A Return to Stillness
The New Year arrived to find friends, family, clients and especially me facing a reassessment in the essential nature of self. The poles are shifting; the climate is changing and this dimension called Earth is bringing new opportunity to explore uncharted territory.
Those who know me well, see pretty much the same thing as those who have had a brief encounter. I am extroverted, animated and thrive on high socialization, as I have always found life, people and the world very interesting and stimulating. For the last few years I have tried to hang on to this persona, comforted by familiar life responses, but the
comfort did not last, as I found myself in a tug of war with my own soul. This tug of war was simply a deep longing for and calling into stillness. This calling to stillness is a state of being in which I had spent very little time, and until the end of 2012 was not consciously considering entering. However, suddenly and without explanation, the call to quiet was deafening, and so in mid-November I went into retreat and what I found there was more exhilarating than any adrenaline rush I have ever had.
I began my retreat after having scheduled 40 readings in nine days. Upon awaking the morning after completing the sessions, I found that my eyes were burning and swollen shut. The swelling, I realized, was a symptom of having exhausted and overworked the 3rd eye or intuitive chakra. To say the least, this got my attention, and I spent the next several days simply breathing, meditating, reading and resting. This rest prepared me to spend a week in Virginia at the retreat home of Rev. Sally Perry — Swami Maa — a healer, Native American teacher, sadhu, and a disciple of Swami Paramanand Ji Giri Maharaj. I had gone to India with Swami Maa in 1999 and knew very well the healing power of her presence. In the week of my retreat, I did lots of
prayer ties, “forgives and releases” (a process Swami Maa teaches), a sweat lodge, and lastly, I spent hours sitting before a roaring fireplace, needing to do nothing, completely mesmerized by the power, beauty and warmth.
The next phase involved a week-long physical cleanse and when that was complete, I took a glorious trip to the Vajra Vidya Tibetan Buddhist monastery in Crestone, Colorado. There at the monastery, I spent long days in silence, meditation and contemplation that took me deeply into self-examination, giving me a glimpse of what lay beneath the surface mind. The Buddhist call it the primordial self, the Christians call it the soul, I call it the truth. As extroversion and animation gave way I found myself talking little and softly, my movements became measured and conscious; the quiet was all around me, but more importantly it was in me. The frozen stillness where deeper wisdom resides began to thaw. I became hungry for the quiet, joyful in the simple, fulfilled in the inactive. Don’t get me wrong, I can still reclaim my verbosity, resurrect the familiar extrovert, but I don’t live there anymore. I have found a mandala of the self that is more complete, that has more pieces to it and that gives rise to greater, more authentic self-expression.
As with myself, I am watching this great and beautiful soul group I have connected with here begin to change. The timid are finding courage; the weak, strength; the proud, humility; the busy bees are starting to rest; and the high achievers are reevaluating success. YOU are moving from a monolithic definition of who you are to see that within reside all things: a complexity of self. Yes, the poles are shifting, the ice is melting, and maybe, just maybe, it will make us more fluid.
Category : Insights Posted on February 19, 2013