Bowing To Our Own Reflection
Editor’s Note from David Arenson: Living ‘the awakened life’ is one of the goals of our sacred living page on allthingshealing.com. New writer, Julie Hoyle, contributes revealing insights into the concept of the external being a mirror, reflecting what we are accepting and resisting.
From the awakened perspective, every aspect of our lives is a mirror, reflecting where we are in a place of acceptance and where we are resisting what is unfolding in our lives. Unaware of this truth, when I first arrived on Grand Bahama in August 2004, my opinion of the island was that, “it has an energy of depressed neglect.”
My new teaching work was challenging and highly stressful. Not realizing that I was the one who had attracted and created outer conditions to reflect inner patterns of self-neglect, I found myself with a schedule that was almost impossible to maintain, leaving me exhausted and depressed.
Gratefully after a few months of suffering and discomfort, I was graced with a pivotal insight in the form of a lucid dream. In the dream, I found myself standing on a lush, green lawn looking toward a small wooden stage and into the face of an extraordinary woman. Without her saying a word, I intuitively recognized that she was the revered Yogi known in India as the ‘Mother.‘
On seeing me she exclaimed, “You! It’s good to see you again!“ With that beautiful welcome, I fell to my knees sobbing and she pulled me to her, holding me in her arms like a baby. After a while, she gently inquired, “Do you know how you got to this place?” Then she sweetly reminded me, “If you want to stay in this work you can. If you want to get yourself out, it’s up to you….”
Moments after waking, I went online and typed the words, ‘The Mother’ into the search engines, watching in awe as the same, compassionate face of the woman I had seen in my dream appeared on screen. I discovered the Mother was a French woman who had met Shri Aurobindo and had later given her life to serve him and to serve his mission in awakening people to the truth of who they are.
Following the dream, I felt empowered by the understanding that I could make outer changes if I wanted. However, I was more aware of the importance of making changes on an internal level. The first part of the Mother’s question was key. Did I know how I got to this place in my life? That inquiry underpinned the necessity of becoming conscious, rather than falling into the trap of hastily reproducing the same conditions elsewhere. With that awareness, I chose to embrace my current work and environment and created an intention of offering the highest and the best. In support of this, I made a commitment to keep asking,
*What am I supposed to learn from this situation?
*Can I create something beautiful?
*Am I bringing focus and Presence to what is unfolding now?
Data collected from cancer patients has revealed that when asked to write about their terminal diagnosis, people detail childhood trauma. A shocking number of patients also describe chronic boredom with their lives, reinforced by a belief in dis-empowerment. This study validates the yogic and shamanic view that sustained loss of energy and inspiration for one’s life leads to crisis, manifesting as a chronic and debilitating health issue or through a major event that forces people to become conscious of the signs they had been choosing to ignore previously.
Essentially, we can only embrace who we are when we wake up to the truth that we have created the outer conditions we are sooner or later compelled to learn from. Until that happens, we are doomed to re-create what we repress, often choosing to identify with the role of the victim, blaming a fickle and uncaring world as the source of all our problems.
The more unconscious we are, the more we suffer and the more we suffer, the more we keep looking for someone or something to save us from the hell we have unwittingly created. Committing to always offering the highest good means that we must behave and respond in an adult fashion, rather than crying and complaining about the perceived injustices the world is bringing to our door.
Accepting and embracing the challenges I was faced with both internally and externally when first arriving on Grand Bahama Island proved to be life-changing. It marked the dissolution of the small ’i’ leading me on a profound journey of self-discovery and integration. And as I made changes on an internal level, the outer conditions changed. I was suddenly given a more manageable schedule. Beautiful opportunities opened up to share aspects of my spiritual awakening. Once in alignment with purpose, I discovered that abiding in Presence was palpable and readily available moment-by-moment.
Being challenged to, ‘bow to our own reflection,’ is not an easy task. However, it has the power to affect everything in amazing ways. What once created stress and friction in our lives becomes softened, until over time it’s completely gone. We naturally know if, when and how to flow with change and when we are prompted to leave a situation because we know we have learned enough from it, we can act without hesitation.
From the awakened point of view, this is how we must live. If we are fully conscious and actively engaged with what we are creating in our lives we are empowered and energized with abundant vitality. Then there is no place for frustration to take hold, no room for chronic boredom to grow and no opportunity for crisis to manifest. Instead we are free…