“Faceless (but not nameless) Angel”: Journey of the Heart 2.0 – Day 39

Journey of the Heart - Day 39 Susan Billmaier for susanwithpearls
Journey of the Heart – Day 39
Susan Billmaier for susanwithpearls

Guiding Thought

Gratitude strikes my heart like a bell, resounding love through my being.

Gratitude opens my heart to Love’s purity, my very own essence!

I experience such deep gratitude for my heart, my essence, my ALL of Life!

-Play the Guiding Thought here (loops automatically).
Journey of the Heart audio created by Brad Vanlandingham for Susanwithpearls-

 

Sharing

I was reminded today that Journey of the Heart is supposed to be out of my mind. I was remarking about feeling “off”, feeling like I’ve been having an out of body experience during this Journey, and my dear, wise friend said, “No, just out of mind”.

It’s amazing to me, how learning new things, shifting into something new, can feel so wrong. I mean, it makes sense. I am a very mental person; it absolutely makes sense that I feel “off” being with my heart as much as I have been for the past 38 days. I am comfortable in my head, but being in my heart pulls me in ways that are simply unfamiliar. Unfamiliar can feel uncomfortable. But there’s nothing wrong, it just feels weird—but I admit, I’ve been inclined to label it as “wrong”.

I catch myself from labeling it as “wrong”, and stop, and remind myself…this is an example of little lettings-go. This is the slow, gentle process of detaching from myself.

How do I identify? Who do I think I am? A lot of my identity is wrapped up in myself as an intellectual, thinking person. And what happens when I lower the importance of that part of myself and privilege my heart? The discomfort I feel has to do with a readjustment of my self-identity, removing emphasis from my mind, giving emphasis to my heart and feelings. My mind rebels with discomfort; but the process is slow enough that I can deal with the little rebellions each day and keep going.

What’s neat is, the letting go and discomfort has been rewarded in ways that make it worthwhile. The work I’ve done, and my heart expanding has (apparently) opened me to new energies. I do several energetic healing modalities—Reiki, Rebirthing, and Jharra. Mostly, I use them for myself as “meditation” or relaxation techniques, but I also give them to friends and family. I was giving a friend Jharra, before any session I always invoke “Highest Divine Love and Light” and invite representative beings to aid and assist the session. As I was doing this, I felt this huge “rubber stamp” come down on the screen of my mind and it left the stamp “Raphael”. I thought, OoooooK… and went on with the session.

The next day in another session, the same thing happened. At the end of the session, I said to my friend, “WHO is Raphael!?” … “He’s an Archangel” … “What does he do or represent?” And I had to Google him. Apparently, it’s very much in his (outgoing) personality to announce himself in this way, and he is an Angel of Healing (Raphael means, “it is God who heals”). All of this made sense in the context.

Since then, I’ve been just thinking about Raphael, and inviting him to be more a part of my life. This is all new to me. And I like it. And I’m grateful.

“Fibonacci Fireworks”: Journey of the Heart 2.0 – Day 34

Journey of the Heart - Day 34 Susan Billmaier for susanwithpearls
Journey of the Heart – Day 34
Susan Billmaier for susanwithpearls

Guiding Thought

Oh, my beautiful blissful heart!

How can I deepen and expand my relationship with you?

How can I give your love, your wisdom, your compassion more openly and freely?

How can I know you, my heart of love, as myself?

-Play the Guiding Thought here (loops automatically).
Journey of the Heart audio created by Brad Vanlandingham for Susanwithpearls-

 

Sharing

Sometimes things just don’t feel right. Sometimes we call it “waking up on the wrong side of bed” sometimes we describe it as just feeling “off”, sometimes it’s a wordless malaise that seems to seep into life through invisible cracks.

This happened to me this morning. It started with my usual morning bath. Normally, I spend 90 minutes soaking, even sleeping, with no problem. This morning, after 30 minutes I wanted to jump out of the tub. Fortunately, I am experienced enough in tub-soaking, that I know the impulse to jump out is precisely a reason to stay in. Soaking in the tub processes and heals emotions. When there is an impulse to leave, most of the time the water is processing feelings of urgency, emergency, impatience, dissatisfaction, etc. If I jump out too soon, the process does not come full circle, and the emotions are left hanging there…and when that happens more often than not they come up for resolution at less convenient times. So I stayed and soaked, wallowing in my discomfort. My solar plexus was uncomfortable. The deep little muscles in my biceps were uncomfortable. My fingers and feet wanted to shake and dance. My sternum was uncomfortable, for crying in the mud! It wasn’t as bad as, maybe, ants crawling over me, but it was close. This morning, I came up with the theory that people with “restless leg syndrome” are suffering from too much emotional urgency that they have suppressed for too long, and now the energy just needs to get out.

During this time, I thought about the book by Simone Weil, Waiting on God. What a great title to think about when feeling impatient. Wait on God. It’s so hard to wait on God when I just want to jump up and get out of this discomfort. Wait on God. Ugh. God’s not quick enough, I need to move, and forget this ever happened. Wait on God. My body is not happy about waiting on God.

Healing happens when we wait on God. Miracles happen when we wait on God. Enlightenment happens when we wait on God. Soaking in the tub is just the warm-up.

I stayed in the tub for 60 minutes—my personal minimum when I am in such a mood. I don’t think it was enough. I still felt off.

I decided on the bright spot: I was having growing pains! Expansion discomfort! Increase-of-awareness awareness! There is moving and shaking (literally!) going on, and I just need to be able to go with it and grow with it!

The Fibonacci sequence 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144 (the title of today’s picture), is what is represented by the spiraling hearts; of course, the more well-known representation is the nautilus. It represents growth, more specifically, it represents geometric growth in near-exact proportion. This is my attempt at harnessing my decision about the bright spot in my growth-pains, and making something perfectly beautiful out of it. Growth is beautiful. Growth may cause some fireworks, but hey, they are beautiful too.

Cat Comfortable

Copyright Tam Black 2013 Edited for susanwithpearls.com May 2013 by permission
Copyright Tam Black 2013
Edited for susanwithpearls.com May 2013 by permission

Have you ever watched a cat sleep and wondered, “HOW in the world could that be comfortable?”

Master contortionists, cats sleep curled up in balls, with their heads turned at practically 180 degrees. They balance precariously with only half of their body on a window sill, they lay inside boxes, their necks crooked against the side and two legs hanging out, or on their backs, crescent-shaped, or crammed in tissue boxes, frying pans, baskets, or bowls. They sit up, pile on top of each other, lie over grates, or rungs…for visuals see the link included at the end of the article.

Observing these positions, or seeing pictures, I can’t help but be amused…but there is also something deeply disconcerting about it. I think about how that must feel. Crammed. Crooked. Scrunched. Bent. Compressed. Stretched. Hanging. Balancing.  None of these descriptors say “comfortable” to me. Yet, for the cats, these positions are natural; they are cozy, happy, and comfortable.

This is being “cat-comfortable”: doing something that is natural and that feels right to you that to someone else might feel disconcerting or uncomfortable.

The problem of course is since you are comfortable in your natural position, you may not be aware of another person’s discomfort. Do you think cats think about whether or not I am uncomfortable on their behalf when they sleep? No, of course not.

Let me give an example of cat-comfortable in humans. Several years ago I started playing basketball with guys from work: custodians, maintenance guys, electricians, police officers. I was the only woman and it was really the first time in my adult-life that I played exclusively with men. When someone was having a bad day, the guys on the other team generally offered such remarks as “C’mon is that all you got?” “My mother plays better than you!” “You SO bad because MY defense EXTENDS…” The guy having the bad day would get frustrated and come back with some defensive retort, which would make the other guys come back even harder with their cutting remarks. Sometimes it got pretty heated…hostile even. At least, that’s what I thought. I was pretty uncomfortable with it, the peace-loving, conflict-reducing person that I am.

So, I asked one of the guys about it one day. He explained that they aren’t experiencing conflict OR hostility. This is their way of encouraging each other, picking each other up; motivating each other. When someone gives them a really hard time because they are doing poorly, it makes them dig into themselves harder and deeper to pull out the strength within and do better.

They were perfectly comfortable with these interactions. I was the one who was uncomfortable. They were cat-comfortable—interacting naturally, yet displaying behavior that I felt uncomfortable with. As soon as I realized that there was no hostility, it was just a “mode” of encouragement, I started to practice my “smack-talking” skills. I got pretty good at it. Even though it still kind of made me uncomfortable, I could participate in a way that was natural to them. I was able to expand my own sense of “comfort” outside of a familiar circle to interact in a way that was natural to others, if not to me.

Here is another example. I was helping out with the Youth Group at my favorite church and there was a high school junior who read philosophy and liked to argue, in the sense of debating. The first time that he and I “discovered” our mutual love of verbal banter, we sat among about half a dozen high school kids and “argued”. Materialism? Realism? Nominalism? Idealism? What is right? What makes a table a table? Does this table really exist as a table or merely as a set of molecules/energy!?? How do we know!!??? It got pretty intense. He and I were having fun—it is not everyone who enjoys such verbal intensity. Clearly, however, the onlookers thought we were fighting, bickering, and agitated. To them our natural state of comfort within a heated debate was disturbing. I’ve seen this type of thing happen also in work situations, where two people discuss with an intensity that makes others around them uncomfortable. Sometimes, especially when the observers tend to be “peace-makers”, intense, direct, discussion can be misconstrued as conflict or hostility, when to the people involved, it is just pointed discussion.

Everyone has their own cat-comfort—those behaviors that are perfectly natural that might make someone else uncomfortable. I ask a lot of questions — A LOT — to people who don’t know me, or people I’ve just met, to friends, to anyone. Sometimes I notice people getting uncomfortable. Sometimes I tone it down, sometimes I don’t. When people get to know me and realize that’s “just who I am” we laugh about it. But until then…sometimes people feel awkward with my questioning.

When I am the one exhibiting the behavior that might provoke discomfort in another, when I am the cat–as with my questioning or pointed, intense, discussion– I try to be aware of their feelings and to make a choice about whether or not to “tone it down”. I don’t always change my behavior but I do attempt to maintain an awareness of people’s responses.

When I am the person who is uncomfortable—as on the basketball court, I take a deep breath first and notice how other people are responding to each other. Is the discomfort mine? Is it theirs? If they are not uncomfortable, why should I be? If they are interacting in a way that is natural to them, what can I learn from this? Can I be so bold to make myself uncomfortable by interacting with them in a way that I have never interacted before? Can I expand and grow the number of ways that I can be cat-comfortable? The more I practice, the more I grow my comfort level, the more people I can interact “naturally” with, and the less I feel afraid or uncomfortable when other people are interacting.

http://www.buzzfeed.com/paws/awkward-cat-sleeping-positions