Abiding in the Dream
The Shaman's Touch Part V
This article is Part 5 in a series of articles entitled, The Shaman’s Touch. The series concerns the path of self mastery through covenant relationship with higher purpose. The Shaman’s Touch is aimed at people who have heard the call of their dream and answered. Click here to read Part 1 of this series, Invoking the Refining Fire of Your Destiny.
Abiding In the Dream
“The lover and the beloved are one.” ∞ Donna DeLory
As I approached this subject a feeling of warmth and of gentleness flooded my body and a soft kind of joy spread through my spirit. It was as though someone gently placed a warm blanket over my shoulders in the dead of winter. It wasn’t just the blanket that warmed me, it was a sensation of being loved and of being held. In fact it was more than being held. It was the sensation of being held by someone who was receiving intense pleasure from the embrace. As I reached back, I discovered myself on the other side of that embrace. And I realized that I have learned to take delight in myself.
When I began imagining that I might actually have a dream worth fulfilling, I was deeply entrenched in the belief that I was flawed, inwardly ugly beyond recognition. The only God I knew was awaiting my every mistake with the spiritual equivalent of a wooden paddle. The lessons that came my way were about proving what was wrong with me and fixing it. I was engaged in a self improvement project. It wasn’t about liberation or even about dream fulfillment unless you count the desperate hope of finally being good enough as a dream. I courted the Fire. I asked it to confirm my worthlessness over and over again.
I can’t tell you when this dynamic shifted. I am just aware that somewhere along the way my desire to fix my flaws evolved bit by bit into a fervent desire for liberation. I wanted to be free of the habits and patterns that bound and chafed. I wanted to gain real freedom from the circumstances that felt insurmountable. I wanted to actually make a conscious difference in the world.
These tiny, almost imperceptible shifts began to happen.
Slowly, I moved out of self hatred and into curiosity and awakening. These shifts marked my initiation into self love. Suddenly the lessons that came my way took on a new flavor. They became the yarn with which I wove the tapestry of real understanding. I began to wake up.
Before long, I was able to see the humor in the endless repetitive cycles that seemed to ensnare me, and I began to toy with the notion that my destiny was actually in my own hands. This notion of self-responsibility fueled my fledgling awareness. It opened the door to discernment and detachment, which in turn, opened the door to skillful action. I began to develop compassion for myself and others. My compassion and my detachment also fueled my awareness. Awareness thrives in an environment of neutrality and unconditional positive regard. I began to offer myself the gift of my own unconditional love.
As I woke up, I began to extract my creative energy from the constant struggle to survive and from the addictions that assuaged my anguish. I began to conserve the energy that was once wasted in drama and the heightened emotions brought on by self hatred and the loathsome thoughts I held towards myself.
I can’t tell you exactly when it came about.
But I am acutely aware that my desires and my focus shifted as well. I began to tap into the gifts I might be able to offer the world and I began to envision sharing those gifts with a world waiting with bated breath for me to arrive and to contribute. I began to abide in the space of deeply held aspirations. Instead of relying on negative emotions to bring about change, I began to catalyze change with life force energy, with the joie de vivre that was coursing through me like electricity.
Up until now, I have written this series from a place of detachment. It was an endeavor of delineating concepts and methodology. I wanted to provide a framework for developing critical skills such as discernment and for working skillfully with the two most powerful agents of change – pleasure and pain.
This piece is different. It emanates from my heart. It is the result of having walked through the Fire over and over again and of having learned to cultivate the joie de vivre without clinging to the pleasurable sensations. It is the birth child of an open heart. This final installment in The Shaman’s Touch is, in essence, the story of my own return to the natural spontaneous state where creativity and movement flow effortlessly from delight and from a relaxed state of mind. In writing it, I have endeavored to pull together all of the prior pieces by personalizing the concepts and to crystalize them by giving you a window into my own story.
Most importantly, I want this piece to stand as an invitation.
Whether you are taking your first tremulous steps towards a brighter future or you are standing on the precipice of awakening, just reach out and take my hand. I will guide you gently through the Fire and into the joie de vivre. I will initiate you into freedom, self love, and the empowerment that flows naturally from their cultivation.