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DESPAIR

Described in the Thesaurus as a "broken heart" or "agony of mind or spirit" or "crushing", Despair is a seemingly very unapproachable travelling companion who appears to take up every tiny bit of space. Associated with feeling powerless, hopeless, desolate and frozen this experience is apparently utterly consuming of joy, passion, delight, love and laughter.

In truth, Despair has some friends who know the openings that can allow transformation. They are called  Listening, Acceptance, Authenticity, Gentle Soothing and Love. These friends are not afraid of or overwhelmed by Despair. They know Despair is in pain and deeply suffering. They see the Essence of Despair as part of and yet simultaneously existing as a witness to her body, thoughts, feelings, behaviours and relationships and her present, past and future. They hold up a loving mirror of spaciousness in which Despair can see herself and learn to show deep compassion - if she so chooses? They don't try to fix Despair. They know that touching and sometimes sitting in the depth and breadth of utter devastation allows connection with the void. In the void and stillness, there is no struggle! This peace can enable perspective and new learning. New learning could be critical for Despair to tentatively, gently and yet surely evolve herself into courage, initiative, flexibility and discernment.

EXTERNALISED SELF-WORTH

Our sense of worth is externalised when we inadvertently give our personal value away to what we have acquired, what we do, and what we think other people think or feel towards us. This often unconscious decision leaves us dependent, waiting at the end of dole queue or floating like a leaf in a storm water drain, waiting to be treasured. When we keep looking outside of ourselves for confirmation of our fundamental value we can never get enough to fill up the empty hole. We can convince ourselves that if we have improved grades, a better job, more money, lose weight, find an intimate partner, get fitter, have plastic surgery, buy more expensive clothing, live somewhere else, win another award, publish another paper, travel somewhere, save the world, drive the latest model car, have a baby, never slow down, spend every second in conversation, or anything else you can imagine, we will fill the empty hole of not being enough!

The truth is that our value or worth is our inherent birthright- for  each, and everyone of us. Babies do not have to do anything at all to be valuable - the only have to be. Each one of us was once a baby and this is also your birthright. Developing a sound and unwavering internal sense of your own unconditional value can be very challenging in a world where the superficial and the material dominate our popular culture and we can become caught in constantly comparing ourselves - either negatively or positively with other people.

You are unique! I strongly encourage you with all my heart and soul to move out of being a fair weather friend with yourself. You are probably not like that with anyone else and this constant pattern of handing over your worth to someone or something else is a very fragile foundation about which to live and to thrive. It is a bit like the story of the three little pigs, where two of the little pigs built their houses out of straw and wood only to have them decimated by the big bad wolf. The third little pig did the hard work and built his house out of sturdy brick- he was then able to protect himself and also his two terrified brother pigs in his very solid house of safety, abundance and delight.  Your safe, compassionate and wise foundational relationship with yourself can similarly help to buffer, protect and delight you with all that your life has been, currently is and will become- no matter what!

You could choose right now that the Essence of you is profoundly valuable - even if no-one  has ever told you that or treated you in that way. You could choose to keep coming back to this Truth no matter how frequently or how far you stray. That does not mean that you might not also choose to learn from your experience, change unhelpful  behaviour and consider ways that you might live and flourish that are  more consistent with your own core guiding principles or ethics and what is also in the interests of you own health and that of our communities.

FACING DEATH

I had been going on my very busy way. In fact, I had so much going on that I had not published a post in many weeks. The book I had written on "Evolving with Trauma: Become your own safe, compassionate and wise friend" was just finalised, published and then launched in February 2011. It was receiving some critical acclaim and importantly appeared to be really helping some people. I was thrilled! My practice and my life were literally thriving! I had made some more tough and courageous decisions to set limits with important other people and I was/am clear that these choices were indeed- very wise.
Then, seemingly from nowhere, I became very ill and died for a time!

My practice has been closed since May 20th,  2011. I will return slowly towards the end of August/ early September. Re-claiming my physical health and energy has been challenging and yet overall, has gone in leaps and bounds.

Something far more profound has occurred! I experience my deep, deep aloneness. Nothing and no-one makes this better - no distractions, nothing external. I feel my terror, despair and uncertainty. Strangely, it feels like I am meeting "me" for the very first time - I have met/ am meeting my own tenderness, warmth, humility, courage and love - from the inside out.  I am sooo… grateful!

STILLNESS AND NATURE

In being still we are invited to experience spaciousness and to become the witness to our own inner and outer processes. Being fully present allows us to notice exquisite subtlety in a flower, in ancient mountains, in each touch, sound, sight, smell and taste that we truly experience. Our days are punctuated by a natural rhythm that sits deeply and quietly beside the ups and down of our thoughts, feelings, behaviours and interactions.

IS THIS THE WORLD TO COME

It is morning. The radio automatically comes on. The news is bad, all bad? F......k this! I turn it off. I have heard enough.

Healing and transformation are possible. In fact, they are inevitable!

The first option is that we as human beings will die quickly or slowly by direct annihilation or poisoning. In such circumstances, the planet itself will rejuvenate and some life will probably survive in some form. We then get to evolve again starting from a different baseline and we will have lost amazing innovation, culture, diversity and wisdom. We won’t know this because we will be dead.

The second option is alternating with living in pain or numb to the suffering of other beings through emotional disconnection, social distancing or physical, emotional, spiritual and cultural rape. This manifests in symptoms consistent with depression or we might also call it living death, despair, alienation and lack of power and meaning. This is a survival response to try to get the love we need - simply not effective if we seek this love outside of self. In such circumstances, uniqueness, conceptual evolution and intellectual diversity are profoundly invalidated. Our inner realities are directly reflected in our outer environments Voracious appetite for physical perfection, power, status, money  are simply failed attempts to fill the empty hole within!

The third option is for paradigmatic change in our relationships with self and the physical and social environment sooner, rather than later. Each of us could move with and through the past (in all its complexity) and into the present and future. Perpetuating feelings of terror, disgust, rage, despair and greed happens in the absence of real alternatives. However, each of us can choose not to repeat these experiences in relationship with self in the now. We can also go around this whole cycle again and again. Either way, we are left with self. We have an ongoing choice of active, present and loving intervention across all levels of functioning- body, thoughts, behaviour, feelings and relating.  Being or connecting with self from a place of deep unconditional love through the up and downs, challenges and delights in daily living is an ongoing process - ultimately enabling greater joy, peace, spontaneous fun and creativity- that is not about externalised notion of worth reflected in acquisition and consumerism.

Each person can facilitate the evolution of individuals, communities and societies. We can develop empathy and move beyond gender, racial and cultural stereotypes and seriously consider the consequences of sabotaging quality of life and then life, itself on our planet. We can call back our power as informed and socially responsible consumers. We can collaboratively develop goals and a systematic  programs to achieve them. We can identify and document the current resources available in creating change in environmental practices. We can highlight and challenge fragmentation, duplication, and hidden and delayed costs. We have the skills to research, draw upon and integrate aspects of specific successful programs, nationally and internationally.    

From this fluid, dynamic and responsive place we can address universal issues of fundamental safety, health, environmental and social need.

CHOICES

Hi!  I am posting again after renovating, selling, building and re-locating.......... simply exhausting and so exciting.............!

The processes of moving beyond the domination of pain, trauma and loss  invite you into presence, grace, honesty, love, determination, responsibility, tenacity, warmth, creativity, humour, intuition and  profound courage.  Please be very still, even for just a moment, and consider carefully want you wish to create? Will it be more of the same?  Will you choose to develop and nurture a truly loving relationship with yourself- especially when you are exquisitely vulnerable?

An unconditional loving relationship with yourself is not about what you have, what others think of you or where you have been. It is that deep, deep knowing  that we all share if we can move beyond the layers and layers of "generational dust" across all levels of functioning (body, thoughts, feelings, behaviour and relating).

What will you be choosing today, tomorrow and the next day?

ABRASIONS

When people do, or say, hurtful thinks to me - and unfortunately they do, and say, quite a lot - I can  turn the focus onto my own wound. From this place, I can be tender and gently soothe myself and  attend to what I can control- my own reactivity!

I breathe deeply.  I remind myself that others cannot hurt the deepest  part of me - ever!  This practice allows freedom.

© J.N Higgins 2017