Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Self With Two Faces

Approaching my journaling with a reminder of the importance of meditating regularly and asking the mind to go deeper than before. This deepening takes me well below all the emotional garbage that is strewn in my current reality. Much of it has been blocking my creativity and spiritual connections. Just the opposite of what I want. I'm eager to work with my emotional childSelves, but desire to do this at a spiritual level and not from my ego-Self. The first is powerful, creative and healing; the latter offers little of anything.

I'm surprised at my level of anger, as well as the anger than surrounds me. As I become more aware, it's seems like a plague. I've decided to shut off the TV and to stop reading the newspaper for now. Then there are the others who are so contaminated with anger. It's so clear to me now....their "operating systems." My reaction in the past was to move into my defensive mode, fighting to the finish. This is a very unhealthy pattern, one I'm interested in deflating or breaking completely. Of course I realize this is a lot to ask, but I'm asking anyway.

Before meditating...

I'm going to use a technique from my past that worked quite well for me. I call it the "garbage can." Opening my journal, pen on paper, requesting the pen to locate anything and everything that is blocking my mind today. Just a quick mention is all that is needed. The power of awareness. Noticing and releasing, leaving the creative space open. Inviting the Self to enter deeper levels. Lots of junk today. As the pen puts it to paper, all seems rather ridiculous. I've always had a churning mind, even as a child. I feel like I'm vomiting some of this. Some of the same themes hit the paper. First it's the "to do lists"...the never ending "to do lists." But there is more. Here come the things that want to be on the to-do list but haven't been listed as yet. In a way, they drive me crazier than the actual list. Constant shuffling. Never a moment of peace. Needing and fighting to win agreements, things that are wrong with our house, being interrupted and tensing my body as I pretend that it doesn't bother me, which it always does. That's a laugh unto itself. That part of me is hyper-active, just waiting for that button to be pushed. Here comes some more. The need to exercise at a higher level, walk further, harder, push those weights, setting more goals than I could achieve in a life-time. Here they come...the never ending goals, some as dreams, others in parts like wounded soldiers, goals carrying lists, goals pounding on my mind, goals, goals, goals. Goals choking me. Never, ever finished and never will be. I feel the anger rising in my throat...leave me alone. But, they won't because I'm addicted to them, just like my eating disorder. I hate them, but I love them for they are what I am. How sick is this? My "journal master" says nothing. It's as if I never spoke. Feeling like a crazy person needing some sort of restraint. Restraint? Of course. My eating disorder. That is a restraint. Yes, I know all about restraints... I'm requested to "shhhhhh" now...

Meditating and deepening...

"Garbage can" away... following my "master", going deeply into the chair, utilizing the "deeper down dial" that works so well, especially when debris has been removed. The regular dial has five levels, but I an requested to go deeper today where I can enter levels of my spirituality and creativity that have been absent from my life for so long. A special gift, rewarding me for working in this very difficult area and not backing away. Thank you. It feels good to go deeper and the journey is rather speedy, like the express elevator in a tall building. Passing floors that have no purpose for today. Perhaps another day, but not today. I'm grateful, for I am really tired from shoveling garbage.


The elevator door opens and the "Light" greets me. I want to bask in it. I need to, but I'm moved along. The message is "that I don't need anything." I just think I do. I have everything inside of me, including my Highest Spiritual Nature. Sensing a spring breeze touching the top of my head. It's been so long since I've felt a breeze. I've been out of touch, blocked by so much debris and anger, not even noticing. Asleep for it. Like being in a smoke-filled room, unconscious and smothered with the poisonous gas.

Waking up is both delightful and challenging. Asking to see the blockage means being willing to look with acceptance. Not a strong suit for me. I've been fighting for so long. No wonder I'm tired. My biggest opponent is me, mySelf and that part comes towards me. I don't know whether to laugh or cry. She is beautiful and ugly, like someone with two distinct faces. I tear as I write this. Something touching my soul. I feel so sorry for her, yet I admire and love her at the same time. Like a mixing bowl of emotions, all releasing themselves. Goodness...

The children come forward carrying their toys. Seeing them in a new light now. Understanding their meaning and importance to the protection and release for the child who had no other way. But, I am no longer that child and so the release must be re-designed. The part of me with two faces shows me some of the ways I've collected anger and how I handled or tried to release it. Try is the operative word, because it was impossible to truly release my anger with inefficient or addictive tools. Instead, they destroyed me further. Now, the two faces me is showing me a living diorama that displays how I even enjoy the anger. Giving permission for entering addiction.

Additional parts of my life experience are becoming clear, like a fog lifting. Realizing much more is opening to me now. I'm grateful, for this is very fertile ground for creative planting.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Buzz-Saw

There are many libraries in the "theater of the mind" and all are multi-functional. It's good for me to remember that my mind is beautifully organized because most of the time I feel just the opposite. Today is one of those days!

Before I even begin journaling, I'm reminded that sensations of disorder often follow times of great stress or tension and I've certainly experienced that over the last week. Still cleaning up after the electrical fire. Waiting for the building inspector to hopefully close this door. The electrician gave me a magnet reminder to stick on the refrigerator. Not a good idea to keep this in the front of my mind. Besides, who could ever forget the name Mr. Sparky or the jingle that plays on their phone line.

My mind is just leaving the anxiety-mode. Sensing the tension remaining in my body. Like buzz-saws. I've decided to utilize the sensations for going deeper. This is a technique for managing pain, so I'll look at the buzz-saws as a pain sensation, going deeper down as my mind locates the sawing sensations. Starting at the top of the head, scanning down, just like a hand scanner for airport security. I'm stunned at the amount and intensity of the buzzing. This sort of meditative body opening is very powerful and revealing. My shoulders reveal super-sonic buzzing. Of course, so much weight placed on them over the last week. Forgetting how vulnerable the body can be to high stress, and how out of touch one becomes when the stress experiences push themselves to the front of the line. Reminds me of people in the supermarket who would run you over with their carts in order to be first....especially in the bakery.

Thoughts are racing, arguing with the buzz-saw, demanding to be noticed. I observe them passing through my consciousness, as I travel deeper down, like swimming underneath them. Noticing them on the surface of the water, but not caring about their presence. Simply allowing mySelf to go deeper down. When my attention is brought up to the surface, I simply notice and respond by going deeper down. Meditating through mind and body clutter.

Feeling better now. Leveling off. Ready to greet my inner mentors and Universal Mind. While they are always present, it's often difficult to communicate through all of the obstructions brought about by stressors, both big and small. I often forget to notice what's flowing through mySelf and this experience serves as another reminder to stay connected.

The buzz-saw now presents itself to me, asking to be utilized for something useful. This is an example of "transmutation" or changing something into something else. In the body, it represented locked-up stress and now outside my body, it represents a useful tool. I'm understanding that I do have paths in my subconscious mind that have not been tended to over the years. They are over-grown with weeds, brambles and debris. I'm led to one of them, not even knowing where it leads. I'm reminded of how clutter blocks many things in life and how good it feels to get rid of things that often stuff closets, drawers, cupboards, to name a few. Paradoxically, clutter can take over all areas of life without even being noticed. Ask any hoarder...

I'm now wondering how many paths are blocked with over-growth and what lies beyond. My childSelf has appeared, demanding that I leave them alone. Obviously frightened, even though she maintains that she knows nothing about these. Fear of the unknown. Another childhood issue that needs to be put to rest. I'm reminded that the best way to achieve this is to go forward. The buzz-saw buzzes in response. I'll start with what is in front of me and take it from there. The brambles, vines, weeds respond to the buzz, removing themselves with little effort. Reminds me of cleaning out the garage. Items wanting to be released by donation or going to the trash. Realizing that my mind was doing the blocking and not the stuff.

The path bricks are revealed. While a bit dingy, it's clear to me that they are golden or goal-den says the journal. I can now notice a sign directing the way. This path leads to the Library of Desires and Talents. Oh, it's been a long time since I thought about any of this. My life has been so encapsulated around my work, home, relationships and daily rituals. In a way, my life has become tiresome in it's sameness. It's not that I don't enjoy my life, but every room can benefit from a fresh coat of paint.

I'm entering the Library and have decided to spend some time here. I think this is "just what the doctor ordered." Fresh paint...fresh insights into those parts of my life experience that have been ignored. I'm heading for the early years and can sense the idea of fun and games entering my body. Glad that I released the buzzing, so now I have room for taking in the joy that I know is located here. Skating, hop-scotch, my blue bike, clarinet and my kick ball are against the wall. Just like new. Just like "knew."

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

I Believe in Angels

Beliefs are deeply-held mind programs that work behind the scenes as powerful goals. They originate from many places, some obvious, some not so obvious and others...a complete mystery. I love exploring the history of my beliefs through automatic journaling, especially if those beliefs position themSelves in the middle of my life path. It's almost "as if" they want to communicate with me, perhaps to share something that I might find useful. My Path has revealed some of these, mainly spiritual in nature.

Today's Automatic Journaling...

I ready mySelf to relax deeply into the moment, releasing my mind and body. This is usually easy for me, but this time my conscious Self keeps interrupting, trying to direct the subject matter for my journaling session. This is not the way.

Oh, how I despise being interrupted. And, as for being directed, this is not one of my strong suits, especially if, whatever it is, belongs "soul-y" to me. This is how I view my journal, the front door key to my soul. I've worked long and hard to attain this position as writer, director and producer. In the past, I would stand by the side-lines. Others ran and played with my life. Now, I'm not tossing blame here. I expected and even wanted them to do it. Lazy? Fearful of making mistakes? Always wanting to please? Many reasons to be the actor instead of the director.

Today, it seems that my conscious mind wants to return to that way of being. It's not going to happen. I get up and change my position. Back to the down-breath. Feels better this time....no static interruptions. The thought processes slow, slow, slow. The mind screen a beautiful shade of light blue. Images arising of their own accord. Just letting them do their thing. I don't believe I'm "there" yet. Just passing by images assisting the journey inward.

I'm invited to sit inside a spiral, rather like a slinky. I had one as a child and loved watching it going down steps. Now I'm inside one, going deeper down the spiral staircase. Yes, the spiral staircase. I went down one a few days ago with my childSelf, but this time I'm alone inside the slinky. The slinky-ride is fun. Feeling like a child in an amusement park!

The slinky lands and a door opens. I'm at a different area than before, but I sense this is my Life Path, like someone is telling me that. In front of me is a library-like building with a gold door pusher. I'm already pushing it open. The sign tells me that this is the Library of Beliefs. I'm reminded of the Library of Congress where some of my father's political cartoons are in safe keeping. I sense my father's presence, wondering if this is just a heart-felt desire or something else. Whatever it is, the sensations are peaceful and loving.

As a child, I was brought up Catholic, but my adult conscious Self does not follow any organized religion, but instead harbors strong beliefs in a Higher Power, spiritual teachers and message bearers. Part of me questions the presence of actual Angels, imaging these in a different category from spiritual teachers and messengers. I've often thought what my reaction would be if an Angel Spirit came into my awareness. My current thought is that I would really "freak out." I'm here in the Library of Beliefs to explore that notion and to learn more about me, mySelf and I.

The inner mind houses many different libraries, this being just one of the many, but a very important one to be sure. Beliefs fall into categories. They are housed in sectors of this particular building. It's already known that I am here regarding spiritual beliefs and so I'm ushered into a sector located near to the back. I've come to understand that spiritual beliefs are often very old, accompanying the individual through the birthing process. If newborns could talk, they might relay some of this information, but by the time the baby is old enough to speak, these memories are often in the back of the mind. However, if you hold a baby close to your heart, you may be able to sense the energies released by these. We think of the baby as being precious, but underneath the preciousness one can find spiritual connection.

I'm hear to ask specifically about Angels.

My fingers type direct questions onto my keyboard. Sometimes the answers come through my fingers, other times through the pen that sits on top of my writing journal.

"Have I ever been in contact with an Angel?" I'm somewhat doubtful, because of the Angel image I have in my mind. I'm answered with the words of my own observation.

"What makes you believe that Angels look a particular way?" I honestly don't know. It's just an idea in my head.

I find mySelf in a sector of the library were my Angel contacts are classified by date and time. Wow! I must say that I'm surprised to know how many contacts I've had. I'm told that some of my communication was short, but very important, some even life-saving. Others were short, but with less impact. Others were huge. I pull one of the "huge files" off of the shelf. Yes, I do remember this happening very clearly. I just never thought of it as an Angel Appearance.

It was back in 1984. We had a carbon monoxide leak from three different furnaces in our new home. The house was old, but we had just moved there a few months ago. The furnaces were all replaced, but I had a cough that wouldn't relent. So, I went to stay in a section of the house that was deemed "servant's quarters." I'd been sleeping there for about a week, but the cough persisted. One night I was awakened from a deep sleep. I felt pressure on my legs. There was a blue light surrounding something or someone who seemed to be sitting on my legs. I heard the voice of my step-father who had died about five years ago. The voice was calm, but strong. "Get out of this room right now. The flue is blocked and the contractors did not put the safety switch on the furnace. The carbon monoxide is spewing into the room." His voice went on to tell me exactly the configuration of the furnace, the flue and where the blockage was. He also told me not to call the same contractors because they would lie.

Yes, this is exactly what happened and everything was as his voice told me. "And so, do you not realize that you were visited by an Angel?" I must admit, I didn't realize that. I did know that something spectacular happened that night.

I'm asked to look around this sector of the library and spend some time reviewing other parts of my life experience. "Yes, I do believe in Angels."

Monday, August 23, 2010

The Sixth Sense

Everything is connected, but sometimes we have a loose connection that needs to be attended to.

Automatic journaling is how we enhance our connection with our Higher Power, sixth sense or intuition. Journaling is not just a writing exercise, but a process of becoming fully engaged with the Universal Mind. Our level of engagement continues throughout our daily experiences in what I like to call the "workshop of the world. We know this as our current reality. It's like we are participating in a theatrical play, where the script unfolds as the scenes unravel themselves. It's an "auto-pilot" production and we are the players. The clearer our Universal connections or intuition, the better for us. We stay in the position of "heightened observer." The scenes of life become more vibrant or clearer like HDTV and our ability to ask or hear specific directions is greatly enhanced. In other words, the connection is clear because the debris has been removed.

Sometimes intuition speaks softly, other times very loudly. In my experience, it's always best to listen. Intuition allows us to see more and to make better choices. These choices can change one's life dramatically. This is what happened to me in the middle of the night.

Act I Scene I

I'm awakened by our alarm system making a strange noise that I've never heard before. It wasn't all that loud, but since I have a tendency to "policing" my life, my mind seems to stay alert to any and all changes in my environment, a result of early childhood trauma. I get up and flight on the light. No light. No electricity. Oh damn. What's going on. Heart racing a bit. Wake the husband. Just for a moment, wondering what I would be doing if there was no husband. Am I such a needy person??? Realizing the child part of me is so very fearful, but I can turn this off. Just this week I released my child from her leg braces, taking my position as a mature Self. Deciding to wake the husband, so he won't feel "left out". Also, depending on what happens next, he may be useful, especially since he really likes to take charge.

Act I Scene 2

Well, as expected, he takes over, directing me through the house with flashlights, calming the child, even though the child was calmed long ago, but no need to announce that. Nothing to be gained. "Just a regular black-out" was his diagnosis. As for the alarm, "who knows. It's not the first time the damn thing did something strange." I do have to agree, although the police, investigative part of me isn't satisfied, but no need to get into this discussion in the middle of the night. Those subjects are best saved for another time, if at all. Lessons learned from many years of marriage. Husband returns to bed, snoring within minutes. The investigative-police part of me is happy to have him removed from the scene. She also likes to be in charge.

Act 2 Scene 1

Awake and alert. Time to research and collect evidence. What's really going on here? Another presence is felt. I immediately know it to be Universal Intelligence, an active group of spiritual helpers. Some people call these "angels." Whoever they are, I'm happy they're here. I feel at peace and safe. The childSelf is directed to sit quietly on the sofa to observe, for this is how the child part of us learns to mature.

I'm told to disengage the alarm and go into the garage. Calmly now. As I open the door, the smell of smoke touches my nostrils. I look around, but everything appears normal, except for the smell. I wish the lights were on. I'm instructed to call the electric company and receive a recorded message. Our address is checked via their automatic-response computer and I'm told that the problem will be resolved by the next morning.

The investigative-police part of me isn't satisfied, but it's more than that. She will not go to sleep, but stays vigilant, shining the flashlight in different parts of the room, just in case this is more than it seems, for my intuition is convinced that there is more than meets the eye.

Act 2 Scene 2

The mind and body are calm, but alert. 4 AM Lights and voices on the side of the house and a banging on the window. A man wearing a construction hat informing me that there is no problem and telling me to trip the main breaker.

It doesn't move. I'm not strong enough. He agrees to push it for me, even though they are not allowed to enter any premise. I open the door and he takes a step back. "Don't touch anything. The electrical panel is smoldering. It may spark or explode if you touch it." The car sits next to the electrical panel. My husband is snoring down the hall.

Act 3
Finding an electrician on a weekend and one who would be able to handle this job. I look through the phone book with my flashlight. Don't know any electricians. My pen moves towards the name of a company with a ridiculous name. "I would never call a company with a name like that." The pen ignores my comment, encircling the name. Oh, someone else is in charge here. The pen then makes a 1-2-3 list as to why this is the right company. Intuition.

Snoring stops and agreement is reached without debate. Strange? The company with the odd name responds immediately, dispatching a knowledgeable professional...clean, neat and focused. "You're very lucky you didn't lose your life or your house last night." Yes, I do know that and I am grateful. There is tremendous power in heightened awareness and healthy connections!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Releasing the Up-Tight Self

Relaxing deeply into the moment now. Fingers not touching the computer keys. Eyes closed gently and slightly turned up. Entering the subconscious mind via the spiral staircase, the suggestion of the childPart. Most likely this also has a meaning, so I'll remember to ask. Going down, down and further down. Eyes opening, fingers working independently from my mind. Questions appearing as if being asked by themselves...

Down the spiral staircase...one foot before the next....paying careful attention to the placement of my feet. I've never been keen on spiral staircases & wondering why the child part of me chose this way of getting to where we need to go. Since I'm working with "right brain or automatic writing", I can hear the child explaining this to me, even before my fingers type out the question.

" I have to go slowly because of my leg braces. You always go everywhere so fast. I never get to see anything."

Critique accepted. Yes, she's absolutely right. This is an important reminder for me. Take more time while enjoying the moments. Life is not a marathon event. This is a habitual way of being for me, so I'm asking my subconscious mind to awaken me.

I'm being asked to clarify this. On a scale of 1-10? "Please wake me at level 5." It's easier to change something BEFORE it gets too big and over-whelming. In nursing these are known as the "prodromals" or behaviors that "come before." Obviously, it would be a nuisance if I'm continually aware of how fast I'm moving along in my day. To my mind, level 5 is where I'm placing my foot on the gas.

I have some idea about the child's leg braces. I've worked with this image in my original inner work. Thought that was over. The braces are old-fashioned, buckles covered in rust. Again, thought this was over. Wondering, "Are old issues every over? Are we just collectors of "issues", cramming them in the closets of our mind, never to be free?" This is not a happy thought, but I'm reminded that thoughts and emotions have their own purpose, so perhaps this is a good thing? I'll have to ask.

Once in the mind and in front of those that share my automatic journaling, there is no need to ask, for the question is already being answered. Once something is noticed, then it is explored and tended to. Rather like "automatic gardening." Weeds notice...weeds gone, but in this instance, a special learning or healing takes place.

I'm asked a question. "What are the braces telling you?" Perplexed. "Go over and help the child to remove them. The braces are wise. They have been holding the child upright."

As I maneuver the buckles, trying to get them to open, I notice the rust has come off on my hands, forming words. "Happiness, joy, love, compassion, forgiveness....freedom." Seeing "freedom" brings tears to my eyes. Why hasn't the child been free? Did I place the braces on her legs? Am I responsible for keeping her from running and playing, experiencing the joy of life? I respect freedom so much, this idea of being responsible for this is pouring guilt over my being. And, what's with the sweater, hat and scarf? "When one can not experience happiness, joy, compassion, forgiveness and love, one is often cold."

The words in my journal ask me to relax and release. "You know not what you do and so guilt serves no purpose here. Now you are aware and in charge of keeping the child free to explore life wearing happiness, joy and love. She forgives and has compassion for what happened in the past. Now, you can forgive as well, for those who originally placed the encumbrances on the child did not know what they were doing, just like you." An image of my mother, father, brothers, aunt and grandmother present themselves. I draw a forgiveness heart on the page of my journal, observing as it is transferred to my family images.

A noise interrupts. The child is laughing. Chasing a butterfly down the path, winter clothing and braces no where to be seen.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Theater of the Mind

Can't believe this... I re-sprained my old knee injury! Hit it on the corner of the car door. What is this business with my mind and body keeping me "chair-bound?" Knowing that "there are no accidents", I have to assume that I'm meant to delay returning to my life as usual. I'm reminded that I have choices. Either sit here, complain and snarl, or open myself up to whatever this is all about.

Remembered my automatic writing journal. A great way to work inside the "theater of the mind.". Love that journal and I've had great experiences with it in the past. I'm interested in knowing when I used it last and what happened. It seems that our own mind, given the opportunity, will grab it, taking us to where we need to go at that particular time and I'm ready to go somewhere now.

Here it is. The last time I wrote in it was in October, 2001. Noticing I was engrossed in a conversation with my "alive part." Reading further, recalling what was going on with me. A season of mild reactive depression. Little desire or energy to do anything. Inner journal or automatic writing is a great way to have well-guided, self-hypnotic experiences. Reading through some of the inner conversations and suggestions from the Higher Part of Me, following the experience, observing the healing, the exit door back to a healthy, balanced life being held open by my "alive part."

I haven't thought about that part of me in a long while and I'm happy to have the time to reconnect. Wondering what my "alive part" would have to say about some other things that I'm currently experiencing. Becoming re-ignited and anxious to get back to this.

Even though I haven't written in this journal since 2001, I accept life as a continuation. While I've side-stepped on tangential paths, it's still a journey of what came before, what comes next and what comes after that.

I'm reading that my "alive part" has suggested that I design my own outcomes, as I would like to have them. The depressed part of me would benefit from "mind re-hab" and changing it's relationships with particular emotions that are related to the wearing of "heavy shoes." Another suggestion is to change my family of origin...not exactly eliminating them, but making up images of different brothers and sisters that are more balanced in their approach to life. Working in the subconscious mind is often like child's play. The inner mind has a great sense of humor, loving metaphors that while appearing silly, are just the opposite. Imagining having Thanksgiving with my new and delightful, agreeable and friendly family of siblings. But, sensing mySelf being encumbered by ridiculous heavy shoes is not too far from the truth. Perhaps my subconscious hasn't been in shoe departments lately!

Automatic journaling allows me to frame areas of my life that I choose to work on. This can be anything, from problems, health issues, habits, addictions to areas of creative living and design. I spend some time thinking about what I would like to address. Usually choosing just one or two things at a time. I'm never sure how many parts of me might like to weigh in on the issue, and I might even have some visitors from the Universe at Large. One thing for sure, it's always an enlightening experience.
Sometimes I meet up with some of my younger Selves. On occasion, future or much older Selves have joined the conversation, along with the inner workings of a particular problem. I can always expect emotions to be exposed, both positive and negative. Once again, this all happens automatically and right off the end of my pen or on the computer screen, if we all choose to type. WE? Yes, we. All parts have points of view and flashlights to shine on different aspects of whatever is on the table. As for the Universal Guests, can never be sure who will turn up.

I do have a meeting room in the "theater of my mind", but most of the time we just meet in a quiet, spiritual place....perhaps in a garden or by the side of a stream, or under the "library trees." Those are trees with built-in reference texts from the most powerful Universal Beings. I especially love going there because the energy is so BIG.

My journal is ready and inviting. However, I'm not alone today. A childPart of me has presented herSelf, wanting to travel along with me. I had a feeling that something special was going to happen, so perhaps this is a clue. The child is wearing heavy braces on her legs, rather like the kind children wore when polio was common. She's also dressed in rather cumbersome clothing. Heavy sweater, hat and scarf. This is Florida, but obviously that means nothing to this part of me.

Relaxing deeply into the moment now. Fingers not touching the computer keys. Eyes closed gently and slightly turned up. Entering the subconscious mind via the spiral staircase, the suggestion of the childPart. Most likely this also has a meaning, so I'll remember to ask. Going down, down and further down. Eyes opening, fingers working independently from my mind. Questions appearing as if being asked by themselves...

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Missed Appointment

One of my patient's cancelled her appointment. Hearing the news, the peach recliner beckoned to me, or was it another part of me doing the beckoning. This wasn't my usual response to a cancelation, but for some reason I must admit to feeling some level of happiness. Another part of me slammed the door, telling me that I had too many other obligations and deadlines. Much better ways to spend my newly found free time. I know this part well. Always raining on my parade. It's a very old part, even older than me. Noticing that it doesn't even want me to write about it here. Sacrilege. Shining a light on family secrets, rules and regulations. "Time is not for wasting. Time is for doing." Even the message feels tight, uncomfortable and confining.

Thinking that all is lost, I let go of any ideas I might have had about moving over onto the peach recliner. Accepting my fate of always following that stick-carrying part of me, I wait for further instructions. After all, that part is right. I do have lots of "real work" waiting for me and I could utilize this time in a better way. Feeling a bit self-righteous, better than those people who just sit around whiling away their hours in purposeless play.

"Move over to the peach recliner." The instructions, kind, but firm, like a parent or teacher or healer reaching my ears. I'm waiting for the rebuttal from the stick-carrier, but there is silence. My body moves over, as if being transported on some sort of effortless conveyance. I check my watch. The hands are gone. How will I know when my time is up? A feeling of "no-need-to-think" answers my question. Wow...I rather like that part. It's like being absent from mySelf.

Sinking back into the recliner, being pulled down gently, traveling quickly and finding mySelf in the parking lot of my office building. What? Hearing the rain and wondering if my car windows are closed. This isn't exactly what I had in mind. Two cows appear, signaling for me to follow them, so first I check the car windows and then follow the cows. It takes me a few moments to realize that it is very odd to find cows in the parking lot, but I couldn't care less. They're quite a bit ahead of me, so I quicken my step, noticing that I'm passing some beautiful landscapes. A few other animals appear, letting me know I'm on the right road. I'm floating now, moving faster over the pastures and can see my life area underneath me. My feet turn downwards, making it easier to land. Noting that I'm wearing golden shoes with an ankle strap, like Mary Jane's. I have no idea if I'm an adult or child, and once again, couldn't care less.

The path is also golden, with clearly marked gardens on each side. I'm requested to follow the path past the bend to the right. In the distance is a huge rainbow, housing a light underneath it. To the right and left are chairs, divided into sections by the golden path.

A parade of child-like individuals parade in, some going to the right, others to the left. I'm told there is a chair for me directly on the path, in front of the light, but then I notice there are two chairs, side by side. I sit in one, observing the parade. The individuals on the left are a bit messy in appearance, some bigger than others. I notice the stick-carrying person, rather surprised to makes it's company here, although it pays no attention to me as it takes it's seat. Those on the right are a mixture of big and small, all very neat and composed. The chair next to mine is now occupied with someone that seems familiar, but I can't seem to remember where we met before. There is no conversation from anyone, as if the light has hypnotic qualities. I can sense a great respect. A powerful energy is obviously present. This is a spiritual moment, but it's still not clear to me what's going on. The compulsive part of me wants to talk to the person in the next chair, but I sense mySelf being pulled deeper into the chair where I'm sitting, so I'm assuming that something is going on, even if I don't understand what it is.

The child-like individuals, to the right and left, are now bathed in light. Those to my left becoming smaller, while those to my right become bigger. I notice black drops leaving the fingers of those to my left, falling onto the path and transmuting into golden dust. Those to my right are also producing golden dust, but there are no black drops, just pure gold. Each child-like individual has a small container and is filling it with the dust. Each takes their leave, walking under the light and the rainbow for destinations unknown by me. There goes the stick-carrier.

The person who sits next to me tells me that my emotions have been called for a balancing of sorts. Those to the left were my negative emotional states, those to the right my positive emotional aspects. Rather at a loss for words and feeling a bit shy. "I seem to have many negative parts." Goodness, I even run mySelf down here! This doesn't go un-noticed.

"It's time for you to respect all parts of yourSelf. Each part of you has something to offer. Now you are being invited to the schoolhouse where each emotional state will teach you something you didn't know before."

"When will this happen?" That's me....always compulsive and in a rush.

"When it's supposed to happen"...comes the Wise Reply.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

The Peach-Colored Chair

In my office I have a peach-colored recliner. It's been there for many years and it never surprises me when a patient, old or new, sits down and immediately changes in some way. Patient's have told me that for some reason, sitting in that chair makes it easy for them to go into a trance state and start their own work. I'd been thinking about the chair when I was home recovering from whatever that was, wondering what effect the chair would have on me. Would I also experience a different level of existence? Would the chair take me somewhere I've never been before? Is it possible that the chair actually stores hypnotic energy in the fibers of it's being? Goodness...better stop these thoughts now and just wait to get back into the office.

I decided to go to work early. I had thought about staying later and experimenting at the end of the day, but then I thought that my mind would travel over areas that were visited by patients on that day, and I preferred to experiment with a cleaner slate. The office building was very quiet and that suited me perfectly. I love quiet and rarely have the opportunity to experience this during my work-day. Entering my office, I already felt somewhat different. In this moment I was not the therapist, but someone else. Locking the door, I set the stage with lighting, just as I would do for a patient, and then sat down in the peach-colored chair. Feet up...slight recline...arms resting comfortably on my lap, just as I've seen patients do for decades. Since nothing happened, I closed my eyes, taking a cleansing breath, as if I could hear mySelf telling mySelf to do just that. I peeked out at my therapist's chair and saw some foggy image sitting there. Oh, I do have a great imagination!! Or do I?

I'm very eager for the experience and for answers. Most certainly, this is part of my compulsive personality. Of course, this goes along with being very impatient. As I wait, I'm very aware of this. Part of me wants to push the fog-filled therapist into some sort of action. Wondering if my patients feel this about me? Something or someone tells me to "cool it" and so I do. Why not have a good half hour of rest? What does it really matter if the experience isn't any more than this?

Almost immediately, the letting go of my expectations cleared the way.
The way down into trance was very swift, as if the peach-recliner was motorized in some way. It was somewhat like an elevator experience, going down, down, down and then we were there. The door opened and the path presented itself. I have been here before, but his time the colors were much more vivid, the workshop much clearer in definition. The door opened as if it expected me. This time my desk was clear. No list...nothing at all. Part of me wondered what I was expected to do, but nothing was expected. I don't know how I knew that, but I did. It was such a lovely place, clean and organized, beautifully furnished, views from the windows welcoming to my eyes, my body responding in kind.

A table offered me field glasses, inviting me to look out at the wide expanse of my life. It was clear that this was mine and no one elses. I could see beyond my place, to the place of others who share my life experience, but their place was not my place, nor was mine their's. This ownership of Self felt very good. I understand being self-responsible, but this clear imagery underlined this fact, as well as helping me understand the importance of others also being self-responsible. That includes my family, friends and patients. While the peach-recliner allows me to take them to their place, it is their place to care for. My responsibility as a therapist, is just the same as my responsibility to mySelf and my family. Self-ownership.

I'm asked to put the glasses down and go over to the closet. Oh no...I'm not fond of closets. Breathe says the Self. I have a multi-colored history with closets. I've hid in them, been locked in them, hoarded things in them. To me, they hold my secrets and I don't want to open this closet, certainly not in this place. Oh, why did I come here. My body spelled out resistance, but the fog blew my way, covering me in a gentle hue of blue. I reached for the knob, turning it to the right and gently pulled the door open. A little broom appeared in my hand with an invitation to sweep. Clean and clear was the tune in my head. The fog helped by absorbing whatever was being swept and I found myself enjoying the process. I was now invited to enter the closet where I found another door asking to be opened. Having been reassured by the fog, I simply opened it and was shown a beautiful flower garden.

Gardening shoes, just my size, sat on the brick path. I slipped them on, finding myself skipping like a child again. Light and airy. So happy, peaceful and excited to explore the plants. Shhhh...not so fast. No need to hurry. A watch appeared on my wrist. It had a face, but no hands. "Time does not exist here" said the watch. "Take all the time you like for it makes no difference. The idea of time simply tightens it's grip on the plants, making it difficult for them to grow. Loosen and lighten and they will grow." As I began studying the plants, I realized that each represented something I had struggled with previously, with the belief that I would never complete these things. Of course, the struggle had tightened the growth. That was the message.

I heard some movement in the hallway of my office building. Could I have been here an hour already? I peeked at my watch, noticing the hands had appeared on the face. Oh darn...how I prefer the other watch. But, it was time to return to the day at hand. The peach chair asked me to return in a more dignified way...slow & gentle. No rushing. Promising that I would be returning again, in fact many times, for there was much to know here and this was my life, no one else's.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Secret Wishing

Most of the time we are not aware that we are on the path leading to illness. We wake up to the activity of our day, or I should say, "we wake up IN the activity of our day" because the mind and body are already well involved before the clock radio is called to action. While I know all of this, I'm no different from everyone else, therapist or not.

My recent illness was both a surprise and not a surprise. I was expecting it, actually wondering where it was. My breakneck pace of life that always seems to be my response to additional stressors had brought me back to areas "less visited" during my more balanced days where addictions and compulsions stayed away without a fight.

As I lay here, I'm thinking that I probably had been secretly wishing to be ill. At least I would be forced to do nothing. Over the years, I'd cleared out most of my addictions and they no longer held the same love appeal, but the old programmed mind wanted to hang out anyway, like a big tease. Now I find their presence annoying, preferring to escape through sleep instead of through a plate of ice cream.

It's been a full day since my inner visit. I've thought about it and now wonder if it was simply my fever breaking. I hope not. The last time this happened for me was several decades ago when I was seriously ill and my life seriously shifted. I'm hoping there are other doors, other than illness, that will keep me connected. As a therapist, I believe and practice meditation, but this place is something more and I WANT IT. Oh, how typical of me. Just like a child stamping her foot, demanding that she be given what she wants.

As the image of my outrageous child matures, I find myself laughing at her ridiculous patterns. The voice from nowhere or somewhere else responds with gentle demeanor "Ask politely." Once again I feel tension draining from my body, as if I'm back in that chair that pulls me down. While I'm delighted to be back, I'm wondering if this inner traveling will be interrupting my day whenever it wants to. Certainly that can't be a good thing. How will I ever get anything done? Or, maybe I'm sicker than I believe and these visiting images are active delusions, setting me up for some serious medication.

Stop now. It's time to give it all up...all the hindrances that have blocked for decades. Give them up? Goodness, I'll be empty! It's obvious in this moment that I have a liking for the most miserable parts of myself. The idea of releasing them, just letting them go is more unsettling than my fever-pitched headache.

Question time. Where would I begin? Answers coming even before the questions fully materialize. Yes, I remember this happening before and it was enjoyable, at least then. Let's see how it feels now. The headache opens and I'm already inside the corridor, back in the chair, surrounded by teachers I can't see or hear, but somehow I know who they are. Some are very old and wise, others younger, perhaps seeking their own spiritual merit badges through their work with me. Somehow I'm remembering the time I went to have my hair colored at the local beauty school and realizing what a mistake that was, but for some reason that experience doesn't mesh with this. I'm accepting what's about to happen before it happens. It feels comfortable.

The answers flow. There is no beginning and no ending, just Knowledge and the experience it lends. The Universe is eternal and fluid. Everything experienced of this so called life plan is an illusion. So, let me get this straight. Nothing is real?

It's made clear to me, and not for the first time, that life is like a big story book that can be edited both past, present and future. And, since this my story book, I'm invited to do the editing, along with Universal Guidance. There are no mistakes, nothing to forgive, nothing to fear. A pile of fresh-start clean slates are always available. Yes, I've known this for a very long time, but for some reason it feels new again. Perhaps I've entered through a different door and the clarity that I'm experiencing is moving me up to a higher level.

Checking in on my headache and can't find it, so this is also good news. I'm wondering how to proceed, when the answer is presented before the question is fully formed. I come to know that I am already proceeding and yes, I will be interrupted many times, just as a pilot needs to keep checking, perhaps re-adjusting the positioning of his plane. The life that my body and mind are experiencing are tantamount to a big school, where the teachers are all spiritual in nature. Some appearing in bodies and some not. I'm now plugged in, meaning that I am on an accelerated path. I'm excited by the possibilities, but also feel myself holding back, not wanting to open everything at the same time.

I'll be communicating through inner journaling, as well as straight-forward mind-chat. I know where I want to begin, but I also accept that perhaps I don't know what is best. We'll see.

Internal Landscapes!

Therapist's Couch Self-Hypnosis Webinars to begin later this month. Receive my newsletter for the schedules.

I've been away...not on vacation, but on my own journey of self-honesty. It's not something I raised my hand for, but my body & mind decided to shut down business as usual until I took the time & personal space to address some of my own issues. Oh? A therapist with issues? Why not? Everyone else has them!

It's been several years since my body decided to take a trip into the dark abyss of illness. In a way, I was excited because I knew that once I started to feel better physically, I still had to fully recover & it is in that time-space that an inner journey would take place. I know from past experiences that my mind knows where to go, but living life "as usual", never affords me the time to arrive at that special destination...the place that holds the questions, as well as the answers.

Two whole weeks away from work, desk, computer, phone & even a meaningful conversation of any length. Days & nights consisting of sleep & more sleep. No need to worry for this is the preparation for the journey that would take place very soon. No preparations necessary. The body would alert the mind when the time was right & I would simply find myself there.

It happened in the middle of a morning at the end of the second week or so I seem to recollect. I didn't do anything special, just took some tylenol, closed my eyes, waiting for the pain to go somewhere else. Instead, the pain opened, just like a door in the middle of my forehead. I recall a long hallway, dimly lit, but appearing friendly, as if it was expecting me. I sensed a lack of hesitation on my part, a wanting to go in & down the corridor...starting to feel better, a little stronger & clearer despite the pain waving me on. The pain no longer had meaning, other than to be some sort of director to the scene. I didn't seem to mind it's presence because it was the one thing that remained familiar to me, rather like a touch-stone. As I moved further down the corridor, I no longer felt a need for it's presence & so as if it could read my mind, it stepped to the side, becoming part of the wallpaper.

I was not asleep, but instead very much awake. I know this because I opened my eyes & looked around the room where I was resting. Everything seemed the same & so I simply chose to go back. There was no difficulty in getting back to that place. That in itself was interesting because before getting sick my level of concentration had been waning.

I found a chair & sensed an invitation to sit down. There was no one there, or at least no one that I could see or even sense. The chair was comfortable & began pulling me further down into it, not enough to frighten me, but enough to let me know that I was to be there for awhile.

The next thing I remember was the fog. I've lived in England, so I do know fog, but this was a different variety. Very colorful with blurred images that seemed to be lining themselves up & then leaving to the left. I started to become aware of what things were, despite never hearing any voice or instruction. It was simply a sense of inner knowing that was accompanied with a feeling of deep certainty. Things not only needed to leave, but they were simply leaving on their own. No efforting, no decisions to be made, no thinking things through, just peaceful exiting. By body began to feel lighter, as if I was floating upwards. Now, in my usual awake state I would not have been accepting of any of this. My tendency is to hold on & never let go, but that part of me wasn't present at this time.

Now I found mySelf standing in back of my body. I placed my hands on my shoulders & could feel them, but I was definitely outside of myself. I walked to the right side of "me", then to the left & then found I could float up & look down at myself. I was aware of where tension had been stationed inside my body. I also understood that my mind was not in my "head", but instead in all parts of my body, experiencing the tension as blockages. I was then invited ( I don't know by whom ) to reach down & remove a block. The blocks were rather small, but when I removed one, it grew in size. I chose another one & this one also grew, but not as big as the first one.

I was instructed to place the blocks on the table & somehow knew that I would be spending time with these. The answers I was seeking, even though I didn't know the questions as yet, would be given to me by the blocks.

At this moment I came to the realization that I was hardly alone, but instead, there were many "beings" with me, each one an instructor of sorts. I didn't see them, but their presence was obvious to me. I also understood that they had been assigned to me, to walk me through my healing & then into a clearing, where my purpose or work would be synthesized by them. I would also become acutely aware of the emotions that would be part of my life from now on forward.

This was not to be a one time meeting, but would happen frequently to be enhanced in meditation. My body would be welcomed, but I am not my body. It is simply a conduit for moving around the Universe. My focus in this regard would be changing & there was really nothing I had to do.

I found myself opening my eyes, fully returned to the room & my bed. There was nothing else. No fanfare, no lights, no angels, no eureka or ah-ha...just a knowing that change had happened & perhaps for the first time, without any struggle.

Before I became ill I had been working on many different projects, always feeling like I was chasing myself. It's become clear to me what parts of these have left & what has replaced them. These are not plans that I worked out in my usual way, but instead, an inner knowing of what I am to do.

I invite you to join me in making contact with your own Universal Connections.