Look to your High Self for the answers you seek. Turn inward and ask for help. Your High Self wants only for you to find your way, to grow, to know the whys and wherefores of everything you experience, but it cannot help you if you do not reach out and ask for help. Open your heart, open your mind, and let the answers flow into you. In quietude, become your own channel to your own secrets. From your High Self to the little soul of you in human form, let all knowledge flow. Ask for help. Be open. See what happens. And remember, your High Self will communicate with you in its own unique ways, so be prepared for the unexpected!
“I tried to die young, boy did I try, but the voice deep inside would not let me succumb…” These words were written by Melanie Safka in a song from her recent album Ever Since You Never Heard of Me. Both Chuck and I have had this song playing in our heads for weeks now, its significance struggling to emerge.
I already know that when I hear a song over and over again like that it usually means something, either to me or someone I know. Sometimes before I do a channeling I might hear a song and so I know it relates to the person I’m channeling for. Once when this happened the person told me that it was the song that was played at her wedding, and it meant a lot to her. In fact, it figured significantly into the process she was struggling to make sense of, and so I trust such things.
In this particular song, of most significance to me are the words: “the voice deep inside.” This is the voice of the other mind that Chuck wrote about in his blog the other day, the voice of direct knowledge, the instinctual mind that knows we are here for a reason, that our journeys are journeys of the utmost importance. We all have access to this voice deep inside; at some time in our lives we’ve all heard it. Whether or not we’ve paid attention to its messages is one thing, but we can’t deny that it exists.
People who’ve been traumatized have direct access to that voice more than most, the voice that says: You will not succumb; you will survive. This is the voice that kept many people alive during the Holocaust, the voice that will not succumb, that will not give in, the omnipotent optimist inside us that will not ever give up. Every one has this voice inside them, but for some reason in some people, as Viktor Frankl suggests in Man’s Search for Meaning, it’s a dominant force.
It’s definitely dominant in anyone who suffered through sexual abuse or other trauma as a child. If you have survived a childhood of sexual or physical abuse you definitely have had direct access to that voice, and if it hasn’t reawoken yet, it will, because it’s the voice that knows everything that happened, it’s the voice that speaks the truth. But that voice goes even deeper, beyond the trauma, to our very soul and this, I believe, is where the answers to surviving the most horrific of traumatic events lie. I believe we do not succumb, because our soul’s journey has a different intent. And so we are charged with discovering just what that intent is. Why did I survive my trauma when so many others don’t survive theirs?
As a child I heard that voice deep inside a lot. It came to my rescue when no one else did. It instructed me in how to survive. It gave me access to tools of survival that could only be fully realized because I was being brutally abused. Had I not been sexually abused as a child I might not even now have such direct access to that voice. I might not trust it the way I do now. I might not have direct knowledge of out-of-body experiences, of the innate abilities we all have inside us. I might not be so sure of what happens when we die, if I had not been traumatized as a child and had direct experiences of leaving the body, of leaving the thinking mind behind as my awareness left my body and went elsewhere. In addition, since I had direct access to that inner voice deep inside me from a very young age, it got plenty of exercise and it strengthened significantly so that today I’m very comfortable with it.
In fact, I feel lucky now that the voice deep inside was actively present in my life. I cannot deny it nor the access to a greater awareness it brings me. And so I would even have to say that in many ways I’m lucky to have been sexually abused as a child; I’m lucky I found that voice at such an early age. That voice helped me to survive, but it also taught me that there is more to life than meets the eye. It gave me direct access to my soul and the knowledge that I am on a journey of the utmost importance. Even if that journey is only partially completed in this lifetime, I am aware that in my next lifetime the work I am doing now to fulfill that soul’s journey will have great impact and significance.
That voice deep inside continues to teach me every day now, as I meditate, as I channel, and as I go about my day, hearing songs playing in my head, asking me to go deeper, to pay attention. And as I continue taking my soul’s journey, one day at a time, I can’t help but wonder how far I can go, who else I might become, in this lifetime or the next.
At one time I was a victim of sexual abuse, mesmerized by trauma I could not access, yet my life was severely limited because of it. Then it all came back to me and I became a survivor, strengthened by the knowledge that if my child self could survive what she had gone through, then certainly I could survive the recapitulation of it. Now I’ve advanced beyond survivorhood, for staying there held no appeal. Once I was done with reliving the trauma I had no need of it anymore. Except as a teaching tool it has been put to rest. I became interested only in facing life, life as I had never been able to envision it before. Having taken the diamonds out of the blackness that once was my life, all I wanted was to live among those diamonds, in a world that was aglitter, alive, vibrant and exciting.
All I’m interested in now is looking forward into life, wondering what other gifts I’m going to receive, what other songs I’ll be hearing, what other experiences I’ll have. I live from that place deep inside every day. I don’t have time or inclination to do otherwise. I wake up each day and that voice pipes up and happily asks: I wonder what this day will bring?
It is my sincerest wish that others find and trust that voice deep inside themselves. Trauma gave me access to it, as it has many others. There are diamonds hidden in the darkness of traumatic memory. Listening to that voice inside leads right to them. For those who have not had the gift of trauma to find that voice, it may just be a matter of listening a little more closely, paying attention in a new way.
It’s the dreaming voice, the sober voice of truth, the voice that acts on our behalf and shows us its ultimate gift—the power of the human spirit to transcend the body—that our awareness exists outside our human form. It’s the voice that acts on our behalf unbeknownst to us. Perhaps not until our traumatic event is over do we realize we’ve been aided by something other than what our brain or our will could conjure up. It’s the voice that says, “No, that’s not the choice you should make,” but do we listen, even when we know it’s right? It’s that mystical something, unexplainable by the rational mind, that just will not let us rest back in an old world once we’ve experienced it. We might even want more or it!
Once we’re in total alignment with it—the voice of our personal truth—we’re right in alignment with our deeper, spiritual self, taking our soul’s journey. Paying attention to that voice deep inside is what got me started, my spirit calling out to me, asking me to heed its call, and I did pay attention, and boy did it take me on a journey of a lifetime.
And I’m still going!
Thank you to Melanie for all the songs and for her voice deep inside that keeps her singing! Thank you to Viktor Frankl for having so deeply investigated the human condition.
Ever since we left the Garden, we’ve had to rely on stories—be they myth or fairy tale—to provide us with a description of reality to orient us on how to be and behave. Prior to the Fall, as unthinking beings, we had the surety of our animal instincts to guide us with direct knowledge of the way things were and how to act appropriately. After the Fall we became beings of 2 minds, split into the mind that knows without thinking and the mind that thinks incessantly, generating newer and newer myths and stories—descriptions of reality to live and act by. The dominating myths of our times are created by Science, with its descriptions of reality that are believed to be objective and true.
The Shamans of Ancient Mexico went so far as to call the thinking mind a foreign installation, an actual entity that has taken up residence inside us for its own nourishment. Like all descriptions of reality, this description too is a story, the foreign installation a metaphor highlighting the impersonal nature of our chattering minds. That foreign installation has generated its picture of the world based on stories inherited and constantly generated by the internal dialogue within us.
We are a species addicted to our stories. We constantly crave stories—in books, movies, or oral traditions—to provide us with a sense of security, an identity, a framework, a world within which to grasp and live the totality of what we are. In turn, we are constantly catered to by a worldwide web of stories—news that frames and organizes our world—our dissociated instinctual selves finding outlets in the latest tales on the world stage or the latest thriller in the theatre. The spin doctors weave their tales, like salespeople catering to our need for a story to bring us peace and order, or an outlet for frustration, boredom, and depression.
In the healing field of psychology, clients are encouraged to build new narratives to find meaning in their lives. Unprocessed experience, like trauma, is fit into a narrative to make it more palatable, digestible, as if a new story can put the raw truth to rest. However, not all experience fits neatly into a story.
The fact is, our species is in peril because our stories simply aren’t true anymore. In fact, I believe we are at an evolutionary crossroads that demands that we step beyond the story and into full exposure and reconciliation with what is—without story, without metaphor. Look to the recent exposure of sexual abuse cases of children, and how we care not to know the full details. Instead, we hope they are not true; we hope that a different story will emerge. But healing will only come when we learn to accept what is.
President Obama steps into his second term largely freed of the need to uphold stories, dated myths of who we are and where we are. He can now point to the truth of global warming, the legitimacy of social programs, the real needs of woman and gay people, and the true inequality of our financial system. We need to be a world that can stand in and be with the truth now. We need to allow ourselves to reconnect with our ancient minds, the mind that speaks softly and dispassionately, with dead-on accuracy. This is the mind that can be in the presence of the full truth, that can guide us to healing, without story. In the groundlessness of direct experience, as we face our old stories and myths, the knowing that emerges is not just another story, but a documentary of the truth. In the groundlessness of no story we grasp the real truth and allow it to be fully experienced, fully known, and then finally filed away in the annals of life lived, tension fully released and resolved.
We have the opportunity to resolve our wounded psyches and bodies in the same groundless, storyless manner. In the case of trauma, we must allow ourselves to encounter what was, as it was, without framework, without the story we’ve always told ourselves. Our present self must be able to stand in the full presence of the traumatic event and breathe through it, without shutting down, allowing the full experience to be admitted, our personal docudrama acceptable for what it truly is. Our knowing mind leads us to full healing as the old myths fall away, no longer needed to hold us together. In the presence of this knowing mind, the adult present self merges in love with all its formerly splintered truths. We evolve into beings no longer needing two minds. We emerge as journeyers of one true mind, fully equipped for the adventure, without the weight of story.
Is that not Buddha beneath the bodhi tree at the moment of enlightenment—a being with full awareness without story—launched? Is that not the Shaman on the precipice of the definitive journey into infinity—a fully recapitulated being without attachment to story, a being with continuity and full awareness, perched for flight? Is that not like President Obama turning back to look out over the crowds at his inauguration, taking in the truth of a sight he will never experience again? Standing in his own truth, while others stream past him as if he were not even there, he releases that story and, having completed his backward glance of recapitulation, turns to face the future.
We all have the opportunity to face the truths of our two minds, to release our stories and stand in the truth of what is. Traumatized or not, it’s time to heal in a new way.
Life is a flow of energy. Judgment is a freeze frame of that flow of energy—an attempt to understand and value it—but clearly, judgment is not life. Life flows; judgment is static.
Don Juan Matus pointed out that human beings are perceivers, perceivers of the flow of life energy. He hypothesized that human beings went on to become judgers because it was an efficient way to manage the challenging dimension of life energy. Don Juan believed that the ability to quickly interpret and categorize energy in solid form gave our ancestors an advantage in defending themselves.
We can experience this today by simply walking in the road. We might see a flutter of movement in the distance. We then quickly judge that movement to be a skunk or possibly a rabid raccoon. With this in mind we plan our approach. Funny how many treacherous leaves and fallen pieces of bark I’ve encountered as I’ve approached these flutters in the distance—the dangerous jungle of the street I live on!
Carl Jung, like don Juan, agreed that human beings are perceivers who perceive through the functions of sensation and intuition. Don Juan would likely call these functions organs of direct knowledge—knowledge obtained independently of the mind.
For Jung, the ego, or the mind, develops the discriminatory functions of thinking and feeling to decide what things are and what value they have. These are the freeze frame functions of judgment, the solid interpretations of energy that don Juan spoke about. With judgment we create exhaustive categories of what life is, how it works, and also assign all this knowledge a place in our lives.
In the modern world, the judgment functions and their host, the mind, have become so dominant that the channels to direct knowledge are lost, devalued, and even ridiculed.
How often do we ask our bodies directly what they need using our innate sensation function? More likely we must research the latest study or be told by a professional what our bodies need. How did our ancestors ever know what to eat before we had science and Science Diet!
Intuition is vision into that which can’t be seen—a direct tapping into the flow of life energy. Intuition completely bypasses the mind. The rational, judging mind has little use for intuition, as it only deals with solid facts—the freeze frames of life’s flow of energy.
What I observe is that life continues to flow regardless of how we judge it. Life is, forever and anew, approaching us with both challenge and support. Challenge may come in the form of loss and deep trauma and support may come in the synchronicities of guidance and encouragement, presented in signs all around us.
Most of the time, life energy is moving us along in the most amazing ways. Unfortunately, because we are dominated by the judging functions of the mind, we miss the magic always active in our personal lives.
I constantly notice how bogged down we become in feeling bad about ourselves. We miss how the daily events of our lives unfold in such a meaningful and helpful way. Even more amazing is how we are continuously supported in our growth and evolution, in spite of the negative judgments we daily place upon ourselves.
Life continues to both challenge and support us regardless of how brutally we judge ourselves or how low our self-esteem. The real problem is not in our flow of energy but in our judgments. Often our judgments are so fixated that they refuse to take in the reality of the life we are actually living. Our judgments generate a negative interpretation regardless of the facts.
It seems as if we fear that if we truly accept ourselves as acceptable to life, we will invite the wrath of some higher power to level us. The fact is that bad things happen to good people and bad people alike. Life happens as it will. Energy will flow regardless of our judgments.
Judgment has no control over life. Judgment does, however, have control over what we allow ourselves to see and know about the lives we are actually living. Judgment is the ultimate spin-doctor.
If you judge yourself to be bad or a failure today, life will still bring you supportive energy tomorrow. Life is deaf to judgment. The real question is whether you will be able to be aware of the wonder of the day and the amazing gifts being offered. All that judgment does is fog the screen, but beyond the fog life continues to both challenge and embrace without judgment.
Can you suspend judgment and show up for the real show? And, even if you can’t allow yourself to get too close to the real show yet, life continues to challenge and embrace you anyway. The truth is, you are wanted by life to live and explore fully. It’s why it brought you here, as the eyes and soul of ever-evolving infinity.
Carlos Castaneda in conversation with don Juan, excerpted from A Separate Reality:
From where I was seated I could see the group of boys through the glass window… After three days of watching them go like vultures after the most meager of leftovers I became despondent, and I left that city feeling that there was no hope for those children whose world was already molded by their day-after-day struggle for crumbs.
“Do you feel sorry for them?” don Juan exclaimed in a questioning tone.
“I certainly do,” I said.
“Because I’m concerned with the well-being of my fellow men. Those are children and their world is ugly and cheap.”
“Wait! Wait! How can you say that their world is ugly and cheap?” don Juan said, mocking my statement. “You think that you’re better off, don’t you?”
I said I did; and he asked me why; and I told him that in comparison to those children’s world mine was infinitely more varied and rich in experiences and in opportunities for personal satisfaction and development…
“Do you think that your very rich world would ever help you to become a man of knowledge?” don Juan asked with slight sarcasm… “Can your freedom and opportunities help you to become a man of knowledge?”
“No!” I said emphatically.
“Then how could you feel sorry for those children?” he said seriously. “Any of them could become a man of knowledge. All the men of knowledge I know were kids like those you saw eating leftovers and licking the tables.” –from pp. 20-22.
We in America still live in the richest economy in the world. Do our freedom, opportunity and richness make us people of knowledge—people able to see and align with the true nature of reality? Do our educational institutions enlighten us or merely groom us to uphold an old world order? This old world order is so out of balance that nature is leading the revolution now to bring it down.
Nature has delivered a profound blow to the country of Japan. Perhaps we can ignore dead sea turtles in the oil-polluted Gulf of Mexico as new drilling leases are approved for oil companies, but can we really ignore radioactive waste filling the ocean? Who really feels reassured at the suggestion that by the time this waste finds its way to the human dinner table the radioactivity will be negligible and fit for human consumption? How can we ever really feel comfortable eating fish again? Are not the oceans all interconnected?
Don Juan challenges the worldview that privilege and wealth create advantage. In fact, he would argue that privilege and wealth lead to complacency and clinging to delusional beliefs. Don Juan would likely suggest that what appears as compassion for Japan is, in fact, displaced self-pity emanating from a deeply threatened old world order.
Our world of solid objects may be maya—sheer illusion—but even illusion requires some integrity to hold it together. The Newtonian dimension of our world—that of dense solid energy—is so out of balance that nature is unleashing its own corrective measures to root out the culprit: GREED!
The invasion of greed into the quantum level of reality through nuclear energy has now completely exploded. In a world of interdependence and interconnectedness, no amount of prosperity can insulate us from nuclear fallout. We are all in it together; we all live in Japan now.
Traumatized Japan is not a victim. Japan has been jolted awake. Japan is challenged to take the lead and overthrow greed, and align itself with needed change: a new world order in balance with nature. Can we all take that lead, see reality and become a people of knowledge?
Can we align our actions, policies and intent with what the seers of ancient Mexico call direct knowledge, or the Taoists call the Way: right action based on truth? This is our challenge: Truth or Consequences?
Citizen of the new world,
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