By Swan Michelle
“Suffering is necessary until you realize it is unnecessary.” Eckhart Tolle
I practice a somewhat unconventional approach to New Years/cycles that I would love to share with you. It is not programmed, crafted nor engineered by a clock, calendar, plan or any personal nor social expectations.
To feel a future that is new, bright and optimistic might mean to first mourn for the true death of the past and to feel the intelligent messages that pain has to offer for it is truly the past where pain comes from.
Pain has important messages for us. Our past desires, veils and our attachments are thinnest in those moments of pain and grief. It is also a poignant threshold of something actually changing, where we may begin desiring something new.
Grief and pain is a Soul cry that all Spirits hear. Howl! Animals and the indigenous do this in calling out to their ancestors as a shattering through the physical barriers of limitation. Allow for these howling’s of the night when it is your time.
“In the Lakota/ Sioux tradition, a person who is grieving is considered waken, most holy. There’s a sense that when someone is struck by the sudden lightening of loss, he or she stands on the threshold of the spirit world. The prayers of those who grieve are considered especially strong, and it is proper to ask them for their help. You might recall what it’s like to be with someone who has grieved deeply. The person has no layer of protection, nothing left to defend. The mystery is looking out through the person’s eyes. For the time being, he or she has accepted the reality of loss and stopped clinging to the past or grasping to the future. In the groundless openness of sorrow, there is a wholeness and a deep natural wisdom.” –Tara Brach
The Universal message of pain has a long blueprint of the imprints or curses of our histories & ancestors.The pain body, individual, and carried within us for too long, can begin to feel more like a phantom version of us where we are no longer ourselves. This unfortunately slows down or arrests the flow of receiving the present blessings that our Soul desires.
“Watch out for any sign of unhappiness within yourself, in whatever form- it may be the awakening of a pain body. This can take the form of irritation, impatience, a somber mood, a desire to hurt, anger, rage, depression, a need to have some drama in your relationship, and so on, Catch it the moment it awakens from it’s dormant state. The pain body wants to survive just like any entity in existence and it can only survive if it can get you to unconsciously identity with it. It can then rise up and take you over, and live through you, and become you. It needs to get its food through you. It will feed on any experience that resonates with its own kind of energy, anything that creates further pain in any form: anger, destructiveness, hatred, grief, emotional drama, violence and even illness.. Once the pain body takes over, you want more pain. You become either a victim or a perpetrator. You want to inflict pain or you want to suffer pain, or both.” Eckhart Tolle- The Power Of Now
A beautiful teaching from Gautama Buddha on pain and suffering are The Buddhist 4 Noble Truths.
First Noble Truth – there is suffering
Second Noble Truth – suffering is caused by attachment and cravings (to things that are impermanent and don’t exist in the way we think they do)
Third Noble Truth – there is a way to overcome attachment
Fourth Noble Truth – the path to overcoming cravings is made up of eight parts – right view, right action, right intention, right understanding, right concentration, right livelihood, right effort, and right mindfulness
Imagine a life where you no longer desire the things that bring you pain. May this be your mantra.
I do feel it important to remind ourselves just how far we have come considering the pain we have been carrying in the collective and within ourselves, consciously or unconsciously. Pain doesn’t do well surviving once identified through inquiry, kindness and awareness, where we can begin imagining something new.
The only way out is through.
“These pains you feel are messengers. Listen to them.” Rumi
Treating our life with a holistic, instead of an allopathic approach whenever possible will guide us to the acknowledgement & cause of the pain, suffering, grief, sickness we may be currently carrying from yesterday or from generations as it focuses on the source of the suffering as important information, yet not as our curse to carry on. That is not a future.
Feel and name your divorce, a fight, your job ending, a betrayal, a sickness, a loved one passing away. We are not here to dwell in repressed, distressed lives. That is not your future. We are here to receive all of the blessings that the Divine has in store for us. The future is about creation, with all things in their right time and right place.
Stress, not distress, can be healthy if we process our pain as it steeps us in our wisdom body, challenges our adaptability, and calls attention to our Soul’s cry to elevate, receive and fully live.
I pray we each take moments to acknowledge what suffering actually is, that it does exist, and how it invited us to change so that suffering does not become us. We are not suffering. We are Soul’s here to live in freedom, creation and life, with compassion for the human hardships in our hearts.
“Your gains through meditation give you the enthusiasm that can bring a breakthrough into another plane, or the heartfelt desire to go in deeper, or the hunger to change your life. But it still takes much courage and fortitude to face the deepest attachments head on.” Ram Dass
Here is my New Year/New Cyle/New day approach. I do this every morning (not just New Years) for 20 minutes as to allow each day to be exciting and unknown since I am proactively working on no longer being lead by nor desiring to be with my past pain. With this practice, I’ve actually begun to fall in love with and direct my energy to the mystery and the unknown far more than entertaining a past pain that tries so hard to continue to feed off of my journey.
Seated Meditation and contemplation session:
Somatically feel into your body and acknowledge where there may be pain or suffering in the physical body, mind or emotional health.
Name it and bring all breath, awareness and compassion to it and the pain and suffering that it caused
Proactively imagine a life where you no longer desire the things that bring you pain. Imagine and rehearse your desires and your future. Sit with this in meditation. Allow the meditation to be a full body experience so that you practice charging your cells, blasting them with the light of joy, where pain has a very difficult time residing,
This meditation encourages me to identify as my Soul, Higher Self and Higher Power.
Our Soul is a lighthouse shedding light. It is not in pain. May you ready & source yourSelf for the direct messages of eternal Truth of your Soul from which to guide you into a new future.
“I am in need of nothing but the Truth. I sought for many things and found despair. Now do I seek but one, for in the one is all that I need and only what I need. All that I sought be- fore I needed not and did not even want. My only need I did not recognize. But now I see that I need only the truth. In that, all needs are satisfied. all cravings end, all hopes are finally fulfilled. Now have I everything that I need. Now have I everything that I could want. And now at last I find myself at peace.” A Course In Miracles Lesson 251
Asato Ma Sad Gamaya
Tamaso Ma Joytir Gamaya
Mrityor Ma Amritam Gamaya
I can see what is not real and what is real
In the dark I can see the light
I can see what limits me
And I embody the bliss of eternity
Yoga Sutra 1:1:
Atha Yoga Nushasanam – Only in the NOW, I am destined to the well established Self
The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
Breaking The Habit of Being Yourself by Dr Joe Dispenza
Mother Night by Clarrisa Pinkola Estes