Jeanne Marie Ketchel
Channeled by Jan Ketchel
Today, another reader asks a question.
I have had many very human experiences in the last year. They range from the desire to live a life of fulfillment, which led me to speak my truth for the first time in my marriage and begin the process of detaching from that relationship, to throwing myself into my business and home, to supporting a friend as she released her human life. Life and death, and all else in between, have been with me this year. Intellectually, I understand that this is the continuum; life, death, rebirth. Even before I could explain that, I knew I had been here before and so this always made sense to me. What I want to understand is how do I hold that knowledge, honor that knowledge, in the midst of all the human experiences that I am here to partake in? How do I honor my exquisite energy while my human body craves connection and pulls me into pathways of comfort? How do I walk away from a life that holds so much wonder and pain into a life that is better for my eternal soul? Intuitively, I also know that whatever I do will benefit my soul, and it may speed up or slow down the process. There seems to be this idea that only the soul should matter, but what of the body and its needs? What of the mind and its awareness? I feel as though I will miss things if I only focus on the needs of my soul. I want to enjoy my life in all its glorious expressions, on all levels of my eternal self, mind, body, and spirit. How do I embrace all of these?
My Dearest One, you address the struggles of all humans, who are aware of their spiritual and eternal selves, to maintain balance and yet continue to grow. Is it not possible to do all that you so eagerly desire? Is it not possible to be so human and so spiritually aware simultaneously? I contend that it is. However, there is a process of forgiveness that must be undertaken in order to achieve this balance. This forgiveness I speak of is not the forgiveness that you might equate with actions taken and regretted. The forgiveness I speak of is self-forgiveness; so that you may fully embrace the journey you are on and allow the self to really be as free and embracing of all aspects of the self that you so desire.
Forgiveness of self is a process of learning to detach from the structures of life imposed by society and the inner self who remains caught in old places. This inner self who confronts the “pathways of comfort,” as you call them, is the self who must release its energy and allow for growth.
Who is this inner self inside you, personally, My Dear One? This is the self who must be addressed, embraced, fully pondered, and become known, so that a new comfort in fully trusting the self may take over and allow for full expression in life. Is this self a frightened and reluctant child, or a taciturn baby? Is it a demanding inner self who, in spite of all that life presents, continually refuses to give up the old comforts, though it sees clearly the life and energy that is available if it does so? Are you caught in several areas of old comfort, many strands of reluctance and fear? This is not an uncommon place to be.
The adult self is the facilitator of this self-forgiveness that I speak of, the intelligent and mature adult self who does, in fact, gravitate toward as much enjoyment of life as it does gravitate toward the enjoyments of the spiritual aspects of life. The rituals of the inner process, the old comforts, are as binding and fulfilling as the rituals undertaken on a spiritual path. So you see, My Dear One, if you are struggling to release the self, you are going to have to confront the deeply embedded rituals in your life. These rituals may range from the simplest and most apparent, such as the process of waking up and having tea or coffee, to the ritual of standing still in the middle of your busy day to take a breath and connect with the inner you, asking the outer you to slow down a minute and breathe in new energy.
Rituals bind us all to habits that may be good or bad for us, comfortable or uncomfortable, desired or undesirable, fulfilling or unfulfilling, beneficial or damaging. But also keep in mind that no matter what the consequences of our habits in life are, they are giving us the experiences we need, showing us things about ourselves that we must learn, though it may take us a long time to notice that we are, indeed, living a ritualistic life, rather than an evolutionary one.
This, My Dear, is what you are confronting in the self as you experience change, new life, death, energy, and the needs of the human self to excel and experience the grandeur of the world you live in, along with the deeply emotional aspects of life. You may begin to notice that much of your life has been reduced to ritual, to habit, to pathways of comfort that do not necessarily lead to growth. These are the areas of life that must change in order for evolution to supercede ritual, for detachment and self-forgiveness to take place, and for a greater balance to be experienced. To actualize this eagerness for a fully lived life in all aspects of self, as you so desire, I do contend that change must happen.
You are well on the way to making changes in your life, My Dear One, and these changes are good examples of connecting with the inner truth of the spirit. If your true spirit is suppressed your true energy for life is also suppressed. If your rituals take over your life, your spirit will remain bound in the repetition of those rituals, unable to free itself from the wheels of life turning endlessly in the same direction. When your spirit comes knocking and throwing wrenches into your wheels, it is time to stop everything and look at how your wheels have been spinning. Have your wheels been free-flying, spinning out of control without stopping, because you fear that if you stop there will be nothing there at all, or perhaps only the skeletal remains of once beautiful wheels of comfort? Are you afraid that you may miss out or be too late for something if you do not keep your wheels spinning at the current pace?
In order to enact change, the wheels must stop. The rituals must be dismantled and examined for truth of need. The ego self must relinquish its desires to the true desires of the inner spirit self, the mature spirit self who, though firmly in adult reality, is also openly trusting of the innocent side of itself as well. It is in combination of true ego self and true spirit self that forgiveness, detachment, and fulfillment of life will happen.
New rituals may seek to inhabit the spaces left by old habits as they are dismantled. In order for true growth to happen these spaces must become spirit-filled energy spaces. As old habits are left behind a period of loneliness and emptiness may ensue, until the ego relinquishes its hold on the desire to replace one ritual with another and instead allows the inner spirit to take over. The balance that you seek, and that every spirit seeks, is awareness of self in constant flux, able to flow through life, fully participating, fully aware, fully alive, fully enjoying and living freely. I do not want to discourage anyone from living and enjoying life, yet do I also not want to stifle the inner spirit’s quest for life as well. How do you give ego self and spirit self equal time and space? How do they sit side by side so that the wheels of ritual and habit turn into wheels of energy? This is the work that must continually be undertaken:
1. Question the validity of the rituals. Are they necessary and truly fulfilling?
2. Stop spinning your wheels and take a look at what they are made of. Perhaps they are not what you thought they were, for they were picked up for usage such a long time ago.
3. Confront the self regarding the changes already enacted and the experiences already granted.
4. Determine, with knowing spirit self and knowing adult ego self, which changes are beneficial and resonant with both and which changes are not even close to fulfillment.
5. Walk in the direction that the signs, the truths, and the experiences in life are pointing you in and follow this new path.
6. The point of self-forgiveness now comes to greet you, as the next step must be detachment from that which no longer nurtures either the spirit self or the ego self. This will be very clear, though it will also be very difficult to process. It will entail the aspects of self that are not only reluctant, but truly afraid. Self-forgiveness is the act of the balanced self giving permission to move on with the changes that may be so painfully proposed and shown. To grant the self permission to move on is the point when the old wheels will be fully seen as no longer adequate.
7. The next step is to hold onto awareness of self in transition, without pulling toward the self new rituals, new wheels, or new comforts. This is a time of tension. To maintain the stability of the self in this time of emptiness is the challenge, for only in holding at bay the old voices and keeping out the old stuff, that will come asking for re-entry, will you be able to fully embrace and enact change. This time of tension-bearing will be a great challenge.
8. This will require learning what it means to truly detach from the world as you know it and turn toward the possibility of a new world, though it may not yet be in sight. This step into the void will be the most difficult, for it will involve learning to trust the inner guidance that may, at times, appear to offer strange or unusual advice. This time of trust, however, will lead to the next step in evolutionary growth, which will be:
9. The acceptance of the self as individual, as wholly self-contained, self-aware, self-sufficient, and trustworthy. This acceptance of self will lead to a new energy. As the old powerhouses of energy no longer function, as emptiness occurs, as the old is no longer invited in to contaminate the self with useless rituals and comforts, a new energy will begin to seep in. This is the energy of spirit in balance with ego and as this energy enters the heart, the mind, the very bloodstream of the body, you will discover that you are different. This moment of awareness of self as different, as changed, as acting now from a new post of command will lead to the ultimate goal and that is:
10. Fulfillment of self in new awareness, innerly connected, outerly connected, energetically connected, and available to truly embrace the life that you are so eager to live.
My Dear One, I see your struggles to embrace the wholeness of self, yet must I caution that to do so too quickly will result in disaster, for only in truly allowing all aspects of self to be present and ready to take the journey will true fulfillment be reached. If even one tiny aspect of the self is not ready to participate there will be difficulty in achieving the proper energy to fully live, as you so desire.
I know this process of balance takes work; it takes slowing down; it takes inner trust, and it takes ego-busting, to a great extent. It takes confronting the sadnesses in life, and the emptiness and loneliness of taking a journey alone for as long as it takes to connect with the true self and truth of the self. But each step of the process of gaining balance is filled with gifts of insight, experience, and energy.
This is quite a subject and quite a question! It is quite a quest, I might add; the quest for fulfillment, for life, for growth, and for completion. I advise, with a final punctuation, that those of you who are so eager to fully embrace life, as this reader is, offer your selves the gift of self-forgiveness, for this is truly at the root of all change and all evolution. For without being able to let go of the old self there will be no ability to find and allow a new self to become real. And this is what you seek, the real self.