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I am so happy for my students and proud of them. Teaching yoga is such a gift. I hope to remember all the amazing moments that my students share with me, their breakthroughs and victories and realizations.Read More
A friend of mine posted this to her Facebook wall today: “What you resist persists. Gotta feel it to heal it. Avoiding life does not lead to transformation or enlightenment.”
Let’s break this down. “Feel it to heal it” aka “the only way out is through.” Sometimes “feeling it” means going thru a period of shadow willingly and without resistance. Our emotions don’t come with a time-table; sometimes we get activated by processes or life circumstances and we’re IN IT. The right time is now. The other day at lunch with some friends I started crying. My friend said “feel that.” As soon as she said it I knew what she meant. Don’t push it down. Get what that feeling is. FEEL THAT! I’ve learned that if we push down or deny or reason away our emotions, we’re going to end up numb and disempowered.
Avoiding life…just because we are active in our work and social lives and personal life doesn’t mean we are present. Non-avoidance means acknowledging what comes up and grappling with it, not shrinking away, having courage to admit “this is here” and then taking the next most healing step.
This dovetails into “what you resist persists.” When we know we have something to deal with and we don’t, it’s just going to sit there like mold growing on one strawberry in the box; eventually, the whole box is contaminated. What we don’t address gains momentum and strength, like opportunistic bacteria that thrive the danker and more toxic their environment gets.
For whatever reason, I was born in this life with a drive towards liberation and freedom, my own and others who are suffering (which is, everyone). All my samskaras (past and present life karma) are here to teach me. I have trained myself to view challenges, injuries, and “shit that happens to us” as teachers. I was not always this way. Peace is a long road. We all come to the path with different strengths and weaknesses. And we are all walking it together.
To couch this post in a constructive light, I’d like to make a request of anyone reading this: TODAY, please FEEL your feelings around something that triggers you. Do NOT avoid it. Then, write your comment here, what you felt, what you did not resist, and how you did not avoid life.
Here is mine, for today: I need to start ASKING for what I want and need in a clear and precise manner instead of assuming people will understand what I want/need and give it to me. This is especially true in intimate partnerships and work situations. This also applies to creative situations, where I am working with others. My programming around asking is that I will either not get what I ask for or I will get something less than what I asked for, or a replacement. For example, as a kid, I wanted to play the drums and wanted a drum set. My father said NO!, then a few weeks later brought me a small hand drum. I remember feeling as a young child that I was expected to be ok with this hand drum, but it was not the drum set with drumsticks that I yearned to bang on. I did not ever end up playing the drums. In relationship, when I have asked a partner for something I needed, like assistance when I had an injury, the expectation I had was not met. I was helped in the most rudimentary (and reluctant) of ways, and I felt burdensome and ashamed, especially because he lacked compassion for the condition I was in (needless to say the relationship ended). This is just an example of how I learned that asking did not mean receiving.
To heal this, I have to move out of “victim” mode by identifying how I feel. How I feel when I am confronted with need is afraid, vulnerable, unsteady, knocked off balance, shy, and anxious. How I will avoid avoidance (hah!) is by identifying when I need to ASK for something to have my needs met and finding the courage to ASK with clarity and precision. If my initial ask is not acceptable, I will NEGOTIATE until a solution can be reached.
This process was inspired by my friend Alex’s “empowerment triangle” he mentioned at dinner tonight. The image of it is above.
Astrologer Lynn Koiner, in writing about Neptune’s retrograde period in Pisces from June 9, 2014-November 16, 2014, urges us to watch out for “psychic attractions” during this period. What’s a psychic attraction?
Psychic Attraction is an emotional reaction to another person whereby you get swept up with feelings…that this is destiny, karmic…but this is usually a “mood” that allows you to escape reality. I always say, “Thinking about it is better than doing it,” where some of these relationships are concerned. People who have severe boundary problems or who are going through a strong Neptune transit (affecting one’s sense of boundaries) are susceptible to this type of negative attraction.
Since completing my Forrest Yoga Foundations Teacher Training in May 2014, I have been very interested in the topics of addiction, habitual behaviors, conditioned reactions…a rubric you could sort of lump under “things we do to prevent ourselves from feeling.” Upon reading Lynn’s description of psychic attractions above, I was hit by the part about this attraction masquerading as destiny and karma, but being more accurately a “mood that allows [you] to escape reality.” Yes.
A strong attraction to someone may be used as a means to escape reality. If thoughts about that person are preventing you from working, sleeping, and meeting your obligations to yourself and society, perhaps the attraction is functioning as a behavior that you are addicted to and using to numb out feelings. People with addictive personalities can be extraordinarily clever. If alcohol or drugs or gambling is not your thing, you can still check out by “totally crushing out” on someone, going into an obsessive state. Having had periods like this before, the amount of time spent thinking about the person, looking at whatever I could find about them online, etc. took up countless hours, that if I could get them back now, I would be able to do a whole lot of great stuff! But at the time, I was very caught up in the romantic idea of “destiny” or “fate” because of the magnetism.
Since many people visit my blog for the article about Stages of a Twin Flame Relationship, I thought it would be pertinent to add to the conversation by bringing up this idea of psychic attractions. Have you ever mistaken a psychic attraction for a twin flame? Twin flame relationships are characterized by spiritual growth and a sense of expansion, but a psychic attraction could mimic the early stages of the twin flame relationship. ANY new love affair could mimic the early stages of a twin flame dynamic if we are still working through a lot of karma because the Beloved always reflects back to us what we cannot yet own in ourselves (shadow and light!).
If your strong attraction to someone is not expanding you spiritually and is causing your focus to narrow, you may be using the attraction to stay in denial about other things and feelings percolating in your life. I’d love to hear back from readers on this topic.