Sunday, 22 September 2013

Why Myths Are Important

We tend to think of myths as forgotten stories from a past that doesn’t belong to us, one where people held irrational beliefs and didn’t know anything. But the truth is that we are still living myths today, individually as well as collectively. In fact, everything is based on myth. It’s because we believe in our present day myths that we live them and perpetuate them. If we want to change our personal or collective reality then we need to take a look at the stories we tell ourselves about who we are. We have to decide not only what we would like to discard, but also what we would like to take into the future.

Myths and dreams are the symbols that illuminate our current self-concepts and contain the seeds of what we can become. The Now-moment contains nothing at all, except what we choose to believe in. The Now moment is pure potential and completely insubstantial. But Now is also the bridge between our myths and our dreams - the space in which we can create. Now is often too fast on us – it doesn’t give us time to deliberate and make informed decisions. That is perhaps why it can open the door to change, because even though it is insubstantial, it is all that we really have to work with. Now is the moment of choice, the moment where all possibilities are connected and from where we can choose our experience. In my experience each Now moment provides the opportunity to either heal the past or direct the future.

Dreams are nothing other than the myths of the future telling us what is possible. If a dream stirs our hearts then it calls us to a better future. The question is often how to use the Now to transform our own stories, releasing myths from the past that no longer serve us to bring the dreams of the future into our present reality. But in truth all myths are important, regardless of whether we like them or not. If we want to get rid of a personal myth, it will probably re-present itself with more insistence until it is healed. We only heal our myths when we love them, because unwanted myths represent parts of ourselves that need to be loved back to life. Once it is integrated into our sense of self, the unwanted myth no longer has control that is beyond the power of our own will. It will then cease to run the show, because we are no longer afraid of it.

In Paulo Coelho’s books I have read about the personal legend. Being authentic means weaving our myth so life works for us and we fulfil our greatest dream, which should also be our biggest ambition. This doesn’t mean that we should be flawless, but that our chosen myth should be original and have the power of our own creativity.

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Going Barefoot

The barefoot theme came up in different places for me over the last few months. Firstly, as an injured runner I had to consider whether barefoot running could be the answer to becoming pain-free. Secondly as a spiritual seeker I read about sun-gazing practices, part of which entails a period of walking barefoot on the earth for an hour every day. Finally, a few days ago I read a post on facebook about the benefits of going barefoot, one of which was reduced levels of depression. I don’t recall seeing any source of authority or research but the thought stayed with me. A few hours later I had the opportunity and couldn’t resist the urge to walk barefoot on the grass in the park. I use the word “urge” because my soul yearned to touch the earth through my soles. We have forgotten how sensitive our feet are.

As soon as my feet touched the grass, the effect was potent and instant. Not only did it feel very good but I became aware of the Earth talking to me even louder than usual, its spirit so very present in the hill called Arthur’s Seat in Holyrood Park, Edinburgh. I then recalled how good it feels when someone I love or at least like touches the soles of my feet.

Whilst the theme of going barefoot came under my attention through the barefoot running debate, it turns out to be much more than that. Being barefoot on a man-made surface is not the same as physically touching the bare earth with bare feet. Maybe we shouldn’t be surprised that humans generally see the earth as just a solid platform that provides a base for us to carry out our daily activities. Ironically, the word “human” is derived from the Latin word “humus” which means “soil” or “dust”. But we have lost touch with our roots. If we can’t hear the Earth talking then perhaps it is no wonder that our souls are still asleep.

The phrase “as above, so below” comes to mind, meaning that there is a material parallel for all things energetic/spiritual. The shaman knows about the relationship between energy and matter and how intent is transferred through and shapes matter. This also pertains to our different levels of being, our essence not being limited to our physical bodies. In the same way that individual consciousness comes from the sea of the collective, so also our bodies spring forth from the soil from which we get our nourishment. The Earth represents the sacred circle of all things being connected. On a physical level she is our Source, providing all that we need for ourselves to be sustained. We may not be aware of this but our cells know and our feet remember, which is why the effect on my mood could instantly be felt the minute my feet touched the earth.

It is common knowledge that touch is very important in relationships, especially between mothers and children. We instinctively long to touch our lovers as a way of promoting intimacy, which also fosters a feeling of safety. If we have long since forgotten the importance of touching the Earth then it’s no wonder that we generally see her as cold and dead. In reality it’s the other way round – we have turned cold towards the organism that continues to sustain us with life.

What I find particularly interesting is that even our concept of career and vocation which supposedly revolves around our work on Earth seems to operate in a void. The range of valid careers in our cultural mind seems to be limited to the system we have created, all based on a concept of money which doesn’t exist. I often feel that my desire to work with Earth energies seems airy fairy. However seeing that our world revolves around a system of money that is based on thin air I am quite tempted to believe that our reality is less substantial than the actual forces that make the world keep turning. The world we have created seems to operate in a space on a solid empty platform whilst nature is largely ignored. I wonder how many people still notice the sun coming up in the morning, the plants teeming with a life of their own or the subtle magic contained in mountains and the ocean. These things have become completely irrelevant to us as human beings except as a backdrop to “doing” that either goes unnoticed or at best provides some pleasant decoration. We have forgotten about “being”, perhaps nature’s most important lesson. The world actually goes round of its own accord and we don’t have to interfere with the process. Being ourselves is enough as it is in this way that we feel connected to the essence of everything else.

Returning to barefoot running, this is actually a topic of its own. A runner that attempts to go barefoot having worn shoes for a very long time will discover in the initial phases that his lower legs aren’t nearly as strong as they should be. A lot of muscles will need to be rebuilt in order for him/her to attain proper balance, which will eliminate injuries. On a symbolic level I don’t think this only pertains to running. As human beings we have become disconnected from our roots because we haven’t been in touch with them. Maybe feeling the earth with our bare feet could be a step towards becoming aware of the larger picture, outside of what we concern ourselves with in our daily lives. Figuratively speaking, our lower legs have become too weak due to being out of practice. Only when we restore our point of contact with the earth will we return to balance and be free of the injuries caused by disconnection.

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

The Changing Consciousness and its Implications for Reality

I didn’t have a clear opinion about whether I would buy into the idea of 2012/2013 and what it meant for changing consciousness on the planet. Whilst 2012 was quite a hard year for me, supportive friends have told me that things would get easier. I wasn’t sure I believed them because it felt to me that things were always going in cycles which were more or less the same. However I can honestly say that my friends were right. Things have changed drastically for me over the last year or so, mostly in terms of the way I viewed things. Insights that I didn’t have before would come to me from nowhere. Whereas before my struggles had mostly been internal, I became more and more aware of how things operated on a collective level. I recognised that my issues aren’t weaknesses in myself but perhaps an indication of what humans go through based on what we buy into. The more I moved to a space where I was having a critical look at global problems versus having a critical look at myself, the less concerned I would become about my own success. Not because I’m more altruistic and less egotistic but just because it’s too draining to for ever try getting ahead or being better than I am.

I would like to highlight a few insights that came to me from nowhere – the “in-between” spaces. To start with, the circle as a symbol has spoken to me lately. This was initiated by my visit to Stonehenge last week, a mysterious stone circle in England dating from ages past. A post-visit meditation plus a few other coincidences presented the following ideas.

All things are connected. We are made of the same stuff. This is not my own idea but one that has been repeated many times by many seekers, perhaps because eventually we all come to the same conclusion. Dust we are and to dust we shall return. Perhaps that is also why the Earth is a globe and has an elliptical orbit around the sun. Everything is in flow and the Universe flows through us. It is not linear but if we allow the light of love to shine through then we are as a circle providing a hollow container for the flow of God. That is when we are on the bridge between the visible and the invisible, the space where we are all things and therefore don’t need to be anything other than what we are. What we want is readily available for us to BE if we recognise that we don’t even need to be it; it is what we are. In this place where we aren’t looking for anything, good things come to us from nowhere.

Reality is But a Projection
Reality is our instrument just like we are Love’s instrument. The problem comes in because we believe that things are the other way round – that we are at the mercy of reality and that love is our instrument. That is when we start to suffer because we want to use love to fulfil our own needs. When we believe and trust in Love we allow it to flow through and transform our reality.

We Don’t Need to Have Our Dreams Come True
We are the dream and we love dreaming. Everything we dream of is already here, inside us. If we can access the dream we can pull it from thin air and bring it into reality. Once we realise that, all we need to do is share our dreams with the world. Within our own dream there is also the seed of everyone else’s dream. Sharing and living our dream, shining it out through love will also wake up the souls of others to realise their dormant dreams. We are the same light and the same dream, just like we are made of the same stuff.

Changing the Nature of Reality
In a world where fear-based systems prevail it can be hard to live the flow of the circle. I often have the feeling of bumping my head against a brick wall trying to realise my dreams since the structures of authority are pyramid-based. Within this paradigm there will always be someone at the bottom and we will continue to re-create the problems we are having. Identities are boxed in and we forget who we are. We become our possessions, which are also meaningless unless we believe in what they symbolise. At the risk of being labelled a conspiracy theorist I’ll confess that I get the impression our minds are being controlled so we could be sheep in favour of supporting a system from which a minority draws benefit. We believe we have to fall in with it in order to survive which is ridiculous because what we really need is supposed to be provided by Nature.

To me it sometimes feels impossible to change the way things are – the nature of the world we know. It is run and controlled by crystallised structures which are based on nothing at all. But once we see that, we have the choice to continue believing we have to fall in with it in order to survive or, on the other hand, believe in what we would like to believe in, making it reality. Fighting the system or worldly order is futile. However if we allow the dream to flow through us (or flow to dream through us?) and we operate from where we are with awareness of love, I believe that we can transcend the old order and move to a new dimension where all things are possible. Once the old is no longer useful, it will fall away. It is easier for us to move or adapt if we are in flow than it is to shift an ingrained system on the level where it was created. Recognising that what we need is right here, right now will bring it into this world. This is not only a fact, but a necessity.