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

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

‘tools’ of the trade

Yesterday, after a quite extraordinary crystal bowl “meditation”, a student asked if I ever just sit in stillness.   It was a great question following back to back sound healing work.

The tools that I use are just that:  Tools. They are never to be mistaken for the goal, the end, or even the path itself.  They are simply helpers along the way.  Our crystal friends come from deep inside the earth to offer us their medicine. Our resident resonant tools offer vibrational healing, clearing and deep visioning. But this medicine is not “what its all about”.  What its “all about” IS stillness.  The greatest sound for healing IS silence.  If we mistake the tools for the goal, we have become lost along the way.

And sometimes, thats ok too.  Life’s diversions, like the fluctuations of the mind itself, are simply what they are.  Perhaps the path forward is clear, straight, efficient.  Perhaps it instead sends us on all sorts of detours, road blocks and obstacles.  Usually, its a bit of both.  Remember though, to gently come back to the path as soon as you notice you have become lost in a distraction.  We practice this in meditation to imprint that reflex in our whole life.

The key is to slowly, carefully and attentively become increasingly discerning.  So that, over practice and time, you learn to see clearly what is a diversion and what is, in that moment, a tool to move you forward. Everything and anything can be either one of these: distraction or valuable tool, depending on the timing and who you are, whats happening and where you are.  An authentic guide understands this and can offer tools as needed all while nudging you gently forward, encouraging a healthy detachment from any “tool” itself.

The question naturally arises:  what is the intention for your practice?  One intention of meditation & yoga as a path for example, is to bring you to a state of “thoughtless awareness”, an expansive mind in union with a clear body that allows you a perspective not based on biases, belief systems, judgement, analysis or expectations.

We become the still pond.  We are the clear blue sky.

Along the way we receive gifts, insights, benefits.  Sometimes the practice is joyful, fun and exciting: the gifts feel like blessings.  Sometimes the practice is difficult, challenging and painful: the gifts can feel like a curse.  All of it is inspiring, creative and essential,  coming from the same loving source.  All of it brings us into greater balance and understanding so that we may hear the silence and be with the stillness.

Balance. Stillness. Silence.

These are words I don’t use lightly.  I carry the depth of their authenticity deep within my  understanding.

But balance, stillness & silence are ultimately still just tools.

so, what its all about, anyway?

Tuesday, Nov. 7th, 2017

 

 

Energy Musings. Here. Now.

Today!

Take a deep breath in, close your eyes, listen to the sound of your breath.  Spend a moment here, just being with what is.  What “IS”, is always the breath.  Nothing less, nothing more.  How deeply can you connect with your breath?  The flowing river of your Be-Ing?  The breath is both your physical presence here & now AND it is your universal, formless, nature.  Understanding this helps us to cope, release, shed and let go during difficult times.

Now is one of those times.

Look outside, at the colors, the movement, the patterns around you.  Connect with something other than the news, politics, “stories” today.  Connect with something deeper, richer, longer lasting than any of these outlets can offer you.  Connect with the Earth and with your Life Force.  The breath will lead you to both.  Take off your shoes, play in the leaves, light a fire.  Or simply be still.

Today, even if just for a moment, Just Be.

Drink in the nourishment of this sacred place of Be-ing.  Restore your Self.

 

Song of the Day:  Stillness of the Day by Paul Adams