Perhaps the most Herculean task that we all face is for our Soul to have to fit itself into the helplessness of a human infant’s body, completely dependent upon the kindness of others to usher it into a human life and support it to maturity.
Stan Grof, with his extensive research into the perinatal stages of birth and the accompanying impact of primal birth trauma, has extended our knowledge of the Soul’s consciousness of itself as it evolves through all stages of gestation.
Back further still are the Soul’s prior lives and identities, which the Soul is required to temporarily forget in order to create the blank slate needed to authentically engage in the purity of a totally new, unfettered human life. Knowledge of one’s infinite life would completely minimize the impact of any suffering in this life, undermining the very reason the Soul chose to enter into the life it is in. Earth School’s working axiom is simple: no pain, no gain.
The postnatal stages of development are archetypally governed by what are called object relationships with significant others, essentially our parents or first caregivers, to reach the necessary milestones of physical and ego autonomy. What we call ego is actually a part of the Soul, wiped clean of its eternal history, capable of growing into a mature adult; ego is the center of the Soul’s identity in this life.
In truth, what we call the inner child is actually the ego itself, a lost soul separated from its true parentage, forced to grow and learn how to navigate this mysterious world it was adopted into. How does one not feel sorry for this lost soul? Even great Master teachers in infinity have a soft spot for the plight of the innocent infant ego. However loving or unloving its adoptive world may be, it will never truly be home.
How does ego not fall prey to self-pity? No matter how much it inflates or deflates itself, at its core, ego feels itself as an abandoned child, disempowered of its divine heritage, inadequate to the task it unknowingly tasked itself with. This pervasive and inescapable self-pity might be tucked away in the ego’s guiding attitude of perfectionism, but even here it sneakily binds one’s attention and emotion through projecting itself upon the sad state of victimized others.
The shamans of ancient Mexico pierced this true reality of human suffering. They understood that the majority of human energy is spent on self-pity. To unclip one’s wings and fly to true freedom one needs a ruthless awakening to this hostage state. They called this great accomplishment, arriving at the place of no pity.
Carlos Castaneda truly loved his Master teacher, the Nagual, don Juan Matus. One day, don Juan had Carlos drive him into a city. Suddenly, Don Juan transmogrified himself into a feeble old man, who had seemingly just suffered a stroke. Carlos was beside himself with fear and pity. Don Juan then started screaming for help, claiming that Carlos was a predatory foreigner trying to rob and kill him. This aroused a group of young men who chased after Carlos.
Carlos was able to get away and ultimately reach a place of cold indifference toward don Juan, at which point he returned and found don Juan transmogrified back into his more familiar, kind and youthful self. Carlos had reached the place of no pity, total detachment.
In fact, the place of no pity is the place where the ultimate veil of narcissism is lifted. Don Juan explained that Carlos’ apparent love and pity for the old suffering don Juan was actually a projection of his own self-pity onto don Juan. The egoistic inner child state of self-pity was lifted as Carlos stepped out of the matrix of his projected self.
A modern example might be a parent blocking their adult addict child’s phone number. This ruthless act is in fact an act of true love, as the child is given the opportunity to assume responsibility for sustaining their own life in this world, a hallmark milestone of mature adulthood.
This cutting of the phone cord sends the message to the child that they truly have been let go to live their own life, and for them to trust in their own independent Soul to guide their journey, wherever that may lead. Trust that this being has their own angels and spirit guides. Retire the overbearing helicopter parent attitude.
In letting go, the parent must suffer the dread of the deep subconscious parental archetype that refuses to ever release the parent from parental responsibility. However, to fully let go, the parent must in turn assume responsibility for their own innerly projected wounded child, which they had previously sought to rescue in the person of their actual child.
For love to rise above the veil of narcissism we must free ourselves from our own self-pity. Outwardly, this means reclaiming our self-pitied selves and facing them squarely. Ego is next tasked with assuming its true purpose and capability in this life: aligning with and mastering its greater Soul’s true mission for this life. That mission is likely situated in the very life circumstance that draws one to self -pity.
Truthfully, the adult self must arrive at the place of no pity toward its own inner child’s journey. This involves deep loving compassion for all of the child’s suffering yet appreciation for the lessons learned and a total assimilation/integration of those experiences into the adult self’s being.
From a place of no pity all experiences are valued with true equanimity. The real question becomes not how was I victimized, but what have I learned? And yes, the journey requires feeling the fullness of all life lived, however traumatic, and the release of stored emotional energies, but ultimately it is awe for the fantastic journey of the fullness of one’s actual life that one seeks.
In the end, full assimilation means to appreciate one’s life, regardless of its experiences, as a beautiful work of art. In this way the child self is dissolved into a powerful adult being, who discovers how much it has truly learned and grown through all of life’s many experiences, good and bad alike.
With this loving embodiment of all that one is, one is reunited with one’s greater Soul. And then one is able to handle remembering their true identity, in and beyond this life.
The willingness to suffer the fullness of one’s Soul’s mission is true love of self, love of Soul, and love of other.
On the mission, with love,
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