Saturday, September 12, 2020

Healing Work is like Giving Birth

"...for any movement animated by love moveth from the periphery to the centre, from space to the Day-Star of the universe...for when the motivating and guiding power is the divine force of magnetism it is possible, by its aid, to traverse time and space easily and swiftly." - 'Abdu'l-Bahá

When we are immature we often make decisions based on limited information or we only see part of the picture, because the whole picture is too big and it would mean taking in more than we can handle. I think this is true for Western society, it is immature, it was the last of the civilizations to develop and therefore its picture is not complete. This is also, to some degree, true of all of humanity - we are immature and as we move toward maturity, we will most likely go through what many adolescents go through in their own fits of growth and bursts of insight. Why do I say humanity is immature as a whole? Because we have truly just discovered that we are really one people, a global people, we didn't know yet that the rest of the world existed as we do today. Maybe there were elders and teachers that understood this, but overall humanity did not understand this reality. Today we are just beginning to see the truth of the statement, the oneness of humanity, and it is upending everything. Including our own selves, how we see ourselves and whether or not we understand our true nature. This is why I think the work of healing old wounds, clearing out false narratives, opening up truths has emerged so strongly in these last few decades. 

I too was called to what we now term healing work many years ago, at the tender age of fifteen and the healer I worked with was so much more than a therapist. She helped rearrange my inner narrative to match more closely the truth of who I am, a noble being with limitless potentialities. At that time we didn't worry about whether it was healing work or therapy or something else, it was a movement of clearing out false narratives and settling in truths and it was powerful work. 

Controlling the movement

Here's why this matters. In Western society we habitually take movements of limitless potentialities and diminish them into pocket size ideas that are controllable and easy to manage. Remember, we are still immature as a society, so it is easier for me to try something on that fits within my framework, rather than stretch my framework out. Why does this matter? Because if you don't stretch your framework you will not grow and being stifled will become another obstacle you will need to move through. It is hard for us to release this control because we are afraid of big movements, we have not been taught to trust, rather we have been taught to fear and this becomes an obstacle to our growth and gets in the way of truth. 

What's important to remember is healing work is a movement, you are learning to listen to and rewrite your inner narrative, setting new patterns of behavior centered on truth. This cannot be done from fear and control. Rather it must be done from love. 

Releasing Control

Luckily, healing work is like giving birth, it is imminent, it will happen, you, I, we will grow. Whether we want to or not, we will grow! And so the question is do we go kicking and screaming or do we let go and just move with the rhythm of what is being called from deep within us? 

This calling from within is surging within each of us and some of us have just gotten very good at numbing it out, no matter, it will win in the end and either you will listen and seek change or you will be destroyed or extremely limited at best. I know, sounds dark, but we see this all around us with increasing numbers of people taking drugs, both legal and illegal, to manage what is surging within them. These are not judgements, they're just reflections of our reality, the real question is what will you, I, we do with it?

I always encourage people to use every tool at their disposal to move through healing work. Use a pillow to cry in, use a journal to write in, ask a loved to hold space for you, use breath to get through it. Use every tool at your disposal that is there to serve you and uplift you. Much like a woman in labor who follows the rhythms of her own body to move through the act of birth, so we too move with the rhythm of our own healing work to give birth to what is coming.  

Finding the Gifts

Because like birth, on the other end of healing work are the gifts waiting to be found by you. The false narratives you hold about yourself diminish into a whisper and the truth of who you are gets stronger. Those things that once felt like obstacles - fear, anxiety, being lost - become stepping stones of strength - faith, trust and confidence in the truth of who you are.

You trust yourself more, you trust your body more. You love yourself more. Your language softens. Your heart softens. You know the truth - you are beautiful, you are loved, you have always been loved. 

These are hard won truths and for anyone that has been engaged in healing work, you know these nuggets of truth are everything and can never be taken from you.  

Giving into love

Ultimately, healing work is the work of love and that cannot be placed into a bite size nugget into your pocket. Love, the powerful force that animates the very universe, how could this possibly be diminished into a fifty minute session for six weeks! No, healing work is the very act of walking toward love and its life long, there will be pauses of great joy and deep love, moments of hard work and extreme pain, and then back again - that is why healing work is like a movement and when we give into love, we are only left with gratitude. 

Check out my podcast The Human Experience where I discuss this article in my latest episode

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