In this transformative container quarantine has gifted us, I’ve plunged into themes of power, privilege, discrimination, giving, receiving, caring and respect.
The deep wells of this conditioning weave though the collective all over the world and through time and lifetimes. I recognize the immense amount of privilege I grew up into compared to most of the world. And I am no expert on these topics of power, privilege and discrimination that so many have dedicated their lives to. Yet, we all have our piece of the puzzle to unravel.
As a white woman, growing up in a middle-class American life, I was subjected to my own unique conditioning. On a fundamental personal level, I learned that power was “bad” and caused harm to others. I learned to submit and back down, to quiet my voice to keep the peace, in fear of being overpowered, shamed, hurt and even killed. At the same time, I also learned empathy, about how to truly care for others, and how to offer and be of service in the name of love. And I learned to do this without embodying my power, in some ways, I was trained at “giving it away.”
I remember a workshop many years in San Francisco, where the author of the book “Power and Love: A Theory and Practice of Social Change” (Adam Kahane) opened my eyes to these core issues as they play out in the inequality of the world. At the time, I was deeply involved in environmental issues, and had begun to see how the out of balance dynamics of the 3rd and 4th chakras were playing out in the environmental world.
"The two methods most frequently employed to solve our toughest social problems—either relying on violence and aggression or submitting to endless negotiation and compromise—are fundamentally flawed. This ias because the seemingly contradictory drives behind these approaches—power, the desire to achieve one’s purpose, and love, the urge to unite with others—are actually complementary.”
I’ve descended deeper into seeing how this separation still lives within myself, in my interactions in the world, my relationships, my business…everywhere. I feel the uncomfortable truth of how not embodying and integrating power and love actually lives within me and in the issues plaguing our world (we have an excellent example now). I have had an unconsciousness belief that in order to receive something, I have to give, over give and give again, until I’m exhausted. I care about others, the world, the Earth, and yet, opening too much without boundaries and direction, doesn’t serve anyone or anything involved. The Laws of the Universe do not work like that. Giving also from a place of simply loving so much all of life, yet forgetting that love also extends to taking care of personal power.
Integration of power and love is also integration of the human and spirit. How can we restore this balance internally, so we can act from that alignment? We bring care and respect for all beings - including ourselves, the Earth, our humanity. We stay open to learning in our interactions, receiving and giving feedback, and a willingness to see our shadows.
Praying for those who’ve struggled deeply in this realm - those in marginalized populations, other parts of the world, ethnicities, classes, sexual orientations, genders, disabilities, ages, the have and have nots, all who’ve been subjected to these conditionings living in our collective consciousness.
"When the Condor of the South comes together with the Eagle of the North, the spirit of Mother Earth - Pacha Mama - will awake, then She will awake millions of her children, this will be the Resurrection of the Dead.” (Incan Elder Willaru Huayta)
Reunion. The condor and the eagle. The heart and the mind. The feminine and the masculine. Intuition and intellect. We are not awake until these are alive and in harmony.
What’s arising now is a frustration and deep concern. Many have been in the depths of fear, death, and restriction and have discovered new joys, the infinite space to feel, and our long-lost appreciation for the Earth.
The time is coming to reemerge. Everyone is restless, with the late spring energy, warm sunshine, aliveness of life beckoning us all out into the world.
But our work is not done. I feel despair that we won’t integrate, that we won’t reap the harvest of all that has unfolded. That we won’t use what we’ve transformed to change our ways and relationship to the world. Perhaps it’s my own angst I’m feeling.
In truth, I don’t know what will happen. Today, tomorrow, next week, next month. Everything is uncertain…still. The mind does not like not knowing. We’ve been for many months collectively unknowing. Refocusing on intuition is the only way to reassure my angst. Listening to my heart, my body, my indirect knowing…those parts know it’s OK. Everything is ok. Life is ok. The world is ok.
The forces at work here are much bigger than any one or collective mind can comprehend. My intuition says I’m on the path I’m meant to be, and we are all on the path we are meant to be, however those unfold. We have in our beings the transformation on deep and subtle levels, that will now radiate out into the world in new, unexpected ways.
The question now is can we keep our hearts open as these shifts happen. Can we welcome whatever arises with an open heart, not returning to the old patterns of the mind?
Feeling a strong desire and steadfast care for the world, as we reemerge. Holding my heart open as best I can, with the intention of harmony, reunion, and integration.
Slowly transitioning from this place of deep introspection, we see, feel, experience the foundation of our being has been re-organized. Metanoia, rooted in the ancient Greek word “meta", meaning beyond or after and “noeo", meaning perception or understanding. The word often is used for describing a profound transmutation of consciousness or change of heart.
“Carl Jung developed the usage to indicate a spontaneous attempt of the psyche to heal itself of unbearable conflict by melting down and then being reborn in a more adaptive form – a form of self healing often associated with the mid-life crisis and psychotic breakdown, which can be viewed as a potentially productive process.” (1).
Feeling this corona virus as one of the instigators, throwing the whole world into a necessary breakdown. This time has forced us all into deeper exploration, through many cycles of emotions, realizations, hard truths, facing our buried fears, healing with people in new ways, connecting to Mother Earth, and shifting our priorities.
Our rebirth process is slowly and mysteriously underway. The universal energies have profoundly reorganized themselves, in ways that we will see play out in our psyches, our lives, and the world around us. But it will take time to see the greater unfolding.
Slowly reemerging into the world, in this process of metanoia, I feel an internal integrity and alignment that is unwavering. Maintaining this new internal re-organization is a fine line of integrating with the rest of the world and holding reverence and devotion to the unique changes within.
Hopefully, we can watch the unfolding, with a true shift in our hearts, and a virtuous awareness that brings us into greater harmony amidst our brothers and sisters and the Earth.
Holding prayers and intentions for the highest outcome.
(1) R. Arp. 1001 Ideas That Changed the Way We Think
..the space in between...
4 years ago, I serendipitously arrived on the banks of the Ganges in Varanasi. When I walked down to the ghats for the first time, I was flooded with deja vu. Death and that time-space between death and birth was immediately very tangible, present and serious. The smell of burning flesh, the never-ending flames, the bathers…it was another dimension that demanded my entire awareness. Dead bodies were being cremated on the banks of the river, and the ashes were released into the holiest river in India. To end life in this way, is believed to end the cycle of death and rebirth, a final liberation, moksha, returning back to the Divine.
In this place, everything became more alive, more potent, more precious. Life was rich and overflowing with infinite energy. And at the same time, a crystal clear stillness echoed through everything. Every moment, every breath, every sensation, every sound, every color, every person was truly exquisite.
With the recent collective shift of energy, as busy-ness has slowed, and awareness of our mortality is heightened, these moments of potency have become more accessible. I’ve been mostly hermiting for the past 6 years, on a solo exploration following my curiosity and my adventurous soul to places where time and space cease to exist as we know it. It’s not been an easy practice to return to the States, where busy-ness as usual is prevalent. But something else is happening. We are opening to something new, and many are discovering depths of creativity, peace, emotion, stillness, beauty, inquiry. We get to explore another dimension, one that’s precious and hard to describe, yet we feel it’s exactly what we needed all along.
When I was in the jungle, I was dancing with the energy of surrender vs. giving up. Over the winter, I’d been feeling like I’d given up on many things - sustainable fulfilling work, motivation for creating my home, a stable supportive partnership, nourishing community, and even my physical appearance. Giving these things up, which were so tenderly held in my heart, was cutting off my life force. I had been working so hard it seemed, and deep down I was very tired. Giving up was giving into hopelessness, that nothing I did mattered.
The feeling of surrender is different. With surrender, there is a letting go - of letting go of the attachments to the way I expect life to work out. Surrender still honors the things in my heart and soul, yet dropping into complete trust in the intelligent flow of life to unfold for my highest evolution. Surrender is a place to rest deeply, to accept fully the present experience. Holding in surrender, inspiration and clarity still streams through. Here I feel the call to step back into the stream with my words, thoughts, actions and energy.
Many of us have been moving through so many emotions about what is happening. On all levels - personally, collectively, globally. Surrendering into the changes has not been an easy journey. But it’s not a time to give up our path, yet a time to refine, get clear on our truth of where we are. We drop into trust of the greater intelligence and our ability to move through life with it.
In the midst of a rapidly shifting world, we all have our work to do. Some of us are deep in our inner work, cleaning out the crevasses of our consciousness, uprooting old fears, seeing places where are are living in limited capacity, and gaining clarity on what’s truly important. We are stripping away what’s not necessary for our evolution individually and collectively. Some of us are feeling called in new ways, offering a helping hand to a neighbor, reaching out to estranged family members, supporting those who are financially stressed, and stepping into new alignment as leaders. The beauty of the crisis moving through, is we get to step into the truth of who we are.
We need all of us here, now, contributing in our unique ways to this evolution. Everything, no matter how seemingly small or large, is part of the grand puzzle. The most important path is following what you know is true in your heart - for your well-being, the well-being of your loved ones, humanity and the Earth.
We are going through an initiation, an up-leveling of consciousness. We are being guided to open to new realities, discover deep truths, release old emotions, and move in the direction of our hearts and purpose. It’s precious, intimate work and takes courage to see into places that have been long hidden.
I’m offering private sessions to those who are transitioning into new thresholds. While I normally work more long-term with clients, I’m now offering single sessions by donation. I’m feeling one session of support for some can make the world of difference.
We work with the mind-body-spirit, guiding the transformation of consciousness to make room for what truly wants and needs to be here. We work in the energy field, and come up with practical day-to-day practices to keep you flowing and connected to higher consciousness.
If this resonates, please send me an email or DM. Sessions are by Zoom or phone, and generally take 60-75 minutes. Suggested donation is $75-125, but I will honor and support those who feel they could really use this and pay what they can. I believe in your path, however it unfolds in this time. Trust the process. Sending many blessings for our evolution as a planet.
My heart followed the call back to the jungle. It couldn’t not follow it to a place where I feel safe and free to explore deep corners and temples of consciousness, to open to Mother Earth for her healing, and to call my soul home to this present moment. I was held in every way possible, nourished and rejuvenated with the plants, the animals, the jungle and dear friends. I return with clarity, purpose, direction, compassion, strength, softness and wonder. My heart is full.
With our reality in crisis now, it was a pure gift of the divine, to travel safely, be protected for this deep work. Now more than ever, going within, turning off the media, discovering our own truths, not getting caught in the stories, is vital for our well-being and the well-being of humanity and the Earth. When we know the truth in our hearts, the answers appear. It may not be what we want them to be, but our lives are meant for greater purpose. Reverence, respect and devotion to the divine intelligence, we surrender into perfect unfolding. We listen, we choose, and we go on our soul’s path home.
Fear is contagious. Having been back in the US for less than 48 hours, I’m shocked at how intense the fear and panic is running through the collective. The grocery stores are packed and the shelves are barren. Today people were congregating in the corner of the pharmacy talking about all their fears around what’s happening. As an empath, I feel it deeply - which has been for me physically feeling headaches, nausea, lightheadedness and dizziness. It’s taken me some work to get stabilized in my body, clearing out the fear and grounding in my own being again.
All fear is an emotion. Fear of the unknown. Fear of the undetermined future. Fear of death. Fear of the death of loved ones. Fear of survival. The energy of fear is heavy, dense, constricting and easily passed /resonated from one person to another. While we can get caught in the cycle of fear, we can also take a step back and recognize it’s not real. It’s an emotion. We can choose not to give our power away to endless cycles of fear, which clouds our thinking and ability to act. I know some of us are caught in trauma responses, and getting out of the fear is not possible without support. Please, reach out for support. Now is the time to see what’s at the core.
The best thing we can all do right now is to cultivate our own spiritual and energetic practices. These can be for grounding, getting out of the head, clearing and moving energy, and connecting to higher consciousness. Go on a walk. Sit in nature. Meditate. Pray. Play music. Dance. Cook nourishing food. Take a bath. Do yoga. Make art. Talk to people who are supportive (not caught in the cycle of fear). Get support from a counselor/ healer /mentor /trusted friend. Take a break from the media. Use this time in relative isolation for deepening into who you are.
Keeping your energy clean is NOT about being in denial. You will better be able to handle what ever happens if you are not caught in an emotion of fear. Those who are grounded and clear are holding the space for the frantic energy. I thank the grocery store clerk today who was surprisingly in good spirits, patient and in service. And just like fear, being grounded and clear is also contagious. Let’s spread more of that please.
⫷ ♡ ⫸
At the heart of my life and work.
We humans are not separate, and the infinite interconnectedness is everything. We are in deep relationship with Mother Earth whether we are aware of it or not.
I left my work as an environmental engineer for many reasons. At the core, the frustration and struggle to move forward with decisions based on this truth was a lot to bear day in and day out. Our society lives in separation, believing we can control, force, regulate, or add more structure to our environment or to our actions. I knew something profound was and continues to be missing. People are living in disconnection not only with the Earth, but with themselves - one and the same. What is being asked for, is a reconnection, a remembrance, a reverence for the interconnectedness, the oneness, the divine, and the love that permeates and is everything. Our hearts know this truth, but we have to uncover all the ways we’ve forgotten.
I don’t know how it will all play out - how once we on a collective level rediscover our hearts and how our relationship with the Earth will transform. I only know it is happening already. One by one, we are all feeling the call to remember. As we rediscover what’s been missing, we can no longer go back to the world as it was.
The resurgence of plant medicines and psychedelics seems to point many to this call to remember, to see through the conditioned reality we humans live in. My prayer and hope is that the call will be respected and honored, and people will safely uncover their truth. It’s not a path for the faint of heart. So let’s please support each other in our remembering - in our grief, our sadness, and our love - in our shattering of realities, our crumbling lives, and our new visions. Let’s hold everyone and everything as teachers, as we all have a part to play in this evolution.
My own journey now calls me back to the jungle. It’s not something I can explain, yet when the plants call, I listen. I know they have something for me, some remembrance of myself, my being, my healing - which synchronously heals the Earth. I choose this path, as it unfolds before me, praying with each step that my part in the evolution is contributing to something much much bigger.
⫷ ♡ ⫸
Some of which are common for beginners, as they are learning how the healing with plant medicines work. Some of which are unfortunately more traumatizing than healing, often due to how the experience was held, facilitated, orchestrated, etc.
I’d just been writing on this topic, and a few good blog posts came across my feed. In one, the writer, a facilitator herself and an outspoken voice on the medicine, says “This is serious business.” (Recommend to read https://www.afterlife.coach/after-life-blog/shamans-need-training). And this one as well, where she talks about what can happen when facilitators don't know what they are doing. (https://kahpi.net/ayahuasca-ceremony-facilitator/)
With all the hype, popularity and celebrity status that the ego can get hooked on in the plant medicine world, many facilitators are serving the medicines as “healers” who have not had the proper training. And it’s not just about the training but also the intensely deep shadow work that the person themselves has gone through and continues to go through. I’d venture to say not only on a personal level, but also on a cultural, collective and even universal level.
Any shadow work not addressed by the facilitator that they themselves are carrying will emanate throughout the circle. In some ways, some see it as a “group” healing, yet for many, it can be traumatic and the facilitator is not able, skilled or trained to help those who are deep in the healing process. What I’ve also seen is that the group, or a portion of the group is then doing the shadow work for the facilitator, instead of them taking responsibility for it themselves. This is part of the learning of energy and plant medicine work- learning to work through our own shadows, and learning from the shadow work of other (including the facilitator.) However, there are facilitators who haven’t done much work, or ones who have shadow that may negatively influence your own ability to navigate and heal on a deep level.
I have been fortunate enough, having been in hundreds of ceremonies, that these types of experiences have only happened 5-10% of the time. Some of them, I’ve been able to remove myself from; others I have not. I ended up with the aftermath that has taken years to integrate- yes, years for some and some are still ongoing. While on some level, I was called to be there for my soul’s learning, I had to come to the very hard lesson of taking back my power by choosing not to work with someone who can’t actually hold the space I need to do my deep healing work. Even if everyone else says this is the best “shaman,” circle, spectacular show, etc. In some cases, I was holding the space (along with others) for the facilitator to do their work (or for them to ignore their work). While this happens in circles, as facilitators are humans too, how we choose to give our power away, and what roles and personalities the facilitators choose to play, can perpetuate wounding and the cycles we are intending to break free from in the first place. (More on this later.)
Choosing the path of your healing requires a responsibility. Do your own research, trust your intuition, and find the path that supports your highest evolution. Do not get caught in the appearances of what facilitators may want you to see, the outer performances, or in what everyone else is saying is the "best." It's up to you to decide.
Protectress of Mother Earth, Energy Healing, Plant Medicine Integration, Coach, Writer