To be human is to have needs and the place where they’re nourished and restored is in relationships. However, if we’ve been hurt or disappointed, we may shut down and try the route of independence, saying, “I don’t need you.” Life and growth are always a risk and always involve an opening of ourselves to parts we might not yet be familiar with. But if we choose not to take this path, we will deaden and stagnate, our inner reality will shrink. Continue reading Needs Draw Us to Life
Daring to allow our true selves to emerge
The roots of our conflict lie inside us even though we usually think of them as something external. Actually, if we don’t have this internal conflict it is very difficult for external conflict to draw us in. Naturally conflict happens inside us as we push against things we don’t normally do or say, allowing our God-given urge to life to move us outward. We do risk a lot then, but it makes us feel alive. As adults, it’s so easy to smother this dynamic, withdraw or close down as the threat and fear around destructive conflict situations paralyzes us.
Since we’re all multi-layered beings, our true inner core has to pass through these layers in order to be seen. Our outer most fringe is our ego, our trading or measured self. Next is our story self, our memories of our joys and pains. Deeper in is our survival self that fights for our very right to exist. When we desire to move outward from our core and try to be authentic, the message gets distorted and blurred by these layers. It’s because of these that we feel vulnerable and scared to love, as the self we really are fights with the self we’ve pretended to be. The conflict we witness as a result of this isn’t the real issue, but like the ‘smoke’ that shows us what’s ‘burning’.
Continue reading Choosing to Stand
“Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack, a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in.”
Lyrics from Leonard Cohen in his song, ‘Anthem‘
As children we let our curiosity take us into unknown places to discover more about our world. If we were given freedom to explore, we learnt to take risks, if punished, to stay within known parameters. We also watched our parents make life choices which gave us our own feelings of what was possible or not. These feelings and behaviour patterns remain deeply engrained in us and as adults we are still either more cautious or are risk takers. Continue reading Light through the Cracks
These inner tensions are the tiger within.
Within our fast-paced and pressured lives, we seldom give time for reflection on what’s going on inside us. We go on, presuming we’re fine, till ‘the wheels come off’. Instead of ongoing attentiveness, we often simply ignore issues and race on until we desperately need a therapist. Continue reading Conflictual Landscape
The way we fight today was learnt as a child
All of us are on a journey to become fully ourselves, yet at every step the world pressures us to conform and obey the system. It is here that much struggle inside us happens as we so need to feel we belong. Many simply give themselves over to an institutionalized system, but if we listen, our inner self continues to cry out, ‘No, this isn’t me!’ and resists being squeezed into something it’s not. For too long we’ve not stood our ground and said, ‘Yes’ when we should have said, ‘No’, or ‘No’ when we should have said, ‘Yes’. Our over-compliance to, or reaction against the system, causes conflict within us. Continue reading Patterns of Conflict
Choosing to see ourselves differently
As children, we constantly wanted to understand things at a deeper level. We’re all familiar with the never-ending ‘Why…?’ that emanates from young children’s lips. This constant flow of growth through reflection and openness to life needs to continue to characterize us as adults. Continue reading What Do We Deserve?
Leaving ‘survival mode’ and celebrating who we are
Unless we’ve become free of it, each of us continues to measure ourselves every day. It’s almost as if we’ve swallowed an inner measuring tape by which we constantly check ourselves with questions like, “Have I done enough?”, “Am I clever enough?” or “Have I met their expectations?”. This inner tyrant drives us to keep proving we’re enough. But constant judgement is waiting to fall! Continue reading Finding Enough