Change is rarely easy. It is made difficult because it means the end of what has been and adapting to a new way of being. We don’t think much about eggs that become chickens or caterpillars that turn into butterflies, because they are “natural.” I don’t know how an acorn feels when it sprouts and turns into an oak tree, but if you have given birth, you are intimately familiar with the pain of the process of creation.
Your transition to greater awareness is a natural process too, but if resisted, can be fraught with fear and anxiety. We humans run on emotion and we become attached to the way things are, even if they cause us problems. In a large setting like a nation change is almost certain to create conflict, as we observe what happens in Congress, for example. The same is true for individual spiritual growth. Adyashanti said:
“Enlightenment is a destructive process. It has nothing to do with becoming better or being happier. Enlightenment is the crumbling away of untruth. It’s seeing through the facade of pretence. It’s the complete eradication of everything we imagined to be true.”
If you are uncomfortable about all the changes, it might be helpful to remember that you are the one creating them. Humanity is evolving its consciousness. That collective transformation places a good deal of pressure on social institutions to change and adapt, which is something they are not very good at. Most social institutions have been created to defend what has been. They are rarely instruments of change.
Because change creates fear, there is the inevitable resistance that creates pushback, both individually and societally. Why else do you think political conservatives, who are heavily invested in the established order, are reacting so strongly to what has been happening lately? Conscious of it or not, they can feel the undercurrent of what is taking place, and it frightens them. After all, they have a lot to lose. You are far more powerful than you realize.
OK, so things are changing. What should you do to help yourself not get caught up in fear and resistance? I will offer suggestions in three areas: your emotional, spiritual and physical selves.
You came to earth to facilitate your spiritual development. The earth environment allows you to shift your spiritual issues into the emotional realm where they can be more easily addressed. So, let’s talk about those first.
Your emotional fears reside in your shadow, your personal emotional swamp. When you were young, the pain from some situation (or a series of interactions) overwhelmed your limited ability to cope, and this was the result. Part of you felt overwhelmed and inadequate to address what was happening, and those feelings persist into the present. The closed off part of you is locked up in that past. You are capable of dealing with the wound, but you’d rather not. You do not want to expose what feels like proof of your unworthiness. No one does. We generally have to be pushed by life circumstances to address it.
Those circumstances are The Universe’s way of asking you to consider whether the things you came to believe, especially about yourself, are really true. The Universe does this by enlisting the assistance of some other person(s) who needs to work on another aspect of the same issue. It brings you together to create what you call “a problem.” The Universe’s interest is to help you become aware of the emotional contractions that inhibit your spiritual development.
Your focus will be on the other, on your pain and the situation, while The Universe is asking you to consider the beliefs you hold (especially about yourself) that cause you to shut down your compassion and led to the creation of the problem. Think of a problem you had recently. How much would things have been different if you been able to move to greater compassion? You will find this to be true for every problem you face. We typically focus on the “issues,” but that’s largely an intellectual exercise. But what every problem really needs, and it don’t matter what the problem is, is more compassion. Gay Hendricks teaches, “The only thing any situation needs is more love.”
I want to make a distinction between a “situation” and a “problem.” The difference has to do with your emotional involvement. A situation, wether you like what is happening or not, is a disharmony that needs to be resolved. A problem, on the other hand, is a situation into which you have been drawn emotionally. Because you feel unsafe, in order to defend yourself, you will have moved into your rational mind and shut down your compassion. That’s why it is easier to give advice than to take it. I don’t have space to go into the details about the emotional process here, but I have written a book about it that offers a good deal of help in dealing with it (see Healing The Shadow).
Also, the changes in the general environment are making it much easier for people to resolve their issues today. I have been doing healing and transformational work for 30+ years, and people today are making incredible leaps in dealing with issues that in the past would have taken them a lot longer.
The other side of the coin is that the pressure for change is also increasing. The shift in our collective consciousness is creating an energy that is sweeping everything up in it. People who have avoided issues for years are being forcefully nudged as never before. People who are strongly attached to what has been are going to have an increasingly difficult time because the pressure will only increase as our human consciousness continues to evolve. There will also be reactionary responses to thosechanges.
While you concentrate most of your attention on your emotional issues, as you should, there are some other things you might want to consider to enhance your spiritual process. Spiritual work can be disturbed by emotional turbulence, but if you can find practices that suit you, you will significantly advance your development.
Meditation is a wonderful way to help calm the emotions and it can also help you make a profound spiritual connection. But, it is necessary to address the major tsunamis in your emotional ocean so that their turbulence won’t keep crashing over your sea wall of calm. That’s probably why meditation hasn’t worked for you in the past.
Something else very beneficial is to develop your spiritual roots. There are many philosophies and teachers out there, and when you are ready, you will find one that is right for you. But here too, you’ll need to calm your stronger emotional swings. I don’t generally recommend religious pursuits, because as Carl Jung said, “The best way to avoid a spiritual experience is to go to church.”
Another important, and often neglected aspect of spiritual development, is your physical self. Your resistance to caring for your body is another way The Universe tries to help you be more aware of your emotional attachments. You have taken physical form so that you could do your work here and you need to keep it in good running order. You’ve heard it a thousand times, but exercise and a good diet are simply essential. If the instrument is not properly tuned, it simply will not play well. There is no universal technique, we are all different. Find something that works for you.
You might also want to consider movement practices like yoga, tai chi or even aikido that help you to open up and center. You can also do things like massage, something we tend to view as a luxury. Curiously today, many people in our culture have finely tuned their physical selves and yet they exist in a spiritual wasteland. That is obviously regrettable.
The thing to keep in mind is that you are going to have to address your emotional issues eventually. You rally have no choice. The Universe is not going to sit back and simply allow you to continue as you are today. Your emotions block your spiritual development and The Universe is going to push and push on you with increasing intensity until you give in and resolve the false beliefs you carry about yourself. The thing is, postponing the inevitable only makes the process more painful. I could not have made this transition by myself. I needed the help of a competent shaman. I tried years of therapy and found that it just didn’t go deep enough. Find yourself a good shaman and get started.
copyright©Blue Lotus Press 2016