Category Archives: Journeying into Spirit

Underneath the pain, you will find Love

Sister

On this blog, I would like to discuss healing the self. It’s a deep topic for me because it took me a very long time to heal…and it took even longer to accept what happened.  For so long, I suppressed my own emotions and because I had buried these hurt feelings, I really hadn’t felt the true impact of those emotions until I finally decided to look at them. Only when you decide to look at those painful, scary emotions…look at the root cause…can you begin to understand them.  Next is the processing and healing phase.

In my old way of thinking, I used to believe that healing meant that you get over the offense that’s been inflicted upon you; and “getting over it” in my mind meant that you remember the offense and become “ok” with it. I thought that this was healing. Little did I realize at the time was that every time you tell yourself that you’re ok with it, you diminish who you are, you diminish the offense itself, you diminish the deep impact and pain it has caused you. You diminish the wrongfulness of your perpetrators and you diminish the way you feel. This is suppression of self. This is not healing.

I can not explain the emotion behind my “being ok with it”. I think on some level, I had told myself that the offense really wasn’t that bad, that somehow I had blown up the events in my head. (exaggerated it) I thought maybe it wasn’t as bad as I had initially made it out to be and I told myself that I was just hypersensitive emotionally…that I really needed to get a grip. As I began to expand my consciousness (grow Spiritually), I began to see that I mattered, I was important: I began to feel “NOT OK”  with what had been done to me. I was no longer ok with the events that had caused me such pain. I was not ok with the perpetrators.  Now we can not change the events of the past, but we can choose to no longer be affected by it in the present. This is the beginning of the healing process…

In healing, there is a time when you need to look at the painful past and tell yourself that you are going to face up to those ugly moments. Take a look at the events that transpired and allow yourself to feel the pain of those events. It’s at this time that you begin to see how wrong those moments were. You are no longer denying or diminishing the pain inside…and you allow yourself to feel the pain that you’ve held down for so long…and it hurts and it’s ok for these feelings to occur. You are remembering the deep pain, allowing yourself to feel it with the intention that it will be worked through and no longer suppressed. At first the pain feels like the same pain that you felt when you first experienced it…at the time of the offense…but now, you are allowing, acknowledging, accepting…processing, letting go and healing.

After awhile, anger begins to surface and this means that you are on your way to healing. At this point, some people may feel inclined to then attack or get back at their perpetrator. I know I did. I had all kinds of vengeful imaginings of how I was going to get back at them. I would lie there at night and make up all kinds of scenarios on what I would do and say to them. How I would hurt them back in my final retaliation. This was a good stage to be in because I no longer saw myself as a victim. I saw myself fighting back. I allowed myself to stay in this stage for awhile but then it was time to move forward and begin to let go of the anger. I knew it was time to move forward because I began to feel uncomfortable being in the vengeful mode. The degree of anger I felt was no longer serving me.

For so many years prior to true healing, I had psychiatrists, psychologists, counselors and clergy tell me that I needed to let go of my past, forgive my perpetrators and move forward. I heard what they were telling me and knew that they were right but the one thing that they did not tell me (or maybe I just didn’t hear them) was that it was “ok” to be angry and because of this, there were many times when the anger would come to the surface and I would push that emotion back down. I thought that it was not right to feel anger. Anger was bad. Besides, how do you “let go” of something that is intangible?

Then there comes the stage when you begin to accept what happened. This is very different than being “ok” with what happened. It is never “ok”. What else is there really? You can’t go back and change the past but you can look at it and tell yourself that what happened, happened and then accepting -that- in itself. The alternative is to tell yourself that you just can’t accept it…then you’re stuck in an inner turmoil.

We have all heard, or been told that the past is the past and you can’t change it. We’re told to “let go”. This may be true, but I think what is crucial in the healing process is to allow yourself to feel all the emotions that accompany the healing. Don’t try to distract yourself from the uncomfortable feelings…but sit with these emotions. It’s not pleasant…but necessary.  When you allow yourself to feel the pain, sorrow, ugliness and anger, these become “tangible” … it feels “real” and when something feels “real”,  it is only then that you can “let go” of it.  As long as you continue to suppress those emotions, you are denying them and telling yourself that they are not real…and if they are not real, how can you “let them go”?

Underneath all the pain, you will find Love.

We need to go, go, go!

 

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When I first started meditating, I would feel very anxious…almost like I wanted to jump right out of my skin. My thoughts were all over the place and I kept thinking about all the things I needed to accomplish that day. It would take some patience on my part and the last person I had patience with was myself! Then I would tell myself that the next 20 minutes was a “special time” for me. I didn’t have to be anywhere, or do anything. I started noticing the anxiousness “taking a back seat” to the quiet. Hey! there’s no threat here!

We all get so wrapped up in our daily activities…all the things that need to get done in the next few hours. It took a little practice and self talk to convince myself that this 20 minute quiet time was “ok”. So many people are uncomfortable with just sitting quietly with themselves. We have gotten so used to being distracted by the “outside world” that we neglect our “inner world”. If there was nothing outwardly to distract us, we would then FIND something to distract us…like playing with our electronic devices. When we have a moment when we are actually not moving, or doing anything, or talking to someone, what do we do? We get on our devices to play that game, look at Facebook and see what people are up to. Why do we do this and why has it become so difficult to just sit quietly?…because we live in a society that tells us that we need to be constantly doing, moving and producing. We must go, go, go. We are not taught to just sit quietly, with our thoughts and emotions…to take notice of what’s going on inside of us. In fact, for many people (myself included), this is initially very uncomfortable. 

A big part of evolving spiritually is to be able to sit quietly with oneself. This is not an impossibility…we just think it is. In fact, in today’s busy society, it is a necessity. It allows your mind to rest and your body to -rest-. After a while, you begin to realize that there really isn’t anything that is more pressing, more important, than sitting quietly with yourself. After all, YOU are the most important person in YOUR life!

There are so many people out there who are suffering from anxiety. I was one of them for years and our anxiety is heightened when we continue to push down those anxious feelings. One of the best ways to calm yourself is to sit with yourself and allow yourself to FEEL those anxious emotions. We are told to pop a Xanax, or go do something to distract yourself and by ignoring these feelings, they are again pushed back down only to resurface at a later time. In the meantime, our lives get busier, more pressure is put upon us and the anxiety builds up even more.

By sitting quietly and allowing those anxious thoughts and feelings to surface, we can then take a look at them and at least acknowledge that they are there. IT IS OK to have those feelings. In fact, what we resist, persists. When anxiety keeps resurfacing, it is the Universe’s way of telling us that we have not yet solved an issue within us. 

In the past, I have used alcohol, anti anxiety, anti depressants and many other “distractions” to avoid looking at those yucky feelings lying deep within me and although those distractions helped for the time being, it would ALWAYS resurface. These uncomfortable emotions lying deep within me were my “inner demons” and once I understood that they were not a threat, I could eventually allow myself to sit with them, look at them and see it’s origins. 

There are so many people who are hurting emotionally and we do everything and anything to NOT FEEL those emotions. Don’t deny yourself the crucial quiet time that we all need to decompress. You will feel so much better.

Meditation is not something that has to be learned, it is something that we all know how to do but have forgotten. When we find ourselves daydreaming or zoning out, it is a form of meditation. As we are falling asleep, we are letting our minds go and letting thoughts come in and eventually we fall asleep. Sitting quietly is just allowing ourselves to “be” in that moment. Letting those thoughts and feelings come…and not judging them or analyzing them. 

So to all my fellow anxious friends, it’s ok feel anxious at times. Allow yourself to feel these emotions without having the need to “get rid of it”. It is there for a reason…it’s a reminder to quiet down and spend some quality time with yourself so start spending time with a very important person…YOU!

I wish everyone healing, love and inner peace.

 

 

 

 

Meditation and your Thoughts

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How can we manage our thoughts? How can we control our thoughts? All the Spiritual Masters have learned to control their minds, their thinking. I always used to think that controlling the mind or your thinking meant that when a thought popped into your head that you didn’t want, you had to push it away or force yourself to think about something else.

What the wisdom of the Spiritual Masters has taught me is that it’s not so much the controlling of one’s thoughts or keeping thoughts out as it is to just let the thoughts come as they will but  to not “follow” them. What this means is to not have a dialogue in your own mind about that particular thought. For example, if a thought pops in seemingly out of no where, just observe that particular thought…without judging it. This is difficult at first because until we come to understand the crazy process of thinking, we tend to judge our thoughts and ask ourselves why we are thinking that particular thought. 

Meditation is key in learning how to “not judge your thoughts”. With meditation, it is about letting those crazy thoughts come (they’re going to pop into your head regardless…) and just “looking at them” and letting them go. Ok…so how do you let them go? You do this by gently changing your focus. Whether you are using a mantra with meditation or you’re  focusing on your breath, it is just a matter of changing your focus from that thought that just popped into your head to going back to the mantra or breath watching. In the beginning of this meditation practice, you will have to keep doing this over and over again. Over time, the ability to stay focused on your breath, or mantra will last longer and longer and eventually, you will realize that the “gaps” in between focusing on your mantra or breathing gets bigger and bigger. Sometimes it’s really just a second or two but in those few moments (the gaps) are where the quiet stillness lies. In this space or gap, there is only awareness. It is the pure awareness that “notices”. It is the one that is observing the thoughts, the feelings, the events in your life. It is this awareness that is really who you really are. 

Eventually, you can apply this to all aspects of your life. You become aware of the “aware being” behind everything. You soon begin to realize that the “aware being”…or YOU is observing everything around you. You don’t have to get into the drama of what is going on around you or even within your own head! You can just be an observer that is observing without judging. 

After a while with mediation, you will notice that you feel calmer and more at peace with yourself. Somehow the things that used to bother you don’t seem to affect you anymore. Why does this happen? It happens because as you meditate, you begin to touch your deeper self. That deeper self is who you really are: pure awareness and pure spirit. Our thoughts and emotions are by products of being human and are a part of who we are but they are not at the CORE of who we are. We have our thoughts, emotions, opinions, perceptions that have been built over our lifetimes based on our past experiences but sitting at the very CORE…is who we really are…the OBSERVER. That observer is Spirit…observing all the other parts of you and once you’ve touched your core, you will realize that you are a free being that does not have to be a prisoner of your own thoughts or emotions.

Remember, how in the past blogs we’ve talked about how you are not your thoughts or emotions? You are so much more than that! Sitting in the center of you is pure spirit or pure awareness. 

When I first came upon this teaching, I could not quite grasp that concept until I started to meditate. Some people get to that space right away and seem to have a quicker understanding of how meditation works. They are able to almost immediately touch their core. I wasn’t one of those individuals. I had to keep trying many times because you see…my thoughts about it kept getting in the way. Ha! The very thing I was trying NOT to do! I kept trying to “think my way to the quiet space”. Well, because I was judging my thoughts and beating myself up over them, I was missing the whole point of just letting them come, then just letting them go. It takes practice but don’t give up! The peace and calm that you begin to feel (and radiate) is well worth the effort.

Ommmm

 

 

Walking through your pain

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOne of the scariest things for me to do in my Spiritual Journey has been to look at and face my fears. To look at all the pain that I carried and to try and understand them. I had to look at many of the incidences one by one and recall how it made me feel inside. This is the hard part: to face those fears and allow myself to feel them once again. 

It felt like I had spent most of my life trying to not feel them. I did everything I could to not feel those scary feelings. I would distract myself by getting busy with doing something else, or I would drink to feel numb. The difference with feeling the pain when you want to heal as opposed to having the memories/pain just resurface at random times is, that when you have made the decision to heal,  there is a knowing that you will be “Ok”. That the discomfort you are feeling at the time of remembering is only temporary. 

This is why all of us often have those uncomfortable moments keep resurfacing…either through a memory that keeps popping up or an experience that forces us to remember those feelings.  It is the Universe’s way of letting us know that we have not yet dealt with certain issues. When those moments arise, we have a choice, we can continue to push them aside as we’re often accustomed to doing or we can chose to really look at them and ask ourselves what we are supposed to learn from them.

People (including myself) who always have the same problems resurface over and over again are actually being gently reminded that there is an old wound that needs to be healed and by continuing to ignore them means that we are stifling our spiritual growth. The sooner we decide to address them, the sooner we are able to move on.

Our fear can not harm us. It is just a feeling and remember from these past blogs…we are not our feelings. We feel what we feel based on each of our past experiences and if we understand this, we know that we will be ok. 

My message to you all is to let you know that YOU ARE OK…IN FACT, YOU ARE WONDERFUL. I know in the beginning, it doesn’t feel that way but once you have decided to take a look at the things that are scary and painful, the degree of power which you think those emotions carry will soon reveal to you that they really have no power over you at all…you just THINK they do…and THAT gave it more power. Take back your power by deciding to heal. Only by doing this will you get your power back. In actuality, you never lost your power…you just gave it away.

I love my fellow spiritual beings and I see that we are all the same. We are all here trying to do the best we can with what we’ve been given…but we forgot who we truly are and because of this, we have built walls around us because we are afraid. We are afraid of our thoughts, our emotions and we are afraid of others. We have become afraid of others because we feel that they may see us as inadequate, or stupid or unworthy. We are all WONDERFUL.

Take that first step towards healing…then take the next one, and the next one…and as you do this, you will soon realize that you have walked through your pain. This is the healing process…

Love, “My Journey in Spirit”

Thought vibrations

 

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Everything is a vibration, everything moves and nothing stands still. This being one of the Universal principals or laws of the Universe, I wanted to understand it further. Physicists today are seeing that when matter and atoms are broken down to its smaller form and broken down even further to it’s smallest form, it is no longer matter but an energy wave which vibrates. With our current scientific instruments, they are able to see that these energy vibrations are at the very core of all things. 

Even our thoughts and emotions are vibrations. We give off a certain vibration depending upon what our emotional state and thoughts are at the time. For example, have you ever met someone for the first time and walked away either shivering to yourself because you sensed that that person gave off “bad vibes?” Conversely, you sometimes meet someone and walk away telling yourself that you really liked that person’s vibes. That person, or that space that you were just in…felt good.

When someone is in a good mood and acts happy, they are vibrating at a high frequency. When they are down or depressed, they are in a low vibration. We all change our vibrations through out our day and our lifetimes and it is possible to “vibrate in a high frequency” consciously at every moment. This takes practice and a conscious awareness. 

We all have a choice from day to day, even from moment to moment to change our vibrations. (By changing our thoughts and perception) Despite what is going on around us, we can choose to either let those moments affect us negatively or not. By making a conscious shift in our awareness, we can change our vibratory state from low to high at any time.

For example, you get out of bed in the morning and you stub your toe on the way to the bathroom. You swear loudly and go about your business. You go to the kitchen to make yourself a cup of coffee and you spill coffee on your white shirt. Crap! You change your shirt and now it’s time to head out the door but then you can’t find your car keys. For some reason, they are not in the same place that you normally leave them. Now you’re upset and swearing out loud…to no one in particular but it feels better to swear and complain out loud. (It doesn’t seem to help you to find your car keys though). Now you’ve told yourself that this is going to be “one of those days”. One of those days where nothing goes right. Well guess what? With that way of thinking, chances are you are right. The day probably won’t get better. Why does this happen?

It happens this way because we have already “set the tone”, or set the vibration at which we will emit during that moment. So when something negative happens, we can learn to stop the low vibration or the negative thought by telling ourselves that sometimes, “shit just happens”. Yes, we know this to be true but in any given moment, we can choose to get into the emotional drama and get upset or, we can look at the situation as something that just happened and get on with it. No need to label it as a bad thing. At the very least, when we do this, we do not lower our vibration by thinking that that particular moment was “bad”. It was just something that happened.

There are some people who seem to be chronically negative. You know the ones, they are always complaining about how life sucks. Everything sucks and nothing right ever happens to them. They have “set the tone” along time ago. They have consciously decided that nothing in their lives seem to work out right…and it probably doesn’t.

They can change their vibration at any time by changing our thought(s). We change our thoughts by changing our perception. Our perception about any given situation is based on our past experiences that we may have had. We can change our perception by realizing that there really isn’t any meaning behind any negative, or even positive event. They are just things that happen in our everyday lives. It is each of us who add meaning to everything. It isn’t good or bad but neutral. The power of our minds and our thoughts dictate to us whether each event or circumstance will affect us negatively or positively and we “vibrate” according to what we perceive in that moment.

We can chose to vibrate in a high frequency consciously by telling ourselves that we will not let events, circumstances or other people affect us. We can chose to be happy in any circumstance. This is spiritual awakening…so let’s change our thinking and our perception about things and get on with life! No need to let moments affect you in a negative way. They are just moments…but you chose how you want to vibrate!

 

 

 

 

I’m angry!

 

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Anger…that emotion really pisses me off! What is anger and how do you deal with anger?

In our society, we are often told to control our anger or to distract ourselves from this emotion. For some of us, we are told that being angry is bad. This is not a good idea. Sure, there may be a temporary reprieve of the angry emotions if we go for a hard run or work out but this has only released the energy around the anger for the moment but has done nothing to resolve the anger.

How do we take care of our anger? Firstly, it is important to admit to yourself that you are angry and tell yourself that it is ok to feel this way. By doing this, you are giving yourself validation for your emotions because they are important!  You are important! You want to understand the real reason why you are angry. Anger is usually unresolved hurt or fear. Or a perceived threat to you somehow. To deal with the anger, you need to look at the underlying emotion…but this takes courage. It takes courage because we need to feel ok with feeling vulnerable and admit that we are vulnerable. By looking at these deeper emotions, we can begin to understand the real reason we are angry.

Let’s use an example: Your co worker received the promotion in the office instead of you. You put in long hours on that project and even worked at home and on the weekends. You put your heart and soul into this and yet, Bob was promoted instead of you. Argh!!! Anger!!! But if you were to look at the deeper emotion, you may find that you feel threatened and fearful. Ask yourself what exactly in this situation causes you to feel threatened or fearful? You are fearful that you are not “good enough” and no matter what you do, you will never be good enough and your job status will never get better. You are threatened by Bob.

Be present with these emotions. It doesn’t feel good to feel vulnerable but remember, all of this is just a -perceived threat-. So consciously feel these emotions. If you are anything like me…it may even lead to tears. As you sit with the feeling of vulnerability, you will notice that the anger emotion begins to fade. 

Another way to deal with anger is to put your pen to paper! Writing out your anger words can help to diffuse your anger.

In dealing with your anger, you want to make a cognitive change or shift and you do this by developing empathy or compassion towards the person that you are angry with. Try to find similarities between the person that you are angry with and yourself. When you really look at the people around you, just about everyone has their own “fear issues”.

Anger is a good emotion because it tells you that there is something deeper that needs to be addressed. Once you realize this, you can begin to resolve some of you deeper issues. Unresolved anger means that the underlying issues have not been acknowledged or looked at and as long as they remain unresolved, you will remain angry, angry, angry!

Remember that all your emotions are valid, you are important and taking care of your emotions  and addressing them is one way of taking care of yourself. By doing this, you will gain a deeper understanding of who you really are. 

Sending love to you all…

 

 

 

Psychic change

 

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One of the questions I get asked is how a person goes from pain…to forgiveness, then peace. Well, first of all, hopefully before you move ahead in accomplishing this, you have already decided that you have made a decision to heal your wounds…no matter what it takes. 

I can say for myself that I spent many years looking back and licking my wounds. I was still in the “victim” way of thinking…asking myself why this happened to me. Why were some people in my life so cruel? What had I done to deserve this kind of treatment? I had to move beyond seeing myself as a victim and seeing it as just an experience. Then evaluating the experience in terms of what lesson(s) it had taught me. 

This kind of psychic change will take you out of the victim role and puts you into the observer role. It’s like watching a movie where you begin to identify and get to know each of the characters. One of the things that came to me was; “what happened, happened. What can I do about it now? How can I be at peace with it”? It wasn’t about changing the “other person” but about changing myself. Now some of you may think that in your place in life as “victim”, terrible things were “done to you” and you didn’t ask for it. I understand…like myself, when you are a victim of child abuse, how do you reconcile the behaviors of the supposed “adults” in your life that hurt you? Well, you can’t. There is no reconciliation…and there is no justification for the perpetrator’s behavior towards you. Only compassion. Ok, I think I’m jumping ahead a little bit. Actually, compassion comes a little bit later.

Let’s look at you first. You’ve been hurt…very deeply. What do you do with THOSE emotions? You acknowledge that you have them and you allow yourself to feel it. Cry, get angry, punch a pillow, scream and find someone you trust to talk to. Try and sort out the emotions a little bit. There will be memories that cause you to feel angry…or sad. That’s good. In allowing yourself to feel those emotions, you are giving value to yourself and everything that you feel…no matter how bad the emotion. What I mean by this is that, so many people who have been abused have guilt about feeling angry. The whole experience of having been abused in the first place is because your perpetrators caused you to feel guilty by making you feel that you had deserved their “punishment”. Recognize first that you may begin to let go of any guilt by knowing that you have done nothing wrong…you DIDN’T deserve any of it. Tell yourself this: “I have done nothing wrong and I am no longer going to feel guilty about it”. Sometimes this is easier said than done…but remember that healing is a process and as you move forward, an understanding will begin to come over you. 

Sometimes it takes a while just to talk it out and talk it through. Writing letters to the people that hurt you, expressing exactly how each event has made you feel. It’s ok to not hold back your emotions. Remember, this is not about preserving the perpetrators feelings, nor is it about lashing out at them out of anger. It’s not about them…it’s about you. Initially when I started writing my healing letters to people, it had a very angry tone and I did send some of those letters out. It felt good to express it on paper, whether I sent it to them or not.

For a long time, I wanted to understand WHY it happened. Why did they do it? I would eventually come to understand the reasons but not in the beginning and in the beginning, it is ok to not understand why. Understanding “them” only comes after you’ve processed some of your own emotions.

The healing process is also not linear. You will go from one emotion to the next…sometimes feeling as if you’ve made tremendous headway only to realize the next day, you’re really having a tough time with things. Hopefully you have found someone to talk to by now, or you have a really good therapist. I had all those things, but not all at once.

I believe that some people who chose a spiritual way of living/thinking often came as a result of their past pains…trying to understand on a deeper level… a spiritual level rather than a human one. Sometimes, there just aren’t any good reasons as to WHY something happened. I’m not saying the the only way to heal is to become…”spiritual”, but I know that it really helps. With understanding things on the deeper level, it allows you to see things from a different perspective. 

So, you’ve decided to “heal thyself”. That’s wonderful! It will be a fantastic journey. The emotions that come out in the beginning are basically the same emotions you’ve carried all along anyway…pain, anger…sadness…only now, instead of just feeling these emotions, tucking them back deep inside you and beating yourself up for it, you will be “walking through them”.

…until next time…

 

Awakening

 

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Sometimes, some of us perceive ourselves as being stuck in our current situation. We do all we can to change the external stuff, not realizing that it is really our perception, or way of thinking that needs changing.

We have discussed how our feelings and thoughts are not who we really are and I would like to discuss this further.

When you go beyond your thoughts and emotions, who are you? What lies back there?

For many people, including myself, working through past trauma and a messed up way of thinking/feeling, allowed me to shed the false sense of who I thought I was. I knew that there had to be more than life than being in mental, emotional and spiritual anguish and yet the thought occurred to me that when I finally did strip away all those thoughts/emotions…what would I be left with? At the time it didn’t matter. I just knew that it had to be better than where I was. Many people who experience profound pain ask themselves the deeper questions and begin to find their answers. I’m not saying that everyone who searches their spiritual path at one point experienced pain (Buddha lived in prosperity) but I think being in pain forces one to do anything to try and understand or go beyond it.

We are all told from a very young age, how to act, think or feel, which causes us to become limited in our beliefs about ourselves. We are taught by our external world that we are limited beings living in a box. Often times we are taught by people who themselves, have a limited understanding and belief about themselves and therefore, project that same belief unto you. When you hear someone say, ‘think outside the box”, this means to think outside your own limited way of understanding. It is not so easy to do initially when you don’t see that there is even a way of thinking outside the box. So we live within this confinement and over time, develop a false sense of things…including ourselves.

 

Meditation is one way to begin to think outside the box. Meditation is not about focus, or keeping all thoughts out of our awareness. It is about noticing that  thoughts are swimming around up there and not focusing or on those thoughts. Whether a mantra is used during meditation, or just watching your breath, when a thought enters your mind, change your focus back to the mantra or breath watching. During the practice, you will soon notice a gap…a space between your thoughts and something deeper. It’s a quiet space where there is nothing…no thought…and you realize at that moment that you were “aware”. This “awareness” is the conscious being who watches the thoughts…(you) The first time I touched this space, it was just for a split second, but in that flash, I experienced wholeness. A place where there is so much peace and bliss. And at that same time, I felt eternity. I knew what eternity felt like…a sense of limitlessness…and then I knew. I was a part of this vast Wholeness…or Consciousness…this is who I am…expansive. This place that I experienced was a feeling of wholeness, the One Conscious mind or the “Allness”…and I was a part of it. I was connected to it and everything and everyone around me. I’m a conscious being that was a part of a bigger Consciousness. It is as if we are all droplets in the vast ocean. Separate, and yet a part of the ocean and really, it is hard to separate out each drop in the ocean because it all seems to “blend together”.

This was the beginning of my awakening. The awakening is a process where a person realizes that they are no longer the limited person that they had perceived themselves to be. They begin to see that they go beyond just who they think they are, and see that they are a part of something so vast, so wonderful and so loving. It is an overwhelming feeling.

Over time, one can begin to strip away the falseness of who they think they are by tearing down many of the labels that had been placed on them…either by the external world or themselves. I mentioned meditation above but this is not the only way. Everyone has that inner voice or deeper/higher self that will guide them in the way that they should go. If you are sincere in wanting to know, you will be shown. There is a saying in the spiritual community: “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear”. So however you decide to take this trek, trust that you will be guided.

…And once you’ve experienced the wholeness, there is no going back. You can not “un-know” what you now know and along with this, you begin to see that there isn’t really a “me” and a “you” but us…because we are ALL connected. If we all understood this, there would be no hatred, prejudice or wars. We are all in this together but each living separate lives having different experiences.

If we continue to believe what we believe with a limited understanding or perception, our understanding at that moment is unable to go beyond what we think we know. With expanded consciousness, we begin to break down the walls or confines of our beliefs by going beyond our own limited way of thinking. So in the beginning of our journey, it is important to keep an open mind…after all, our limited understanding up until that point hadn’t gotten us very far.

In conclusion, our thoughts and emotions are a part of our daily lives but it doesn’t describe who we are. We have to live with these thoughts/emotions daily but when we see that we are a part of something bigger, we begin to change the way we perceive life and everything in it. The implications of this awareness is astounding. It becomes easy to let go of our limited beliefs about ourselves and others because we now understand that we are limitless and many of the negative thoughts or emotions we had about ourselves begin to fall away.

I believe that more and more people are beginning to realize this in our present day. People are not so willing anymore to live within the confines of how the world tells them to live. They are beginning to break out of those small boxes where they have lived for so long.

Keep on trekking!

I am not what I feel

 

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My last post discussion was about how we are not our thoughts. Today I will be discussing our emotions.  What are emotions and where do they come from?

I really starting looking into this question when I realized that despite how good my life seemed to be, I still felt bad inside. I didn’t know why I would feel bad because nothing “externally” seemed to be causing me to feel the “mucks”. (In modern lingo…I still had “issues”).

Therapists couldn’t seem to answer my question when I asked them why I felt bad when everything seemed to be going well. The only answer I received was that I must be clinically depressed. It was suggested that maybe my sadness was “seasonal”, but upon further observation, I realized that my sadness didn’t seem to increase around certain time frames…or even certain events. What was triggering the mucks within me? The other explanation was that I had a “chemical imbalance”. I used to like this explanation better because then I knew that I could take some pills to change the whacked chemistry within my brain…but what was causing this imbalance? In the process of trying to find my answer, I’d say that one of the hardest things I had to do was to “sit” with the bad emotions…sadness, fear and all.  For so many years, I had become accustomed to fighting the emotions or trying desperately to distract myself somehow. Or force myself to feel something else. I decided to try and sit with my feelings without judging them…to “observe” what I was feeling. This was difficult at first because our analytical brain wants to figure it out and I found that I just couldn’t… There was no way out as far as I could see. That in itself became another tremendous fear…to feel as if you are immersed in the sadness/fear and feel that there isn’t  really anything you could do about it but to experience it. Initially, there was added sadness thinking that these emotions would resurface every now and again and there didn’t seem to be a way out except to accept them as a part of me. Then soon I started to look behind the emotion…what was the thought that was causing me to feel bad? Simple right? … no. If your “monkey chattering mind” is anything like my monkey mind, it takes a little bit of focus.

I began to see a pattern emerge. The bad feelings were usually a result of a negative thought I had about myself.  It could be something as simple as telling myself that I was no good. Looking for the specific thought behind that negative emotion isn’t always that obvious. It takes some work to recognize it and there are questions we can ask ourselves while we are thought hunting…questions like,  — when was the last time I felt this way? — when was the first time I felt this way?

In this process of remembering, we are trying to figure out the experience(s) that caused the thought and emotion. When we recognize the event, we realize then, that THAT particular event may have dictated our thoughts and emotions at one time…but they no longer need to be a part of our lives. When you’re doing the work of “undoing” the effects of trauma, it takes some time and when I realized just what I was dealing with, I was committed to letting go of the emotions that were preventing me from complete healing. An important lesson in this is to realize healing can be uncomfortable but it is a part of the process and accepting this is a huge step.  It also helps to have someone you feel safe to talk to when you’re going through the mucks. My safety guy is my husband. He just sits and listens to me.

With my relentless search for self acceptance and love, I knew that I was not my feelings, or emotions…that these were just experiences that I was having based on events in my life. I had come to realize that I was so much deeper than my thoughts or emotions…

My inner awakening continues…

 

 

 

We are NOT our thoughts.

 

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On the last entry, I talked about where thoughts come from and would like to expand our discussion on thoughts a little further.  Today I would like to discuss the underlying thoughts behind our negative emotions.

Until I realized that behind a negative emotion, lies the causing thought, there seemed no way for me to change my negative emotions. I just assumed that people feel what they feel when they feel it…not understanding that we can change how we feel by looking at the thought behind the emotion.  I am talking about the moments in my life (and maybe yours as well), when for no apparent reason, I would begin to feel bad, or sad, or fearful.  Outwardly, everything seemed to look good but on my insides, there would be profound sadness…and  fear.

It has been difficult for me, to say the least because for so long, I believed that my  negative emotions were a permanent part of me and the fear and sadness I’ve always felt would forever be there. When I first began my spiritual awakening, I believed that the knowledge I was gaining in my growing awareness would prevent me from having those negative emotions and yet, I was still having them. I do believe however, that for some people who are growing spiritually, acute and sudden transformations can take place and their negative thoughts and emotions are then “transmuted” automatically.  I am not one of those people and I used to ask myself why.  It seemed that my awareness/consciousness was expanding but this particular area of emotional and mental pain was something that I would first have to understand in order to transmute it.

I would have episodes of extreme sadness, sometimes mixed with fear (the mucks) come over me.  In the past, it would cause me such pain followed by a panic that these emotions would get worse. I would often try to fight the feelings or do something that I thought would distract me. I would hear myself telling myself that there should be no reason to be having an attack. Of course this made me feel worse. 

In the recent past, I have had several episodes of the mucks and while I was going through the horrible emotions, I tried to identify the thought behind the initial onset. It is never too late to see the initial thought behind the fear but in my experience, if I don’t “catch it” at the onset, the emotions will come and expand…then I’m immersed in the moment…so I’ll just have to let it ride. I have learned to sit with it, try not to judge it or attach a meaning to it.  It always passes.  I notice that if I worry that the feelings are going to get worse, they usually do.  This proved an important tidbit of knowledge for me.  I began to understand how powerful the mind is. If I can identify the thought behind the emotion while I’m beginning the spiral down, I can then transmute that particular negative thought and turn it around. For example, recently, I began feeling the mucks again and while it was still a “thought form” and not an emotion, I was able to change that thought into a positive one. I ended up telling myself that it was not necessary for me to have that thought at that moment. This sounds silly and so were my erratic emotions so I needed to find the reason or meaning behind it all. My reason for having the mucks may be that in my lifetime, I’d become so “used to” feeling bad that when things are going smoothly, I somehow “convince” myself that I haven’t had an episode for awhile so…it starts…talk about a self fulfilling prophecy.

With practice, I know that we can all change our minds to change our life. It take practice and in the practicing of turning our thoughts around, we become better at it.  

Our minds and our thoughts are very powerful.  If we can convince ourselves to think negatively and bring about negative circumstances, we can also think positively and bring about good thoughts.

 

With Love, My Journey in Spirit.