A new day has arrived! Take advantage of the opportunity to begin anew, filled with the energy of this moment that has come to offer you its energy and promise. With respect for your journey thus far, and with anticipation of change that is good and fulfilling, set your intent, and with patience move toward your goal, one more day and one more step at a time. And when you have reached that goal set another one. That is how to greet each new day with anticipation and excitement. That is how to live a life of wonder. A warrior always finds the beauty and the promise in each new day and, with renewed interest and unbending intent, travels always a path with heart.
Stay grounded in knowing that you are a dual force in the universe, body matter and spirit matter, comprised of so much more than what you normally perceive yourself as. Stay grounded in your body, remembering that you are also spirit, that these two parts of you are constantly urging each other to stay in alignment, to stay on your path of heart, your path of growth, healing, and evolution. Learn as much as you can about yourself, body and spirit, so that this alignment might bring you to greater understanding about the overall human condition, about how things happen and why, and greater knowledge about your own particular peculiarities. Remain aware of your two selves, body and spirit and, with loving kindness for this dual self, set upon your path of heart with renewed intent every day, knowing that this is your purpose, to learn that your life is indeed meaningful and beautiful in so many unexpected ways.
Reason is the dominant tool of the first attention, what the Shamans of Ancient Mexico call everyday life. Beyond the first attention is the second attention, the world of energetic life, which is replete with all things irrational.
The Hindus note, for instance, that the emotional body component of the energy body, which is the home of powerful emotions and passions, is a prominent feature of the second attention.
Jung calls the second attention the collective unconscious, which lacking consciousness to guide volition, operates through the activation of powerful archetypes that can overwhelm the reasonable ego of the first attention, causing it to perform outrageous acts. To preserve the order and decency of normalcy, Jung asserts that these deeper dimensions of the psyche are repressed and housed in what he called the shadow, a component of the second attention.
Reason and shadow are mortal enemies, hence the natural tendency to keep them separated. Reason insists upon the rules of logic and fairness for decision making. Shadow insists upon the release of intense emotions and passions as its modus operandi, reason be dammed. Reason, in its own condescension, snubs the irrational shadow, misjudging the power of the repressed.
The history of humankind reflects the occasional reckoning of these two dominants in the clashes of world wars. Our current world predicament is a prime example of reason clashing with the formidable energy of the irrational. The world is rapidly disintegrating into such a primal clash at this very moment.
At a fundamental level the worlds of the first and second attention are layers of the same onion. As humans we are both consciously reasonable, solid beings, as well as irrational, energetic spirit beings. The totality of ourselves requires that we integrate these worlds despite their inherent opposition. Evolution is absolutely requiring such an advance at this time. How can we achieve this integration without the ultimate disintegration, Armageddon?
To begin, reason must address the limitations of its own belief system: “Things aren’t that bad… no one would let thathappen…” In fact, the shadow thrives on letting anything happen that offers it powerful release.
Next, reason must recognize that shadow is a dimension of its own self. Reason often doubts this, despite the many addictions or obsessions that it notices in its own functioning. Does it also notice its fascination and vicarious excitement with the emotional outbursts of now? Reason always believes that it has things under control, or that things are, ultimately, under control.
Reason must accept responsibility in developing a relationship with the energetic world of the second attention. When people discover the out-of-body world, they are often at first driven by insatiable desires, repressed in the first attention of everyday life. Maintaining the operation of reason, with the intents available in the second attention, is critical for deep responsible exploration.
I strongly recommend Robert Monroe’s three books, which detail his own journeys into the second attention with the evolving accompaniment of his first attention, reason. With his success and guidance, he is truly deserving of the title of American Shaman.
Exploration and reconciliation with the deeper dimensions of the self offer a playing field of deep soulful satisfaction, which checks the tendency of the shadow to need to project itself upon habits and outer events that mesmerize the ego and take over consciousness.
Ego must humble itself to the existence of energies within the self that are far more powerful than ego itself. Ego has reason, but that’s no match for the irrational. Ego, in its humble smallness, can say no however. What change would happen overnight in the world if all individuals just said no, not driving today, not consuming today? Such a world strike of no would force a different relationship with power.
Nonetheless, ego must not be unreasonable in its demands. The world of the irrational, the world of passion and spirit must be lived. Beyond the shadow of doubt, reason must join with its passionate, spirited, irrational self in deep exploration and life, beyond reason.
Let your heart be still, your mind clear, and your intent focused so that your path of heart appears in each step you take, in each day’s unfolding, so that you are always in alignment with what is right for you to do, within and without. Make decisions based on the question, “Is this my path of heart?” Discover yourself more fully each day as you pose this question and make decisions, testing your ground and feeling your way. Train yourself to know in an instant what to do, how to act and react, until your path of heart is automatically your first and only choice.
Stay connected to your healing intent, to your convictions that you are worth the effort, to your dream of a new you. In alignment with all of that, and sure of a higher purpose and greater meaning, find solidity in your life. In keeping with the knowing deep inside of you that your path of heart is the only path for you, continue your journey restrengthening your intent with renewed vigor every day, restating that you matter and that your dream matters. Resolve the issues that hold you back so that you may become fully open and accessible. Lose your regrets and resentments so that you may be truly ready for new experiences. With love, let go of your attachments so that your energy may be truly free to enjoy, explore, and embrace your new dream of you. Keep your intent strong from moment to moment and day to day. Your path of heart will not fail you nor disappoint you, but it’s up to you to stay upon it, to act on your own behalf, and to be the dreamer dreaming the dream of the new you. Dream on, with intent!