#730 Chuck’s Place: Intent & The Left Body

The concealed advantage of luminous beings is that they have something which is never used: intent. The maneuver of shamans is the same as the maneuver of the average man. Both have a description of the world. The average man upholds it with his reason; the shaman upholds it with his intent. Both descriptions have their rules; but the advantage of the shaman is that intent is more engulfing than reason.” —From The Wheel of Time by Carlos Castaneda, page 138.

The seers of ancient Mexico, who view the energetic dimension of human beings, observe two distinct energy patterns, on the left and right side of the body respectively. The energy of the right body moves in a continuous rocking motion. The energy of the left body, in contrast, is more “turbulent and aggressive, moving in undulating ripples and projecting out waves of energy.” —From Magical Passes, page 140.

Those seers also note that the energy of the right body is the dominating force in human beings. The right body energy is rationality; the left body energy is what Carl Jung would call the unconscious. For seers, the left body is both the more comprehensive reservoir of human potential as well as the human door to infinity.

The energy of the left body is accessed in various ways. Carlos Castaneda describes many times how, after a blow on the back from don Juan, he shifted into a state of heightened awareness, opening access to the energy of the left body. In non-shamanic life experience, trauma can force a shift out of body into heightened awareness as well. The peculiarity of heightened awareness is a state of detachment with a heightened ability to focus, understand, and know, at a profound level, as the dominance of rationality is suspended. However, like Cinderella at the stroke of midnight, heightened awareness suddenly ends with a return to right sided dominance, and all the accrued knowledge and experience of heightened awareness fades and is forgotten. These experiences are nonetheless stored elsewhere in the left body awaiting retrieval. This is a major reason to recapitulate. Recapitulation is an exercise in retrieving stored memory. The functional value of recapitulation is to open the channel to the left body and infinity.

Intent is also linked to left body potential. While the word intent is generally bandied about, full of ego desirousness or right sided control in such expositions as The Secret, intent belongs to the realm of energy and the left body. Intent is beyond ego, beyond reason, beyond the mind.

Intent or intending is something very difficult to talk about. I or anyone else would sound idiotic trying to explain it. Bear that in mind when you hear what I have to say next: sorcerers intend anything they set themselves to intend, simply by intending it.”

That doesn’t mean anything, don Juan.”

Pay close attention. Someday it’ll be your turn to explain. The statement seems nonsensical because you are not putting it in the proper context. Like any rational man, you think that understanding is exclusively the realm of our reason, of our mind.”

For sorcerers, because the statement I made pertains to intent and intending, understanding it pertains to the realm of energy. Sorcerers believe that if one would intend that statement for the energy body, the energy body would understand it in terms entirely different from those of the mind. The trick is to reach the energy body. For that you need energy.” —From The Art of Dreaming, page 23.

There is no rationality to intent. If we want something from right sided awareness we develop a plan, employ a strategy, manipulate, and control in order to create an outcome. When you boil it down, that’s simply ego control, not intent.

Intent, from the left side, is a simple intent, stated, sent out—light as a feather—with no attachment. No reason, no control, no manipulation is necessary. A silent knowing that the energy body has received the intent and works its magic is all that is required.

The process of tracking the path of intent is synchronicity: everything is meaningful. Everyone and everything that presents in your life reflects intent in manifestation. Follow it, and be guided by it. Suspend judgment, the dominating influence of the right body, and track instead the meaning and signs of the unfolding events in your life.

These events are the signs of unfolding intent. The challenge becomes one of aligning right sided decisions with unfolding intent. So much energy is consumed by right sided resistance through doubt, fear, indecision, rationality, and, frankly, big baby refusal to take the unfamiliar journey beyond known habit, the rocking chair of right sided energy.

Perhaps our ultimate intent is the one we set from infinity before we entered this world, our reason for being here. That intent persistently presses upon our lives, through the years, seeking to awaken our right sided dominant body to its true mission in the world. In the final analysis, our reason for being in this life is to discover and acquiesce to this core intent; the one set long before the birth of the ego and the right sided human self.

Send your intent to your energy body; see what happens!

If you wish to correspond, please feel free to post a comment below.

Until we meet again,

NOTE: The books mentioned in this blog by Carlos Castaneda, and other books, are available through our Store.

A Day in a Life: Recapitulation & Walking

During the summer while strolling around our rural neighborhood with Chuck, in a ten minute span, I related to him three memories in vivid detail, the first sparked by the scent of black locust trees in bloom and each subsequent memory linked by some detail in the previous one. This chain of memories was sparked by what the seers of ancient Mexico would call the usher. In The Active Side of Infinity don Juan instructs Carlos Castaneda to begin the process of recapitulation by walking. Here is what don Juan says to Carlos on page 149:

Walking is always something that precipitates memories. The sorcerers of ancient Mexico believed that everything we live we store as a sensation on the backs of the legs. They considered the backs of the legs to be the warehouse of man’s personal history. So, let’s go for a walk in the hills now.”

We walked until it was almost dark,” writes Carlos.

I think I have made you walk long enough,” don Juan said when we were back at his house, “to have you ready to begin this sorcerer’s maneuver of finding an usher: an event in your life that you will remember with such clarity that it will serve as a spotlight to illuminate everything else in your recapitulation with the same, or comparable, clarity. Do what sorcerers call recapitulating pieces of a puzzle. Something will lead you to remember the event that will serve as your usher.”

In my experience while walking with Chuck the strong smell of the locust blossoms sent me back into a memory that seamlessly led to other memories; the smell of those blossoms was indeed my usher on that occasion. Several years ago while in the midst of my recapitulation I was walking with an acquaintance across a field on a hot summer day when he inadvertently slapped me across my shoulder blades while making a point and although the slap was not particularly hard it immediately sent me into an old memory. Suddenly I was four years old again and walking across a sunny field with the man who had abused me during my childhood. In this state of heightened awareness I was once again a frightened little girl sensing that I was caught in a trap I could not get out of. In one reality I walked next to my acquaintance who, still talking, had no idea that I was no longer truly present but was in fact being presented with an old experience. In fact, I believe the slap across my shoulders, light though it was, actually ushered me into that memory, the force of it just enough to cause a shift of the assemblage point.

Carlos writes often of don Juan slapping him on the back in order to cause a shift in his assemblage point. In The Art of Dreaming he mentions, on pages 15 and 16, the following:

This was the first time, in my memory, that he deliberately talked about something he had been doing all along: making me enter into some incomprehensible state of awareness that defied my idea of the world and of myself, a state he called the second attention. So, to make my assemblage point shift to a position more suitable to perceiving energy directly, don Juan slapped my back, between my shoulder blades, with such a force that he made me lose my breath.”

Although the blow I received that day while walking with my friend was really just a light tap it was enough to send me off into a dark memory of falling into a black abyss because I was already well into and open to the recapitulation process. In fact, once begun, the memories flew up at me, eagerly asking to be acknowledged, clearly studied and relived, and, finally, truthfully accepted and laid to rest. Carlos also writes in The Active Side of Infinity, on page 160, about the unfolding of his own recapitulation in a similar manner. He states:

The clarity of the usher brought a new impetus to my recapitulation. A new mood replaced the old one. From then on, I began to recollect events in my life with maddening clarity. It was exactly as if a barrier had been built inside me that had kept me holding rigidly on to meager and unclear memories, and the usher had smashed it. My memory faculty had been for me, prior to that event, a vague way of referring to things that had happened, but which I wanted most of the time to forget.”

In the past I used to get up every morning at 5:30 and run for three miles. I did this for perhaps fifteen or twenty years, but one day I could no longer run. I couldn’t get out of bed and run even one more mile. That signaled the beginning of a new life for me. I learned to walk, and eventually I learned a lot more—things about myself, but things about the world too, not the world I used to see every morning as I ran in the dark, but the world I could not see through the darkness inside myself.

At first I used to walk very fast, still trying to run away from that which sought to catch up with me, all the memories I kept at bay. One day Chuck said to me during one of our shamanic sessions: “Why don’t you stroll? Learn to stroll.” In so saying he pointed out to me my penchant for wanting to always stay one step ahead of the past. In learning to stroll I learned how to slow down so the past could finally catch up with me and teach me what I needed to learn about it.

I had no idea that my own past held such treasures, that my own fears and frightening memories were such gems in disguise. In slowing down, letting them come to me in their own time, greeting them—in the beginning with my resistance and fear and later being open to them—I was able to uncover the jewels hidden inside the black hole of that abyss I saw that day as I walked across a sunny field.

Yes, a slight brush against my shoulders was enough that day to send me into a place I needed to go, just as on that other day last summer the scent of the locusts was enough to lead me to recapitulate, in rapid recall, several other events a lot less remarkable and frightening, but recapitulation nonetheless.

If you wish, feel free to share or comment in the Post Comment section below.

Sending you all love and good wishes for good walking experiences,

NOTE: The books mentioned in this blog and other books are available through our Store.

#729 A Little Tenderness

Jan Ketchel channeling Jeanne Marie Ketchel

Dear Jeanne,
Today I ask for a message of guidance for all of your readers. What is most meaningful and important for us on this day, as we begin a new week?

Tenderness is not a virtue left to but a few to utilize but a known quality within all human beings that must now be brought forth into everyday activities, interactions, and decisions, applied as a given, so to speak.

Please elaborate on this idea.

I speak of tenderness as a heart-centered emotion often reserved for only the closest of acquaintances or possibly only for one or two people in a lifetime. Mothers tend toward tenderness while others eschew it for more pronounced emotions. Today I speak not only of maternal tenderness but of the tenderness that lies within the self and is often bypassed because it exudes too much in the emotional realm.

I contend that in the world you live in a little tenderness for the self and others is most appropriate. It is also largely lacking and thus its need is great.

Explain what you mean by tenderness and how to go about accessing it.

I interpret tenderness as a quiet need, but I also know that a quiet approach to its awakening must be granted, for now it sits within the greater body of humanity like a scared animal, uncertain of its fate, for it has for far too long been relegated to darkness. This human quality of tenderness is not meant to be pushed aside though that has been its demise.

I do not advocate awakening raw emotional responses to one’s life or the dilemmas of others, pouring out concern or smothering care. Instead, I approach this awakening as a deeply invigorating self-awakening in order to stir up, first of all, a little tenderness for the self.

The idea and the process I offer today is this:

1. Offer the self a means of connection to heart-centered feelings of tenderness, drawing out the maternal feminine that resides inside all human beings, female and male.

2. Understand what tenderness feels like inside your own physical self. Does it cause pain? Is it largely blocked and difficult to access? Is your child self holding it firmly gripped, afraid to let you, the adult, touch it for fear that it may mean annihilation? You must know that often the child self holds the emotions that once were so important but had to be kept hidden and safe. Ask your child self, in such a case, to allow you a small taste of this most precious feeling.

3. Take this tenderness for self into your heart-centered breathing practice, utilizing it as your point of intent for the day, perhaps offering the self a mantra.

I offer myself a touch of tenderness.

I open my heart to my feelings of tenderness.

I allow my tenderness for self to reawaken on this day.

As much as I can hold within my heart is enough.”

4. Feel your heart’s warm expansiveness as you stir up the energy of the reality of this quality of tenderness inside you.

5. Do not lose sight of the fact that this feeling does indeed reside inside you even though it may be hidden behind rusty doors of old, left locked for good reason, though now it is time to unlock these true feelings.

6. Understand that this is not a selfish act or practice. Keep in mind the goal, which is to awaken a sense of longing that lies inside each one of you to feel love, to feel love of self first and foremost.

7. Only in facing the self with this tenderness will your intent be pure. No matter what you attempt to accomplish in life the most important step is connection to inner self. So use this heart-centered awakening of tenderness as a tool to begin a new process of learning to love the self with the intent for it to blossom into the world around you.

8. Notice, as you take on this practice of awakening tenderness of the self within the self, that other emotions may arise. Use the tenderness to melt them, staying aware that this heart-centered awakening is the most important focus at this moment. Without judgment or consternation accept the pain that may arise as but a quiet voice inside, letting you know that deep within your inner shadows are but tender feelings.

9. To begin this awakening is enough, a little at a time. In meditation or in brief periods of heart-centered breathing begin to open your heart to the needs of the self. Only in doing so will you achieve the most meaningful of gifts you can give the self: love of others, unconditionally, without attachment, simply because it is the deepest purpose of being human.

10. Find the self vulnerable to this stirring up and know that all human beings are equally vulnerable, that all have a heart center and the capacity to hold within that heart tenderness for the self and others.

11. This practice does not require any more action than allowing the self to feel. In awakening heart-centered feelings within the self one awakens heart-centered feelings in all. This is the intent of most importance, for now is the time of necessity for all mankind to carve a new direction.

12. If one is intent on learning compassion and the means of living a compassionate life the first step must be learning the tenderness of compassion for the self. It involves unbiased awakening of all that you each hold within. With heart-centered opening of all the doors to the self, offering the self the compassion you wish to offer others, your journey in that world will truly begin to expand.

Do not forget that one cannot truly embrace another until one has fully embraced the self. I stress this for I know there are many upon that earth eager to do good, to help others, and to succeed at inner growth for the betterment of the world. All of these goals are most worthy but will fall short if the inner self is not allowed to experience that which the outer self professes as so necessary.

Change the self too, even as you seek to change the world. One will not happen without first the other. The inner awakening supercedes all other awakenings.

Remain connected to heart-centered intent through all your days. Invite the energy of this intent into your physical body, for that is where it will have most effect. By your personal practice of this intent your every action will likewise be involved with it, naturally and tenderly. For in embodying heart-centered intent you become one with it, and this is most appropriate, necessary, and desirable, at this moment and all moments to come.

Thank you, Jeanne!

Please feel free to post comments or respond to this message from Jeanne in the post/read comments section below.

Fondly and most humbly offered.

#728 Chuck’s Place: Here & Hereafter

Yesterday, as Jan and I prepared to make a brief visit to Aunt Virginia before attending a matinee showing of Hereafter, I struggled to somehow dismantle the bathroom ceiling fan to free a trapped bird. Jan had just been outside and noticed a flock of bluebirds on the roof, calling loudly. The eyes of the trapped bird stared intently at me as I lowered the fan, it was a female bluebird and she was now freed.

We arrived a bit late to 91 year old Aunt Virginia to find her resting with her new Yorkie puppy Dewey sitting calmly in her lap. Dewey is adorable with bright attentive eyes, wise beyond his years. He locks onto my eyes, we connect. Aunt Virginia is a young mother again, constantly tracking Dewey’s whereabouts, fixing him lunch. We say our goodbyes; it’s time for Hereafter.

Back in the day, Jeanne and I anxiously awaited three things in life: the always postponed release of Stevie Wonder’s next album; Carlos Castaneda’s next book; and Clint Eastwood’s new movie. While Stevie and Carlos attended to our spiritual and magical sides, The Clint was pure masculine shadow. He mirrored the energy I aspired to and that Jeanne was attracted to. Who would have thought that The Clint would evolve into such a sensitive, gentle director willing to take on the question of the hereafter, only the greatest mystery of life?

This movie is at once engaging and seamless as it flows through the unfolding dramas of three characters in separate worlds whose lives ultimately intersect at the deepest level. The pace of the movie is decidedly Eastwood’s. He skips the explosiveness of most Hollywood dramas, calmly allowing the story to unfold without over-stimulation or over-telling. You’re not likely to encounter too many texting teens at this movie; The Clint does not cave to that energy. This is an intelligent movie.

Jan and I thoroughly enjoyed it, two thumbs up! I will say no more directly about the content of Hereafter. Go see it!

However, I am not a stranger to the hereafter, so I will describe my own experience. Jan and I have had profound experiences of Jeanne in the hereafter in the here and now. We literally lived a scene right out of Ghost where Whoopi Goldberg transmogrifies into Patrick Swayze so that he can connect with his wife played by actress, Demi Moore. Jan, Jeanne and I have verified this experience and that possibility.

What I can say however is that this experience doesn’t mean anything to my rational mind. The rational mind will always do what the rational mind does best: doubt and question. My rational mind doubts and questions every otherworldly experience I have ever had.

Here is the conundrum: We know this life will end. Then what? Lights out or lights on? Our reason knows there is no god, no magic; it can all be explained. We can choose to believe but our reason scoffs at belief. If we have genuine experiences of hereafter, reason, our own or someone else’s, quickly explains them away with reasonable doubt. And so, we are left with reason on one side and experiences on the other, with reason claiming ultimate control over the interpretation of everything.

My solution to this conundrum has been to suspend judgment and to have experience. Allowing for experiences leads to its own knowing. This knowing needn’t challenge reason, which has its own knowing, albeit limited. The solution lies not in convincing reason. This is not possible. Reason upholds our consensual reality. It is the foundation of that reality. Experiences of hereafter lead to knowing an expanded reality, one in which reason exists in its own right but is simply one world among others.

There was once a time when it was certain that the sun revolved around the all-important Earth. That it is now known that the earth—among other planets—revolves around the sun, does not diminish the reality of the earth, it simply diminishes its supremacy. Reason shares a similar fate, though it is fighting hard to maintain its supremacy over the hereafter.

I like The Clint’s approach to the Hereafter. It’s calm, no dramatic attempts of proof; an invitation to experience.

For those who haven’t read The Book of Us, I suggest this autobiography as a documented experience of here and hereafter. Of course, like all documented experiences, we are left with confronting reason with its doubts and questions. Take it instead as an invitation to have your own experiences. That has been the essence of Jeanne’s channeled messages: lessons in how to have experiences of hereafter, here and now.

If you wish to correspond, please feel free to post a comment below.

Until we meet again,

A Day in a Life: A Shamanic Experience

One day last week I sat down to meditate in front of a sliding glass door looking out over the deck and into the trees beyond. I focused my gaze on a spot at eye level in the leaves of the large catalpa tree and let it soften. In continually softening my gaze the leaves began to blur, my peripheral vision blurred as well and after a few minutes I was gazing at nothing more than a tiny pinprick of light. At first I did not attach any significance to this light, simply noted it, keeping my gaze on it.

As I concentrated on the point of light it began to float. It began to jiggle and shift in the blurred pattern of leaves. I became fascinated by this light, yet I also warned myself not to attach, to stop “looking” at it and simply let it be. “Achieving inner silence is much more intriguing and important than this pinprick of light,” I smugly told myself. Making a new attempt to banish all thoughts and soften my gaze I noticed that the light was moving again, this time coming towards me and that it now seemed to be something on the glass door.

“Oh,” I said to myself, “it’s just a raindrop!” But as soon as I noticed that, it retreated and was once again a point of light in the leaves. “Oh, perhaps it is just a speck of sky showing through the leaves,” I thought, now somewhat puzzled by what I was actually seeing. This shifting back and forth continued. As I watched in utter amazement the point of light was a tiny bit of sky one second and the next it was a raindrop catching the light on the door.

“Hey, wait a minute!” I said. “What’s going on here?” One minute I’m positive that I’m looking at a drop of water and the next I’m equally positive that I’m looking at a bit of sky. I watch this process with growing frustration and yet I resist the urge to get up off my pillow and investigate close up, aware somehow that this little show is for my benefit.

“STOP IT!” I finally yell out loud. “Calm down! Don’t you get it? It’s both. It is both a bit of sky showing through the leaves and a raindrop on the window and yet it is neither, so let it go!” With that I was able to detach from assigning a label, from creating a logical explanation, from affording it importance, from interpreting it in any way according to the foreign installation as the seers of ancient Mexico call the mind, of putting it into a context at all.

As Carlos Castaneda writes in The Wheel of Time:

“Human beings are perceivers, but the world they perceive is an illusion: an illusion created by the description that was told to them from the moment they were born.

So in essence, the world that their reason wants to sustain is the world created by a description and its dogmatic and inviolable rules, which their reason learns to accept and defend.”

I let go of all the rules. I let go of perceiving the point of light as anything in particular. I simply accepted its presence, without attaching any meaning or significance whatsoever. I allowed it to be part of my meditation practice.

As I let go, the light grew larger. I accepted it. I entered the light and held myself in its nothingness. In this place I was unaware of self, of light, of breath even. I was utter calm emptiness. I stayed for a moment, suspended, sustaining the nothingness of it, transported into a stillness that was so familiar, so known, so all encompassing that I almost resented leaving it.

As I returned to this reality I gave thanks for my experience, got up and walked away. It was only later that I realized I did truly get beyond the syntax of this world, for when I was done I did not, as I might have at an earlier stage in my life, investigate if there was indeed a raindrop on the window. It didn’t matter. It was the experience alone that mattered: letting go of this world in order to have an experience of another.

In The Art of Dreaming when Carlos is having difficulty understanding how he could possibly perceive what don Juan is telling him, they have the following conversation:

The problem of validation always played a key role in my mind in those days,” says Carlos.

He goes on to say: “Forgive me, don Juan, but this business of the assemblage point is an idea so farfetched, so inadmissible that I don’t know how to deal with it or what to think of it.”

Don Juan retorted: “There is only one thing for you to do. See the assemblage point! It isn’t difficult to see. The difficulty is in breaking the retaining wall we all have in our minds that holds us in place. To break it we need energy. Once we have energy, seeing happens to us by itself. The trick is in abandoning our fort of self-complacency and false security.”

It’s obvious to me, don Juan, says Carlos, that it takes a lot of knowledge to see. It isn’t just a matter of having energy.”

It is just a matter of having energy, believe me. The hard part is convincing yourself that it can be done. For this, you need to trust the nagual. The marvel of sorcery is that every sorcerer has to prove everything with his own experiences. I am telling you about the principles of sorcery, not with the hope that you will memorize them but with the hope that you will practice them.”

If you wish, feel free to share or comment in the Post Comment section below.

Sending you all love and good wishes for good experiences,

NOTE: Excerpts from the books of Carlos Castaneda mentioned in this blog come from The Wheel of Time p. 137 and from The Art of Dreaming pp. 9-10. These and other books are available through our Store.