Why “self realization” is not an “altered state”

As the movement toward clarity, awareness and consciousness gains a wave of momentum (again) I have noticed an old well worn path presenting itself anew.  

The equation with awareness to being ‘altered.’  

Now, I know it can feel like that sometimes. As we clear pathways and connect to something both bigger than us and at the same time, more intimate within us, we start to feel a kind of “high”.  The tendency is then to use that feeling of “highness” as a litmus test to seek out specific practices, events or modalities.   But I might suggest that this has the potential to lead us astray.  

The truth is our normal, everyday state of being IS a form of “high”.  It is resting in the the eternal bliss. We are divine beings having a human experience.  And within this truth lies another truth, when we honestly experience this natural expanded state (enlightenment?) we understand just how normal and accessible it is and the processes which externally seek to create a “high” suddenly feel forced, unnecessary and potentially misleading.  

We do not require any kind of hallucinogen or psychedelic experience in order to connect us to our consciousness.  In fact, it gets complicated when using pathways created somewhat artificially as we can mistake the end result for the personal journey. And make no mistake, the journey to aligned living is filled with both valleys and peaks, is challenging, requires commitment and time as well as guidance and community.  In other words:  there is no fast track without consequences.   

To be clear, in a ceremonial setting we may naturally enter an altered state with the guidance of someone who understands how to both open and close that space (this is both RARE and critical). And we may use tools to assist this process.  However, we do so in order to receive information that then gets translated into our day to day life.  It there is no translation, if we simply hop from experience to experience looking for the next cool thing, becoming dependent on external tools,  and go back to same old same old afterwards, we miss the point of integration.  

And without integration, there is no forward progress either individually or collectively.  And without progress we repeat the same patterns over and over again, perhaps moving forward nonetheless, but at a pace that creates more suffering, distraction and difficulty along the way.  

Sound familiar?

Self realization is not a psychedelic trip (not at all to dismiss psychedelics)

We’ve been down this road before.  

You know that feeling when you just know for sure what you need to do?  Perhaps you have clarity around how to resolve a situation at work?  Or maybe you suddenly have insight into a change you need to make in your schedule? And you just … KNOW.   Its as clear as day. Obvious as the nose in front of your face. Like its been there all along and you are finally seeing it.  

Thats the quality of self realization.  Its been there all along.  Its not new.  Its not even an “aha”.  Its more of an “oooooh.”  And rather than high/super/buzzed/powerful, you feel solid, comfortable, at peace, calm, ready and wonderfully happy.   

I believe we all have our own path, and our paths are as beautifully varied, colorful, non-linear  and complex as we are.  And we also need to share our paths, to look out for each other and to offer our perspective. 

Today I offer you mine.

Peace
Jeneen

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The week in review

Energy Musings. Here. Now

The real state of this union

Waking up to each new dawn, there is a feeling “what will this day bring?” And although this is truth each and every day regardless, right now, that inquiry has a particular tone to it.  A level of uncertainty and weariness.  We can learn to roll with the punches, so to speak; to rise about it all, so to speak; to stay centered and grounded, so to speak.  And yet the unrelenting signature of this inconsistency around us, is to wear us down over time.  In other words:  Its not that easy to escape or remove yourself from this all pervasive incertitude.  

After the state of the union address this week, I noticed a distinct  shift in my personal students.  A new level of “stress” if you will.  That stress originates from the massive disconnect between what was said in that address and what is really going on in our communities and lives right now.  This disconnect feels unprecedented in its enormity. And the disconnect creates an energetic rift in our being.  

Healing this rift, this disconnect, is what is “up” right now. 

Resisting the overwhelming tendency to either run away from it all, hide from it all or be triggered by it all is the first step in this process.  Take a deep breath in and know that you are not alone in this struggle.  It is a personal and collective strain.

We need tools intended to literally clear and work the inner landscape, like meditation (not visualization), tuning forks and Qigong.  

We don’t need “expansion” at the moment because this can be overwhelming and overstimulating to the nervous system and energetic body.  While this acceptable form of escapism might feel good in the short term (depending on your preferences), in the long run, it will contribute to the likelihood of being more triggered and less able to cope.  

The state of the union is chaotic and unpredictable.  Blanketed in deep unknowing and embedded in fear and false pride.  Thats just what is happening.  And we are all truly “in” it.  This lens we are seeing through right now is cloudy and mirky.  Just knowing that, helps to make more informed decisions and to be more centered. 

Take a deep breath in, and blow it away.  (repeat, if necessary)

Thursday, Jan 31, 2019

Energy Musings.  

Here.  Now.  Today!

Boundaries.

a line in the sand.  the word “no”.  a fence.  a wall.

What do boundaries serve?  WHO do boundaries serve?  This, as in most things, all depends.  Depends on who you are, where you are and what is happening.  Boundaries divide. That is true. But boundaries also protect.  Division.  Protection.  When are these necessary? When are they problematic?  This is the real question.  

Examine your boundaries.  Personal.  Private.  Familial.  Societal.  In your work, your ideas, your relationships, your words.  

Many have a tendency to believe that a life that is unbounded, is the most creative, expressive and desirable.  Many have a tendency to believe that setting limits is restrictive and confining.  

But limits and potential need each other. 

If you try to fill a cup with no edges, what exactly are you filling?  If you can’t fill, how can you experience your wholeness?  If you cant experience your wholeness, how do you know who you are, what you are doing in this precious world?  If you are  the universe (which you are) and have no container for your being, what is your work here?  How do you direct your life force without boundaries?  

This physical form of ours is form of boundary, and it serves us in this time and place.  We are energy bodies in a human form.  If we leave this form, we no longer exist here (some call it death).  But to be alive, is to understand this form, this place, these boundaries.  And to know how to work within them.  We can touch the infinite and have a connection there, but we live in this body.  Our body of boundaries.  

Boundaries can both powerfully serve us and others as well as potentially harm us or others.  By examining your beliefs about boundaries and being honest with yourself (aye, theres the rub!)  there is an opportunity for deeper connection, deeper work, deeper understanding and greater clarity.  Its easy to be deceived by our belief systems, so being as neutral as possible with this examination is key.

When boundaries are up, its time to examine your own first.  Then look to the manifestation of these patterns in the world around you.  Everything becomes a reflection of it all.  The infinite and the individual are not separate.  We are bound together.

 

Song of the Day:  

The Walls Came Down.  by The Call.

 

Tuesday Jan 8, 2019

Energy Musings. Here. Now.

Today!

Its a new year, and the beginning of a new cycle.  Mindful of course, that we are continuously cycling so to consider starting and ending points is somewhat arbitrary.  The opportunity to begin again, to bring in the new exists in each and every breath. Not on any calendar date.  Though we celebrate the full and new moon with rituals, the moon of course, is always in a cycle.  And each step of the way is in fact significant.  Each phase has its lessons, its rewards and its challenges.

Its easy to get swept up into the drama and majesty of those end/beginning points.  And to anchor into a particular point is not necessarily irrelevant. But really, the important question is:  where are you in your cycle?  where are you in this cycle?  What are the beginnings and what are the endings that are present right here for you?  In other words, locate yourself in the cycle rather than just imposing it onto you. Without forcing events into a label or construct, just see what is present.  Perhaps, on this New Year, for you it was about closure, or opening, or just being in the middle of it all.  The structure of cycles is fluid and encourages us to pay attention to the moment we are in, not to label ourselves prematurely or absentmindedly.

I’m not quite in “new year” mode yet as dictated by cultural phenomena around me. I’m still shedding, clearing, becoming lighter and more spacious. This process takes the time it takes… no more no less.  And when my “new year” moment arrives, I will greet it with celebration, joy and open arms no matter what date it lands on, no matter what the phase of the moon offers.

Sending blessings on this cycle, your cycle and all cycles,  all-ways.

Peace.
Jeneen

On the solstice & the moon

Theres been lots happening this week.  The weather, for one, has had the quality of instability.  Quickly changing its mind from one moment to the next.  Yesterday felt like an early spring day, with the  promise of  warmth to come.

To look outside the weather patterns,  this instability has been mapped and mirrored all around us.   In the midst of all this, we have the Winter Solstice,  right before the Full Cold Moon.

I’ve led many a Winter Solstice event over the years, and this one really did feel different.  It was even quieter, simpler, more introspective, less talking, less sharing, less ‘words’ period… than I can ever remember (and I’m not one to include a lot of that anyway!).    It was as though I couldn’t pull “in” far enough.

As I was aligning with the events this week, I was struck by how quickly and easily information on something as straightforward as the moon and the Solstice, became misunderstood and misrepresented.  Suddenly there were posts about the coinciding of the Full Moon ON the Winter Solstice.  Which, btw, is not what happened.  Close to each other?  Yes.  On the same day?  No.  By quickly fact checking straight up data driven astrology sites, its pretty easy to find the actual information.  How odd then, that so many were creating posts on Social Media claiming an untruth. And while the actual coinciding of the full moon on the winter solstice is a somewhat rare event, I wasn’t sure (despite the rarity) that I was feeling any particular resonance or significance of that alignment (which didn’t happen).  I had more of a “yeah…so?” read.

As I took a step back and watched this unfold curiously, I was reminded again of the messages I kept getting all week:  slow down, watch closely, pay attention, be diligent. Be SUPER mindful of our actions and words and be extremely discerning in all matters.  Take nothing for granted.  Watch everything with a larger perspective in mind.

So I stepped back even further and detached from the mini whirlwind of drama being stirred up.  It looked and felt to me just like that:  debris swirling around creating a kind of vortex.  Good to know… and to stay clear of.

Perhaps this gives me my final messages for the coming days.  When something doesn’t quite sound or seem right:  step back from it. Far enough back to see the bigger picture.  Without interfering in whatever might be unfolding in the unconscious realms, we can choose at least to notice, without judgement, and decide not be a part of it.

This year, as I launch into a new series of Full & New Moon ceremonies, of Solstice & Equinox events…. I want to remember this moment, here, now.  I want to disconnect from the need to pump up a particular lunation or celestial alignment to the point of frenzy.  To caution myself against the reflex to assign extraordinary and superfluous meaning to any event.  To get caught up in the hype.

Instead, may I continue on my steady, clear, course.  Celebrating with quiet reverence and consciousness. It is enough.  Enough to gather on the moons and the transitions.  Just to witness and notice and commune.  May we all find comfort and joy in these ordinary moments of cycling together.  May we learn that we are enough, that all of this is enough… just as it is.  May we be in true peace.

Happy Full Moon to all.

peace

Jeneen

 

 

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Energy Musings.  Here. Now.

This Weekend.

Theres a chaotic energy whipping through the trees today, stirring things up, moving them around.  In some cases, movement/stirring is a good thing.  In some cases, not so good.  A favorite astrologer of mine likes to talk about loss vs gain in astrology (think retrogrades) not from an absolute perspective as “good or bad” but all relational.  For instance, if you lose a beloved pet, that can be seen as a negative. But if you lose weight to get healthier, that can be a positive.  Loss, though often considered negative, can also be what is necessary and desired.

This is true of everything that is out there, which makes the complexity of our world quite apparent and calls for the need for true discernment in all situations.

Lately, there has been a serious lack of subtle discernment.  While the main “message” of an event (for instance) may be positive, without full understanding of the energetics of language (in particular) we can find ourselves in a deep mess though that was never our initial intention.

And let me tell you, there are those of us out there who are constantly “cleaning up” energetically after such messes and see the implications that others choose not to see.

The request here is to pay attention, and then to pay attention even more deeply still.  How do we do that?

Come in to stillness.  Come in to silence. Rest here a while.  Let go of all attachments.  Let go of all beliefs.  Let go of all triggers.  Let go of all judgement.

No.  REALLY.  ALL of them.

This is where we fall short.  We let go of the things that we want to let go of, but hold on (sometimes even more intensely) to the places we think or believe in.  And we somehow fall in to the very dangerous and false assumption that “if only all those other people would let go of x,y,z…. then the world would truly change”.  If you notice ANY part of you beginning to externalize or blame in this way, take a GIANT step back.  And repeat the steps above.  Clear your internal slate.

So much is happening in the energetic field right now.  Change wants to come.  But those who are initiating that change for the betterment of all beings everywhere are still BLIND to the places where they are actually holding back that very same change they wish to see fully realized.  They think its others that are holding back the change, and fail to realize it is actually them.

All I can say is this: be honest about your blind spots.  Look for them.  Ask others to help you.  You’ll know what they are when you are triggered.  First, you have to recognize when in fact you are triggered (or listen if someone else tells you you are!!).  Then look there.  Whats behind the trigger? Thats the place for you to work.  When there are no more triggers, you come in to the true ‘neutral zone’ and then… only then… will you see the path forward that has been waiting for you, for us, for all this time.

From the depths of my heart and the trueness of my being, I offer you this today, this weekend, and moving forward.

Song of the Day: High Hopes by Panic at the Disco

Live your truth…. quietly.

If you see the words “unique, never-before, once in a lifetime, new, cutting-edge, original, experimental, latest, hip, popular, trendy, hot, big, now, ‘In’ “ describing an event, I urge you to be cautious.  Well, personally, I would run the other way!  OK, I don’t actually mean ANYTIME you see the words, but within a context of promoting something thats supposed to make you think you will become cool or part of the “in” crowd if you attend this event. 

This all feeds into our collective addiction to feeling special, or feeling like we are doing something that is totally trend setting, or that we are all visionaries with our finger on the pulse of the latest fashion.  The thing is, all of this is ALREADY TRUE.  You ARE special, You ARE a visionary, You ARE relevant. …without the pomp & circumstance. Without the need to shout it from the rooftops in neon flashing lights or post it all over social media.  Without the need to dress it up in stand out clothing and place a spotlight on it. 

I wonder why, over and over again, we insist on making everything into a spectacle of some sort or another?  The cult of the ‘spectacle’. Its something I consider a lot.  What is it that causes us to want to do the things that make us seem really funky or brave or radical in some way?  This is a juicy territory.  Lots to think about, lots to sort through with no one way through it all.  I just know that something in my eternal being cringes every time I see another example of this.  Not because I’m triggered, but because I’m being pinged…from a collective sadness place . 

“really?  again?”  my soul whispers. 

The only truly NEW thing would be to ditch the emphasis on the new.  To choose humble, simple, deep, meaningful, living instead.  To not have to compete for attention or success through being more, bolder, bigger, brighter, better.  To truly honor the quiet, the intimate.  Which, in this day and age, might look like:  getting off social media, not taking any more selfies, reading a book on the bus instead of being on a device…..   In other words, truly connecting IN to your self, fully, wholly without adding anything.  YOU ARE ENOUGH.  Which, in truth, is a quiet private act of intimacy. of relationship. of the most important relationship of your life: the one with you.  Its not necessary for it to be a public display.  We don’t need to share these moment of privacy publicly to prove they exist. 

I know you sometimes dress up outrageously, mess around with your hair,  dance like a wild woman,  act silly and goofy in front of a mirror, get naked in the moonlight, paint your body, sing with abandonment, jump on the bed, go barefoot in the snow, play in the rain… or whatever version of this free spirited essential you comes out in private.  And thats a beautiful thing. A gift. To you, for you, from you.  The important thing is that it fills YOU.  You don’t need to turn it into an inspiration for others.  Let others find there own inspiration from within.  If we keep looking outside ourself to be inspired, we will miss the beauty and truth of our deepest selves.  We can be the inspiration we so long to be by simply, quietly, being ourselves. 

Live your Truth. Without the publicity. Now thats radical.