Saying Yes To The Healing Process
"Problems cannot be solved at the same level of awareness that created them." - Einstein
The willingness to heal comes for most of us at a point where it is more painful to continue doing what we're doing than face the truth about ourselves. That conscious decision to come to terms with what's bothering us is only the first step toward change. Healing also requires a shift in awareness, a shift that I call surrender.
When we feel lack, limitations, or that life is a struggle, we use our minds as the first line of defense. At the ego/mind level of awareness we endlessly analyze and then search for a solution to the "problem". This so-called solution can be anything from accepting what should not be acceptable to blaming ourselves or others for the state of our lives. "I've always had trouble with relationships and that's the way it is!" or "My boss doesn't appreciate me." "Look what they did to me!" We explore therapy and self-help books trying to grasp what is not graspable.
Layer upon layer of beliefs constructed over years and maybe lifetimes, create the life experiences we have today. We hold on to those beliefs about ourselves and our universe because they make us feel safe in a world that we believe is patently threatening. As a vulnerable infant or child the world can be a threatening place. Many of us were abandoned, neglected, ignored, or rejected. At that point, the belief was created that something must have been very wrong with us to bring on such trauma. The only recourse for a child is to disconnect from his/her core being. Most of us don't even know these beliefs exist and are often surprised by how they have judged themselves and others when they finally reach the level of awareness that Einstein talked about.
Working through the mind, as most of us try to do, will rarely heal the separation that we have created in ourselves. The ego/mind made a decision to never again feel the kind of hurt we were subjected to. In my own life, at the age of 14, my alcoholic father abandoned our family. Being the eldest child I experienced the brunt of his anger and disappointment with himself. Instead of taking responsibility for his life, he blamed me and told me so in the rare phone calls he made. Though my mind knew that he had a serious problem, the abandonment and rejection forced me to abandon and reject myself. I closed my heart to myself and hurt others around me until years later I found myself again losing someone I really loved. The protection that I had erected was keeping love and joy out of my life. The pain was so great that I began to seek out healing. I didn't know what needed to be healed but I wanted an end to the suffering.
What I discovered on my journey and what I now share with others is that there is another level of consciousness, one that knows everything about us, is extremely powerful and loving and can take down all barriers to self-love and compassion if we allow it. That level of consciousness is the Higher Self. With the help of the Higher Self we can finally surrender our protective armor and experience true healing.
Surrender is a dirty word for many people because it signifies some sort of defeat. It certainly was the last place I wanted to go. I believed my father had some justification for what he did and I resisted getting close to my real self for fear I wouldn't be able to handle the feelings of shame, guilt or worthlessness. This is a very common reaction. I have a client who was working through a maze of fearful beliefs. His ego/mind was throwing up the kind of obstacles that I often see in my practice. When he came close to the point of surrender, he would take flight, find distractions, create cartoon characters, anything to avoid what he feared would reveal him as the failure he imagined himself to be. One day, at the end of a session I asked him what he thought about surrender. After a moment of silence he raised his voiced and told me that the concept of surrender was tantamount to death as far as he was concerned and made me promise to never mention the word again! In subsequent sessions his Higher Self continued sending him light and strength and he was finally able to let go and say yes to the healing process. Surrendering is not a conscious decision. It is a process that happens when the resistance is overcome by the strength of the Higher Self.
When I work with clients the Higher Self presents a clear image of the obstacle. It shows up as a wall, a fence, a suit of armor, some object that the client can see or experience that represents a protective barrier. With the client's permission we ask that the obstacle be removed. There is a special structure that the Higher Self uses to bring us to the point of surrender. As we move through the process, taking down the various obstacles to our clarity and healing, the Higher Self shows us a vivid memory of the wounded child, infant or even fetus we were. Depending on our strength the memory might be clear or clouded in self-judgment. While the ego/mind is saying "I won't let go because if I do I will feel things I don't want to feel. I'll be vulnerable!" the Higher Self provides the necessary strength to move forward. When the Higher Self is asked to heal, through our intention, we are giving permission to the Higher Self to expose the erroneous and/or negative beliefs we carry, though we may not even know what they are or that they even exist.
What does surrender feel like? From my own personal healing experience and those of my clients the point of surrender comes when the negative beliefs are literally stripped away and an image of the loving, innocent self emerges. It is so powerful an image that our hearts open up, the energy releases and we embrace and merge with that part of us we believe is flawed. Though it is most certainly an emotional experience it can happen quickly and quietly with the help of our Higher Self. The truth, our truth, cannot be denied or dismissed. We finally know the pure, perfect being that is us.
Obviously, it is not always necessary to have a transpersonal therapist to heal. Many times a person will have reached the bottom so to speak and will have a spiritual intervention, either through an accident, serious illness, loss or something so shattering that surrender is the only option. But the person has to be willing on some level to experience this. The Higher Self will never force this on us without our free will.
Surrender and the resulting healing are a process. We do not start out ready to let go of our ego/mind resistance. We spent many years creating the resistance and it takes personal commitment and the extraordinary power of the Higher Self to finally say yes.
With Kind Permission of Jean Sullivan Finn
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