinges and for something very new to happen.

Do these kinds of breakthrough journey often begin with PTSD as that is something that, so clearly, happened here and it is something I had been long-ago forced to consider relating to my own breakdown and subsequent healing journey; for this was no simple trauma I was dealing with, it ran incredibly deep, like I had been saving it up for many lifetimes in order to gain maximum effect when it happened. I had never before associated PTSD with “entrapment” as Emma refers to in her book and yet, if I had to nail what afflicted me in the 1990s, it was that very thing; on every side of my ridiculously self-enravelled existence, I felt utterly, irredeemably trapped by circumstance and bound up in my heart. Nor had I ever before come across such an overt reference to a connection between PTSD and breakdown of memory…though this was surely part of my own experiences, to a very large degree. The severe brain fog episodes that accompanied the early years of my health breakdown were horrific yet (in the long run) served me amply as they enabled me to, as it were, reformat the way I thought and processes experience; to start all over again since I could no longer rely on the intellect that had become my mainstay until that point. Its as though (in both cases) we were being primed or softened to receive the blast of light that came next; a quality that I have observed before yet this was the first time I had heard someone else describe pretty-much the same thing to such a similar timeline.

Like Emma, I thought at first (having been an incredibly determined person, accustomed to thinking my way out of any situation) that “like a little girl screwing up her eyes and clenching her fists…I could make it all OK” but I simply found I couldn’t do it that way anymore; not without dismantling and restructuring my priorities, letting intellect be the servant and not the driver from now on, which is exactly what Emma talks about in this book. Brick by brick, the life she had built upon her intellect, a high paying corporate job and all its incumbent lifestyle trappings had to be – necessarily – dismantled to make room for something else that was clearly wanting to be let in. In my own way, I watched that old world disintegrate as I completely gave up both my corporate  and self-employed work (thus all financial independence) and surrendered myself to the unknown plan that my health conundrum seemed to have in mind for me; and all this on top of the ups and downs of parenting a very young child (more on that powerful catalyst below). It’s what the Eighth wave can feel like at first; a turn-turtle upon all the familiar values of the previous wave, all the things you once thought were important and by which you defined yourself. You are forced to take down all the trappings of the old life (an illusory life, or so it turns out…like a stage set made out of cardboard)…and into all that clear space flows the very thing that has been waiting to come in all along.

So Emma gave up her corporate career and found yoga (as I did somewhat later); travelling off around the world in search of teachers and becoming one herself…or at least until another life shake-up prompted her to reconsider corporate employment for a time. Like her, in the early stages (before my health came crashing down) I attempted a career change to address what I was feeling happen to me; endured many months counselling with a career’s advisor in a small wood panelled office close to St Paul’s Cathedral in search of answers that just weren’t forthcoming, as vehemently as I summoned them (for there were no logical answers to what I should be doing with my life). Emma finds herself purchasing a brightly coloured book advising her to list all the things she liked to do best and turn them into a career (much the same advice that I received). “Right, so: walking, finding fossils on the beach, being quiet, swimming. It was hard to see how those things would pay off a mortgage” she observes; and ditto for me. So many of us hit this place where nothing short of a complete breakdown of circumstance, done for us (it can even appear as though it is being “done to us”) will suffice to take us across the seemingly uncrossable mental gap…for her, the birth of a son with ADHD and for me the all-consuming crash and mystery of fibromyalgia that wouldn’t take no for an answer.

Then, here’s another stage I recognise: “My empathy skills were at an all-time low – how can you put yourself in the place of another when you are so lost yourself? I must have seemed selfish and disinterested”. Me too; I became terribly self-absorbed at first…and yet, I have learned, this pulling inwards is a necessary stage as you learn to love self like the seed in the dark that you are tending, so that a new shoot can grow. Everything can feel like a threat at that stage; the world full of assailants, hazards and toxins, you feel “shrunken, like one of those peat-bodies”, your body always, as she so accurately observes, feeling the cold. Yet…as long as you don’t loose yourself to this enhanced paranoia, the self that emerges through the need to find alternate things in common with “other” and “environment” than what is apparent in the material world is an expansive self that is ready for a new paradigm and to see beyond all the trappings.

As I mentioned, we both found yoga…and learned about the layers of body; of memories stored up from other lifetimes. “Whenever I bent forwards to put the crown of my head on the floor I could feel the openness of my neck exposed and my heart quickening. It seemed there were more memories, from other times. This posture showed me the layers of time stored up in my physical body, the layers packed like within an earthen pit; there they all still were”. As any regular readers of my blogs will know, I also found piles of memory stored up in my body and in the earth beneath my feet, especially in England; it’s a compacted, compressed feeling living here, like tightly packed crystalline boxes of human experience which it can feel as though I am channelling, recognising  “like” with the like in my body’s own stored memories then realising them as sensations and insight. Emma describes her relief on going to Australia to discover that “the country’s remoteness gave it the feeling that it had developed along a different, unique trajectory and that felt good. The weight of centuries of European buildings piling up on each other was a long way away”. I explored these east-west differences (and I suspect they are to do with much more than how tightly packed our buildings are…) in my recent post The Point of it All: Memory Shared which explores the very different (scientifically confirmed) crystalline structures at the core of the planet in the east compared to the western hemisphere and the way that I suspect we have stored our collective memories in the earth.

One breakthrough experience that she describes made me gasp for how astonishingly similar it was to some of my own experiences, mental diagrams I have tried to refer to in this blog and my long-running preoccupation with spirals and DNA; in her case catalysed by sun shining through droplets of water from a sprinkler in a municipal park: “Strands were interwoven like an undulating piece of cloth lying down or the strands of DNA structure standing up. Time continuing, spiralling on, with all things connected. It was clear we all have the chance to carry forward the wisdom we have gained or to decide not to. We can or we cannot, but it seemed best that we did; the threads in the cloth could reach across, make their connection and not get lost”.

Even then, in 2001, she wasn’t quite there yet…but things were about to get interesting; with a “one step back two forwards” kind of rhythm that I was also caught up in at the time. There was even an attempt to go back to the “old” corporate life and a job that gave her “clear tasks to undertake…the simplicity of living in the analysing focussed left-brain world” and, guess what, in that very same year, in an attempt to stabilise things and reclaim some sense of order for myself and my daughter, so did I (yes, part of me enjoyed slipping on those business suits)… but a new momentum was already running under the surface and it was only a matter of time before it showed above as even more cracks in the pavement. We both left that corporate world somewhat abruptly (in my case, once and for all and, in hers, to give birth to her son) in the same month –  July 2006. That timing feels significant – for it was the final build-up of momentum for the fifth day of the eight wave that came in 2007…its seminal point (as is the fifth day of each wave of evolution – see footnotes and diagram below) and here we were, poised and more than ripe to undergo a major rebirth in our personal evolution paths.

There was a sense of stasis for me after 2006, like I was living in a holding space, a seedling beneath the earth awaiting the first warmth from the sun. My health was a heinous mess and I had no choice but to pull inwards while my body played tug and push with my daily experiences and my commitment to parenthood (a source of much soul-searching given how much these often seemed to clash, with the added complications of a child who is super-sensitive and not always very straightforward compared to other kids). However, having been forced to completely give up work due to my health, at least I was now able to concentrate fully on parenthood in a way that would not have been remotely possible if I had been as stressed and hard-working as I was before; something which, without exaggeration, has altered the trajectory of my daughter’s life since I significantly altered (you could say “softened”) my parenting style as a result. In Emma’s case, she was at first bringing up a child with special needs and commuting to work in London then running her own yoga business whilst beginning to explore Buddhism; another tug and push yet one that paid off.

Buddha-1-webWe both seem to have awoken a previously subtle level of spiritual curiosity around this time and I agree, rather than finding conflict between parenthood and the spiritual path, I discovered like her that “the path of a parent requires the greatest commitment to love and patience. In this way it seemed to offer the chance to free yourself of the self-centred trap”. I have long-held (and written about) the viewpoint that the birth of my daughter was my first wake-up call; the primal scream of self-awakening and Emma agrees “The act of giving birth itself seemed to have begun he process. Having stretched and pushed and screamed to get that new life felt like the shedding of an old self”. I suspect that many of us are rebirthing ourselves as we birth our children during this post Eighth-wave era that has the feminine aspect fully activated once more. In this way, parenthood is serving as an instrument of a much vaster global rebirth, as it was always intended to (but which was deactivated or, actually, filtered out of our experience in the previous eras, when the birthing process was made secret, fear-inducing and increasingly distasteful or even turned into an artificial intervention by way of a fad that made c-sections and epidurals the very thing women thought they wanted). As women learn not to fear but, rather, to revere their reproductive capacities we activate this rebirthing process in ourselves whilst reclaiming the feminine aspect from eons of suppression by bathing it in the light of our awe; realising parenthood (for both parents) as a spiritual process and an instrument for achieving deeper understanding. In Emma’s opinion, parenthood is “not one of the five-forms of yoga but maybe it should be” and I agree, it has been massively instrumental in my journey of awakening. In her case, it was the “big shovel” that dumped her “100 per cent on to a spiritual path”. In my case, it was a combined effort between that and all those weird and wonderful challenges going on in my body (the one thing keeping me from utterly surrendering to the other, which I might have been more inclined to do had I not had a daughter to take care of).

Then, of course, 2011 was a very big year, for both of us and no less the world as it marked the arrival of the Ninth Wave. My account is that I “woke up” with a blast of internal light in March that year (my “big” spiritual awakening moment mentioned many times before in my posts), which not only set me off on a very obvious spiritual trajectory but also fed into an understanding that I could physically thrive, in spite of my health challenges, by reclaiming this new place of inner harmony and living closer to its design (begun in earnest as a self-devised food, supplement and lifestyle program in October of that year). It was in October 2011 (the all-important fifth day of the Ninth Wave; see footnotes) that Emma Slade took the first of many journeys to Bhutan and fell in love with the place in a way that utterly changed her life; a very different life to the one where she was involved in banking. We were both well on our way now and life hasn’t looked the same, for either of us, since.

I also can’t help noticing how we both arrived in a place that meant having one foot in each hemisphere, as it were, after that (which is, in essence, what the Ninth Wave is all about; achieving unity consciousness). I have chronicled my own yin-yang adventures and my many thoughts about east and west very throughly in this blog; whilst noticing how I now tend to prefer “living in” the right hemisphere these days whereas “left” is where I once, resoundingly, lived. Emma too; living in England, she found herself drawn to Bhutan more and more once this particular door was opened. As she first allowed herself to delve deeper into Buddhism, shaving her head and taking on different clothes, she couldn’t help noticing how happy she was “having one foot in the East and one in the West” until, before too long, she was happiest dressing like this all the time and, now renamed Pema Deki (Blissful Lotus), was excited to take on the lifetime commitment of becoming a Buddhist nun.

And yet….I can’t help comparing…we both still find our left-brained skills serve us very well and, somehow, come into their own more than ever within the new right-brained context that we use them in (I am fascinated by this, especially as an artist, and it has become a preoccupation of my writing themes). There’s a telling moment when Emma is interviewing a potential new helper for her charity and throws down the gauntlet for him to drop everything and come with her, immediately, if he really wants to help. “It was the closest I’d come in a long time to reclaiming my corporate-world brain. The speed of the decision was driven by the commitment to make this charity a real success”. Later she explains how “its now more than ever that I am grateful for the analytical background I acquired in the corporate world. It gives me confidence to ask the necessary questions about the ideas and figures until I’ve got the full picture”. Even her wording here reminds me of my own take on how the left-brain is useful in my approach to the “pictures” that I am working on; and I find its input invaluable as a writer of extremely abstract themes. I have long suspected that our true power lies in the ability to marry the best qualities of these two sides of ourselves together; left and right, east and west, both working together as one. Yet who would have ever imagined the corporate banker (as she once was) taking note of synchronicities…such as a rainbow on her path…to indicate that her project has got off to a good start. Just as she now struggles to imagine how the brusque and stylish person that she once was, dashing from meeting to meeting, would have responded to the person she now is (would she have even noticed herself if they passed in the hotel lobby?), I have that same difficulty imagining how the “me” of a decade-plus ago would have coped with what I have become. Would that version of me have despised my current life choices, my laid-back dress sense, my alcohol-free vegetarian diet, the absence of a typical social life and of television, my seeming lack of ambition or materialism, my relative withdrawal from the conventional world? I’m not sure they would have known what to say to each other in the unlikely circumstance that they had ever got chatting in the first place (though the odds are quite slim); and when I look at those old photos of myself, they are like a completely different person with a harder face, a far less-ready smile and much less light behind the eyes.

13738076_10207051703951294_9090516762248401158_oTraining diligently for this life as a nun (building all-new neurological pathways…which has been so fundamental to my health-recovery journey), Emma was confronted with having to recognise all the mental habits that tend to hold us prisoner in our lives (and which are so typical of the western way of life). She uses the Buddhist analogy (one I had not heard before) of the bee trapped in the glass vase…trapped in the circles of suffering known as samsara. No less, I have written endlessly about circles transformed into spirals and used the analogy of the butterfly trapped behind glass as my core metaphor for the last few years, exploring this idea repeatedly in my art, my photography and my writing as one of the most compelling themes that I am drawn to work with. As the penultimate chapter of her book is titled “The bee that flew out of the jar”, so I have recently written posts entitled “Out of the box” and “Released from the jar” and, many times, about those escaping butterflies. I have played with the idea of the butterfly being not only released from its glass (as though rescued) but, actually, transcending the glass, making  for itself (as it were) a whole other relationship with the glass so that the glass serves the butterfly’s best experience and not the other way around. Thus, we both seem to have reached this same point, in the last few months…just as so many of us have managed to renegotiate the terms upon which we engage with life (I keep seeing this same thread in the lives of my friends). In other words, another evolutionary breakthrough point has been reached, one which – I suspect – is far more universal (or at least shared to some fairly significant degree…) than we previously allowed ourselves to know from the perspective of our individual journeys, which can feel so unique to us that we hardly notice others experiencing versions of the same.

I just want to slip in that in Autumn 2012 I came upon the compassion prayer that Emma talks about in her book “om mani peme hum” (the version I knew was “om mani padme hum”) set to music by Buedi Siebert. I hardly knew what this was all about (though, of course, I looked it up)…all I knew at first was that I literally could not stop listening to it; I would listen on loop through headphones as I took my long early morning dog walks in the forest, a place where it was quite possible not to see another soul for over an hour of walking, and I would sing along with this mantra…and it quite literally cracked me wide open. I would weep, I would laugh and smile and feel such joy, staring up at all the sunlight pouring through trees with eyes still dewy with all those tears and I just seemed to release and release and release what was so jammed up inside of me. It was quite incredible, so powerful…and still brings a lump to my throat to hear that prayer in any form but especially that version.

Then there was this thing that Emma talks about where you realise the importance of kindness…and of admitting that we, ourselves, are kind; which (we find) deeply matters to us, though its importance might have completely eluded the person that we used to be. Not until last week, in my post Love Letter to Myself, did I finally, admit this to myself; which is such an understated sounding destination and yet it can feel like such a breakthrough when you arrive there. It seems to occur along with reaching a state of appreciating the kind of emptiness that “realises the interdependence of all things”. This is the void that I seem to speak about all the time these days; my quantum “point in the middle” that is neither form or non-form, left or right, west nor east…yet, really, it is both together at once. Without any Buddhist teachings to my name, I find I have such a lot in common with this English Buddhist nun and my curiosity regarding Buddhism is more piqued then ever. The “Teachings for Living Every Day” that the book ends with ring true to my heart; being the very things I have learned for myself this last decade and I could not have summarised them better if I had tried.

As I have come to realise with the writing of my blog, once it is written, it is up to the reader to decide how they interact with my words and not for me to say how that outcome should look. Like the butterfly, I release my writing to fly where it will and if I never get to know about where it lands, or even if I do and it turns out to be different place to the one I envisioned, it is not for me to argue. So, whilst I almost feel like I should apologise for taking liberties with this story and all the audacious comparisons I have made between my own and another person’s life, I must add that I found them all too irresistible (and useful) not to point out. In them, I find the validation of something that is a core belief, which is that we are all connected; in a sense, all one, the many going through highly individuated yet remarkably similar processes of personal evolution…as instruments of a far vaster process of evolution taking place in the world at large at this point in our history (whether you believe in evolutionary waves or not; however a grasp of the Nine Waves, I find, really helps to get to grips with what is happening).

Where those individuals are already tuned into the Ninth Wave, their stories may tend to stand out for having these similar patterns of breakdown and start-all-over-again which, for the moment, makes them quirky enough to stand out from the crowd and therefore somewhat easier to hear about and compare, in contrast with more mainstream ways of conducting a life without any sudden changes in trajectory. It is this utter breakdown of one way of being and the reformatting of the pieces into another, more heart-centred way of living that seems to form the backbone of a journey closely synchronised to these waves; and I find the timings of Emma’s life and mine (compared with the phases of the Eighth and Ninth Waves) quite compelling. I also take heart from these similarities since they tell me that many more of us are on this pathway of rebalancing our hemispheres…in ourselves, our work and lifestyle, our way of interacting with the world and each other. It feels like a leading edge, the point to an arrow, the start of a new trajectory for a great many of us and thus (one hopes) the whole planet and it thrills me to hear this story again in its many forms; as though we are growing in number and strengthening our resolve to go where the heart leads, whatever it may take. Importantly, we are doing this by finding that hemispherical harmony within ourselves, learning that it all begins “in” there, a “place” where harmony is our intrinsic state and we are, as it were, peeling back layers to rediscover it. For me, it emerged into form…first…through the process of art, which enabled me to allow those two aspects of myself to work together in their innate harmony without my interference. Through that, I learned that I was able to realise harmony as my most natural and familiar state of being…in spite of what the outside world or my daily physical challenges were presenting. What feels so apparent is that it is the deep personal journey to get “there” that is all important, whatever form that may take; and that by being harmony in our own lives, holding it within ourselves, we roll it out to the whole world through our actions and intentions (however humble or small those may seem at the material level).

“You have just built yourself a massive unpaid job” Emma is told about the charity she started “Opening Your Heart to Bhutan”…and, yes, in a much smaller way, I guess you could say that’s what my various full-time writing pursuits are too since they take up so very much of my time and (in material terms) earn me nothing at all. To me, they are a kind of service, as is my life, in that I hope that by modelling the qualities I have learned that we all possess beneath the surface of busy life, we all somehow get there sooner. Emma has taken her service to a whole other level with her charity work and tireless trips to Bhutan to work with the people there. Though on a different scale, these kinds of pursuit have in common that they are a world apart from the salaried jobs we used to do yet nothing would induce us not to do them; we know in our heart of heart’s that we are on the right path since we can feel ourselves existing as an expression in form of our most harmonious essence. There can be no doubting when you are on such a “right path” for there is no other inducement required except the feelings of joy and “rightness”, of wholeness and personal truth that you derive from it. Crossing paths with others operating from a similar place can be such encouragement. There is a powerful point of creative evolution, a sort of concentrated forward momentum, to be found in the meeting place between your two sets of experiences and the many ways that they are found to correspond; like the essence of oneness in action. I found this book such a profound and heart-felt pleasure to read across all its many layers and heartily recommend it.


Final thoughts: Bhutan, “Set Free” and Emma’s charity work

I just wanted to add that I found myself falling most tenderly in love with the Bhutanese culture…second hand…as I read this book, such is the heartfelt way it is presented through Emma’s words. One of the things I find most endearing (is this bizarre?) is the habit of adding “la” (as in “Emma-la”) to the end of a person’s name as a mark of respect. It reminded me of my dear German friend (who I finally get to meet in person in just a couple of months) who has the habit of saying “dear” at the end of a sentence, even when written. I found this both quaint and arrestingly meaningful the first time I noticed it, like a soothing gesture that had been so-long absent from my life. These days, we tend to associate the add-on of such a word to our name with the little old ladies of our childhood, don’t we, and yet where did they go and when was it considered so superfluous to add an endearment like that? Just think what it means – “you are dear to me”; how wonderful is that. Its like the word “love”, which I often find myself adding when I address my daughter, though I used to abhor the practice before I became a parent (I remember how I used to think it sounded like a take-off of a Cockney taxi driver to say “love” at the end of so many sentences…) yet I found I literally couldn’t help myself where my daughter was concerned; it just started happening because, guess what, I love her. This tells me something about western culture, where we have made language so perfunctory, to the point of text-speak, that we have lost something precious in the process. Hearing “la” added to the end of my name would feel like a loving hand caressing the top of my head and I found myself craving a world where such word usage is the relative norm. If this sounds like an odd reason to open your heart to a particular culture (helped by so many descriptions of smiling faces) then it is because it helped capture something about these people that genuinely warmed my heart and added a whole other dimension to Emma’s book…one that cannot be taken out of the book without removing its substance altogether.

set_free_cover_emma_slade-pre-order-197x350Emma’s charity is called “Opening Your Heart to Bhutan” and was started in 2015. The charity works to acheive tangible long term improvements to the quality of life of children in Bhutan, especially those in remote rural communities and/or with additional special needs. The proceeds of this book are being donated to this charity and you can read all about the marvellous work that they do, and donate or help on other ways (as well as seeing so many of those smiling faces I talk about), on its website www.openeingyourhearttobhutan.com.

Emma’s own website relating to her book “Set Free” is www.emmaslade.com and you can watch her give a Ted X talk here.

“Set Free” is available on Amazon via the link (left).

 


How do any of these personal experiences relate to the Nine Waves of Creation and the current evolutionary trend of humanity?

These two quotes are from “The Nine Waves of Creation” by Carl Johan Calleman, PhD:

“I have several times pointed out…the special role that the fifth day has had in the evolutionary process of a wave. This special role was exemplified by the birth of Christianity in the Sixth Wave and the birth of modernity in the Seventh Wave. The two phenomena may seem quite different, but the fifth day is the period of breakthrough regardless of what wave we are studying”.

Screen Shot 2017-06-27 at 08.06.11

Significant events in the fifth days (and nights) of the previous waves of evolution (Diagram by Dr Carl Johan Calleman – The Global Mind and the Rise of Civilization)

“…the time after activation of the Ninth Wave, on March 9, 2011, had given clear indications what direction this, the highest and final wave, promises to take humanity over time. The Ninth Wave is designed to take us not only from the dominance of the bankers and dictators but also from nationalism and religious fanaticism. If these tendencies became much less evident immediately after the shift on October 28, 2011, it was not because of the Ninth Wave but because the simultaneous shift in the lower waves came to influence the world…”

For much more on The Nine Waves of Creation in my posts, search this website using the term “nine waves”.


Photography:

Bee photo taken in Copenhagen (on the twelfth degree longitude where, according to Dr Calleman, East and West hemisphere’s meet…) in August 2016

Flowering Buddha taken in my garden, Summer Solstice 2017

© Helen White Photography

 


Related posts on this website:

Glass Butterflies 2016 & Glass Butterflies II 2017 (and more, search for “butterfly”)

Released from the jar 2016

Out of the box 2017

Spinning light 2016 (and many more topics related to my vision of the structure of evolution and oneness realised in form –  search for “spiral”, “circle”, “DNA”, “tapestry”)

Using the Nine Waves to Heal Your Life 2017 (and many more, search for “nine waves”)

Love Letter to Myself 2017

Fountain of Life 2017

The Point of it All: Memory Shared 2017

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Absolute healing

Probably the most comprehensive, coherent and powerful post on healing that I have ever shared drawing on everything I have come to know about achieving wholeness within a physical body. Far too vast to summarise, far too important not to share here from my other site, here it is in full via the link below:

 

Source: Absolute healing

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Don’t feel you have to ditch your story (unless you really want to)

…because its literally chock-full of jewels. And to do so is to betray that part of yourself that gathered the story to you, that went through everything to get here, putting together this vast composite of experience; and this only leads to more fragmentation, not wholeness.

It’s such a spiritual cliché to say you must ditch your story, just drop it by the roadside and pretend it has nothing to do with you (and there can be so much tutting behind hands when you admit to having a story to tell), but that was then and this is now. In the ninth wave, we incorporate the resonant bits of our story into an amalgam of “story” and “no story”. Without hanging all that judgment around its poor neck, we find our story is literally full of riches for us to pounce upon when we do this. Synchroncities continue to work for us across all the strands of our life’s experiences so why would we want to erase them and be left with a blank slate; what would be the point of that (and points are something I’ve spoken about such a lot lately)?

When we get to the point, we bring ourselves into wholeness, the two hemispherical sides of ourselves merging to become one…and that includes all those aspects of our story that we decide to hold in there, in a sort of suspension between form and non-form (no, not oft repeated like a mantra until they crystallise and become non-negotiable “fact”, but…) so we can dip our brushes into their colours and find all-new meaning waiting for us when surprising aspects of different parts of our many stories suddenly line up.

ImageLike a kaleidoscope creates a new pattern every time we shake it, when we operate from the void of all creation, new patterns emerge in every moment and, from them, we derive meaning and insight. The story we have chosen to preserve about ourselves includes bits and pieces of all those preferences we have expressed across the years…books and films we dived into, nuggets of things that attracted our attention, places we travelled, small details, conversations, hardships that helped make us who we now realise we are, personal traits that bobbed up time and time again until we knew they were important…all held waiting for us to thread onto a new strand of understanding at some unforeseen moment in the future, only to fall off the thread and be recycled for another day just as quickly (nothing need be turned to concrete anymore and our story is retained as a much more fluid thing than we remember it ever being before).

The thread that holds them there is us; the awareness in form that has been the lifelong kleptomaniac of “things” by way of gathering experiences that we have squirreled away for such a rainy day…only, sometimes, rainy days are the very best. They are the ones when we get to tip out all the intriguing boxes and play freely with whatever we can use to hold our attention and, from them, some of our best and most surprising creations yet can emerge. And so we create our next layers of meaning, across many lifetimes’ “stories”, and we get to birth something infinitely new from them, which is the spiral tail of our own evolution. This is the master playing with being consciousness in form…not throwing anything out because it is out of favour this year (that is so old-style yang!) but incorporating it all as useful (hello yin!) to become the best of both as one.

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Love letter to myself

Summer solsticeThe last decade has been a self-righting, a sort of rescue operation and a slow-steady reunion of two aspects of myself that had become exaggeratedly fragmented (I know now) expressly so I could learn how to put myself back together again! This powerful time of planetary poise, Summer Solstice (a time that was such a favourite in my childhood, when more light meant even more playtime and joy) became attached, through association, with a hurt which, in turn, became the very pivot-point of all my efforts to “return home” to myself this last quarter century.

Perhaps this period of maximum light has made it all the more painful for me to see more of myself yet not like what I saw across all these years of the wound that I was harbouring being, as it were, spotlit by this anniversary. A stark contrast was set up and the rub of it became my very growing point; a navigation aid as I brought myself into better alignment with what truly felt like me, year-on-year. At the higher level, its as though I have been working with the Summer Solstice…and my task, now, to work powerfully with it in my favour as such a life-affirming time of the year, unconditional upon any associations I have ever formed around it. I see now how I have been working to redress an alleged moment of self-abandonment (although I never really did fragment or separate…not for one moment, though it may have seemed to be so); to both offer and receive the love that was never, in the first place, either refused or denied.

Writing this letter to myself is my Summer Solstice gift to myself and anyone else who takes solace or encouragement from these words. May it encourage others to at least consider what those two aspects of themselves might have to say to each other, if they were handed the pen with which to do it!

You can read my letter in today’s post on Living Whole:

Love letter to myself

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Six months in – working more effectively with the ninth wave

The dip of the ninth wave cycle (or, mid-point of the ninth wave “night” phase) is like deep diving for pearls in the mud – that much I knew immediately on finding out about it and tracking it backwards thorough the rhythms of my life. Those times when the ninth wave influence subsides to allow “previous” waves to have another say, like a clear, assertive voice that pipes down to allow the hecklers on the back row to shout out another word or two, can feel messy, dark, like plunging  somewhat reluctantly into the mire of “the past”.

Fig 8.1

This gives some idea how the evolutionary impulse has “speeded up” since the 9th wave was activated in October 2011 (from calleman.com)

Yet, (made conscious) they can also feel like we are only revisiting those aspects of our “story” for a valuable review (the kind we used to only get at the end of our lives), so that we can now get to make all those layers of experiences fully conscious AS they briefly come up again, seeing them for what they are, noticing the patterns and higher threads of connectivity between them. So, once I had read The Nine Waves of Creation and delved into the ninth wave’s patterns for myself, working it backwards against my own life events, I noticed myself working with these phases differently, newly, from a higher vibration, (not submerged in them, filthy to my neck but) perched on the side, reaching in for what feels of value to pull out of them and carry forwards into my next phase. Like I was, with 20:20 vision, reaching down and expertly plucking out the gems-in-the-mud of many lifetimes’ experience. Not loosing my footing in that mud, not making the revisited drama of going in there “mine” again by investing in it or adding more mess but, rather, watching what unfolded with detached curiosity, increased clarity and a growing ability to making powerful connections, drawing vastly bigger pictures. And, all the time, trusting that this phase would move on and that, in just a few more days, the ninth wave impulse would inevitably assert itself once more and I would be back on top of things, in the flow once more. In fact, all the richer for the deep-dive and the hands full of pearls.

I was even starting to enjoy the opportunity for the review, to indulge in life’s rich and textured variety without fully going there like it was defining me in any way (not unlike watching a film without having to pretend I really am the main character caught up in a chase scene). There’s a part in my painting process when everything looks the most messy and slapped on, quite the eye-sore to anyone else’s eye and yet, I know (as the artist) that it occurs just before I start honing it all back, choosing what to keep, tweaking and manipulating my canvas to my original artistic vision of balance and harmony (no splodge of paint being, really, an accident) and that it will all be alright in the end. Well, somewhat like that, it can be deeply satisfying to be in the low-point of the ninth wave; an oportunity  to pick from the vast array of colours and textures I have “laid on” to life’s canvas and to show off the skillfully achieved state of coherence that am I capable of suddenly pulling out of the bag at the, seeming, darkest moment (like that classic “darkest before the dawn” thing); never really faltering in the knowledge that I would do it and that everything was perfect, all the time.

The more I practice this thing, on vastly different themes it seems, cycle after 36 day cycle, the more intuitive it feels to be like this rather than immersing in whatever doom and gloom life offers up. The ninth becomes a feeling that you re-navigate to, adjusting your dials over and over again with so much relative frequency (compared to previous cycles) that it starts to become a default position that you hold steady to, throughout all the ups and downs; finding and maintaining a personal plumb-line throughout. Meanwhile, during those night phases, you know what you are in for and, instead of seeing “doom” you simply reach into the mud for those gemstones rather than plunging into hopelessness as you might have done before. It is a compelling pattern, once you tune into it; one which, I suspect, we are all being entrained to, whether we are anywhere near conscious of it, yet, or not (though making it conscious vastly accelerates the process).

I also find these can be vastly creative times; monumentally so, like I just have to show willing and show up for things to come together, inspiration to strike and the right words to find their way to the page, with what feels like a higher wisdom effortlessly coming through. Like today, I’ve got five posts on broadly different topics wanting to be written and its (guess what) the lowest point of the 64th night of the ninth wave right now…its so called weak spot though, in some ways, its strength. Why? Because – once we are in resonance, the night phases test us out, they allow us to know our own measure, unconditional upon outward circumstances that may seem to be less than perfect. Having familiarised with its impulses, its particular frequency, throughout the day-time phase of its cycle, its like then being allowed to ride the bicycle alone for the first time during the night phase as its influence wanes; as though the guiding hand is lifted from the saddle-stem and – there you go – you’re doing it all on your own. Seeing that you are really doing this thing – that is, holding a ninth wave frequency whether circumstances are in your favour or not – can be an odd mixture of starting to really trust, appreciate and be in awe of the fact that the universe has your back whilst, at the same time, finally acknowledging that you really knew all along that life was just a game and that you were always in control of it (not it of you). Its like stepping into your “big shoes” and dropping the pretence that you were ever a hapless leaf on the breeze. Like a fast-track training ground to self-mastery, this oscillating rhythm of 18 days “on”, 18 days “off” is like a set of bellows teaching you to breathe new life into what felt most stagnant before; the CPR that gets you heart jolted back into its own trusty rhythm again…and never more powerful than this, once it really gets going on its own.

Screen Shot 2017-06-19 at 11.20.37This is all really happening so rapidly now; this thing that what once took centuries, even thousands of years, to play out its up-and-down rhythms of evolution – any wonder that, for many of us, life feels like it is moving faster and faster and that we are hardly the same person we were even six months ago. If this is already us and we are aware of it, in what way is it useful to “geek out” on the ninth wave, cross-referencing our experiences with some sort of calendar we may only just have heard about? Well, for those in resonance with unity consciousness (or at least “getting there”), a conscious glance to see where they are at, against the rhythms of the ninth wave (noticing, how do our circumstances correspond with its rhythms; how well are they aligned), can feel increasingly comfortable and affirming as a result of noticing they are on that same pattern. For those not there yet and still in resonance with earlier waves such as the 6th and 7th, I agree, this can feel more disarming…perhaps, ironically, more so during the day phases when their lives may feel uncomfortably out of sync with the ninth wave’s compelling unity impulse, which may not meet well with remnants of preoccupations from those earlier waves. When the tension of miss-match becomes too much, this can trigger the kind of life “break-down” (a so-called crisis to do with health, career etc) that is the start of a whole new evolutionary trajectory that is now fast-track aligning with the ninth wave. Either way, if evolution of ourselves (in tandem with humanity in general) is where we think we are at, knowing how smoothly we are lining up with this trend can be a powerful tool. Like we sometimes need to look up from our engrossing book and stare out of the window of the train at the landmarks and place names whizzing past to feel that we are really getting somewhere, using the tool of the ninth wave (which can be so easily tracked here) is the very thing to contribute a sense of coherence and forward motion to the more ad-hoc, two steps forward and one step back, sense of traction you are probably already achieving; feeding even more rapidity into the evolutionary momentum that is now just longing to become realised with our conscious participation.

We still hold this thing in the balance and our next step together as a species relies upon the choices we make, going forwards. If achieving unity consciousness is something that you believe in, aspire to and want to work towards, faster and more coherently, in this lifetime as a top priority (which all starts with owning your personal experiences, both past and present, and choosing your present-day response to them) then I heartily recommend an active awareness of the ninth wave as one of the own most-powerful and potentially life-accelerating evolution tools available.


 

Further reading

Why Follow the Ninth Wave from the author himself, Dr Carl Johan Calleman

See my (many more) posts on this topic by using the search term ninth wave in the search box (left sidebar)

 

Resources:

The Nine Waves of Creation by Dr. Carl Johan Calleman

The Ninth Wave Calculator

 

 

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Shaking up life’s algorithms

(By the way, this post isn’t really about music but…) I really love Spotify. Once the die-hard music collector, insisting upon “owning” everything I listened to and following particular genres, I defected to Spotify a couple of years ago; yes, somewhat skeptical at first. The result: it was like opening up a small, familiar box that I had carried with me everywhere for years to find its contents popped out and inflated to multiple times the original size. For that was my music taste then and…now, two years on…it is infinitely expanded into something almost unrecognisable, and growing still.

One of the things I love most about Spotify is a thing called Discover Weekly, which suggests music for me to listen to based on my prior taste. Every monday, I get to dive upon a new playlist of suggestions and this has led me off on some voyages of discovery, towards some “new” musical artists that I might never have got to discover by any other means. Really, I treasure some of the suggestions it has made to me and what I also love is how one small detour leads to another…and another…and another, making a whole new trajectory out of one small willingness “to explore” on my part.

What this has amply demonstrated in action serves as a metaphor for life itself. What you “ask for” here and now manifests “in the future” as your array of choices. In other words, if you stick to what is known and comfortingly familiar then…guess what…that’s what you keep getting, week after week. If you open up and diversify then, again guess what, the suggestions and possibilities that life opens up to you will broaden and diversify too. Those once tight little options that made up “your certain little world” hold the potential to grow exponentially as soon as you do this, offering ceaseless variety, colour and texture plus so many pleasant surprises in tandem with your preparedness to try something different.

priscilla-du-preez-165370.jpgSometimes just for fun, or because a silly-summery mood takes me over, I dive into something completely outside of my usual musical taste, you could say my comfort zone, into something frivolous, unexpected or as though I am become someone else for a holiday. Different cultures, completely different styles; there’s nothing to lose and everything to gain when you get to dip in to it all so freely as we now can do. Partly, its as though I am trying to throw some part of me off my own scent when I experiement, surprising myself into feeling something fresh. And indeed, these diversions do throw off the algorithms associated with my Spotify account, serving to pepper-up my future weekly lists with weird and wonderful suggestions aimed at meeting this new seasoning where it crosses with my more familiar choices. These diversions not only freshen up my “here and now” but, quite often, throw up some of the more interesting fusions of music that are some of my most treasured recent discoveries; where cultures and eras cross over into a free-for-all of musical taste. And, believe me, all these options exist out there – the world’s most diverse musical taste has never been more experiemental and available in a way that explorers like me help to encourage. In other words, my preparedness to open-up my taste a little now feeds into the  potential for me to explore a lot more in the future. I am offered new and ever more creative shades of experience that might never have come up for me to sample had I stuck to the well trodden route of my more-typical music taste accessed in a more traditional way.

Again, this is life all over…the looser and more inclusive we are prepared to be in our “now”, the broader the future sample-plate of our experience becomes going forwards. Life becomes richer by far, as though portals of experience that may have remained sealed and invisible to our eyes suddenly appear on our path, offered only because we dared to be open to them being there. So, life expands and expands, ever more textured and colourful…infinitely more exciting and beautiful…no longer this stale and containable thing that is so easy to own, to label or to describe as a particular genre; and why would we want to when there is all this ever broadening diversity just waiting to be explored in a way that just is so enriching to the soul.

 


Contextual note relating to The Nine Waves of Creation – the eighth wave of our evolution (which birthed internet technology) allowed Spotify to exist…but it is the ninth wave (unity consciousness) in action when both access to, and exposure for, music and its makers are so freely available; and when we see musical tastes and origins merge and cross-over to become so much more than the sum of their parts!

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Creating from the place in the middle

It feels like there is a leading edge thing going on where art and technology meet. They both pull me together and repel me, in equal proportions; the repellant part where I’m having to revise processes that are stuck in old grooves and entrenchments formed around ideas of what they were devised for and oh-so many misgivings about what I am now doing and why. For its a place where I am truly faced with not knowing what I am doing; with all the incumbent loss of “comfort zone”, even identity, since I can’t really call myself a painter anymore (so “bang” goes the identity of a decade’s creation). Yet I know I am doing something; am on the way to something new…straddling a breach, one leg in each place, and so (to a new timescale that involves no such time pressure, infinite space…) I to and fro across that gap, making and losing ground in small increments to the rhythms of my ebbing and flowing inspiration. In other words, I only create when I feel like creating!

The oscillation of this motion feels like breathing…like a breath of fresh air where I was beginning to feel deathly stale before. It feels like where these aspects come together is a healing place, a balancing thing, so I keep at them both in some sort of new incubation territory that, for the moment, feels like I’m achieveing nothing at all (not that I could resist even if I wanted to). By anyone’s terms, this feels like its been the least productive half-year of my decade as an artist…yet, by my own, I know I’ve covered vast distances, though I hardly have a thing to show for it.

Its been six months since I painted…though I hardly knew, last time I cleaned away my brushes, that it would be so long. At the time, I was even sorry to be packing away for Christmas, looking forward to a snatched hour or two over the so-called holiday…yet some new urge came over me during that time and it grew and grew. Somehow that usual January reach for the routine of linseed and mess never happened, I passed it by and, once its habit had been resisted, it grew easier to keep going. I began to wonder how much of my painting practice was merely learned behaviour and some sort of inverted work ethic that kept me at it, even at times when the inspiration ran dry. Resisting its pull has been not unlike giving up smoking or drink or any of those other addictions I have managed to put behind me; for, once past that heart-racy part where a small voice panicked at a reality without the prop of the identity painting gave to me, I was able to deep dive into a new void. I’ve succumbed to more spontaneity, more pleasures for pleasure’s sake, than at any other time since childhood this last few months. And from within that new turf, an equally new impulse has risen like an unknown shoot; one that is more about experiment, about exploring if something tenuous can be realised, than caring what anyone else thinks or even sharing with the world.

And that tool I’ve found myself reaching for, built for “getting down to it” quicker than my ideas could otherwise be realised, is my Apple Mac; which is also a “place” where I can scrub what I just did and start all over again at a moment’s notice. The learning curve has become accelerated beyond anything I could achieve spending weeks labouring over a canvas; so much so that what I used to do feels like I was knitting myself an artwork, stitch after weary stitch. Here is where my mind wants to be…not just my left brain but also the right side that feels, suddenly, like it is unleashed to tear ‘round at the speed at which it naturally operates. The gratitude it feels for the technology that makes this possible is honing a reconciliation of sorts between two aspects of my brain that haven’t aways been on best speaking terms.

Without pressure of label or intention, I find I’m newly prepared to take risks, to not know where it is that I’m heading or whether it has any “use”. It feels the most like “play” of anything I’ve indulged in since childhood; without planning or forthought, following my joy. When did I loose that ability and when did this rift quote-technology-is-destructive-only-in-the-hands-of-people-who-do-not-realize-that-they-are-alan-watts-30-84-57form between left and right aspects of my brain, like I couldn’t be in both at the same time (and why, even when I went back to the right-brain part of myself, years later, did it feel like I now had to bail-out on the left)? Yet it feels like the most important undertaking of my life to allow myself to embark upon “just not knowing” why I’m doing it, where its heading or whether it will go well, how well it will be received, nor is it to particular timescale, all without shying back into abject fear of the unknown. There is a quiet courage to it…as there always is to the feminine aspect when she aserts herself; and she aserts most powerfully of all when she works with the masculine aspect rather than fighting with him (this is, after all, the universal impulse in action…realised through the creative acts of humans invoking our most creative potential without getting in our own way). This is all what I’m talking about as I try to describe where I at as an artist…and it feels worth keeping at, even when forward momentum with actual creations feels somewhat stilted, caught up in all the teething issues of this being “very early days”.

So, it’s not that I’ve stagnated but its been more stop than start in a new world of fabric design and photo manipulation. I recognize similar impulses to when I painted yet they hit frustrations when technology won’t keep up with me (though frustration, as ever, is the mother of invention). Then I play with getting paints out again, perhaps using what I’ve learned since deep diving in a world of easy correction and manipulation to evolve what I do with a brush (and maybe I will at some point; taking my new treasures back there)…yet, for the moment, I know I would quickly feel frustrated if I went back there too soon, to where corrections are “mistakes” or even “failures” to be thrown straight in the bin. The urge (increasingly, demand) inside of me to correct something with press of button or to enhance with the sweep of an effect would take me over and make the kind of fluid effect achieved with brush alone feel just so antiquated, lopsided, ham-fisted…hardly keeping up with the forward projections of my mind. Even when I was painting, I found the overwhelming urge to scan-in the fruit of my efforts and tweak it, make it better, using technologies at my finger tips was growing year-on-year (how is this considered wrong when the vision I have of an end product comes all from one place…the artist, me). The feeling I must avoid such last-minute “cheats” felt like it was on some sort of mental-moral grounds (ergh!), as though anything digitally manipulated would be considered “not to be really my own work”. It was tearing me apart further than I was already torn….into some sort of encampment in the right-brained perspective where I was used to licking my non-commercially rewarded wounds while more left-field friends thrive better in whatever else they do for a living. Even in this, I was feeling more and more torn about what I do (or why I was doing it) since I am not all about right brain and it was like I was pointing my left hemisphere to the door and banishing it for no reason at all, when it can (surely) help to make me feel more complete.

Once I allowed it, this hand reached out to technology, asking “what can you do to help me” felt like a correction of sorts; bringing me closer to that middle point where skill sets meet, since (previously obtuse) they somehow speak a remarkably similar language just as soon as what drives them forwards is acknowledged to be, after all, the same impulse of the heart…a vision of creation that brings common purpose, that focusses them with ever-lessening conflict towards a single aim that is about celebrating what is beautiful, positive, uplifting…This, after all, could be a saving grace for our world (already is, as our young people bring these two skill-sets together with ever more wow-factor and beauty; you just have to look online to see what it is that they are doing with their creative technology, their artistic innovation, to know…somehow…we will be alright in the end).

Impossible not to see how the marriage of liquidy creative flow with hard-nosed solutions that help it take form and to stretch itself to the edges of human innovation (of the liquid with the vessel that holds it…) is a newly balanced marriage of yin and yang in the making. Being the marriage of aspects we have been told to be polar opposites (these belief are so entrained), it may take some working at, may take another generation to bring it in fully or the combined personal successes of all those who are prepared to work at overcoming their innate resistance to what is most new, unexplored, unpredictable, indefinable about it (and through our participation in all those personal forums of exploration, never doubt, we can’t help but contribute massively to the whole). Those that do this might not be able to immediately demonstrate or explain to others how what they are doing is useful or is going to generate equivalent rewards to those things we have come to rely on as the benchmarks of success (self-image, an income…) nor ways that, through exploring the unexplored territory in the middle, we are making a vast difference to our whole future as a species…and yet…I am prepared to keep plugging away at it without any of those answers.

It is the fruit of such a marriage of opposites that always makes it worth it…though I hardly, yet, know what that fruit could be; can only intuit it will appear on the stem once this flower has opened and that its inevitable ripening is but the hint of a feeling that I detect on the winds when I am called to create according to these new criteria. Even if I do no more in this lifetime than practice honing a particular feeling of how it registers inside a person when they start to lock-on to such a centrally navigated route through life, with no prior agenda nor particular product in mind, then I will have played my part. That delicious feeling of being on-track towards something fresh, innovative and worth-it is exactly what keeps me at it…this push-pull domain between two differently processing aspects of the mind, hemispheres that are really longing (now) to meet in that place in the middle and bounce off each other’s ideas. Both sides know that its a place where they get to learn quickly (even benefit) from “mistakes”, to notice differences or failings without making-up drama about them, to be prepared to take risks without knowing what they are aiming for (no insurances, no guarantees here…yet so much unfettered potential) and, yes, to optimistically, open-mindedly, excitedly collaborate together on…well…who knows what. Simply, navigating forwards, (like children unleashed) guided by joy and exploring what is possible. What a model for our world! The word I find I want to use about this place is burgeoning…and its something we are all doing, together as we deep dive in this evolutionary place; together, creating something entirely new of our world, both on and off the canvas.

 

LIGHT ON ART

It feels like there is a leading edge thing going on where art and technology meet. They both pull me together and repel me, in equal proportions; the repellant part where I’m having to revise processes that are stuck in old grooves and entrenchments formed around ideas of what they were devised for and oh-so many misgivings about what I am now doing and why. For it’s a place where I am truly faced with not knowing what I am doing; with all the incumbent loss of “comfort zone”, even identity, since I can’t really call myself a painter anymore (so “bang” goes the identity of a decade’s creation). Yet I know I am doing something; am on the way to something new…straddling a breach, one leg in each place, and so (to a new timescale that involves no such time pressure, infinite space…) I to and fro across that…

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A walk on the grass

Next time something flags up with a “just don’t go there” sign, or keeps appearing on your path though it is something you think you have an aversion to, perhaps take the time to question what it is that you think you know about why you are determinedly not “going there”. Perhaps it has something to tell you, or that place you are so studiously avoiding could afford you the next greatest viewpoint; the one that was always missing from your overal “picture”. We are entering a time when some things are seeming to speak in opposites and this is my feeling why.

Some of these old ideas around places and things, around value judgements, accepted behaviours or about remedies that “mustn’t” be pursued, became beliefs long before anyone we ever had direct contact with was born and they have become crystallised into rock without inbuilt checks to ensure they have any current relevance. I’m not trying to say that information has been deliberately hidden from us by nefarious people with their own ends in sight, since I am not someone who finds my joy in conspiracy theory; and joy is my guide to everything that is worth pursuing. Rather, to an extent we conspired, ourselves, to keep away from some of the things we have historically avoided and which could now be most useful for us to remember since it was part of our journey to go into forgetfulness so that we could shake the scales off at this very point. Those ideas were for then and this is now; many beliefs are reaching the expiry date on their usefulness all at once, during these times of dramatic evolution. Sometimes evolution takes a leap or, you could equally say, the teacher appears when we are ready for them to do so. When we have just so many things we have warned ourselves away from for just so very long and then many of those things turn out to be just what we are now looking for, it can have the effects of dozens of “teachers” appearing all at once from beneath our very noses. For some of these things, we were simply not ready before; our histories (global and personal) were meant to play out the exact way that they did, even preserving some of the very things that are now most useful to us until we were ready to receive them by keeping them off-limits. Of course, I’m talking about all sorts of things here (far too broad to list), from matters of science to personal preferences that have kept us from realising our next stage of personal growth. The thing that identifies them is when we sense we are walking round and around a thing like the elephant in the room that we just won’t acknowledge or interfere with – this can sometimes be the very thing we need to take a look at next. Like the dessert plant that receives its first dowsing in a very long time, some of these areas of our experience that have received the least of our attention can suddenly yield surprising blooms when we give them what we have been denying; at least a look in their direction.

In other words, when you feel a contraction around something (now you have developed an astuteness at reading such signals), why not check in with whether that contraction is truly yours…or could it be your response to a learned behaviour? Is the feeling of aversion or distrust founded in anything that feels consistent with your experience or is it, perhaps, ingrained (and out of sync with what you really feel, hence the strong reaction)? Is the feeling this thing gives rise to, actually, not an aversion but a sign that, deep down, you really want it or that your intuition is trying to flag it up to you until you are prepared to listen? Does it keep appearing in your line of vision because it is the very thing that you need the most? This could be, literally, anything going on – an aversion to a particular place, a fear over eating something or of pursuing a certain remedy (we have been warned off so many things as “dangerous” but, in some cases, this bears further investigation). Sometimes the more vehement the so-called warning flags, the more we need to at least look there to see what all the fuss is about. Examining and questioning our shared family or cultural values can be a way of noticing what is not truly ours, along with identifying old emotional wounds we have carried for years and which are calling for some release when they keep triggering the same aversion response. When we become true to ourselves and live only to that benchmark, there is really no learned behaviour that can compete with what we intuit as best for ourselves and our own averted eye can tell us when we are trying to adhere to rules that are external and which don’t fit with our way of being at all anymore. This always makes me think of my dog who, when he was younger, did a trick with a piece of food left on his paw, which he was not allowed to eat until he was told he could do so. Of course, he really wanted the morsel of food so, to follow the enforced rule (which felt completely out of sync with what he really wanted), he always found he had to look away so that he couldn’t see it any more. Very comically, he would turn his head a sharp ninety degrees and stare fixedly at the wall to get through the predicatment for as long as it took until my daughter (it was usually her!) would say “OK” and he would get to eat the food. In other words, our own sharply turned head away from something can be the very clue that, deep down, we know we really want or need this very thing next…and this should be explored since our intuition is seldom wrong on these points.

So, more times than I can count, I have found (hidden beneath the very rock I had previously been walking around on the basis of some conditioned behaviour or other) the very thing I was looking for or the very place that I was most being called to go for my next big moment of enlightenment. I recently mentioned an irrational aversion to place that I have come to consider may be due to my mother’s strong aversion of it based on her childhood (I have never been there), even though she almost never spoke of it and that was all many years ago so, you may think, how could this influence me so strongly? Yet this is not the only example I have and these hand-me-down ideas can run very strong in families, generation after generation, carried in our DNA, quite aside from all those learned family behaviours (my parents and grandparents were awash with cursory tales and superstitious phrases that just tripped off the tongue), long after a “bad” thing happened to do with this thing and allowed it to become crystallised in the annals of what we all thought we knew about it.

Keep-off-the-grass-sign-crop.jpgThese so-called warnings have been knitted into our very landscape and I have repeatedly found that the places we are warned away from can hold some of the most precious gifts. Near where I live, an ancient pathway leading (I believe) like a string between even more ancient sacred places harking back to a time before the peak of the sixth wave, has been known locally as The Devil’s Highway and associated with cut-throats and highwaymen for hundreds of years until it fragmented and nearly disappeared into mud and overgrowth. So, really, was it so very bad or did the story go back to a time…long long ago…when certain people wanted the masses to forget those places even existed and affiliate with the new wave of christianity that was being seeded to meet another agenda. Ease of access to an earlier time is one of the reason people are increasingly drawn to ancient sites such as Stonehenge and Avebury yet those anciently meaningful places lie scattered around everywhere, they are beneath layers and layers of city pavements and long-running stories that have managed to supersede what those locations were originally all about. If we only ever read the labels on things or allowed ourselves to see what is still there to greet the eyes, we would barely scratch the surface of all that has been amassed for us to know and which is becoming ever more available, in more and more overt ways (yet we begin by noticing the subtleties). One of my favourite places in the world, where I receive a great deal of personal guidance and solace, is regarded as this great Roman relic, which people visit by the busload for that very reason (I pick the very quietest times). Yet I connect with something much deeper there; the energetic remnants of a far earlier folk who lived there long before those Roman’s showed up and took over their patch. This connection has enabled me to engage with the place in a way that I find hugely meaningful and supportive in my life and which I might have missed out on entirely if I had only focused on all the “packaging” that suggested I was visiting a Roman site. From that training ground, I learned to engage with a variety of places on these deeper levels, allowing whatever layer feel most relevant to me to rise up through the concrete slabs, as it were, and speak to me wherever I go, yes even in cities teeming with modern-day chaos and hordes of oblivious people. It can feel like peeling back the layers, rewinding the clock and dissolving limescale on an old kettle element to do this, clearing the way for information that has got lost or buried along the path. Having done this on one level, I have then been able to do it with my own body, to let go of old stuck points that had calcified over to obscure what was really hidden long long before that layer covered it over, to work on the original wounds or reveal nuggets of information found hiding there like pearls in the seabed.

So, these days, when I notice I have been stepping around something, my interest is piqued and I look (or should I say, feel) into that thing – holding my neutrality – to determine what is there that may be useful to me in some way. Don’t be so quick to judge is a kind of mantra, I suppose. And just because there is resistance or a warning does not mean that I should over-ride that message (this is not what I am saying at all; I do not propose that all black is now white or vice versa) but at least I take a fresh look, without forcing anything one way or the other. If the object of my aversion, my discomfort or suspicion still feels “off” to me, I continue just as I was but at least I checked in with it, and, perhaps, I can check-in with it again further down the line; plus, I tend to remain more open towards it from this point onwards. A bit like finding the magic key in a computer game that unlocks the whole next level, these “places” that have detered us (or from which we have been detered) can turn out to be just what we were looking for to unlock the next level of our experience and end a long hiatus on a recovery journey or a sense of moving forward in our lives. Around that once avoided turn in the road could be the very next person we were meant to meet or the opportunity that alters our whole trajectory and which (by vertue of the fact we are prepared to meet the very thing that we previously avoided so studiously) we have shown we are now ready to receive. Thinking we know everything already or that we even know ourselves so very well can be a very limiting thing and the practice we gain in questioning all things is immense when we consider even those things that seem “obviously” out-of-bounds. After all, it is all just information wrapped up in different packages and working with information like this (receiving the occasional “yes’ where “no” was written on the label) can be another way of affirming how everything is working in our favour, all is on our side; in fact nothing could be said to be going against us when we are prepared to take our best assistance from all kinds of messengers, even those which once turned us away. Noting our aversions and those area of life where we still religiously follow rules that really don’t fit us any more can be another way of receiving such powerful data as well as growing ourselves past a whole other layer of limitations to expand our experience even more.

Posted in Consciousness & evolution, Life choices, Life journey, Menu, Personal Development, Spirituality, Symbolic journeys | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Fountain of Life

I had a vision in a meditation the other day and it was a direct sense or deep immersion into a kind of neutrality I had never experienced (I mean, I thought I had…but I hadn’t) before. I saw this “place”, as I approached it, as a circle – like a cell – with a thin yet brittle outer casing holding an unfamiliarly neutral space (something the mind truly struggles to perceive) only I was beyond that egg-like shell boundary now and this inner “place” was the void to be found at the centre of everything; its softness beyond any concept of softness I had ever held with my mind.

This was the infinitesimally small void at the centre of the quantum aspect of physicality and I knew this lay at the very centre of me; replicated as the centre of each of every molecule that I am “made up” of as a human yet I was simultaneously aware that this was also the centre space of every molecule of every other living being, of our whole planet and of the whole of existence; all one and the same. One void, many voids, all the same shared space. The feeling of arriving there and (most importantly, having only ever seen it with my mind before) getting to experience it and sustain that feeling for more than a split second was a feeling of completion, of something being “all done now”, of having reached the point of everything, a meeting place, I found I wanted to use the word “singularity”. Yet it wasn’t lifeless, it wasn’t in any way innert…quite the opposite…since in there I found something that I wanted straightway to call the Fountain of Life. I could see and feel its upward propulsion and its overspilling arcs, its relentless flow, its loops of self-generating life force spiralling in all directions. It felt like that aspect where the very first impulse out of “void” to become something was occurring yet it wasn’t compartmentalised into anything; there was no division, no contrast, no definition.

Fountain of LifeThis thought arrested me, for what had I been fixated upon painting last summer, hour upon hour, but a fountain at the end of a pathway bordered by dense topiary hedging…and I had felt myself returning there with every brushstroke, like I was taking steps along that path through my painting process. As I painted it, its shape and structure morphing even as it emerged (with the least pre-meditation…interesting phrase since this new way of painting felt like meditation…of anything I had ever painted), the feeling arose of this being a pathway bordered by Yin and Yang. This was because, initially, the foliage on one side wanted to be dark and shadowy and, on the other side, light and more ephemeral…their contrast pushing against one another. Yet the more deeply I went into the painting, my eye ever-drawn to that fountain, the more I found I wanted to soften the differences, which defied the “logic” of the way light and shadow distribute in our physical world, presenting such a challenge to the artist in me. First rule of painting landscape – decide where your light is coming from – yet I wanted light everywhere, coming from all directions and this risked undermining what is used to determine art-skill at every turn; I knew this would never be accoladed as a “good” painting and my ego struggled with this. Yet I was aware (oh-so importantly) that I was taking this as a personal journey and that this was part of its surrender; to get there, I could not afford to burden myself with thoughts of anyone else’s opinions or, indeed, any other motivations. The part I struggled with most was the overhanging foliage and it morphed many times. I played with the colours and tones, the ratio of empty space to form, the amount of detail I included to get the leaves looking just right…or, I wondered, should it all just be a blur. When, at first, I thought it was finished, the colours of that foliage seemed all “wrong” (it turned out, my mind had painted it) and I wasn’t happy again until I softened it more and added other less-feasible colours, higher chakra shades of violet and blue, making the scene otherworldly yet, at last, I found I wanted to be there. And that fountain; it didn’t look right until I made the water seem to pour in all directions, not just left and right like an idea of a fountain, and had it over-spilling to where even a year later the path still appears wet where I have splashed and splattered greatly thinned paint. It was only at the very end that the title Fountain of Life suggested itself and, while part of me reasoned that it sounded somewhat trite to call it this, nothing else would do and I have learned to trust such impulses, even when I don’t know what they are all about…yet.

It was only the fourth time I had ever been led by a painting like this; directed by subtle impulses and not by the eyes or the left hemisphere of the brain. The three preceding it had been equally intense in a way that was quite different to when I painted from “real life”; like a painting meditation or channelling with a brush. They went on for weeks or even months and I would pick them up and leave them for long periods of time, never finished until they felt right at some hard to pinpoint level that told me “its done”, as though I was learning how to recognise such a feeling at a whole other level beyond the logical mind and its insistence upon certain markers and proofs. I was often left wondering what these paintings were really “about” until months or even years later, when new understanding would steadily emerge in layers. These are not the most accomplished painting I have ever done by a long stretch (so my left brain struggles with them over their many technical failings) yet to me they are uniquely precious and meaningful in a whole other way. I seldom feel right about selling or even exhibiting them and tend to hang them on my wall where I can see them every day and they can speak to me at the subconscious level when I am least expecting them to do so. Since painting them, I’ve only completed one other significant canvas (the one called Heart-Centred in which the coiled up swan retrospectively suggests to me exactly how I have curled myself inward and concentrated on nothing so much as my own inner process for over half a year now…quite unlike any other time in my life). It’s as though I have been in a void about painting ever since…having seemingly lost all sense of why I do it or for whom  (hence, I’ve not picked up a brush for over six months now…the longest painting hiatus I have had in well over a decade). Yet its really as though I’m just quietly awaiting further instruction from beyond my rational mind, so it’s all perfectly OK; I can wait for as long as it takes, there’s really no rush at the gate of life any more. It’s as though, in this aspect of my life (no less any other), I’m simply not prepared to compromise my motivations as I used to; I either have a calling to do something or I do nothing at all and that option is always just as perfectly valid and well-timed since all such definition and judgements about “what I should be doing” have dissolved away too.

Return to EdenThe first painting that I ever really approached from this non-physical reality inside some sort of inner landscape that sought expression was my blue butterfly Uncommon Blue, depicted hovering above an ethereal garden seen as though with its eyes (I felt like I was that butterfly…), painted in the summer of 2015. The next I called Return to Eden (2016) and was a play on the apple tree of so-called “original sin” (that point when we got separated from ourselves…) and yet it was all about returning that apple to the light; allowing the form (the calcified idea of our supposed “wrongness”) to dissolve back to where it was just thisThe Return beautiful thing growing steadily towards its own ripeness. As I painted it, perfecting the fall of light as it broke through dense foliage, there was a sense of (personally and collectively) regaining access to “the garden” of our highest existence after having been “banished” from it for so very long. You could say, it marked the end of a separation age; a reunion with self.  The next painting was a pathway through the garden, leading to a goddess temple by moonlight, which I called The Return and which was, even as I painted it, so obviously about the return to the sacred feminine. Yet, a surprise to me, this temple insisted on being a portal or a gateway of sorts, not a destination; so I suggested a space bathed in moonlight behind where she stood, which gave the sense of there being more beyond this return to the feminine (as so there is…since that was just a stage on the way to our fulfilment; the Eighth Wave when the Ninth was still to come…) and, beyond it, an inner sanctum, a secret space or  seldom seen “void”, where presumably everything came together into a state of Wholeness. Which led on (though I hardly recognised the connection at the time) to this next canvas, the one that I’ve spoken about, The Fountain of Life.

The whole of this two-year journey through painting, from stealthily hovering over the most secret areas of the garden as the butterfly (seeing as the butterfly that navigates by higher-spectrum vision), to regaining entry to the apple tree (reclaiming the apple, ditching all the judgement), to walking that direct path straight to the goddess temple, only to go beyond that and into the inner sanctum where the fountain of life pours abundantly in every direction…the whole of this journey that I have been taken on through my right hemisphere holds so much more meaning to me now than it ever did at the time when I immersed in each painting separately, not (then) seen as part of a series leading me somewhere, yet now I see so clearly how they are each stages in a progression leading me to this place of profound neutrality; an inner sanctum that holds some sort of key to myself. None of it was pre-meditated; it led me all the way and I simply followed to the point where, a year after the paint dried, I feel like I finally understand where I have been taken. More than that, I get to see how this mirrors how meaningfully we get to follow the apparent randomness our own life’s journey to this same destination since we only get to appreciate how perfectly designed each of the supposedly random events of our life was once we arrive at the singularity to which they were all pointing us…

Back to where I was: a year later, in this meditation, a fountain was overspilling out of each and every void that I was now, suddenly, conscious of and it was so real for me, like my painting come to life inside my quantum biology. It  turned out, what we think of as “empty”  (such is how we respond to the concept of dissolving all the push and pull, all the friction, of life…) wasn’t empty at all. It was source, it WAS life, and it regenerated and replenished and rejuvenated me in an unmeasurable blip of time; I felt this occur in all my cells and the feeling was overspilling me at every minutest level. This unfathomable sea of overspilling fountains, at the level of aspects much smaller than atoms in my physical body, joined forces to become the fountain of me. Rising up through my energy centres, I knew this sensation of old as the kundalini tingles in my spine (with, this time, effortlessly, all resistance and blockage…gone) joining with my third eye which, I noticed, had become its own fountain. Suddenly, I knew this whole process had been catalysed by the shifting or dissolving of a layer of calcification – an invisibility cloak of sorts –  around my pineal gland… and I was revealed as the human fountain. Without a moment’s hesitation, the micro became the macro and the whole blue planet was this same fountain and I was pulled back in space looking at it doing what I was also doing. Then, of course, I saw it for what it was at last, this dynamic energy field coloured in the blue of planet Earth…for as the fountain completed its symmetry and looped back around to feed back into its own axial “spinal” column in a self-perpetuating process (appearing exactly as Earth’s magnetic fields appear in a diagram…as a pair of wings), it became – of course – my shining blue butterfly, hovering in space. This shining blue torus was a field of radiant energy, self-regenerating, self-energising, self-replenishing without the need for fear or pain or forgetfulness, for trouble or strife, nor for any of those perpetually waring contrasts that make up our human dramas, to propel itself or its inhabitants forwards since, now, it had other ways to fuel itself. And then I was back in it, on it and Moph_HDR.jpegfeeling that activated energy field coming up through my feet and that shining blue colour was tinging everything and everyone in my line of vision, we were all bathed in it. Every single most-mundane physical object and all physical life, no exceptions, was teaming with vibrant blue energy like a glow around its edges and we all reached completion together; it was done, finished, as though the sting was taken out of everything’s tail, all things were levelelled and everything become simultaneously passive yet – oh wonder – we were all still here and life was more than continuing as before, yet transformed somehow; moved onto another energy grid. The very terror of the void that we all seem to carry within us (like we fear we will stop existing if we don’t have something to resist, fear or push against) had not been realised since the lack of contrasts had not caused us to melt away by any means; it was as though the lights had been switched on and everything was several degrees brighter, more coherent, the wizard revealed behind every curtain (it was us all along…) and all of us returned to the home we never really left behind. And then the spirit that we had learned to keep so low to the ground became a glorious peacock’s tail unfolding (as peacock tails do) so that it suddenly transformed from this drab brown thing trailing along in the everyday dirt on the ground to, suddenly, this glorious fan of iridescent colour, which was really there all along. And I saw mirrored in it…oh how funny…all those countless shining blue circles, the reminder that had been under my nose for all these months of noticing peacocks wherever I turn.

So much more than this came though to me that morning, far too much to articulate, across every level of my experience but the most resounding feeling I am left with is that it all feels done done done now…all is complete…like reaching a journey’s end in some hugely momentous way. Newly, I feel able to rest in a feeling of overwhelming grace that had previously eluded me though I got very close to it; a deep and immersive awareness of myself and of the whole planet resting in a permanent state of grace that is already here; and we get to claim it as soon as we like. It was like slipping into a warm pool and accepting a deserved rest. And even though I have had to open my eyes and to go back to my daily activities, and though things go in on their worldly, far less than perfect-seeming, way (I feel like I want to entreat you, don’t be fooled or taken off track by them), I still know that it is done; that it is not compromised by what “seems” on the outside, represented in our three-dimensional world, which can be much slower to catch up. In my physical body, I already felt regenerated at some impossible to define level and I know I can go there for my life-force, to seek repair and rebalance, to self-energise and self-heal whenever I chose, from now on. In fact, it was always there – this Fountain of Life – only we obscured it for the longest time for the purpose of our own evolution (that phase is completed now, we can give ourselves permission to know it again without having to worry that we are letting anyone down or that we are going where we are not allowed to venture). Having found my way back…yes, via the feminine path yet this ultimate space is beyond all such yin or yang distinction or any other such compartmentalised perspectives… I find I now notice it at the centre of everything; can re-find the feeling whenever I need to, now I have come to recognise it more intimately and I intend to refine my adeptness a little more every day. We all have access to it since it it is not external to us, we can find it at the very core of everything that makes us a physical being, so it is, quite literally, available on free access for everybody, always and with it comes great healing at every level of human existence. Nothing can undermine that and, with time, we can only realise it more since that is the momentum we are now in together.


 

The same day this epiphany occurred, as we spent the day in our garden and I was still processing some of the new things I was observing, we noticed a pair of robins were starting to build a nest in the lion head fountain (thankfully, its pump switched off) hidden behind our wisteria tree. The synchronicity was astonishing; the way life was spontaneously choosing to regenerate in a fountain without the need for a mechanical power source to pump water through it made us smile (fountains, it seem, always find a way to keep going). A day later, another synchonicity brought a similar smile to our faces as we found an extremely busy bee hive inside the 2000 year-old stone walls of the Roman remains near where we live in the spot where we always stop to meditate on the lovely view. The thought of ancient and, of course, manmade city walls (already reclaimed, externally, by wild flowers and grasses) now teaming with new life and overflowing with soft golden honey…on the inside… as though a void within what had once appeared formidable and structurally solid had been newly acknowledged and breathed with new life; again, it felt like an astonishing nod in the direction of everything I have shared above.

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Posted in Art, Art metaphor, Art purpose, Art transformation tool, Consciousness & evolution, Divine feminine, Life journey, Meditation, Menu, Personal Development, Spirituality, Symbolic journeys | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Modelling a new relationship with pain

It feels like the infrastructure for a completely new world full of brand new responses, new choices, new levels of living in love, joy and peace are already there in our world…however, many of us just don’t seem to know how to take it and make it our own quite yet. We mistrust these newnesses for being so different; almost, a little too easy-feeling compared to how hard we have been making things until now. We are standing on the very threshold of a portal looking straight at these new possibilities and yet we hesitate, questioning whether we even see them or if it is a mirage; being far better at seeing what we expect to see than what is so new that it is almost invisible to eyes unaccustomed to such lightness. So we put one foot in and one out again and we often turn back to responses that feel much more familiar, more solid (if heavier; it comes with the territory). Once backward looking, we read the news, get drawn into negative conversation, get tugged back into fear, we assume the worst and alow our morale to be stolen from us by all those many arbitrary things that seem to grab our attention far more effectively than our own tender shoot of optimism, which gets so quickly trodden underfoot. For some reason, we *think* we feel better doing things as we have always done them and that genuinely new options are so terribly hard to come by. We hardly believe that such new ways of being could already be standing right there in front of us in every moment; its like we can’t see for looking. Sometimes it takes a crisis, an illness for instance (anything that shakes you out of the learned way of seeing and gets you using the full spectrum of your observational skills), to notice what is already there.

Recognising that there are new possibilities just a hair’s breadth away is the start point to our own transformation. It’s enough to get you going on that new trajectory and the recognition is as subtle as a ribbon of fresh air through a newly opened window…which happens as soon as you consider, does this choice feel light or leaden, am I invested in it in some heavy-old contractual way or does it flutter freely like a butterfly on the summer breeze? Does it release a fizz in the stomach or drop concrete in my heart? After making the choice, did I feel relief cascading in my body? Did my shoulders relax, all my tension drain away like free-flowing water poured from head to toes? Do I feel invigorated, excited or, suddenly, chronically exhausted by this action set in motion? Some of us that have been through years of pain have become acutely sensitive to such very subtle variances in our nervous system and really so adept at interpreting them that this kind of navigation is second-nature to us. So now is our time to make use of these highly developed sensibilities as a means to navigating our lives forwards towards a new kind of human experience.

Learning to take our next steps like this, using subtle data gathered by our super-sensitive nervous system as our lead, can break us out of some of the very “old” stuck patterns that we’ve been caught up in like a kitten in a ball of wool, releasing us from being the hostage of our own life while making none of our experiences of pain “the villain of the piece”. Keeping “fault” (or “fault-y”) out of the vernacular of this stage in our evolution is hugely important. Speaking our truth is cathartic, yes; but we need to consider, at what price do we add the weight of further words and do these words feel liberating or burdensome; do they come with more strings rather than wings? Are we truly expressing from the perspective of the present moment, not from an idea we had some time ago; does what we say fit the infrastructure of a brand-new potential that is starting to take form on the winds or is it a rehash of old ideas that are already feeling outmoded and throughly well dug-over?

When we tune up our subtle observation skills, we start to observe that many ideas that once felt worthy and of substance are becoming unsure of themselves, dissolving into nothing and seeming to want to be let go of now. What we thought about something yesterday might not hold any water today and we need to keep on our toes with this; staying flexible and alert, always prepared to dissolve our own best-laid plans rather than progress what no longer feels higher-vibrational. Then of course, used mindfully, expression is one of the great gifts of the feminine aspect, the “yin”; which, having been out of balance for so long, can use the leveling effect of the kind of communication that reaches into all the corners to expose what has been hidden, to bring transparency and rebalance what has been tilted. Yet there is a fine balance between this and saying so much that we add more substance to what is ready to be completely washed away in the flow. In other words, if we keep banging the same drums, disappearing up the same gullies (tempting as it can be), we will remain stuck in the same old version of reality. It’s a responsibility we have that we need to be able to discern those widely varying potentials derived from remarkably similar actions, leading to very different outcomes, then choose wisely for our brand-new future (and I think I am getting somewhat better at it). Again, those of us that have travelled the long-persistent route to health-stasis have become adept at noticing the broadly different outcomes that are possible from subtly different choicepoints; and we know how recognising feelings in our body gets us to where we really want to be.

It really all comes down to focusing on our own personal journey of evolution (healing, by the way, is a very fast-track version of evolution in action, in case you were still wondering); we can’t shepherd anyone else, we can only demonstrate through our living example. Our own super-intense journey towards increased wellbeing (we all have one) is all that really matters; this is how we impact the whole. You could say, this is where we really make a difference; by refining the relationship we have with our feelings (which is where pain sometimes comes into it). What we learn, the whole  of humanity learns (whether we talk about it or not); we can be sure of that. When we keep hesitating in our own forward momentum to check how the rest of humanity is coming along, we stall our own progress by looking backwards for longer than was necessary and, sometimes, throw ourselves back in the mire. Its been a foible of mine to keep doing this in the name of “helping others” and I know I need to become more selfish, in a sense; even if that means not sharing every single leap of progress I make. When we make those leaps, we need to do what it takes to let them settle in, holding that new space until they have grounded into the three-dimensional for long enough to develop resilience; not dashing around telling lots of people how we did it or spinning around to see if anyone else has noticed (I’m all too aware how ego can come into this). Our own longterm wellbeing needs to be our primary purpose and the focus of all our attention; that’s it, nothing else is so powerful or sustained as that singularity of focus (and perhaps those of us who have been through long illness know this better than most). As other motivations drop away, this makes room for healing to take place since the cells of the body receive a clear signal that we are ready to move past all the old stuck points and diversions; to pull away the blocks from the aircraft wheels ready to take off and fly.

 

Extract from my post Modelling a New Relationship with Pain on Living Whole

living your whole life

I’ve had a couple of weeks of pretty devastating levels of pain followed by crashing, jelly legged exhaustion and I’d be lying if I said it hadn’t demoralised me just a little. When you’ve done everything to make steady and, most of the time, pretty consistent headway with your health and suddenly…for no apparent reason…you’re deep in the mire again, its nearly impossible to it shrug off with a cheery smile. Watching other people go through health challenges then recovery to come out the other side while yours is still going strong months, even years, later can feel like a long-running trial by endurance. Your mind tries to lure you into learned responses, including self-criticism at the fact “its” still here, like you must be doing something wrong; perhaps you made it come back by thinking about it too much, or in the wrong way (that law of attraction stuff is a…

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