Watch your energy so that it does not become usurped by that which is depleting, negative, or unhealthy. Remain aware of what you do, who you attach to, and how your mind wanders; all these things can drain you of your vitality. Remain attentive also to what is going on inside of you and attend to it; to the things that memory presents, to emotions and physicals symptoms, for all these things are drains on your energy as well. Turn to nature for refreshment, calmness, and grounding. Walk calmly, breathe deeply, and ponder the vastness of the Great Sky and the beauty of Mother Earth. Let these things be your anchors so that within and without all may be well with you.
Sending you love, The Soul Sisters, Jan and Jeanne
Watch your energy. Take care of yourself. Pay attention to what comes at you and decide if it’s worth spending your energy on, both that which comes from outside of you as well as what emerges from inside of you. Wants and desires can be as energy draining as the biggest baby in the world. Curtail energy expenditures so that you have plenty in reserve for what really counts.
Ever notice how rapidly the mind assembles a story at the slightest hint of a possibility?
Once the story blossoms, all surrounding extraneous events become added details to support the surety of the story, as absolute reality. Yet, many, if not most of the times the story turns out to be just that, a red herring produced by the internal dialogue.
An incredible amount of energy is spent on these stories that are generated nonstop throughout the day. Furthermore, many of the stories evoke emotional reactions that further deplete one’s energetic reserves.
One way to apply the shaman’s dictum to suspend judgment would be to not attach, as the Buddhists would say, to not give attention to our stories. Perhaps we can’t stop the rapid assembly line of thought that creates the stories, but we can say to ourselves the word “story,” as they are presented to consciousness, reminding ourselves to pause and wait for the real facts to arrive.
Intuition sees in the dark, but it’s not always right. Make sure you get the facts. Synchronicity abounds, but it too can get caught in the tangled web of the storytelling trickster within. Tracking energy is a shamanic activity that seeks out genuine expressions of manifested energy, not cogitations of the mind that spin many a sordid tale.
The storytelling function we all possess is in fact an expression of how our intent is used. Someone fails to call us at an agreed upon time. Our creative capacity, our link to intent, is suddenly commandeered by the internal dialogue that then paints its pictures and authors its novels. When we refuse to attach to these unsubstantiated stories we strengthen our control over our link to intent.
Perhaps the most valuable gift from the current state of the world is the rapidity at which new stories are rapidly assembled, constantly changing versions of reality, blatantly assembled before our very eyes! We are suffering from story saturation, yet the lesson is crystal clear: ‘reality’ is created by stories that people agree upon.
We live in a consensus reality that is currently losing its cohesion due to major conflicting interpretations of the facts. The question to ask is, what interpretation has substance, and which is merely a phantom story? A good place to track the truth is following a path of heart. Seek the truth within the heart, beyond the reach of the cogitating mind.
The practice of recapitulation entails reclaiming energy from the stories we have really lived. As we relive our true stories we reclaim the energy they have held. Our freed energy then becomes available to be redeployed toward walking our true path of heart.
Self-importance is truly believing that the story of ourselves, our personal novel, is a best seller! Indeed, it must be, or we wouldn’t be solidly committed to it! This, of course, is the ego’s pitch, and the ego does have a point. If we weren’t so committed to our personal value we truly would cease to exist. This is one definition of schizophrenia: loss of ego, and with it, the ability to commit to a consistent storyline of self.
So yes, we do acknowledge the magic of our being as a story of great continuity. On the other hand, to become too fixated on a consistent story of ourselves clips our wings, limiting all that we might become, in fact, a very changed being.
Storytelling beings that we are, may we create a new story, a substantial world we can all really live and thrive in.
Is it diabolical that a mosquito, tick, bacteria, or virus feeds upon the matter and substance of our physical bodies? A nuisance, and in some cases a lethal nuisance indeed, yet, we begrudgingly accept this negative symbiotic reality as a feature of our physical world.
The Shamans of Ancient Mexico concur that our universe is a predatory universe. They describe this dynamic as operational at an even more subtle energetic level as well, that of an inorganic yet living entity that feeds upon the human energy produced by human emotion. Although negative in its draining of human energy, it also serves as a teacher that helps humans evolutionarily advance, if they can learn how to master its parasitic onslaught.
This opportunity, and the need for mastery over it, is ever so obvious in the conditions of our current world predicament. Outwardly, we are bombarded daily with the most outrageous of words and behaviors, incessantly taxing our emotional reserves, resulting in extreme volatility and emotional exhaustion.
These onslaughts fill the airwaves and social media, captivating modern life. Closer to home, beyond the politics of now, are our own personal longings for attention and validation, our own deepest needs compulsively seeking to bind us to screens.
Inwardly, we too are prey to the promptings of self-importance and self-pity, seeking outlet in an upward spiral of ecstatic inflation, or in a downward vortex, sending us into a bottomless pit of tortured longing and sadness. These volatile tendencies within ourselves often manifest in cycles of addictive attachments.
Shamans maintain that these various pathways of emotional activation are generated by an inorganic entity, which they have dubbed the flyer, through the judgments of offense that our internal dialogue incessantly broadcasts. Those judgements are directed toward self and other. They, in turn, generate a wave of emotional energy, the food for the flyer.
To free the self of this depleting symbiotic trap, shamans recommend a furtive effort of detachment, which they call the warrior’s way. The goal of the warrior’s way is to gain freedom from the bindings of attachment, first and foremost to being offended. If one can remain sober and detached in the face of offensive words and behaviors, none of one’s energy is lost in the encounter.
To accomplish this, one must lose one’s attachment to self-importance. Self-importance is generally garnered through validation by others, a highly dependent and vulnerable position, which leads to endless emotional strife. Rather than turn over one’s power to another’s validation, the guidance is to face the truth of one’s self within. Acceptance of, and the ability to laugh at, one’s self, goes a long way in cancelling out the impact of the judgments of others.
Self-esteem becomes acceptance of the whole truth of one’s actual self, good and bad. Inappropriate behavior by others is properly placed as their problem to face and resolve, and not as offense to one’s own self. This does not mean that we don’t strategically decide how to manage inappropriate behavior, however, we do so with truthful sobriety rather than with offense.
Freed of the emotional activation generated by judgments within and without, we advance in maturity. We accrue the energy that grants us the power to act decisively, with precision. No energy is wasted in feeding the predator. The predator is defeated when we deny it the energy of our emotional disgust and defeat.
In this time of flagrant predatory human behavior, we are all offered the opportunity to advance beyond the narcissistic emotional web of the predator, who constantly stirs up and then feeds upon our emotional turmoil. We don’t have to keep playing that game.
I prefer to punctuate the positive opportunity of this seemingly depressed and depressing time. I envision the predator as our ultimate teacher.
The predator, as teacher, shines the spotlight upon our attachment to self-importance, showing us the emotional trap where the greatest work needs to be done, and where the largest storehouse of our energy lies, waiting to be retrieved. Once we close this emotional trap drain, we open ourselves to a whole new world of freedom. Freedom to be.
When it really matters, when we are really threatened, something in us seizes control and acts. Awareness of the acts we perform in this heightened state of awareness may instantly be lost to memory as we shift back to our ordinary state of awareness, like when an intense dream is immediately forgotten upon awakening.
Immediately upon shifting out of these non-ordinary states of reality our internal dialogue takes charge, filling our minds to the brim with the affairs of everyday life, as our just moments ago extraordinary adventures fade into oblivion. In psychoanalytic language, our internal dialogue delivers us to a full blown neurosis. A caricature of how it operates would be a Woody Allen/Doubting Thomas character whose mind incessantly ruminates, doubts, and judges both self and others.
The salient feature of this obsessive thinking is its fixation upon feeling offended by the actions of others or blaming the self for the way things are; in effect, feeling offended by one’s own actions and limitations.
That we all have an internal dialogue is a necessary fact of life. In fact, as the Shamans of Ancient Mexico point out, its incessant defining and judging functions allow us to interpret and navigate the solid world we live in. However, the debilitating side of this nonstop chatter in our minds is that it distracts us from our capacity to live a richer life in a state of heightened awareness.
Indeed, we can be injured by the intentional actions of others, but to attach to the constant promptings of the internal dialogue, to be offended by the behavior of other or self, is to relegate the lion’s share of one’s energy to inconsequential, emotional self-defeat. Put bluntly, it’s a major waste of energy.
We needn’t obsess to address real occasions of injury, for as previously stated, when needed, something within us will spring forth and act without the necessity of lengthy deliberation. Even the action of freezing, or leaving one’s body under the impact of violent attack, reflects instinctive knowing of how best to survive. The internal dialogue is of no value when it really counts.
Shamans recommend freeing oneself from spending one’s energy on feeling offended. The energetic savings accrued by this allows one to gain greater access to living in a richer state of heightened awareness, where one enjoys, and is fully present to, all that is possible in life.
Don Juan Matus calls this state the mood of the warrior, where one is fully energetically alive in each moment in a state of inner silence. Pragmatically, this entails refusing the promptings of the internal dialogue to attach to any interpretations of being offended, and responding instead to the actual presenting needs of each moment.
The thinking mind might have a role in deliberating a decision, but silence allows the truth of the heart to spark spontaneous right action. This is living in the Tao of heightened awareness.
The best guidance for freeing oneself from the energy drain and limiting perspective of the internal dialogue is to allow it to just be, to not engage it, to not argue with or fight against it. Rather than be offended by life, particularly in this time of great offensive talk, respond like a warrior who acts from the place of what is truly needed to survive and prevail, in the best interest of all.
Yes, acknowledge that the acts of others can injure you, and do take decisive action to protect the self whenever necessary, but don’t waste any energy on being offended by the acts of others, as the internal dialogue would have you do.
Finally, place no attachment on the outcome of your decisive actions; fulfillment is already achieved in the purity of the warrior’s decisive act.