Tag Archives: soul

CHUCK’S PLACE: WHO AM I REALLY?

Dreaming the dream…
Art by Jan Ketchel © 2004

At a Tensegrity gathering in Barcelona, 16 years ago, an assignment was given to answer the question, “Who am I?”  A deadline was assigned by which answers were to be submitted via email. No suggestions were given as to how to navigate locating an internet cafe—there was no Wi-Fi in those days—nor how to communicate if you didn’t speak Spanish.

As I recapitulate the experience today, I know what my honest answer should have been, “I’m a terrified little chicken, reticent to assert myself, to be imperfect, to not be on time.” I believe my ‘enlightened’ answer at the time was more like, “I’m an energetic being who is going to die,” taken directly from the Shamanism Catechism 101 crib sheet!

The truth is that though the more honest answer reflects both my survival fears associated with the first chakra, as well as my ego Soul assertiveness issues at the solar plexus chakra, the answer I gave also reflected a center of who I am at the third eye chakra, though at the time this was not a place I could volitionally rest in.

We are beings with several dimensions of awareness. We may habitually occupy but one or two of those centers, but even A Failed Christian, as Nick Lowe sings of himself, can be stirred to a higher spirit center when the choir sings in harmony.

The chakra system of ancient Hinduism is a useful structure to identify the various centers of consciousness in the human body. More precisely, they refer to energy centers in the etheric body, a subtle body that energizes the physical body through the activity of kundalini, the active force in human life. I refer to this subtle body as the Soul, which is comprised of the little soul of the subconscious, the ego Soul, and the high SOUL who resides in infinity.

At the levels of the first and second chakras, we are purely animal instinctive beings, almost exclusively controlled by our DNA, ancestral history, and the archetypes of the collective unconscious. This is the domain of the dweller I have referred to in recent blogs, the conservative autocrat only focused on the rules of survival.

At the level of the third chakra, we have the birth of consciousness where the will and the ability to choose over nature’s dictates are discovered. Nonetheless, ego Soul at this level has a very narrow narcissistic worldview: ME!

At the level of the  heart chakra, ego Soul comes in contact with high SOUL, the love and truth of infinity, which expands its horizons to include itself as only a part of a greater interconnected reality.
The divisiveness of the solar plexus warrior is supplanted by a greater love for all beings as part of a greater wholeness.

The chakras above the heart center are increasingly associated with the high SOUL dimension of our whole Soul being. Consciousness at the third eye or crown chakra offers direct access to interactions with beings in infinity, such as in channeling, as well as provides the respite of deep detachment from the affairs of time and space, as one rests in the perspective of heightened awareness.

Meanwhile, back in time and space, we have Western thinking, which  is obsessed with progress. Goals are broken down into smaller logical objectives, successive stepping stones that culminate in achievement of the established goal. This linear ascent model dominates our definition of progress. We constantly judge ourselves and are judged by others by the quality and status of our ‘progress.’ Perfection is reaching the completion of the goal with maximum efficiency.

The truth is that this measure of progress is only relevant for a part of our multidimensional being, who we really are. Our root chakra is obsessed with survival. Our solar plexus may be obsessed with winning. Our heart may be concerned with doing the right thing with compassion. Our third eye might view the multidimensional synchronicities of this current wave of energy. Our crown chakra might be dreaming the dream we are currently living.

Progress or growth clearly involves an integration and blending of all of these dimensions of awareness to realize the fullness of Self. Furthermore, kundalini herself directs where and how our journey will unfold to discover the fullness of who we really are. The way of kundalini is not simply one of vertical assent or of logic.

In traumatic recapitulation, kundalini might first take one to an early childhood memory and next to adolescence, and then zigzag back to childhood, then forward to early adulthood. If one expects a logical time progression one is sure to be disappointed and, in fact, one can get caught in a depressed mood through a judgment of failure.

Kundalini has its own internal reasoning, which is impervious to the constraints of logical order. This is also experienced physically. The mercurial path of kundalini might go from a third eye intense headache one day to a pain in the big toe the next.

The path seems more about clearing space at one level and then returning to other levels to trigger and address older issues whose time is due. Perhaps the path is similar to a Rubik’s cube, where progress requires movement at different levels at different times. Guidance here is to suspend judgment and trust the process.

So, who am I really? Seems the current working definition is a multidimensional being, whose centers of awareness are getting to know each other. Good luck with solving the puzzle!

Have fun,

Chuck

Chuck’s Place: Containment and the Journey of Soul

Stay contained…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

Last week’s blog culminated with the adjacent image of the dweller contained within the angel, sitting in quiet repose upon a tree stump. The eyes of the angel reflect the agony of the basement dweller, imprisoned within this flighty, heavenly angel, as well as the sadness of the angel, weighted down to Earth by the dweller’s dense energy. Nonetheless, a hint of innocent companionship is felt in their tentative thinking man pose.

This stage of quiet containment reflects the moments in our habitual cycles when we are able to hold within ourselves the dweller’s impulse to action. This action of restraint, nonetheless, generates a condition of great tension within the body.

Inwardly, this is the experience of a combined wild fire and flood, as an electrical charge, called anxiety, races at lightning speed through the central nervous system, accompanied by a clenching vascular action that forces blood to rapidly flush throughout the body. Both the neurological and pulmonary body systems seek immediate discharge from this unbearable tension through physical release, be it through raised voice, aggressive body movement, or outright body flight into spirit, clinically defined as dissociation.

As pictured above, the ego Soul can alternatively choose containment over physical release and, with the support of the angel spirit (SOUL messenger), land in the eye of the body storm, at the heart center, which enables it to hold fast to the knowing that positive transformation will result from this right inaction. Additionally, expansive love is available from this center, enabling greater acceptance of the opposite planes of the self, activated and in conflict in its present struggle.

In a nutshell, the technology employed here is to not take the lid off the pot of water on the stove as the heat rises and reaches the boiling point where energy transitions to a new state, from liquid to gas. In human terms this can be likened to kundalini rising from one chakra to another, opening one up to a new plane of consciousness.

For instance, kundalini rising to the heart chakra opens consciousness to the expanded awareness of a non-egocentric perspective of the world. Rather than the perspective of a willful battle with opposing forces, characteristic of the solar plexus chakra, ego Soul at the heart chakra sees the interconnected value of all things. As well, right action, action in alignment with the high SOUL, becomes obvious and then ego can calmly, from a deep state of detachment, execute appropriate behavior.

The Shamans of Ancient Mexico taught the practice of utilizing the petty tyrants in one’s life to achieve this enlightened state of awareness. Petty tyrants are the people and situations in our lives that trigger our anger in defense of our self-worth. Essentially, these are the people that offend us. Being offended evokes the survival fight reaction at the lower chakras, particularly at the solar plexus.

Although, at a certain period of ego development it is necessary to battle, i.e., confront one’s oppressors, to be frozen at this level leaves one permanently vigilant, tense, and dominated by a negative attitude. Shamans practice refusing release of their instinctual reactions to their petty tyrants. In fact, they allow themselves to be used by their tyrants, which causes the resultant contained emotional energy to rise. As that emotional energy rises it burns through the web of feeling offended at the solar plexus level, while purified awareness rises to the clarity of the heart chakra.

From this detached place of not taking anything personally, Shamans gain clear knowing of right action to subdue the tyrant, not from a place of anger but from objective right action. I’m reminded here of the elderly Aikido master who offers the hostile passenger his seat to most efficiently resolve a tense situation on a crowded train. Another example is the Dalai Lama who admits that one must defend oneself, even perhaps having to shoot someone in defense of one’s life, but all the while holding them in a place of loving compassion.

Gaia teaches us this practice of detachment now, as her own kundalini energy rises in our experience of global warming. Her evolutionary objective is to reshape the Earth, with survival practices emanating from the plane of the heart chakra. At core, Gaia’s intent can be summed up as a release from the Dweller-based economy of survival—that which has mismanaged and exploited Earth’s resources—by moving into a Spirit-based alignment with SOUL. This transition will shift humanity’s primary emotional operating system from fear and vigilance to interconnected knowing and right action, based on the true needs of the planet.

The journey of ego-soul through a lifetime on Earth, ultimately culminates in Soul, as energy body, exiting the physical body at the time of death. The trajectory of that Soul’s journey is to bring its experience and knowledge from its just-lived life home to its greater SOUL in infinity. That continued journey may require many stops at other levels of experience, perhaps even subsequent return trips to Earth to fully solve and release attachment to its former life.

A willingness to fully explore one’s life while here, particularly through the practice of containment, allows kundalini, the active energy of the Soul, to rise and open to a fuller and more fulfilled exploration of life while here, and a more direct journey to SOUL when it’s time for that definitive journey.

Contained and rising,

Chuck

Chuck’s Place : Dweller & Angel

Dare to trespass and grapple with the dweller!
– Photo by Chuck Ketchel

The dweller* is the ruler of the subconscious, in the basement of our human being personality. I also call the dweller the little soul of the personality. The dweller is bound to nature’s survival instinct with sex in the forefront for species survival, and food, shelter, material resource and power acquisition its focus at the level of personal survival.

The dweller relies upon nature’s instinctual archetypes to maintain physical homeostasis and prompt behavioral action. The dweller is extremely conservative, it stays with what works, the programs that have ensured planetary evolutionary survival. These programs are encoded in our DNA, our ancestral memory and, ultimately, in our deepest karma, our high SOUL’s purpose for sending us into this earthly life.

The dweller doesn’t think and is not open to change. Like a conservative fundamentalist, it follows, without question, the commandments of the archetypes. In the absence of new orders it stays with what works. Even if one has been miserable an entire life, from the dweller’s perspective this represents successful survival and, hence, it is loathe to allow new, consciously sought after behaviors to stick. In fact, like a hidden sniper, it patiently awaits its opportunity to defeat them.

The ego Soul, bearer of consciousness, lives in the ground floor of the human personality, as a result of its decision to gain knowledge and make its own decisions in Eden, resulting in its banishment from nature, the dweller’s domain in the basement. Curiously, though the dweller is bound to its programs, like a willing soldier it immediately responds to orders from elsewhere, such as from ego Soul, influential others, or public opinion.

This, in a nutshell, is the heart of hypnosis. The hypnotist becomes the ruler of the dweller through suggestions that the dweller enacts upon command. In fact, we, as ego Souls, are all self-hypnotists, constantly sending suggestions to the dweller through the repetitive internal dialogue of our thoughts. Thus the dweller manifests in the body in how we think about ourselves.

This includes our central nervous system, which the dweller oversees. Thus, if we tell ourselves we are not safe, the dweller activates neurological signals and chemical processes that mold us into body-clenching, anxious beings. If we maintain this belief system over time, the dweller institutes this habitual thought pattern as a permanent program, with its resulting body state—however uncomfortable it may be—as a proven survival program, the dweller’s guiding priority.

Here we witness the familiar vicious cycle of ego Soul attempting to enact change by exercising intent, discipline, mantra, or downright discipline and, after some optimistic initial success, ultimately being defeated. The hidden dynamic is the dweller, at first following ego Soul’s orders but actually opposed to them, laying in wait for a vulnerable moment to defeat the ego Soul’s heroic efforts with doubt and defeatism, whereby restoring the more trustworthy program of familiar hell. In truth, the ego Soul might willingly collude with the dweller’s plot, as glimpses of the unfamiliar lightness of being might scare the ego to death!

Often, ego Soul turns to the upstairs occupant of its human personality, the high Self, who is connected to the high SOUL, to seek solace and guidance and, frankly, to escape from the dweller’s paralyzing grip, which repeatedly freezes the possibility of change. Thus, we might turn to inspirational music, prayer, or positive self-help books to infuse ourselves with the positive energy of heaven, seeking release from the darkness of our private hell.

Dweller in Angel, contained…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

Many religions offer the technology to cast out and cut off the devil dweller and identify instead with the beings of light: saints and angels. Psychologically, this often results in a state of dissociation where a major part of the psyche is disowned, the consequences of which, in extreme form, can be seen in bipolar disorder, where one swings from living a powerful identification with the dweller to a powerful identification with pure angel.

The plight of the Catholic Church, as well as many institutions and individuals outed by #MeToo, reflects the consequences of the disowned dweller unleashed in the dark, contrasted by only the sunny angel appearing in the light of day. Out-of-body practitioners must also be aware of their own physical body dweller, as the tendency of New Age technologies is to covet the light and disown the dweller in the dark basement. If you are in human form there is no escaping the force of the dweller.

Ironically, both Jung and Trump agree on one thing: we must construct the walls of a mandala sanctuary within if we are to safely integrate the powerful forces at all levels of the personality: little soul, ego Soul and SOUL. Trump reflects everyman/woman in his struggle to contain those forces within himself and has consequently become a major channel to the dark collective dweller archetypes that are currently wreaking havoc on the human playing field. Would that Trump would grasp that his projected wall must be created within himself!

Trump’s journey is instructive to everyone. We all possess the dweller, the angel, and an ego. We must use our ego to fully own all that we are. We must create a container, build that wall within, versus identifying exclusively with dweller or angel while projecting the dark side outside of ourselves onto someone else, or some other race.

As we bear the tension of our mandala container in our own body, with the dweller’s help we can turn toward the angel for inspiration and comfort. And then, well, see what happens! This is the journey of soul to meet its higher SOUL, the topic of next week’s blog. Until then, build your inner wall mandala, the sanctuary and proving ground for your own personal journey of wholeness and completion.

Contained,

Chuck

*I am deeply indebted to Elmer Green and his life’s opus, The Ozawkie Book of the Dead, for introducing the term dweller in the context I use it. Jan and I are on our fifth reading of this treasured three-volume masterpiece. It is truly a diamond, cultivated from the rough work of living a fully explored life.

Also Please Note: We are currently publishing Chuck’s blogs on Tuesdays.

Chuck’s Place: Google & the dream

Daphne
– Art by Jan Ketchel © 2003

Carl Jung discovered the Collective Unconscious, a layer of the mind all beings share in common, what the ancient Hindus identified as Universal Mind. Edgar Cayce validated its existence through accessing, in trance, the Akashic Record to provide spot-on medical diagnosis and treatment recommendations. Joe McMoneagle equally accessed this dimension of all-knowing through Remote Viewing, proving its utility for military intelligence and solving ancient mysteries.

What Edgar Cayce and Joe McMoneagle teach is the use of deep relaxation of left brain focused ego dominance as a pathway to direct experience and access to all knowledge, the deepest level of the collective unconscious that we all share. These methods can be trained to waking consciousness.

Dreaming, where ego relaxes its focused left brain dominance in order to fall asleep, also takes place in the realm of the collective unconscious. Thus, it is possible to encounter deceased relatives or living archetypes, such as gods and goddesses, or virtual treasure maps, in one’s nightly journeys in the all-knowing Universal Mind of being.

Dreaming provides opportunities for the Universal Mind of the collective unconscious, or SOUL, to communicate profound knowledge to waking ego consciousness. This linkage of Universal Mind to personal ego requires dream interpretation.

The first stage in dream interpretation, and perhaps the most challenging, is to remember the dream.

Everyone dreams. It was scientifically demonstrated in sleep labs long ago that anyone who is deprived of dreaming for three days will become psychotic. Restitution of dreaming quickly reverses this condition. Remembering dreams, however, is a matter of intent. State, in advance of sleep, “I intend to remember my dream tonight.”

Stage two is to value whatever dream fragments one wakes up with and write them down. Like a hooked fish quickly slipping back into the ocean, a vivid dream not recorded is gone after even a quick visit to the bathroom. In particular, watch out for King Ego, master of the waking world: “Oh, that’s stupid, irrelevant, nonsense, etc., …” Follow Carlos Castaneda’s number one rule: Suspend Judgment. Write it down!

Stage three is to track immediate associations as you recall and write the dream. Last night I had a tin can of bluefin tuna in a dream. As I remembered the dream next morning, I immediately flashed to an article I’d read of a Japanese restaurant owner paying $3.1 million dollars for a large bluefin tuna at auction. Suffice it to say that this “prized fish,” contained in its leaden mandala tin, perfectly mirrors the current stage of my own opus of individuation.

Stage four. Once personal associations are exhausted, take it to the next level: Google. Google is humankind’s collective conscious effort to mirror the all-knowing collective unconscious. It is a great aid in deciphering the universal symbolic language of the vast collective unconscious.

I offer an example from a recent dream of Jan’s. Jennifer Lawrence and Lawrence Osborne show up as characters in the dream. Jan knew of and had associations to actress Jennifer Lawrence but had never heard of Lawrence Osborne. Quick google research produced a nomadic author of some repute. Jan has here to face her own nomadic author self, who has written deeply valuable books about her own shamanic recapitulation, combined with facing a latent extraverted Jennifer Lawrence self!

Jan next looked up the name Lawrence. Ultimate derivation of the name Lawrence is laurel, symbolically referring to Daphne, who ran from rape by transforming into a laurel tree. (Side note: many of Jan’s paintings include a tree). Daphne is both a symbol of perseverance and frozen avoidance of life. These associations help Jan explore the current balance of her hermitic introverted and confident extraverted selves.

These associations, both personal and collective, string together a profound communication from SOUL to ego Soul, essentially gifting a willing ego Soul with a direction for the playing field of waking life.

Google doesn’t always get it right, though. Ego Soul must decide upon what personally resonates and then take action—that is the completion of the dream. It is a grand opportunity to bridge the SOUL/ego Soul relationship and communication in the completion of one’s life karma, or mission on Earth, this time around.

Thank you, Jan, for sharing this gem.

Dream on,

Chuck

Chuck’s Place: The momentous opportunity of Now

Turning in a new direction…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

As without, so within. Without, we are all witnessing a stupendous archetypal drama. The dweller, at the threshold of the mighty house, has opened the door to the dark side of the force. Within, the ego Soul, at the threshold of the subconscious, must awaken to whom it has let in.

Difficult to own this projection. The drama without is so spellbinding it would seem to be the only real movie in town. That’s part of the challenge. The collective subconscious ego Soul has materialized a hypnotist, whose name is invoked daily more than any other word on Earth. Now that truly is black magic. With that much attention surrendered to the hypnotist, we are all drawn sheepishly to await the next suggestion upon which all life revolves.

Now, how could such an overarching outer predicament actually reflect the condition within one’s own personal psyche? The ego Soul, at the third chakra, is a child obsessed with its own wants, needs, and desires—particularly an insatiable hunger for attention and recognition. A child is simply incapable of seeing and caring for the rest of its personality and body beyond the mirror of its own appetites and power drives.

The subconscious soul is the warehouse of what Jung called the shadow or personal unconscious. However, it is also the gateway to the collective shadow and the collective unconscious archetypes deeply tied to the physical instincts. The subconscious soul is abundantly willing to cater to the power and appetite drives of the naive attention-seeking ego Soul at the third chakra, with the hidden intent of taking possession of the ego Soul.

What then ensues is ego Soul at the third chakra getting all it wants satiated via a Faustian-like pact with the devil, which uses its position of influence to take control of the personality and give free rein to its long suppressed shadow agenda. From an outer world historical perspective, the Nazification of Germany reflected the shadow taking possession of a collective national ego Soul, with atrocious consequences.

To actually reflect objectively on both inner and outer reality, ego Soul must establish itself at the heart center chakra, which enables an adult perspective and decision making center to come online. These include being able to acknowledge life beyond the self, as well as clarity as to the interconnected, interdependent wholeness of all things. This allows for acceptance and creative integration of all parts of the self. This enables the adult to raise the child at the third chakra with compassion and firm limits.

Outwardly, we enter a New Year with a new American Congress set to challenge the Executive branch. Investigations offer the possibility of temperance, but all must face the reality: as without, so within. No one is immune from encounter with the dark side, which is quite willing to change its appearance from devil to angel but still house the same power drives. All must ask themselves: From what center are they really acting? From the sly, rationalizing, justifying, manipulating possessed ego Soul, at the third chakra, or from right action, from the ego Soul raised to the heart center?

The momentousness of this time we live in is the opportunity for all world citizens to participate in the raising of the world ego Soul to the adult position of the heart center, both within and without. This is the dawning of The Age of Aquarius, which at this time beckons us to own the projections of our times, within ourselves, and to cover our ears from the master hypnotists, both within and without.

Turn and walk in a new direction. Don’t look back. Move forward with ease into new life. What will you meet? It’s all new now. Don’t get caught in the Scylla and Charybdis of depression or exhilarated denial. Walk the razor’s edge mindfully. You are the master of your own ship.

“The time to hesitate is through,” say the Doors.

Walk your ego Soul through the door to new life in the heart center of your SOUL.

The journey continues.

Happy New Life,

Chuck