<![CDATA[Inquiry: A Portal to the Heart - Blog]]>Wed, 16 Aug 2017 00:40:06 -0700Weebly<![CDATA[Unforgiveness has a need?]]>Mon, 14 Aug 2017 20:00:00 GMThttp://monicaespinozaonline.com/blog/unforgiveness-has-a-need
Picture
by Noirran Marx http://www.flickr.com/photos/48898524@N07/
It can be hard to hear "forgive, as it sets you free."

But, what if we just have no idea what forgiveness means or how to go about it?


Sometimes some acts seem unforgiveable.  While we may know we are suffering because of what someone did to us in the past we remain powerless in the present. 


This post is about what lies behind the perception that we do not know how to forgive or the need of unforgiveness.   


1) What is unforgiveness?

2) Why is it hard to forgive? 

3) What does it really mean to forgive?

4) Is there a need underlying unforgiveness?


What is unforgiveness?

If forgiveness is a process of freeing myself of old hurt including resentment or desire for justice to be made, then, unforgiveness is an attitude of victimhood that keeps me from living fully in the present.  

If forgiveness is an act of self-love that allows me to embrace the wound with compassion, then, unforgiveness is an act of self-hate that ensures I suffer.

If forgiveness is the ability to hear my pain and grieve the hurt, then, unforgiveness is not listening, feeling or being vulnerable with myself

If forgiveness is letting go of a story that can haunt me incessantly, then unforgiveness is holding on to the story that I think makes me who I am.

Maybe I am more compassionate as a result of what happened, but I do not have to hold on to the traumatic story to be what I am. 


Byron Katie of The Work, asks  "who would I be without my story?"

Without the story we are just free to be. 

We all have a story.  However, when that story includes trauma, there are layers of hurt trapped in the body.  When the memories of trauma surface the need to be heard seems endless.  

Is there an end to retelling our traumatic story?  

Yes, I believe so.  Sometimes, the wounds of trauma run deep and we keep retelling our traumatic story thinking that can heal us.  

When we can integrate what happened by discharging what is in our body, we can release energy in service of ourselves and others rather than using that energy against ourselves and others. 

Integration includes letting go of our ego's need to judge and punish and learning about our humanity.  


Why is it hard to forgive?

It is hard to forgive because the transgression seems so personal and life altering. 

It can be hard to forgive when as humans we are capable of dehumanizing one another.  Atrocities do occur and yet we are capable of great humanity as well. 

It is hard to forgive when we believe the transgression or injustice was about us more than about the other's pain.  

Forgiveness is hard because it means taking responsibility for the current circumstances in my life instead of holding others or some event(s) accountable.  

Forgiveness is hard because it is not just a single act of letting go of horrific moments in our past.  It is a daily practice of letting go of small things with kindness, so I can also let go of the bigger, heavier or harder stuff. 

What does it really mean to forgive?

It means I stop numbing myself, thinking I cannot handle it and allow my e-motion to flow. 

It means allowing any strong emotion like rage to be released from my body through motion like running, dancing or even just moving and making sounds.  

We let out what was let in.

It means being vulnerable and brave to feel even the deepest fear because we have survived what happened.  

It means surrendering and trusting in our strength and/or in a benevolent force much wiser than us to heal.  

Forgiveness means choosing to be responsible when my needs are compromised moment by moment by allowing hurt and grief.   

Forgiveness means willingness to learn when I and others make mistakes or violate my values.    

Picture
by BK Symphony of Love http://www.flickr.com/photos/pictoquotes/
What underlies my unforgiveness?

Unforgiveness is a need to be heard not so much by others as to what was dishonored....



Being unheard can feel disempowering.  

My needs empower me so I do not have to carry resentment, anger or bitterness. 

Even if I think that I do not know how to forgive, I can set an intention to listen to what I need and be patient as it is a process.  

I begin by listening with the intention of going within rather than looking outside.  I reconnect to what has been neglected within. 

I listen to any judgments that point to unmet needs.  

When I listen, I remove the armor that keeps me from feeling.  

I cannot forgive/heal what I cannot feel.  If I cannot feel, I cannot know my needs.  If I do not know my needs, I slowly decay until life loses meaning.  Without meaning, I may be breathing but walking like the dead. 


Forgiveness gives me wings to fly through uncertain times with a little more joy and peace. 


Are you choosing the decay of unforgiveness or love through forgiveness?  


Can you trust that you know how to let go?

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<![CDATA[Overwhelm's voice & response?]]>Tue, 08 Aug 2017 07:00:00 GMThttp://monicaespinozaonline.com/blog/overwhelms-voice-response
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by ccho http://www.flickr.com/photos/ccho/
Being in one place or moving is a matter of timing.  Being stuck versus flowing is based on mindset?  What supports me in stillness and in progressing?  

What I know is that without change there is no progress.  Without progress there is stuckness. 

I have been learning that stuckness is more than a mindset but an amalgam of patterns or defense mechanisms held in my body that served me once but no longer do.  

Stuckness is not stillness.  Stillness, is not doing nothing. Stillness is remaining grounded while there is chaos or unknowns. 
Sometimes in wanting to become unstuck I've ended up overwhelmed. Overwhelm for me is a response linked to self-bullying or criticism of myself. 

Stuckness is sustained by energy held in the body from trauma.  Trauma manifests through outdated defense mechanisms.  

These are a few defense mechanisms that can and do keep us stuck or unable to make progress. 

*Avoidance 

something difficult is avoided (to remain safe) so we do not gain confidence in overcoming it (our fear), the result we remain stuck.


*Rumination

thinking over and over in ways that are unhelpful like asking "why questions" that victimize us.  Or engaging in self-talk that is self-critical like "I am worthless,  I never get it right." 

Self-criticism is disabling.   It is self-bullying.  The voice of self-criticism is an old familiar voice of harshness that was internalized long ago.  Self- bullying is something familiar yet quite hurtful and detrimental. 

The response to self-bullying is overwhelm due to threat.  I may not always recognize that I am being self-critical until I feel overwhelmed.

Time doesn't seem on my side.  I feel as though I am running in a marathon in place. It is exhausting and not much gets accomplished!    

Overwhelm has become my indicator that I am being hard on myself.  I feel tension in my shoulders and then a headache.  ​
Picture
by Edna Wintl http://www.flickr.com/photos/ednawinti/

 

When I am overwhelmed everything can seem ​endless, complex and make it tough to start. 

Overwhelm is paralyzing.  Stuckness sets in.  The bully wins. 


Self-bullying is a familiar voice of harshness that rages against me. What I need is to stand up for myself with gentleness and great compassion. 

In the grip of threat I want a reset button and cannot find it.  

My mind says there is not time for centering myself.  Yet,  from experience I know that stillness can allow me to be clear and avoid overthinking my priorities. 

And that is what has been alive in me for several days.  

The gift in all of this is that I have greater awareness of the ways this old bully likes to push me around.  I also understand and know that running around is accomplishing little.  

A sigh of relief washes over me as I release imprints of trauma stored in my body. I breathe deep and exhale out loud and fully.  Tears flow and cleanse me.   

I notice what the bully wants from me.  I have a choice to be pushed around and be heavy or to just be light. 

I write down all I think I need to do and all I want to accomplish today and in coming weeks.  Some days I cross off more from my to do list and others less.  The key will be to be gentle and keep at it. 

The bully loses each time I choose to act from a place of gentleness and at a pace that is steady rather than rushed and harsh. 
 
Stillness, allows me to witness and notice what I might be avoiding that is actually not gentle but keeping in place or stuck. 


The overwhelm response is understandable given how familiar the voice of harshness is.  Thanks to overwhelm's voice, my body has offered me the message that I am ready for more kindness & gentleness.  I can face my my inner-bully through the courage of my heart rather than from avoidance of threat.  
 

Do you have an inner bully who pushes you to do what he/she wants at your own expense?

What is your body's response to the threat of this bully (tension/pain in your body)? 

With more self-awareness what will or is your response to this self-defeating bully? 
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<![CDATA[Uninhibited Mourning's power?]]>Tue, 01 Aug 2017 01:00:00 GMThttp://monicaespinozaonline.com/blog/uninhibited-mournings-powerThis post is on healing heart break compassionately and effectively.  

Losses are to be grieved at our own pace but what if we inhibit our own healing?

Sometimes it seems easier to shift our attention to other things than what is alive in us.  And yet other times it is too easy to plunge into a state of endless despair over the loss of a loved one. 

What is the difference between grief that heals us versus one that torments us? 
Pictureby Angela Marie Henriette http://www.flickr.com/photos/mara_earthlight/
​It is natural to mourn losses in our life.  Mourning means we have loved.  
And we are vulnerable beings.  That vulnerability is what makes us attractive to other human beings and it is the beauty of humanity.  

We form attachments that make us vulnerable.  We hurt when we can no longer see and hold our loved one.

It hurts not being able to share our love with that being nor being able to receive the love that they offered.  That awareness brings loss to the present. 
 
The alternative is to resist reality, our vulnerability and be untrue to our mourning process.  
 
To resist what is, is futile.   

To disallow vulnerability is unkind.

I cannot be true to myself, if I do not just experience all of my feelings. 

I realize in this moment there is no "us," anymore.
It hurts to miss tender moments and not have them anymore.  Not seeing thoughtful texts, not hearing their voice, their scent, etc.  

The truth is he still lives in my mind and shall remain in my heart. 


Only to mourn effectively I must make sure I keep my mind from using me. The human mind can wander to the past and future. Sometimes, the past and future are tools of self-torment.  

What is compassionate in mourning my loss is to feel what the past and future have to share.  The more I can listen to my whole being, the more it allows me to leave the past and future where they belong.  

The medicine of mourning is honoring my heart and spirit. 


The grieving process is only inhibited by the mind. 

Not mourning losses is dishonoring the love and life inside of me.  

Inhibited mourning prevents us from building confidence in our ability to move on and share our love again. 

Effective mourning is feeling the intensity of our hurt without filtering it.  

The medicine is in our heart.  I can miss the present by letting my mind wander endlessly to the past and future. 

The truth of mourning uninhibitedly, is that it is very caring/loving to ourselves. 


We live more freely by loving and mourning without holding back.
Joy can surface again unexpectedly when I mourn at my pace. 

Cheers to you if you live fully by grieving as deeply as you love!

​​Cannot the joy of love also be the grief of loss?


Picture
by Esperluette http://www.flickr.com/photos/esperbot/
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<![CDATA[Vulnerable Pedestal Projections ?]]>Mon, 24 Jul 2017 18:00:00 GMThttp://monicaespinozaonline.com/blog/vulnerable-pedestal-projectionsPictureby Mijori http://www.flickr.com/photos/mijori/
When I fell from the pedestal you could no longer see me, hear me, understand me, or love me.

I was caught by the ground I was always standing on.

I didn't need to be admired...

I didn't need to hide my emotions...

I didn't need to change you...


I didn't need to keep trying...


I am writing from the perspective of the one idealized, over-admired or placed on a pedestal.  


I cannot say I never saw it coming.  I let you know I didn't want to be put on a pedestal.  You said you saw my flaws....


Only you needed me to take the fall.   It was "me" why "we didn't work out."


Putting someone on a pedestal is projecting our own beauty and greatness.  Eventually, the one placed on the pedestal will fall off.  They will reflect back that they are not perfect.  

Placing someone on a pedestal is giving away power.   

Pedestals say "I am as good as you are, so don't fall...."  

If we cannot be imperfect, then, how intimate and vulnerable can we really be?  

It is our challenges (shortcomings, flaws, sensitivities) that bring us closer together as we reveal our vulnerabilities or our humanity. 

To idealize is to lack awareness of the whole.  Pedestals don't broaden our focus.  Pedestals narrow our focus off the ground we all walk on.   We are all imperfect beings.  
Picture
by Brenda Clarke http://www.flickr.com/photos/brenda-starr/
Idealization denies our true power to love and accept the imperfection in others, life and ourselves.   

Idealization stunts growth. 

Idealizing does not allow us to see the fullness of our humanity. It means you cannot connect to your own rawness nor accept mine.  

In relationships pedestals promise disappointment and disillusionment. Pedestals come with unspoken expectations.  Those expectations cannot be met by imperfect humans.   

Pedestals cannot fulfill for long.  ​The one on the pedestal is not human to the one who put her there. There is no place to grow in the confines of the pedestal.  

You do not have a soul to bare or a heart that breaks when you are on pedestal.  
​​ 

The truth is 'we' deny our humanity by idealizing or putting others on pedestals.  We miss the opportunity to take a chance at being loved even with all our imperfections. 



The one on the pedestal does have a heart that breaks.  


I am a vulnerable human being and woman whose heart mends from the inside out, free of any pedestal. 




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<![CDATA[Choices..the heavy blame?]]>Tue, 18 Jul 2017 04:46:11 GMThttp://monicaespinozaonline.com/blog/choicesthe-heavy-blame
Picture
by Rory MacLeod http://www.flickr.com/photos/macrj/
What is the purpose of blame and is it a choice?

Blame is making someone or something responsible for some behavior or feeling I am experiencing.   

I learned to blame to avoid painful feelings of shame.  I also learned to take the blame believing I had the power to cause others to feel some negative emotion and even to ruin good moments. 

The purpose of blame is pregnant with choice. 

Blame may serve no other purpose than to protect a part of us that is very scared, hurt and unseen, unheard and wounded. 

So is blaming or being unable to take responsibility a choice?

Blaming can be a choice but when our wounding is deep our reactions are not so conscious or intentional.  It takes energy to hold back our intense emotions and to be vulnerable and authentic.  
Sometimes, we are shamed by those who judge a moment of terror or deep pain and dismiss wounding or trauma.  
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by Tilla Weevers http://www.flickr.com/photos/outcrossed/
Recently, I felt the pain of seeing someone shame themselves repeatedly, that I felt compelled to take the blame.  I felt heavy and clouded. Yet, a part of me knew that my own wounding was trapping me and compelling me to escape.  

The old pattern of taking blame was ready to be seen in a newer light. The heaviness in my being was my cue to stop and breathe.  I was caught in the grip of fear and behaved like a child who pouts and needs a time out. To the other, I was a woman needing to get over her trauma and simply too complicated to be understood. 
 
It won't be easy the next time I am triggered, but I will have a choice because I have greater awareness.  The choice will be to be compassionate to the little girl within who is needing my support and care.  
She my little one does not have to have it all together or take blame because it is no longer loving to her or to the one avoiding responsibility. 

What I can do is feel and connect to the old wound, recognize what is mine to own and forgive myself. 

In relationships, both parties share in misunderstandings, conflicts, challenges and owning responsibility for what occurs both positive and negative.  

When the ego grips, it is heavy.  If I can have that awareness, then I can choose the lightness, let go of the small stuff, what is not mine as well as own anything that is mine with kindness.  

The key to growth seems to be greater awareness of moments when we have been caught in patterns that no longer serve us. Then, all relationships are triumphant if we are learning. Awareness is what gives us a choice the next time we are triggered, trapped, or stuck. 

When we do not have awareness, the pattern continues and we feel victimized, angry, depressed or lash out in rage.  It perpetuates a cycle of unresolved wounding calling for us to listen to our inner child so he or she can be free to be playful and have fun.  

Blame serves a purpose unique to each of us, yet, also traps us and keeps us stuck because our power is given to that which we hold responsible for our suffering, misery or misfortune.  

Without awareness we are not free and empowered, we are blanketed by a heavy ocean of the past.

If we can be vulnerable with ourselves and find compassion within and around us in times when we behave in ways that surprise us, we can begin to see the past as a gift that reveals our humanity. 

The past is a gift in the present if we can learn from it as it will lighten the future. 


Do you know when or how you blame and how that behavior developed?

Can you have compassion for yourself and others caught in the grip of pain, fear or unresolved trauma?


Do you judge or shame yourself for having faults? Do you play the blame game or victim?

How do you feel in your body when you blame v. when you can choose to be in your skin and own a moment when you wish you could have behaved
differently?


Who or what will be left to blame when no one is around you? ​
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<![CDATA[Fierce- tender, vibrant, empowering energy?]]>Tue, 20 Jun 2017 18:20:47 GMThttp://monicaespinozaonline.com/blog/fierce-tender-vibrant-empowering-energy
What is the source of vibrancy? What empowers me as a human being?


Love is an energy that fills my being with life. 

The more I allow the energy of Love, the more alive I feel. 

As a human being my ability to feel is what keeps me attuned to what I need.

So many needs that begin and end in Love. 

​Love is a need.  
PictureBy Dianne Lacourciere www.flickr.com/photos/60712129@N06/

Love is a need and energy that vibrates through me.  Vibrancy is being filled with Life. 

Feeling vibrant is being empowered in Love. 

But, what if I am scared at the loss of love?

Fear will only trap me if I have been frozen after some trauma.  

I know this is true because I remember a time when I was often exhausted even though youth was on my side.   

I was consumed by thoughts and accomplishing what was expected.  I was controlled by trauma in my body.  

I was lacking vibrancy.  I was disempowered not only by being out of touch with my own feelings and needs but by trying so hard to control the loss of Love and the pain that comes with it.  

​Controlling behavior kills spontaneity and saps energy.  

Picture
BK Symphony of Love http://www.flickr.com/photos/pictoquotes/
Being empowered is allowing life to flow and trusting in our abilities as humans to survive challenges while recognizing the tender yet fierce energy of Love that is present and ready to support us at any given moment. 

Being human means to be vulnerable and yet resilient.  

Love is more than a feeling or intense emotion it is the support that is within and around us.  Love a tender and fierce state.  Love an experience of warmth and openness.  

​Love is an energy that empowers, that frees me to be (me) and to let others be as they are.  Love is more than pleasure, it is freedom from attachments.  Love is a need that is not needy.  

Love is what enlivens me. Love can never be lost because it is not a thing or attached to any one person.

Love is an energy that cannot be destroyed.  Love fuels me and empowers me as a human being. 


Are you a vibrant or enlivened human being? 

If not, have you considered that you may be stuck in past wounding or overthinking life?


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<![CDATA[Fun, empathy & pseudo- humans?]]>Mon, 19 Jun 2017 20:00:00 GMThttp://monicaespinozaonline.com/blog/fun-empathy-pseudo-humans
Picture
by Keith Davenport www.flickr.com/photos/sirwiseowl/
When was the last time you had a lot of fun either by yourself or with others?

Which was most fun, with others or by yourself?

There is no right or wrong answer.  But, life without fun, is too serious, boring and sad. 

Fun is a need....

Fun helps us human beings meet a need for balance in a world that is hectic and sometimes chaotic.

PictureBy Alla Qunhua www.flickr.com/photos/alia_qunhua/
It seems to me that 'fun and play' get pushed aside by engaging more of our time in things that do not make us feel alive, yet, sustain our existence.  To keep a roof over our heads and to eat we must work sometimes even when our work is not in alignment with our values, talents and visions.  Doing this almost guarantees illness as we join a world of pseudo-humans.  
 
What do I mean by pseudo-humans? 

Psedo-humans meaning we look human and function like humans but the aliveness of being a human is missing.  

Merely meeting basic needs doesn't make us empathic or caring humans. 

As human beings we have needs that are flowing through us all the time and when they are met, we feel all kinds of positive feelings or aliveness.

If we disconnect from our feelings, we disconnect from our life force.  

Usually when we see children whose needs are being met, we see children who are actively engaged in their imagination and in having fun.  They are full of energy because their needs or life itself is flowing freely. 

Therefore, fun is a need that is innate to human beings.  We are wired for joy and for making life more wonderful for ourselves as well as for others. 

Without enough fun and play we stop caring about ourselves and eventually about others. 

In today's world, fun must be scheduled in.  Have you prioritized play time?

When I was a child I missed out on playing, but, I chose to do what I felt called to do at the time. There have been times when having fun didn't see to come naturally as I grew out of the habit of being a child.  

No childhood is perfect.  No parent is perfect. No human being is perfect. Life is not meant to be perfect.  That would be boring and I would not learn to be a more loving and kind person. 


Without fun and play as human I lose touch with my ability to empathize. Without fun life becomes about producing and about goal accomplishment rather than cooperating and enjoying life as is.  Without play life is one challenge after another.  Play lightens life and allows me to enjoy my existence.  Fun and play are as much a part of childhood as of adulthood.  


Empathy can begin in the playground of childhood and continues in the school yard of life. 

What do you think does fun and play help empathy emerge?
Picture
By Marie Leslie www.flickr.com/photos/marierleslie/
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<![CDATA[Love said.., it shows..?]]>Thu, 16 Mar 2017 16:08:44 GMThttp://monicaespinozaonline.com/blog/love-said-it-showsPictureby Keith Davenport http://www.flickr.com/photos/sirwiseowl/
Love said

everything is me.

I am the music that you hear.

I lead you in dance.

I seek you as much as you seek me.

I am the scent that allures you.

I am the softness that caresses you.

I am the certainty you desire.

I am the doubt that can haunt you.

I am the strength that ripples through you.

I may seem weak, but, I am unstoppable and undestructible.

I am gentle and sensitive.

I am intriguingly secure.

Love said, I am -all there is.


Pictureby Viclyn Slade http://www.flickr.com/photos/viclynnslade/
You doubt that I am Love?

Love said, I fill you and empty you.

I am the very air you breathe.

I am the water within that flows endlessly.

I am ecstatic fire burning ardently.

I am the ground you are carried by.

I am the space that is infinite.

I am within and without.

Look up, I am there.

Look down, I am there.

Look left and right, I am there.

I am everywhere. 

Love said to me, I am all there is. 


Pictureby Julie Gibbons http://www.flickr.com/photos/organikal/
Love said

I am your sanctuary.

I am your wings.

I am your stillness.

I am your beauty.

I am invisible and yet so seen. 

I am your voice.

I am you.

Do you feel me?

Feel me emerge from deep within, kiss you, and explode?

Love said, here I am in every yes!


I am all there is. 


Pictureby bravelittlebird http://www.flickr.com/photos/48407218@N07/
Love said

I am ecstatic touch.

I am bliss.

I am boundless.

I am freedom.

I am the reason to be and not be.  I effortlessly do just by being. 
 
I am the reason you cry and you laugh.

I am new and familiar. 

I am all there is, Love said.

You want me as much as I want you.

Here I am, say yes!

I am all there is, said Love.


I want you to experience more of me. 

Intensely love and show you how I feel.

Love said it has so much to show me.

I said to Love, show me Love's way and grace. 

I am your endless need. 

I give unceasingly without question.

So I said to Love, show me how to love more. 


Love is showing me!
Picture
by BK Symphony of Love http://www.flickr.com/photos/pictoquotes/
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<![CDATA[Ambitious Love?]]>Tue, 07 Mar 2017 22:20:38 GMThttp://monicaespinozaonline.com/blog/ambitious-lovePictureby Lollie Dot Com http://www.flickr.com/photos/lolliedotcom/
Affairs with...

seductive secrecy?

Break trust? 

Shatter notions of integrity.

Precious trust broken. 

Let down...

Unrecognizable to self?

Affairs are not ambitious Love. 

..do not believe identity is found in another. 
..do not believe some are inclined to stray.

..cannot believe in the fervor of careless desires, like some entitlement 
that is our birthright.

Instead, believe in the impulse to wander, to explore, for adventure.

Lose myself in another? 


if only one could truly find oneself there. 

Love is not a destination. 

Love's ambition surpasses desire?!


Pictureby Alessandro Pautasso http://www.flickr.com/photos/kaneda99/
Treacherous desire.

Seeking the gaze of another...


Turning away from the person we have become?

Alluring power of the forbidden. 

Voracious lust ?


Desire seeks but never satisfies....

Incompleteness and ambiguity keeps it alive like a machine...

Affairs are not about sex....


It is about feeling alive!

They are about self-discovery, growth, and healing. 

Be bold. 
Be wild. 

Imagine your desire exposed...

Pictureby Jlhopgood http://www.flickr.com/photos/jlhopgood/
No status quo to uphold.

Exposing the affair, loses its shaming grip. 

A new kind of truth emerges. 

An affair with self. 


No more secrets that bind. 

Ambition that is not deceptive.  As deception is never freeing. 

Freedom is wild responsibility. 

Love's ambition is being the best version of myself. 

Love's ambition is never careless with anyone's heart. 

Ambition to love wildly...?

Here and now....

...I am Love's ambition. 

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<![CDATA[Pleasure of purging pain?]]>Mon, 27 Feb 2017 20:13:28 GMThttp://monicaespinozaonline.com/blog/pleasure-of-purging-painPictureby Toko http://www.flickr.com/photos/tokovoom/
Can pain turn into pleasure?
If so, when does pain turn into pleasure?

Some pain is purging; is this the pleasure we seek and confuse?

Pleasure too can turn into pain.

Like wanting a lover who no longer wants us. 

Many times I became discouraged by the extent of my emotional pain.  It seemed to have no end and my tears were never purging enough.  What was it going to take to purge me of pain?

Now, I can see that my aversion or resistance to pain, was not allowing the wisdom of my heart's healing capacity.  

I also had mixed feelings about trusting the Universe. 

What I discovered was that in moments when the pain seem almost unbearable, I felt the benevolence of the Universe even amidst my sorrow or anguish.  

Moments of intense pain can make us believers of the Universe's limitless kindness and grace. 

What is certain is that pain needs to be felt, without analyzing, evaluating or intellectual understanding.  


Pictureby Rant 73 http://www.flickr.com/photos/125321218@N07/
But, I ran from pain as if it were threatening monster.  Yet, I did not run toward pleasure either. 

My trauma had made me pain averse but prone to guilt when I experienced pleasure. 

Trauma impacts our brain.  The brain releases opioids to decrease pain and increase pleasure.  

Pain and pleasure steer us but are not ultimate destinations.  

For when they become destinations, they become sources of 'suffering.' 

Pain invites us into the moment and to heal. 
 
Like when we cut our finger while cooking, we attend to the cut/pain. We are brought into focus on caring for the wound.  Only with emotional pain, the instinct to attend to the pain didn't steer me to engage in healing.  Was it counterintuitive?   I don't know.  

Certainly, I was not some masochist and I knew enough not to be pathologically addicted to pain. 

It took me some time to realize the strength of surrendering to pain.


What I know is that there is pleasure in purging pain.   

From my pain emerged compassion.

Through surrender to my deep hurt, compassion and empathy purged me. 

Surrender means being raw, messy, scared, humbled, defeated, unresistant to the flow of emotion and tears.  Those tears carry sound of a deep and core wound.  Tears from the soul purge and free us of 'suffering.' 

When we are hurting, surrender allows the grace and wisdom of a Loving Universe to hold us tenderly. My heart's remedy was unconditional loving space.  

Pictureby Jessica Wilson http://www.flickr.com/photos/jek-a-go-go/
Pain is not the same as suffering. 
Pain increases presence and resilience. 
Pain is transcended through empathy.

We can become better human beings because of pain.  

In a world of duality, pain is woven into our experiences of pleasure.  Experiences by nature are transient, yet, our potential to learn, grow and appreciate are constant. 

Therefore, pain has value in our lives as humans.  

It is because of pain that we can value happiness. 

But, happiness is never aversion or attachment to something that brings pleasure or reduces pain.  Happiness to me is being able to embrace and let go over and over and over.  

Pain and pleasure are experiences we embrace and inevitably release. 


Power comes not in giving into pleasure nor in minimizing pain, but, in surrendering to the experiences of pain and pleasure.  


Have you experienced the sweet and bold surrender to the grace and benevolence of your being?  Like fire that needs air?

Picture
by Quotes Everlasting http://www.flickr.com/photos/quoteseverlasting/
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