I have been on an incredible journey this week, with an awakening that is blossoming like a sea anemone when the tide begins to shift. I have had a unique relationship with this subject that has allowed me to be fully open like the anemone when it's tentacles are exposed in all of it's beauty, as well as shut down and in question of it, like when the anemone gets disturbed and completely closes up. Where am I now with it? Completely open, exposing all of it's beauty and vulnerability, in effortless flow with the sea.
What is the subject in question? Spirituality - And please for the love of all anemone's everywhere, keep reading, I promise not to bore you or go down any religious path (quite the opposite is true) - and coming from a woman who was raised without any specific religious or spiritual beliefs, you will more than likely see a small reflection of yourself whether you were raised with a religion or not.
As far as my previous religious/spiritual experience, I've had quite the hodgepodge to pull from. I've gone to an array of Christian Sunday services of different sects, Native American spiritual circles, a day of prayer in a Hindu temple, I camped on the side of a mountain for a week to explore deep meditation. When I was young, I had a curiosity for watching different types of sermons on Sunday morning TV, as well as rocked out to an LP of the inimitable Andrae Crouch while vacuuming my parent's living room.
Growing up there were conversations of Jesus being a great man who gave people belonging by telling his story, similar to so many other great leaders whether in religion or activism. It seemed to me that the folks writing down their stories were the one's that screwed up the feeling of it all. Heart, connection, love, understanding, belonging, a feeling that could be identified in music, dancing, paintings, ART - that is what was most important.
So why all of this backstory? Well frankly, I'm realizing as I type that I've been on quite the search my whole life for something that fits for me. I've always sensed there was something greater, it never felt right to think that we're these skin suits that walk around then get dumped in the earth when we're done grinding away our whole lives. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks this time last week.
I was with a dear mentor of mine who replied to me after asking about some blocks I've been feeling with my work: "You aren't accepting the spiritual."
The 3 Principles behind our experience of life that is the base of my work is spiritual! I talk out my nose to you and my clients all day long about listening to your wisdom, to trust the Universe - if that ain't spiritual, I don't know what is!!!
But guess what? He was right.
The moment he said it and I got past my thought storm that spiraled from "he doesn't realize how far I've come....." there came the bricks. I could see and trust all of what I was saying for YOU, my readers and clients... but when it came to my life, I was still trying to teach the cooks in the kitchen how to make my food. In my meditations I had been having incredible experiences, insights deepening my resolve to continue this path of sharing my work no matter how difficult it seems (aka the reality of building a business, which really only looks difficult when in a bummer state of mind). But as soon as my eyes would open from meditation, the thoughts started flying and I couldn't completely release my grip on the blueprint of my life. I needed to know each step like the board game of LIFE in front of me. For you? For the people I see day-in and day-out? I was tapped in - I could see it - but I was too scared to completely surrender for myself.
Of course I'm human and will surely have to catch myself in all of my humanness in the future, but I've released my grip on my own innocent, getting-in-my-own-way experience of life. A veil has been lifted. I can see all of the breadcrumbs from the Universe - the synchronicity and manifestations are so obvious that I almost have to look around to see if anyone else is noticing them too. And to add insult to injury (with the most positive of meaning behind that), just before this crack in my world exposed itself, I was drawn to pick up a book I've had on my bookshelf since my sophomore year of high school. It's the only book I read word for word back then, and I think it will be by my side for the rest of my life. As so eloquently written by Dan Millman in Way of the Peaceful Warrior, this perfectly sums up what I've always been seeking:
(A conversation between the Peaceful Warrior named Socrates and Dan, a college student in search)
"... you fear death and crave survival. You want Forever, you desire Eternity. In your deluded belief that you are this 'mind' or 'spirit' or 'soul,' you find the escape clause in your contract with mortality. Perhaps as 'mind' you can wing free of the body when it dies, hmm?"
"It's a thought," Dan said with a grin.
"That's exactly what it is, Dan - a thought - no more real than the shadow of a shadow. Consciousness is not in the the body; the body is in Consciousness. And you are that Consciousness - not the phantom mind that troubles you so. You are the body, but you are everything else, too. (...) Only the mind resists change. When you relax mindless into the body, you are happy and content and free, sensing no separation. Immortality is already yours, but not in the way you imagine or hope for. You have been immortal since before you were born and will be long after the body dissolves. The body is Consciousness; never born; never dies; only changes. The mind - your ego, personal beliefs, history, and identity - is all that ends at death. (...)"
Then the clincher...
"Words mean little unless you realize the truth of it yourself. And when you do, you'll be free at last."
So here's to you, Peaceful Warrior, I hope no matter where you lie on the spiritual spectrum, whether the only relationship you have to me is through reading my blogs or if I'm lucky enough to connect with you in person, I want nothing else in this life but for you to reach the peace of mind and freedom that comes with recognizing that our personal human thoughts are the only thing that get in the way of us being guided so effortlessly in this thing called life. Like the sea anemone, completely open, showing it's beautiful colors and swaying back and forth with every swish of the sea around her. And the beauty of it all...
...it was with me the whole time; In me, around me, of me..
...As it is within you, around you, and of you.
Thank you for reading such a meaningful post that comes straight from my heart to yours.
All my love,