Finding love in the right places

integrtion

If you ask me what I came into this life to do, I will tell you: I came to live out loud. Émile Zola

On reflection, what I write about is love.

This may be blatantly obvious to you, dear reader, but to me, as the writer, not so much. Even the posts with ‘love’ in the title, well, I thought I was writing about a different idea of love, inviting one aspect in, whilst putting my hand up firmly against the other kind.

And yet, there it is, bold as day. Threaded like gold through all my intentions, all my chakras, all my posts, glimmering at me.

It makes me smile, and think of Jungian shadows at work. The part of my psyche that is hidden, unconscious, and yet ever present. The poor, hapless, conscious mind often has no idea what is driving it, like a marionette, the unconscious pulls the strings, and makes us dance to its beat.

Love. The one intention I had the most reservations about, the one I purposely put last on my list of seven intentions, so I could ‘deal with it later’, is the very one I keep coming back to.

Love crops up, in every chakra, in every intention. I keep turning it over, looking at it from a different angle. Holding it this way and that. First at arm’s length to get a good, safe look at it, only then drawing it closer to my heart and soul.

In the end, these things matter most; How well did you love? How fully did you live? How deeply did you let go? Buddha

Dancing through the chakras from the base up to the crown, love continues to emerge as an underlying theme in my body’s energetic system.

At the base chakra, I understood the importance of loving awareness of the body as a way to ground ourselves in the world. In the sacral chakra, love extends to others in the form of our interactions and emotions.

In the solar plexus chakra, love tempers our power to be a light for ourselves and others. In the heart chakra, love is generated, and flows freely, when the heart is open and released from the hurts of the past.

Eastern spiritual tradition identifies each of the seven chakras with specific challenges that arise during the quest for spiritual consciousness. Jule Klotter

In the throat chakra, our expression is pure and true, and right-speech flows, when it comes from love. The third eye chakra is the cognisance of the love that is our divine knowing, our all-seeing inner wisdom. And finally, the crown chakra, is our connection with all that is, the love of the divine.

Unintentionally then, I have faced my fears about love, one chakra at a time. And well, something rather lovely has happened.

Romance is, in its divine essence, a temple space… A sacred opportunity for souls to jump past the confines of the narrow self, to take quantum leaps forward into new and uncharted emotional possibilities. Marianne Williamson

A few posts ago, I wrote about the Mr Darcy/Elizabeth Bennett-style love connection. For those of you who don’t know what that is – geez, read Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice, already! – or for now, just think Bridget Jones.

Mr Darcy’s is the love of a man who appears proud and serious, but beneath that seemingly impenetrable exterior, dwells a massive heart, full to the brim with love, just waiting for the woman with whom he can have the true mind-body-soul connection, that he so desires. Elizabeth Bennett is that woman.

The world does not turn without moments of grace. Who cares how small. Colum McCann

When I wrote that, I had a man in mind – the man whom I have loved quietly for the longest time. Last week, this man found my blog, read it, and felt compelled to contact me. It seems he has quietly felt the same way. There were reasons why we couldn’t be together before, but not now.

The unfolding of this connection is incredibly romantic, and a powerful testament to the spirit of this blog. Despite wishing to avoid the whole love thing, to hide my sense of having missed out with the romantic love stuff, I didn’t shy away. I faced it head on, wrote about my doubts and fears, and set the intention to have what my heart desires, and looky-here, it found me. He found me.

It seems apt at this point to do a bit of reflection on where this blog has taken me over the last six months. Have my intentions actually manifested into anything more tangible in other areas of my life?

Doubt everything. Find your own light. Buddha

jacaranda

Aside from this beautiful budding romance, what has this blog and these intentions brought forth?

My sense of community has expanded, this blog has allowed me to indulge in my passion for writing and connection with other people, and my health has improved as a result on this intense focus on creating a fulfilling and abundant life.

Writing this blog has enabled me to continuously ‘put myself out there’, but what does that actually mean?

It means, to illustrate one example, that when I decided I wanted to teach Chakradance, instead of listening to my doubts, I simply put my intentions out to crowd-source the money for the course, and the support came flooding in.

You know you have found your calling, when you would rather do it and fail, than not do it. Alexander Kjerulf

So, six months into this little experiment of mine, to whole-heartedly pursue all my heart’s desires, I find myself bursting with abundance in my life. Love, passion, purpose, joy, community, and health. Sometimes all this abundant love almost feels overwhelming, and that’s where the process of integration is vital.

Chakradance has been invaluable to me in this way. It’s all very well to ask the universe to unleash its abundance, but it has to be able to flow through me or I may explode with the intensity!

As I have completed the seven chakras in Chakradance, this week’s dance was a dance of integration, before I move into the business side of the course.

The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, nor to worry about the future, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly. Buddha

Chakradance is a dance for the soul. It reconnects us back to our true essence by connecting us with the soul’s wisdom.

In traditional shamanic cultures, it is believed that disorders such as depression, anxiety, and addictions, arise from loss of connection to the soul. Where there is conflict between our inner and outer lives, our conscious and unconscious selves.

The common ingredient in every single dysfunction is an issue of power. Our physical body is a construction of spiritual power and that we are, each of us, scheduled to evolve through levels, stages of empowerment and our body is a complete reflect of exactly what lessons we learn and when. Caroline Myss

The soul is constantly communicating with us and telling us what it needs to be healed and whole, through our bodies, our feelings, our relationships, our dreams, our creativity.

In the dance, and dance is a wonderful analogy for our whole lives, we become inwardly focused and allow our body and mind to communicate with us, through sensation, emotion, and vision. In this way Chakradance can be like a waking dream, where the unconscious is invited to communicate directly with the conscious self.

As I wrote in my last few posts, archetypes are images, with which the unconscious communicates to the conscious mind. The visions and images that come through during the Chakradance are not illusions, but messages that contain powerful healing information for us, if we attune to them.

Obviously Chakradance is not the only place this happens, it happens in meditation, creative expression, dreams, in daydreams, in music and art that transports us, and in images that reoccur in our daily lives. However in Chakradance we practice awareness and attunement to these messages, and actively encourage them though the moving meditation of the dance.

The journey becomes part of the sacred quest, in which we find our true core. Archetypes can be seen as spiritual symbols, and the magic and power they hold is only as great as the significance we attach to it. Source Unknown

In preparation for the integration dance, I went back over the mandalas I had drawn for each chakra. In the sketchbook was the mandalas from the last year of me dancing Chakradance, since I first bought the DVD. As I flicked through these drawings, full of light and joy, or stained with pain and struggle, I felt teary at this beautiful expression of the journey I have been on, and the accumulated wisdom that is growing in me.

It was a different experience to reading a journal, theses drawings capture an essence of being, a snapshot of an inner moment in our unconscious mind. And as such, are ripe with wisdom as yet unknown to us.

That’s life. It hurts, it’s dirty, and it feels very, very good. Orson Scott Card

white tiger

There comes a time when you must harvest the fruit of your life. Otherwise you will rot on the vine. David Whyte

You see, when I first bought the Chakradance DVD to practice, I was in the midst of my (extreme) raw food challenge – see my blog  one hundred percent raw. Afterwards I had a massive crash, which ironically propelled me into this journey with my intentions.

This blog began from hitting rock bottom – physically, emotionally, mentally – and believing that was as good a place as any to set a path for the journey back up and out into the world.

Don’t you ever get the feeling that all your life is going by and you’re not taking advantage of it? Do you realize you’ve lived nearly half the time you have to live already? Ernest Hemingway

The seven intentions I set then morphed nicely into the seven chakras and they proved to be a wonderful energetic blueprint by which to work through this rebuilding and reconceptualising process.

As I flicked through the images, I remembered being in those different emotional, mental, physical spaces. And I could honestly say that I could never have imagined studying to be a Chakradance teacher.

This dance of integration, which Jung would called individuation, the process of integrating all aspects of self. Each energy centre represents an area of human life. To live a holistically healthy and balanced life, we need to understand the area of life that each chakra represents. We need to explore each chakra and allow the energy to balance and flow, and then allow the flow between the chakras.

The lower chakras represent our physical, material reality, the higher chakras (from the heart up) represent our higher transcendental nature. Obviously these need to balance or we are too materially focused, on people and stuff, and neglect our inner being, or we are too spiritually focused, neglecting the reality of our humanness and need for connection with others.

I want to feel all there is to feel… I mustn’t forget, I’m alive, I know I’m alive, I mustn’t forget it tonight or tomorrow or the day after that. Ray Bradbury

My back was really sore as I started to dance, so I intuitively did a shamanic ritual on myself. As with many of my powerful experiences during Chakradance, this would have looked very strange indeed to an onlooker, but felt incredibly right to me.

It began with the smudging of dried leaves, and blowing the smoke over and around my body, and then ‘whacking’ myself (gently) with a branch of eucalypt leaves.

This intuitive healing was very focused on my base chakra and sacral chakra. It felt both intuitively guided and primal. I got up and danced, shaking my whole body vigorously and then started screaming, it was to a man who assaulted me when I was little, “get out of me, get out, get out, get out, get out of my energy field!” It was really loud and powerful. I’m surprised the neighbours didn’t come banging on my door.

Once free of this energy, I danced around – feeling really cleansed and light. There was a big shift around my energy, especially the sacral chakra. Then I had a really clear vision of me as a Chakradance teacher and Shamanka. It was a vision of power, of the power we can access when we do what we love for the service of mankind.

Do anything, but let it produce joy. Walt Whitman

Ever since I saw the shaman a few weeks ago, I have been shifting energy from my sacral and base chakras. As I read and contemplate the shamanic idea of soul-retrieval, it seems to me that it is less about getting “fixed” or “rid” of anything and more about integrating everything.Untitled 2

We each inherit many, many ills we did not create. The path to personal power requires that we know what we are called to heal and what we are not called to fix. Starhawk

The shaman told me that a part of me died that day when I was little, and my lover tells me that when my soul is retrieved the ‘who I am today’ will have to die. This ability to remain open to integration of all aspects of self, of spirit, is no lightweight hippy concept. This is serious stuff. It’s not easy to let go of who we think we are, to die to self, especially in order to re-integrate with parts of the soul that were frightened away.

One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious. The latter procedure, however, is disagreeable, and therefore not very popular. C G Jung

It is necessary though, unless I want to live a fragmented life, and I don’t, I can’t. This Chakradance journey has illuminated to me the beauty of the integrated spirit, and the wisdom that my chakras have to show me, the wisdom that comes from all aspects of my experience, including what I term traumatic.

It is important to understand that soul loss is a good thing that happens to us. It is how we survive pain. If I was going to be in a head on car collision the last place that I would want to be at the point of impact is in my body. My psyche could not endure that kind of pain. So our psyches have this brilliant self protect mechanism where a part of our essence or soul leaves the body so that we do not feel the full impact of the pain. Sandra Ingerman

Caroline Myss writes that the shamanic journey is a death of self. It is a death of the lower chakras, and allegiance to the world of human law, and a birth into the higher chakras and allegiance to the world of spiritual law.

She believes that most of our energetic loss happens through the lower three chakras, especially the second chakra which is connected to our relationships to anything outside of ourselves: people, money, and stuff.

To ‘die’ in this area of our energetic body means to release these energy dynamics, to stop needing the allegiance of the tribe (base chakra), other people – friends, family, colleagues, money, and sexual (sacral chakra), the power that comes from ego-play (solar plexus chakra), and to move into a relationship of power that is individual and heart-centred, expressed cleanly (throat chakra) and channels the divine: through the third-eye and crown chakras.

As always, when I write about deeply personal, heartfelt things on this blog I feel afraid, exposed. What if it doesn’t work, what if I look like fool? And that’s a possibility, but I see that love, in all its forms, is a risk. A beautiful, terrifying, but essential risk. To live otherwise is like trying to go fishing without getting your line wet.

Live like a hero. That’s what the classics teach us. Be a main character. Otherwise what is life for? J.M. Coetzee

cat and crow

What you do with your life is less important than how you live it: encased in shells of fear or wide open, actively receiving God’s immense weight of love, ravished to your heart’s core by deeply feeling every moment’s divine intensity and presence, offering your love to enlighten the hearts of all those all those around you. David Deida

Yes, the risks may be great, we may not be loved in return, we may not find a way to negotiate the ups and downs of life, people change, and people die.

That’s no reason to not try. Loving is a leap of faith, and as the Zen proverb goes, ‘leap and the net will appear.’

This last year I have watched my Dad go into a home and lost a dear friend to despair. I have experienced a complete breakdown of mind, body, spirit, from trying to live life from a state of will not a state of love.

Love is here and now in its myriad, blessed forms and I choose to embrace it.

Life is short and precious, and all too quickly I will find myself in the wintertime of my life, and my hope, my intention, is that my only thoughts are, in the words of the iconic Hunter S. Thompson:

Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!” Hunter S. Thompson

Affirmations for integration and oneness based on the Oneness affirmations by Louise Hay:

I am connected to all of life.

I open my heart to all of the beings on the planet.

I open my heart to all aspects of my self.

I seek awareness of the parts of my self that are lost or hidden and I set the intention to integrate all aspects of my soul.

I am healthy, whole, and complete. 

Bless!

 

Sources:

Nourishing the Energy Body by Jule Klotter

Chakra Integration

Chakradance

 

Images:

Chakra Meditation In The Redwoods by Laura Iverson

Jacaranda Sunset Meditation by Laura Iverson

White Tiger Meditation by Laura Iverson

Om Tree Of Life Meditation by Laura Iverson

Halloween Sunset by Laura Iverson

http://fineartamerica.com/art/all/laura+iverson/all?sort=recentlyadded

 

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