Chuck’s Place: Maturing Innocence

In a dream, I notice that a young boy is missing. I race to the parking lot. I see him in a car with other young boys, the car about to drive off, being taken into who knows what. I notice Mitt Romney in the passenger seat; I don’t see the driver. I reach in and grab the stolen boy.

What are we so afraid of?

In America, the home alarm industry is a totally Mormon-dominated industry. Each summer cadres of young Mormon men, schooled in public relations during a year of service, converge upon America. Knocking door to door, they sell the safety of home alarm systems, home security that promises to protect us from the darkness, the blackness of the night and all that lies lurking to invade our sense of safety.

Akin/Ryan, the likely driver of the car in my dream, promises to protect life, “the innocent,” even the products of “legitimate rape.” These are the images, the themes, the platforms, boldly advanced lately to protect America from its own darkness, the outbreaks in Aurora, et al.

Ultra-protection is the proposed answer to the blackening of America, projected onto the blackness of Obama, the “socialist foreigner” who threatens the security and purity, the whiteness of America.

The blatant shadow of this platform is a witch hunt, the degradation of the feminine, and the legitimization of violence on all levels and against all peoples. Romney the Mormon, as in my dream, takes the passenger seat, leaving the country in the hands of the extremists, and anything goes in the service of protection while the truly innocent are taken to their slaughter.

Shattering is unavoidable...

The truth is that the wounding of our childhood innocence is developmentally unavoidable. We arrive in this world creatures of need, seeking and longing for nurturance and love to enable us to grow. A child looks at the world with the innocent eyes of surprise, wonder, joy, and expectation. From early on there are many disappointments. An indifferent, absent, or simply overtired parent is bound to not get it right, at least some of the time. The child will experience disappointment, disillusionment, sadness, frustration, and withdrawal, as the world does not meet its innocent calling.

Rejected innocence curls up in shame. Repeated rejections harden the shell of shame. Traumatic violations of innocence—intrusions into the body and soul of the innocent—dramatically dissociate innocence into even deeper and more impenetrable protective covering.

This protection of innocence is critical but must be time-limited, because life without innocence is life without life. A high-powered home security system only offers an illusion of safety, for it merely separates us from the darkness that already resides within, reflecting the energy of frustrated, unlived life.

Furthermore, buried, encapsulated innocence is innocence awaiting the completion of a transformational ritual. For innocence to continue to be present at all stages of life it needs to transform. Shattered innocence is the beginning of every shamanic journey, but for the journey to be completed, it must be recapitulated and brought into life, allowed to mature with us. Recapitulation offers the completion of that journey to fully retrieve innocence. As all the protections and illusions of protection are removed, innocence merges and becomes fully available for real life.

Real life in the real world must include facing the predatory reality of life. It’s not about being protected from it. Life is loving and fulfilling, as well as deeply disappointing and shattering. The goal is to live our innocence in the fullness of reality.

In recapitulation, we stay fully present with the shattering impact of assaults to our innocence. We bear the full emotional and physical tension and pain of crushed innocence. We don’t dissociate; we don’t leave our bodies. We stay whole and fully present with our innocence as it suffers. In this way we retrieve our innocence, and once joined we are freed to bring it back into life more knowing, more pliable, more able to flow with the world as it truly is. We become inseparable partners with our lost innocence, fully transformed, mature, alive, and open to life in the now.

Innocence matured...

The shamanic journey of recapitulation is the ritual journey of completion into our blackness, into our night’s soul where we face the full truths of our trials in this world, however horrid. At journey’s completion we emerge integrated beings of light and dark combined, in balance, our retrieved innocence nicely matured, open-hearted and wise.

May we, as individuals and as a nation, take the journey into our darkness, however shattering, and move forward as an integrated whole. The days of safety through segregated security systems left with apartheid. Let’s retrieve not regress.


One thought on “Chuck’s Place: Maturing Innocence”

  1. As a seeker who tries to understand and make sense of this world, especially in the political arena where the absurdity of it is so blatantly being reflected at this time, I can always count on you to gather all the colorful remnants and stitch them together into a tapestry that I can see and feel.

    Thank you Chuck for courageously always going deeper!

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