"How many of you can tell the difference between the living and the dead?"
Dr. Judith Sedgeman, EdD posed this question to a room of soon-to-be doctors, and much to their dismay (and after much eye-rollage), she was adamant to get their opinion.
"Seriously, HOW many of you can tell the difference between the living and the dead?"
One student raises his hand, much to his chagrin... "No pulse, heart stops beating, lungs stop filling up with air..."
Dr. Sedgeman responds, "OK. How can you tell without touching them?"
Long pause in the room.
Another student takes a stab at the answer...
"There's no life"
Dr. Sedgeman: "That's what we're talking about. That energy that you know has left. The spiritual component of our existence."
*Let that sink in for a minute. Take your eyes away from your screen and breathe in that undeniable knowing.*
After hearing this simple yet incredibly powerful example to point to the spiritual nature of life and who we are, I got introspective. Stories of folks at the end of their lives, and experiences of my own, flooded my memory. Isn't it true that we're so often told from the ones we love before they are about to pass away, to live life to it's fullest? That their greatest regret is that they allowed fear to get in the way of endless amounts of opportunities, may it be in reference to their career, love, relationships, adventure, travel, finances and so on?
What comes up for me is that when we have a sense that we're at the end of our lives in our current skin suit, when we're in our final days, we naturally drop out of any and all insecure thinking. There is an element of pure surrender to the natural process we're experiencing and all that is left is the feeling of Oneness that exists between us all. We are 100% our spiritual selves. There's a feeling of not being able to see where 'I' or 'We' end and our surroundings, the energy behind life, begins. It becomes blatantly clear that any thinking that kept us from voicing our love for others or from going after our dreams or what kept us divided (ahem.. the current state of our country) was a complete waste of time, because it was just that... thinking that we believed. Though in the moment, the fearful and insecure thoughts looked really real and seemed to be warning signs that were logical, in the end we see that it was all self-made, it wasn't reality. That it was all BS. And who knows what 'could have been' should we have not paid attention to those thoughts.
One of many personal experiences that I've had that points to our spiritual nature is one that I'll never forget. The week I spent with my grandfather while he was passing was literally like watching a butterfly in transformation. When I first arrived to his home, he was still getting up from his bed with assistance, he could absolutely connect to who I was and speak a few words. As the days passed, his circulation slowed to his extremities and he slowly drifted away in his human self, but he stayed with us. Days went by and finally at 3 or 4 in the morning one morning, my mom called hospice. When the hospice nurse arrived, she took one look around the room and said, "Are you all here, all the time?!" She was referring to the room full of women that wouldn't leave his side - me, my mom, aunt, sisters, cousins, nieces... we all took turns caring for him, rubbing on his feet, sharing stories and laughter around him, eating cereal and making pot after pot of coffee to keep us going. It was my first experience where someone who represented science shown light on our spiritual nature. The nurse said, "You all are keeping him alive." My brain couldn't make sense of it, but I absolutely knew what she meant. His spiritual self, who he was beyond his skin suit, the energy that exists within and around us all, was keeping him connected and plugged in, it had nothing to do with his will power.
If you haven't already gotten the gist of the message I'm trying to portray to you, I'll make it very clear.
You can surrender to that knowing, to that Universal Mind, to that greater intelligence, RIGHT NOW.
How, you ask? Oh, I'm so glad you inquired.
You have a factory-installed, innate compass or rather, guide - that is like your own Mission Control center for your life. You don't have to go searching for it outside yourself, you don't need any tools to keep it tuned up and most importantly, you don't have to do anything to know it's there. All you have to do is follow it's inklings.
So what is it?
Your Wisdom. Your gut instinct.
It is 100% connected to the Universal Mind, the greater intelligence behind life. That is why every time you follow your gut, life unfolds without having to work at it. Even when your Wisdom guides you in a direction that looks risky, different, unknown, or you get insights into possibilities on your horizon that seem impossible - it takes courage to surrender to that knowing, but once you do, you begin to live a soul-centered experience of life that's immense. Hard conversations are had with more ease because you are coming from love and that love is felt by everyone involved. Leaps of faith feel supported and the risk isn't terrifying, it's thrilling. Breadcrumbs from the Universe are incredibly apparent and you begin to move in flow with the Oneness of it all.
Many folks have shared with me that what I'm saying makes sense, but are afraid they don't know the difference between their Wisdom and their thoughts. And to that, I answer... it's all in a feeling. Our Wisdom bubbles up one moment before our thoughts clobber the hell out of it with 'logic,' fear, judgement or insecurity. But guess what? No problem. You have a built-in alert system that tells you where the quality of your thinking is. And again, it's all in a feeling. If you are experiencing any feelings of angst, fear, anxiety, depression or physical symptoms of tight chest, sweaty pits and palms, upset belly, etc... all of these feelings and emotions are alerting you that you're believing your thinking that isn't true for you (and if you're thinking of an experience you've had in the past that you're determined is real like a break up or losing a job, it still isn't true for you, now. Why? The experience is in your past. It's important to appreciate it, but then leave it in the past and come back to the moment... it no longer supports who you are now which is why the thought of it makes you feel like shit). Conversely, if you are in any feeling related to joy, excitement, peace, contentment, happiness, love, etc... you are standing in your Wisdom. You are in flow and total alignment with Universal Mind.
Our feeling is the greatest gift. Like the bumps on the side of the freeway that warn you that you're moving out of your lane and you automatically correct your steering... the same is for your feeling in relation to your thinking. Heed it's warning and come back to what feels right. And if you're in a thought storm and feel all over the place and confused? Ask yourself OUT LOUD "What do I need to do now?" and your Wisdom, your gut instinct, will guide you loud and clear. And remember, you are always OK - even if you feel like your well-being has gone missing; You are actually standing in the middle of it, you're just distracted by your insecure thinking that you're believing. It will pass, I promise you. As a dear MFT friend so simply put it: It isn't my belief, it's my experience.
Back to the classroom with Judith Sedgeman:
"Where does that energy come from?" Dr. Sedgeman inquired of her students after them seeing what she was referring to about the spiritual component to life. She clarified that it wasn't a religious question, she wanted to know what they thought intellectually.
The class stayed quiet, they didn't know the answer.
She replied, "It's OK to not know things, and still take them as true."
Ahhhh... trust the feeling as fact, what a gift.
Here's to you, dear reader, and all of the courage that already resides within you to surrender to our Oneness, surrender to your knowing, surrender to your Wisdom and to live in the feeling of hindsight. I am so excited for you and all that is to come.
All my love and see you next week~