Let bygones be bygones as you turn in a new direction now, with heart open, with love leading the way. Leave old negative thoughts and ideas about yourself behind as you turn toward the light of positivity. When it’s time to finally change it can be as easy as turning and walking in a new direction. Knowing that you have taken care of old business, that you have left no stone unturned, no strings attached, and that you are truly free will make the new journey one of right action. Maybe it’s time, maybe it’s not, but it’s always time to prepare, to attend to that which binds you, and to dream a new dream. You have the power totally within you, within your own mind, to dream a new dream. It’s doesn’t matter where you began, what matters is where you go next. Take life forward in the new positive direction you dream of, one small step at a time, one day at a time, with thanks for where you have been and with gratitude for what you have learned. Keep your dream alive, not just in imagination but in action. Every day is a new dream. Dream on!
Many people believe that the basic security they lack, due to parental neglect early in life, must be subsequently supplied by someone, somewhere, for healing and confidence to be established in their innermost being. When I began my professional career as a therapist at The Linden Hill School, a psychiatric hospital for nonviolent, deeply disturbed adolescents, I was told tales of former therapists who had attempted to compensate for the early neglect of caretakers by literally feeding their adolescent patients on their laps with warmed bottles of milk.
I myself once had a cat who’d been separated from his mother prematurely; we called him Ricky. Every time Ricky was held and petted he immediately attempted to nurse on anything his mouth could reach. No matter how much Ricky nursed through the years, this behavior never changed.
There appear to be critical periods for meeting certain needs through age specific behaviors. In the field of ethology, the study of animal behavior, Konrad Lorenz discovered that there are critical periods for imprinting and attachment. For instance, a mother goose will not bond with a separated chick beyond sixteen hours after hatching. In other words, that chick has just 16 hours to get the mother goose’s attention! If that fails, it’s on its own.
In humans, nursing behavior enacted beyond infancy will not supply the archetypal love as it does for an infant being loved through this form of nurturance. Fixation upon the now outdated archetype might persist, but acting it out merely provides a temporary fix, with powerful dependency on others continuing to be necessary to provide basic security. An internalized sense of being loved, with its resultant feeling of confidence, remains lacking.
How then does one fulfill a missed first chakra need of secure footing in this world? Regardless of the state of integrity of our personality foundation as separate beings, our bodies continue to grow. We are forced to adapt to new situations in life even if we are lacking in confidence. Fortunately, some inner parent, what I call one’s High SOUL, invokes a variety of strategic maneuvers which prioritize continuing to be able to grow, cognitively and emotionally, in spite of the lack of completion of a secure personality foundation.
One such strategy of the High SOUL is to prompt a child to make believe everything is OK. An adult name for this strategy is to act-as-if. When we act-as-if, or fake it till we make it, we willfully explore a behavior that stretches us beyond the comfort zone of our habitual repertoire. Though acting-as-if may be experienced as a false self, or may not serve deeper personality transformation, it is useful for adaptation in the moment. It may allow one to stay in the moment and actually continue to grow in vital ways.
Another powerful intervention by the High SOUL is the use of amnesia. Frequently, in the trauma of primal neglect, the memory of the traumatic experience is completely lost to consciousness, stored alternatively in the unconscious mind or somewhere in the physical body. Through this dissociation an individual is enabled to stay somewhat present to the experiences and lessons of the current moment.
Interestingly, as I have witnessed in my personal clinical experience, the High SOUL decides when, at some future point in time, the forgotten experience will surface, often decades after the event. This parental wisdom, exercised by the High SOUL, is to wait until a stage of life when adaptive needs are lessened and focus can shift to the integration of lost wholeness. Indeed, I am suggesting here that our true parent is our own High SOUL, always present behind the scenes, supporting our ability to undertake and fulfill our mission in this life.
Addressing traumatic memory or the fulfillment of basic needs requires a strong adult presence. When one opens to need or trauma, the emotional state of the inner child is evoked through the little soul of the subconscious’s connection to the body and its release of powerful hormones and neurotransmitters to activate emotions specific to the state of the trauma or need. The ego-Soul is then asked to stay present to the activated emotional, cognitive, and body states associated with the memory or need of the inner child.
In effect, High SOUL has determined that ego-Soul is now ready to become the parent to its own child self. This is not a matter of going back to some earlier time and fulfilling a need in the form that was missed out on. What is required is for the adult ego Soul to stay fully present and open up to the experience of its formally dissociated inner child. This means feeling it in emotion and body, and knowing it cognitively as the child believes it to be. High SOUL, who raised ego-Soul, now asks it to become the adult parent to its personality in the time and space of this world.
But how to do this? How does one develop such affect tolerance? One approach is deep relaxation. The little soul of the subconscious does what it is told to do. If, in the midst of a highly clenched physical state, ego-Soul can volitionally place its awareness on the points of tension in the physical body and instruct the body, through suggestion to the little soul of the subconscious mind, to relax the body, the body will respond and lessen its grip. Repeated instruction will deepen relaxation and allow ego-Soul to help its child self to regulate its own emotional intensity in the face of the experience it is in the midst of.
This loving act, of staying present to and helping to transform the inner child’s emotional reaction, opens the door to a deeper cognitive perspective where the child state sees the fuller context of the truth of its early experience, which can clear up false negative beliefs it may have held about itself for much of life.
This adult ego-Soul relationship with its younger self becomes the true supplier of the primal nurturance long sought in life. With this foundation, genuine transformations occur that provide for enriched fulfillment in life, within and without.
Whenever stressed, practice relaxation. Pause, take a breath, shift focus to the subconscious with the instruction to release the body tension. Stay present, see what happens! This is love in action, the right mechanism for archetypal completion, now.
Find your way to peace within, knowing that life itself supports you in your pursuit of your wholeness. Find meaning in all that has happened to you in a way that makes sense, as a worthy tale of a life thus far lived. For, indeed, all lives are worthy of a consolidated picture of reality. All lives are important, noteworthy, and of great value, for one small person effects many and thus one life counts greatly and is part of the bigger picture that is life as you know it. Be at peace knowing that all lives are interconnected, interwoven, and that each and every life contributes greatly to the whole, and that which is whole is complete.
Your own life and those of others are all of equal value. No one person owns life more than another. So take your own life as seriously as you take that of others. And be at peace knowing that your struggle, your story, and your search for meaning and wholeness have great impact upon the whole world, in matter and spirit, just as much as the next person’s struggle. You matter. With dignity and renewed vigor pursue your Soul’s goal to know and understand at ever-deepening levels, and find peace in knowing that it is as worthy a goal as you will ever encounter among the many Souls journeying with you. To know the self is the ultimate goal. Through this pursuit find your peace and balance within and arrive at peace and balance without.
We are beings of suggestion. In shamanic terms, what we intend is what we suggest, and that we become.
Our power lies in maintaining ownership of our intent. As suggestible beings, we are subject to the influence of many outside and inside intents, beyond our conscious awareness, that have the power to put us into trance. Once entranced, we manifest the dictates of those prevailing intents.
Take, for instance, waking in the night to a worrisome thought. If we are unable to fend it off that thought commandeers our central nervous system, and we become victim to its drama and a sleepless night. The thought was just a traveler in infinity, seeking an entertaining night in the theatre of a human body.
The truth is that thoughts are just illusory bait with no substance. In and of themselves they cannot hurt us. What does hurt us is our own energy giving them life, if they hook our attention. Their lifeless drama comes alive through the fear and anxiety we lend them as they take over our imagination.
Parasites they may be, but guides they are as well, those thoughts that manage to take root in our fertile soil. We are shown where our weaknesses are when thoughts penetrate our walls. And those weaknesses likely call us to our recapitulation journey, where we are given the opportunity to retrieve a lost part of our Soul and thereby shore up our wall.
We may have to journey through a nostalgia, a sensitive memory or longing, with its requisite emotions. We may need to feel, to release, and to witness the fullness of this nostalgia before its energy can be freed to join us in our current life. This recognition and appreciation allows for an old nostalgia’s completion, as it gracefully frees its energy to go forward into the self of now. And, with that, a fully permeable wall of total detachment from the nostalgia forms, as there is no longer a vulnerability left in us to cause a trigger or fear.
As beings of suggestion, we must face just how powerful the law of attraction really is, as it manifests the dictates of an intent. We do manifest what we self-hypnotically tell ourselves. When the mind entertains a thought in the night, the little soul of the subconscious delivers us a body riddled with anxiety, the intent of the thought manifested.
Carlos Castaneda taught that a merchant mentality is the ruling intent of our time. This is the ego-Soul fixated at the solar plexus chakra. Even the highest ideals of the New Age, those glimpsed at the heart chakra, are contaminated by fame, self-importance, and the profit motive. On the surface we turn to the light, but beneath the surface we unknowingly cling to security and self-interest, the merchant ego-Soul state.
Our intent is thus unconsciously fragmented, whereby confounding intended outcomes—the groundhog day scenarios of our lives. Without facing the fullness of our personal shadow merchant selves we remain beings of contradictory suggestions, who often then surrender our personal intent to outside influences, to make things happen.
Once a year, in a faraway land, the King, the great world father, stands before his people and proclaims the greatness of his kingdom. “Ours is the richest and strongest kingdom of them all,” he reassuringly proclaims. “The state of our economy is the envy of the world.” Many are moved to tears and applause, even those who would challenge the Gaia-destroying consequences of his policies. Calmly, he warns that the greatest threat to safety and continued success would be to question his rule. This mythological example exemplifies the reality of our current lives.
Many are lulled to surrender their personal intent, to resolve their inner contradictions and find hope and security by internalizing a powerful outer intent and manifesting its demands. The world—inner and outer—is a marketplace of such powerful intents, each vying for the most consumers. We are, by birth, hypnotic beings who must learn the art of consciously taking charge of our own intent!
Taking charge requires the following:
Observe the content of the inner dialogue. Our personal intent, our personality, is a manifestation of the words we repeat to ourselves incessantly. The little soul listens to those words as instructions for the physiological creation of body and emotion.
Change the tense of self-descriptive verbs and adverbs in inner and outer dialogue. “I will never” becomes: “In the past I never.” A further evolution is a positive and definite instruction: “I intend…”
Shield the self from the marketplace of intent, both in the inner and the outer world. If an alien “idea” seeks to seduce from within, stop it in its tracks. This might take the form of identifying it as “thought” and shifting attention away from it, but it might require blatant warfare: “OUT!!!!!!!!” Yes, it may be necessary to return to the issue in recapitulation, but that will be on one’s own terms; never give overbeing in charge.
Limit exposure to outside intent. Everything we read and listen to has its own intent, even as simple as liking a picture or quote. Liking something is an exchange of energy. Carlos Castaneda actually stressed this point to the level of inanimate objects in museums, where adorned objects feast upon and drain the energy of viewers. Of course this doesn’t mean not to go to museums, he stated, but one must be careful to guard the influences upon one’s energy, even in such an innocuous circumstance as appreciating a work of art.
Archetypes are our true original parents. “I am the Lord, thy God…” These authoritative influences upon one’s personal intent are constantly and automatically projected onto high office holders. Recognize these projections, whose intents so easily supersede one’s own personal intent. Go to the heart center. What is the intent of one’s own High SOUL? Reconcile with that intent, taking full responsibility for life in this world.
Taking charge ultimately requires raising the ego-Soul’s consciousness from the marketplace arena of the solar plexus to the quiet and clarity of the heart center. The proving ground for this ascent is the assumption of legitimate power by ego-Soul.
The fact is that ego-Soul is an orphan, separated from its wholeness as a condition for undertaking life outside infinity, in the finite space and time of this world. This sets up the foundation for all of humanity: inadequacy and inferiority. The trapping to compensate for this inadequate state of being is to enter the marketplace of self-importance and attach to its offerings to elevate the ego-Soul’s validity. The Shamans of Ancient Mexico countered this trapping with the mantra: “I am nothing.” The intent of this mantra is to refuse identification with the false gods of the marketplace.
However, this is simply not the full truth. Indeed, “I am nothing” is the counter to the crutch of inflated self-importance, but, despite the fact that I am nothing, I AM! Can I strip away the crutch of self-importance, with its emphasis on validation and esteem, and simply acknowledge the purity of the fact that I AM. And with that acknowledgement of I AM, I am announcing that I am responsible for figuring out and taking charge of the life I am in.
Ultimately, it rests with ego-Soul to take charge of life in this world and that might even, at times, mean having it venture beyond the intent of its own High SOUL. In the final analysis, it is ego-Soul that has taken up this journey in space and time, a life that will end in this form some day. Take charge, refuse the not-I intents of the marketplace, and realize the wholeness of the I AM intent in this life.
Ground yourself. Even as you seek connection with spirit, even as you seek to explore your dreaming body, stay connected to the earth. In-body you reside during this lifetime and it is in-body that your lessons are learned. Stay grounded and take command of your lessons so that your dream journeys may make sense as complements to your in-body experiences and then all parts, body and spirit, will be in synch, working to advance that which is most meaningful: YOU! Stay grounded so that you get it right this time around, and so that when your spirit soars it will know what its doing and why, lessons completed.