Lately, I repeatedly see an image inÂ my mind’s eye. When it appears, it’s always the same. I’m standing in the middle of the scene and on one side of me is a pool of thoughts and idea(l)s made up of what other people think, what the culture says, and what my own Voice of Judgment tells me. On the other side of me, the right side, are the deep, dark mysterious waters of my soul.
In the image, I have a choice. I can choose from the dark waters of my own soul. Or, I can choose from ‘conventional’ wisdom (what is often not wise at all) and the roar of judgment from so many different places, including my own head. By judgment, I don’t mean conscious discernment. Rather, here judgment means the kind of thinking that is meant to keep the status quo in place, keep people in place, keep things from changing. This kind of judgment does not like the fact that life is constantly in flux. This kind of judgment wants to contain, control, shame, dominate, and keep small. Again, notice it is both out there and within.
But, you might be wondering why I include ‘conventional’ wisdom in this mix. To me, it is the unconsidered status quo, the stagnant conventional thinking, that keeps true creativity from being able to enter our world, either our own personal world, or the world at large. And, boy do we need some truly creative ideas and expressions at this point in the human journey.
Creativity upends the status quo. Creativity isn’t conventional. Creativity is brand new and comes when we’ve allowed the fertile ground to be turned under, left fallow, and then tilled for new life.
Creativity comes out of the deep and dark mysterious waters of the soul.
We can try to pin it down, trace it back, figure it out – but ultimately where it comes from is unknown and cannot be known. We can name it, but we cannot truly know it except as an experience because it is alive.
Creativity is alive. Purpose is alive. That which keeps us from being creative and purposeful is stuck and stagnant.
In this image, I can see so clearly how important trust is – the trust of both what lies within me and my ability to hear it and act from it, as well as the knowing that every other human being also is creative and also has a deep well of creativity within them.
I see how often my attempts to understand my purpose, my reason for being alive, have insidiously come from looking to others, or my own Voice of Judgment, for information, validation, or ideas on what this purpose might be. Looking out there isn’t the same as true mirroring from those who know you and really listen to you. Effective mirroring can be a source. But, ultimately, even mirroring must be checked against the knowing that comes from an alive and trusting relationship with one’s soul.
And, I see it is a choice. It is always a choice. Sometimes, I go unconscious in the choosing process, and choose out of fear of humiliation, abandonment, rejection…. like everyone else. Â We are meant to be in relationship and community. Our minds can get squirrelly when we think we won’t be.
This image began appearing after beginning to engage in direct dialogue with my soul, which isn’t the easiest of tasks. But, I did hear her clearly, after asking the question, “How do I begin to follow your lead in my life?” Her response? “Don’t make anything more important than me!” (exclamation point mine!!!)
This image shows me clearly that in each moment it is a choice to not make anything more important than where my soul is guiding me.
What I’ve come to begin to see, (and I write ‘begin’ because, again, we are speaking of the mystery) is that to open to our true purpose we must honestly, in the most way, begin with the question of “Who am I?” and “What am I?”. This is the journey of turning within to ask, to look, to listen, to feel and sense…and then to learn to receive.
When we learn to trust in our nature, both as a creative being and as a woman, something shifts. There is less need to look out there for validation and approval. There is more joy from the acceptance of yourself and who and what you are. And, there is less fog and confusion about things in general, fog and confusion being a way to avoid life and acting on your own behalf.
Your nature is both universal and unique. The soul has unique qualities, and in my experience and in the work I teach, it is these soul qualities that begin to give us a sense of what we truly are. These qualities are NOT static things. Often, when we think of personal values, they are static things. Rather, these qualities are qualities we find when we investigate our own experience(s) to notice the feeling states inherent in them.
Like creativity, experiences are alive, not simply concepts.
To know purpose, we continue to come back to what is uniquely alive within us. What is the feeling quality of an experience when you are doing what you love? We aren’t focusing on the outward expression or the objects of life, but on the feeling state of the experience.
I wanted to share this image here on my Â blog because the tendency to turn to someone else, or someone elses, to see ourselves is so strong. We learned to do it when we were really young because more often than not those adults in our lives who might have really mirrored our own light back to us couldn’t see it because they, too, hadn’t been seen.
But as adults, we can begin to do what it takes to look within, to remember that there is this vast inner world of soul.
This inner world will guide us. It is always here. It never left – we just turned away.
You might find you have your own image. Soul speaks in images and symbols. Open to what your soul shares with you.
Now, when I see this image in my mind’s eye, in my image I turn to soul and open to receive.
Just this act is everything.
I’ve just opened registration for my course, Becoming a Force of Nature.
This round of the course will begin on June 9th and run for 12 weeks. In Becoming a Force of Nature, I teach and offer experiential ways to make this turn back to the inner world, and then to begin, or deepen, what can be a long journey to trust and faith in oneself.Â This will be the last time I offer the course in this format. I may offer it again, but it will change – because my work is changing.Â I do know that if I offer it again, it won’t be in this format.
In fact, I’ll be teaching it a bit differently than I did the first two rounds. On our weekly calls, I’ll introduce the material and then facilitate the exercises on the call, so you have your first taste of each week’s material together with your classmates. Then, after the call, we’ll spend the remaining part of the week ‘living with’ the material. You can read more about this on the registration pate.Â There is so much great material in these 12 weeks; SOÂ much that you can take the course with meÂ the other women in our group, and then – at your own pace – go through the 200+ pages of PDFs that containÂ so much exquisite detail and interactivity.
The depth of the dive you can take is quite astounding. And, doing it a few times is exactly the way to deepen your journey. The PDFs contain everything I will teach on the calls, but they take things deeper in a way that you can utilize to your advantage. Taking it live with me the first time will activate the material in a certain way. After that, using the in-depth writings will allow you to deepen the experiences you had in our time together.
I hope you’ll take a look and consider joining me. You’ll find a new video on the registration page that I created to give a little more background to the material and its capacities to effect change in your life.
I’m in two new podcasts on the subjects of Creativity and Becoming a Force of Nature – one with Amiel Handelsman, the other with Charlie Gilkey. Take a listen. I know there are some wonderful gems in each of these podcasts. Both Charlie and Amiel are great interviewers and I even learned much more about what it is I do.
Image above by The Wandering Angel,Â Creative Commons 2.0. No changes made.