Tag Archives: fragmentation

Chuck’s Place: Why We Fragment

Fragments & Wholeness
-Photo by Jan Ketchel

We are living in a time of great splintering. The energy of the many fragmented voices is fast and furious. The single-mindedness of independent parts, warring against any challenge, vying for supremacy at any cost, is the energy of now. We are a world that has dispersed its wholeness, and those independent parts are not presently interested in finding their way home.

Ironically, when wholeness is achieved boredom eventually sets in. It’s as natural as the fullness of an inhalation alternating with the dispersement of exhalation. When fullness reaches the condition of completion the spark to adventure splinters the wholeness, as points of curiosity launch to scout out new possibilities.

We live this process individually every day. When we close our eyes to our solid waking dream of daylight, our constrained wholeness splinters into a host of adventures in the infinity of our nightly dreams. When we awaken in the morning our nightly indiscretions from the limits of rationality dissolve quickly from memory, as waking consciousness clothes us for another day in the limits of solid time/space reality.

Nonetheless, the gifts of our nightly adventures innervate our daily lives, as synchronicities of knowing seek to jar our consciousness to remember; to remember the dreams, to remember the lessons, to integrate the nightly knowledge gained that opens up a broader perspective of who we really are and all that is possible.

It’s all about remembering. Remembering is the technology of wholeness. Trauma fragments, yet also sends scouts of us out into infinity. Recapitulating, retrieving the parts of our fragmented whole, brings us into greater reality. That greater whole restores innocence, but a greater reconditioned innocence, tuned to navigate the dark, as well as the light of reality.

The goal is hardly the restoration of lost innocence; it’s the birthing into matured innocence, prepped for new adventure. Like the flip side of a divorce that on the one side shatters the security of the archetypal family, on the other side launches all members of a family into a new world of knowledge beyond the myths of the nursery.

The blank slate of our birth is just another nursery myth to securely swaddle our awakening, alienated scout into a new life. When will we awaken to the deeper truth that our longing for soulmate is actually a protective cover from the impact of the accumulated love of our many lives, those whom support us from behind the veils of this earthly sojourn.

Jan, in her recently published final book of her five-volume Recapitulation Diaries Series—Dreaming All The Time—takes us even deeper into the mystery of our birth, as she discovers that she’d agreed to the challenge of her life before she arrived in her blank slate innocence of birth. Why would anyone agree to such a traumatic life?!

When I ponder Christ’s knowing fully of, and agreeing to, the traumatic fate that awaited him when he fragmented from the Mothership to be born in human form, I ask, why? Really? And then the answer comes: What was his greatest message? Love! Love thy neighbors, whoever they may be, whatever they have done to ye! Love thy petty tyrant and you will truly refine love, the prerequisite to advance into the greater wholeness of infinity.

When will we be ready to drop those veils and bring to our wholeness the discoveries of this fragmented life? Once again, it’s all about remembering. Remembering is the road to wholeness. Remembering is the great inhalation.

But, to answer the question, as to why we fragment? We fragment to explore whole new worlds, to satisfy our deepest curiosity, to learn, to discover, to adventure, to grow, to augment our wholeness, to change, to deepen our love, and yes, at times to avoid the challenge of integrating all of our selves, all of our experiences. The list is endless, the challenge great.

But do remember to breathe! Completely exhale, then breathe in a full inhalation. Hold for a few moments, deeply appreciating the wholeness encased within. Then let go, in exhalation, freely releasing the wholeness of the breath to disperse and travel freely, until we meet again, new and renewed, imbued to the fullest with the prana of the journey.

Breathing in and exhaling outwards, ever outwards,


Soulbyte for Tuesday February 18, 2020

Your real goal is wholeness and freedom, wholeness within yourself, all your fragmented parts brought safely home, and freedom from fear. Your fragmented selves are all the secrets you tell yourself, all the lies you uphold about yourself. And your fear rules you, keeping you safely ensconced in your secrets and lies. Accept your wholeness, all the parts of yourself you do not like, that you reject. And acquiesce to your fears; confront them, and in the process find your wholeness and your freedom. Only then will you truly know what it means to be all that you can be. Only then will you truly know what love is. And only then will you truly have achieved something, the real work of a lifetime.

Sending you love,

The Soul Sisters, Jan & Jeanne

A Day in a Life: Evolving Recapitulation

I really am in the final throes of editing my next book in The Recapitulation Diaries series: The Edge of the Abyss. For this week’s blog I post another excerpt, as I am conserving my time for editing. As the recapitulation proceeded I constantly discovered just how my inner process was leading me to learn what I needed to learn about myself. Guided by the intent of the process of recapitulation itself—its intent set long ago by the Shamans of Ancient Mexico—I was swept up in that intent, for better or worse, married to it. Though I often felt that I had married a monster, at other times I knew I had married a prince. In the end I discovered that I had been married to myself all along—if that makes any sense! I don’t believe this excerpt needs the same kind of warning as some of the others that I’ve posted. It’s really just about gaining valuable insight about the journey of life and moving forward with renewed intent.

"Look what I bring!" my child self says... Bottle art by Haldis. Photo by Jan Ketchel
“Look what I bring!” my child self says… Bottle art by Haldis. Photo by Jan Ketchel

From February 6, 2003: My son, sick with the flu and a 103° temperature, sleeps in today. I get my daughter off to school and contemplate what I woke up thinking about earlier this morning: shame, and the child inside me who continues to carry it around like a heavy boulder. I’m pretty sure the adult self let it go a long time ago, but the child self sneaks into the adult world at times still bearing this heavy burden. She plunks it down in front of me and says: “See! It’s still here.”

As I peer at this big boulder of shame that she drags around, I suddenly experience complete separateness from this child self, and with utter clarity I understand that she is the one who so tightly rolls into that fetal position every night. Clutching all the pain and shame, she’s still very much alive, residing somewhere deep inside me, while I—the adult—have gone on into life. I’ve grown up and done a lot of adult things, distancing myself from her as much as possible in order to do so. Now, I clearly understand that I went on so I could one day return to this moment, so that I could one day be in the position I’m in right now, intent upon rescuing the child self still inside me and, in so doing, rescue myself.

Until today, I’ve had such a difficult time seeing and believing myself to actually be more than one being, fearful of what it might mean about me, perhaps that I’m crazier than I thought. But only in acknowledging that I am many beings simultaneously will I be able to embrace the crystal clear insight that right now, in this moment, hits me: fragmentation is a valuable skill!

In one aspect of fragmentation, my fully present adult self is able to step outside the memories and from her perspective carefully and sensitively guide my child self. I see this as an evolving aspect of the recapitulation. I realize that in so doing I’m finally able to reciprocate what my child self once so protectively did, as she fragmented, repressing the memories in the process, so I could grow up. I’ve simply not been in a position to fully embrace this insight until now, but it’s very clear that fragmentation is an important tool that has a valid place in the healing process.

"I can do this now," my adult self says... Photo and painted bottle art by Jan Ketchel
“I can do this now,” my adult self says… Photo and painted bottle art by Jan Ketchel

As I continue to hone the use of this skill, I imagine that all of my parts will eventually merge. As my adult self joins forces with my fragmented child selves—my sixteen little girl selves—and grants them each an opportunity to express themselves, they will no longer be alienated parts, separate from the whole. Once each part has told her tale and been fully acknowledged for both her pain and her bravery, another part will link into this healing process, another part offered the way home. Clarity and wholeness will eventually come, as new ideas and new perceptions about life in general and the past in particular are accepted and assimilated too.

It’s really the job of the adult self now to make all this happen, to introduce the guidelines, for only she has the wherewithal and the stamina to take on this monumental task. It’s what I’ve been preparing for. She must nurture and prepare each of the fragmented selves now too, make them welcome, and fully assimilate them into the inner circle of the new self. It can’t happen without a strong adult presence, a loving, respectful, and compassionate self. That kind of maturity is key to this whole process.

Thanks for reading!

Chuck’s Place: Thoughts about Shame

The gift of the movie Shame is the clear and brutal exposition of a path deeply hidden yet commonly taken, the path of sexual addiction.

At its heart, sexual addiction shares with all addictions the expropriation of an instinct, in this case the sexual instinct. Other addictions, such as food and chemical dependency, are more associated with the hunger instinct. Addiction numbs, soothes and keeps at bay the underlying challenges of self-knowledge, self-acceptance, integration, and true intimacy.

The sexual instinct, fully wrestled with and realized in maturity, brings in its wake bonding, union, love and new life. In addiction the sexual instinct is choked into compulsive release, offering little more than deepening alienation under the ever-present shadow of death.

Choked in shame!

The storyline of the movie gives us little history, but enough to know that life lived must be kept at bay, frozen and unprocessed. Human contact—seemingly at its most intimate in the sexual act—must be completely devoid of connection and feeling. Sex is completely severed from even a hint of love. The slightest hint of feeling renders the phallus flaccid, plunged into yet deeper shame.

And with shame comes the opportunity to be with the pain, to find the tearful circuits to emotional release, to begin to melt the frozen islands of fragmented self. But, as with all paths, sometimes the shock and pain of knowing the truth, and feeling it fully, sends us back into addictive behaviors and release, the wheel of groundhog days. Though this repetitive cycle appears to offer little resolution, in actuality, it allows us to engage in a truly instinctual/spiritual process, as we return to accrue more energy in the form of frustration and discontent, energy that one day will help us awaken and realize that we no longer need to stay on that wheel. We are fully prepared then to step beyond the path of shame into deeper connection and fulfillment.

The movie leaves us hanging, in an unresolved land with some painful truths revealed and many still deeply hidden. It leaves us uncomfortable, confronted with accepting the fact that we all face addiction of some sort in our lives, as well as some sort of shame.

Though addiction comes in many guises, at its core it nonetheless asks us to face the same things within ourselves as the protagonist in Shame is asked to face within himself: the uncomfortable truth.

Can we enter that land of truth? What do we stay addicted to that keeps us from not only facing our deepest pain but from going deeper into where it is instinctually guiding us? Can we allow ourselves to accept that in facing our truths we really will step onto a path of change? Can we bear the tension of that journey of change that seeks to lead us to true union?

Jan: Self-portrait at age 18—still asked by spirit to face truths in the light of day

Lift the veil of shame and see what’s beneath it. The ultimate realization is that we’re all on the same path; we’re all beings on our way to dying. Choosing addictions equals choosing attachments. How long do we really need to hold onto them? How long do we need to keep at bay the real truths of who we are, the truths of our lives lived and the truth of our lives yet to be lived? Can we stay open to our fullest potential—fulfillment in a life we can’t hold onto anyway? Because we do have to die.

The real question is: How do we want to live?

And the real crux of sex and love is: Can we allow ourselves to fully open to love in a life that will one day end? Can we join the spirit of love and fully merge with another human being? Can we love someone who may leave us and someone who surely is going to die? If love is spirit and sex is matter—which is transitory—can we allow ourselves to drop all addictions and attachments, and all our shame too, and truly merge the two?

Full union of spirit and matter is letting love in. There is no shame in that.

Chuck, with love and thanks for some expert editing by Jan.

#642 Chuck’s Place: Liquid Energy is Our Primary Birthright

Welcome to Chuck’s Place, where Chuck Ketchel expresses his thoughts, insights, and experiences! Many of the shamanic and psychological terms used in Chuck’s essays are defined in Tools & Definitions on our Psychotherapy website.

Yesterday, we sat in the waiting room, Cosi in Jan’s lap, both of us touching her, feeling her vibration, feeling our own sadness. In a few minutes the vet would see us, examine Cosi, and concur with what we already knew. Jan had faced the truth first: we were keeping her alive, she could not live without our intervention, she was in pain, it was time to let her go. Jan had previously fanned the pages of the I Ching in front of Cosi, asking her to show her what needed to happen. Her paw stopped on Hexagram #23 Po, splitting apart, the inevitable, unstoppable collapse of the house. There was no stopping Cosi’s body from splitting apart; it was time to release her energy. After that, Jan opened the book at random three times and each time it fell open on Po. There was no changing the inevitable.

Others came into the waiting room. They had no attachment to our cat. Though they occupied the same room they were in a different, disconnected world. That’s how it is with the human operating system; the archetypal substrate that governs our experience breaks us into units, a world of disconnected solid objects that we learn to differentiate. We are drawn to attach to certain objects to experience our emotional selves as we form bonds with other individuals. Our experience of connectedness beyond those we have attached to is quite limited. Haiti, for instance, is another world. Perhaps we might make a contribution on the cell phone. It is hard really to feel connected for very long beyond our immediate world and those we are emotionally attached to. That is the nature of fragmented, disconnected units. The advantage of fragmentation is the ability to obtain deeper knowledge of a part. In medicine this is called specialization. The challenge for medicine is to put Humpty-Dumpty back together again and see a person as a whole unit, holistic medicine.

This same challenge confronts our world now at a major evolutionary juncture. Our world has reached its limit in sustaining fragmentary beings with special interests. This fragmented world must allow itself to also be a holistic unit. This was don Juan’s conclusion: for this world to survive, it must be able to now be experienced as a world of interconnected energy, as well as a world of solid objects. This was Jeanne’s guidance yesterday. She gives us the image of liquid energy versus solid objects. She describes her experience as one of total detachment, that is, freedom from specialized attachments, which results in the experience of utter calm and pure love and compassion for all. This experience is our birthright, just as much as our experience of the world as one of solid objects is our birthright. For our world to survive, we must make the evolutionary leap to experience our liquid energy birthright and allow the experiences of interconnectedness, utter calm, and totally detached loving compassion for all to flow into our world of solid objects. This will transform how we act and react in a world of solid objects.

Cosi lay on the exam table, calmly awaiting her transformation; we laid our hands upon her and she received her injection. Both Jan and I then simultaneously experienced a subtle swoosh of light energy move from her body, through us, and then beyond. She is now in her pure energy state, the place we are all headed. The opportunity we are being offered now, while in our solid form, is to experience ourselves as liquid energy, all interconnected in a far greater reality. The experience of Cosi, as energy, was a reminder that ultimately we are all destined to return to our pure energetic state. However, we also have the opportunity to experience ourselves in our energetic state while we still reside in our solid human form. In fact, this is what is being required of us now, in order to allow our world of solid objects, itself on the verge of splitting apart, to continue to exist and evolve, to become an interconnected, holistic unit.

This evolutionary challenge is actually urging us to rediscover our energetic birthright because, once we enter the matrix of solid objects, we forget. As don Juan put it, “we are energy first.” As Jeanne put it yesterday, once we find our way to utterly calm and detached loving compassion we discover we are in a familiar, known place; we are home. This place is already in us, we just need to allow ourselves access to it. Can we stay in this place of familiar home, with all its truths, and reenter the world of solid objects, bridging the two and, in so doing, evolve this world into a sustainable world?

As always, should anyone wish to write or ask, I can be reached at: chuck@riverwalkerpress.com or feel free to post a comment.

Until we meet again,