The Crone

Beauty comes from the expression and character in your face – not just its symmetry.  – Robert Jones

Todays post was inspired by my dear friend, Madame Weebles. Here she talks about her own version of a Crone. As always her amazing writing and wonderful sense of humor creates a great space for commentary and community.

In part, here’s my comment on her page: “In the Wicca tradition, there’s a ceremony for this [The Crone] – just like other rights of passage, the Croning ceremony marks the [transition] into wisdom. A few years ago, a client brought me a jewelry pin – it was the face of an old woman with gray hair and round, red cheeks. It was a compliment – a tribute to wisdom and my healing abilities – I was horrified and it took everything I had in me to smile and thank her!” The image is of her gift.

These days, I’m  more comfortable with the energy of the Crone, the wise woman, the healer – my Inner Crone if you will. And today, I can truly say, “Thank you, Terri. I can now accept your gift with gratitude and grace.” It’s okay to be a Crone.

Love,

Cathy

What Is It Like?

Wild Orchid by Cathy Ulrich

What is it like?
You ask.
This place where you live?

What is it like
where you come from?
I ask.

It is scary and sad.
Those who live there
are hurtful and mean.
Work is hard.
Life is hard.

It is like that here, too.

What is it like?
You ask.
This place where you live?

What is it like
where you come from?
I ask.

It is peaceful and calm.
Those who live there
are kind and serene
Work is easy.
Life is fun.

It is like that here, too.

Forgiveness

Heart Leaf by Cathy Ulrich

Dad,

I knew I had forgiven you

when you came to me

in a dream.

It had been four years

since your passing.

And for the first time, ever, you came

just

to see me.

You wanted to know

how my life was.

What was important to me.

Who I had become.

You told me you were proud

to know me.

That you wished that you had tried

to know me

when you lived.

But from the other side

you saw.

Only when I had forgiven,

could you come

to me

and tell me

that you loved me.

©CathyUlrich and LargeSelf, 2012

Worthiness

While you can’t keep your heart from getting broken, you can stop breaking your own heart…once you realize the difference between what you can control and what you can’t, and that it’s far, far more fun to lavish all that attention on your own self-worth.

—  Leigh Newman

I found this quote on Oprah’s “Thought for Today” newsletter. And while it really needs no further explanation, it got me thinking about worthiness.

What would our world be like if everyone felt true worthiness? Not entitlement, not narcissism, not selfishness, but worthiness? When I went to the 5-Day Silent Retreat in January, 2010, one of the things that Lola Jones said that I remember most clearly was this (and I’m paraphrasing): “Unworthiness is one of biggest barriers to enlightenment.” I hadn’t really thought of it that way before, but it makes sense.

Unworthiness represents separation from the Divine. It means that we are not worthy of love. And if the Divine is Love and we are drops in the ocean of the Divine, then we are also Love. It’s about understanding that our Beingness and not our Doingness is what makes us worthy.

Where does unworthiness come from? It comes from people pleasing, judging our own actions, believing that we need to earn Love – living our lives where love is given and received conditionally (and I use the lower-case love intentionally here). These patterns often come from childhood – parents doing their best, but loving conditionally. Friends and teachers setting standards that encourage us to “fit-in.” Peer pressure, performance anxiety, loving ourselves and others conditionally – and the cycle continues.

What if the year 2012 is not about some cataclysmic destruction of the Earth – but a change in consciousness where we set aside unworthiness and begin to be that Love that we truly are? That we break that cycle and start a new beginning? What if we really are worthy?

I welcome your thoughts.

Love,

Cathy

©CathyUlrich and LargeSelf, 2012

More Bumper Sticker Philosophy

The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift. – Albert Einstein.

I have long forgotten where I first heard this phrase and then one day, I saw it on a bumper sticker:

O.K. – Think about it – how many times have you thought something, especially about yourself that you fully and completely bought into? Most of our self-blame, self-deprecating, self-criticizing thoughts came from somewhere. They’re either old tapes from childhood, parents, peers, teachers, who probably meant well – at least on some level. Or, they’re thoughts that you cooked up all by yourself, building on criticisms that you heard along the way.

And what about when your mind slips into judgement about something or someone else? The mind seems to constantly want to label, compare, contrast as a way of controlling and making sense of life. But when that propensity to judge kicks in, we’re often left with either a sense of self-righteousness or some icky feeling that then feeds on our love of self-blame. What better way to validate that you’re a shit if you think bad thoughts about someone?

I think Einstein was right. We honor the rational mind too much. Not only do we honor it, we believe it! Think of all the suffering that could be avoided if we simply told our rational mind to mind its own business.

Here are a few suggestions to help you connect more fully with the intuitive mind and tell that pesky rational mind to take a hike!

  • Become the objective observer. When something is too close, we can’t see all of its dimensions. By mentally stepping back and looking at the situation, we can be more conscious and objective. Then we make better choices.
  • Become more familiar with the vibration of the intuitive mind. Some of the qualities of the intuitive mind (LargeSelf, Higher Self) are kindness, love, objectivity, and a bigger picture. It’s that feeling that says: “I don’t see me (them) as bad or scary.”
  • Remember to be in your body. When you find yourself believing thoughts that feel icky,  stop, breathe, come into the present moment. From that place, you can slow down the mental chatter and take back your power.
  • Have a conversation with yourself. Yes, it’s okay to do that – we all do. When a negative thought comes blasting in, you can say: “Interesting point of view. Thank you very much. I’ll consider it, but for right now I’m going to do something else.”
  • As you practice all of the above, notice how your thought patterns begin to shift. Over time, you’ll realize that you have replaced scary, negative thoughts with more loving, kind thoughts. After all, believing everything you think is just a habit. Once you start to changing that habit, you’ll be able to build on it.

So remember, your rational mind is a great tool. But it is just that – a tool. And sometimes it can be a tool (grin)!  Use it to do math problems, read, learn information. But don’t believe it. Because it wants you to give it your power. Just say no…

Love,

Cathy

©CathyUlrich and LargeSelf, 2012

Be Where Your Body Is

Last week, during our monthly Energy Healing Course call, Lisa shared her recent experiences with our physical energy healing process. Swallowing back a few tears, she told us of a new awakening. After years of spiritual practice, Lisa suddenly realized last month that she was still mostly fixed in a mental/intellectual pattern of self-judgement. The shift happened when she began focusing more on her body through the physical healing techniques she’s learning in the course.

I teach a kinesthetic approach to intuition and healing, and Lisa related that her new abilities to feel physical sensations brings her more into her body and out of her intellectual mind. Suddenly she realizes that she’s a Divine being in a Divine body. Many of her old perceptions of herself and her life are no long longer important and the physical sensations that she’s experiencing are leading her into new levels of enlightenment.

Lisa’s revelations brought me back to something I’ve known for many years, but it had become so much a part of my own being, my own way of working and healing, that I had literally taken it for granted. Her message is this: our bodies are our direct route to the Divine. Blessed with a huge array of receptors specifically tuned to feel and interpret vibration, when we can quiet the mind and feel – physically feel – the information of the Universe opens to us in ways that cannot be described in words.

Many spiritual traditions incorporate body-centered practices as a way of quieting the mind and bringing the spirit into the present moment. Walking meditation, focusing on the breath, bell or chime ringing, candle gazing, hatha yoga, tai chi – all of these practices help to move us from our intellectual mind into our bodies and in that space, we truly feel the vibrations of our existence.

So – what better way of being body centered than through the process of practicing physical healing? I often say to my clients that I’m incredibly blessed to get to be fully present for twenty-one hours a week (the number of sessions that I typically do). To do my best work, I listen actively, I use my eyes to read the structural patterns in the body, and I use my hands to feel for energy imbalances as well as physical restrictions through palpation. It’s that place of the curious and objective observer (senser) that allows me to glean information, interpret it and act – all the while including my own thoughts, feelings and intuition in the mix.

This isn’t to say, that everyone needs to be a healer in order to be enlightened or happy. But in our world where many spend most of their day in front of a computer screen, simply allowing oneself to feel from a body-centered place, even while typing at a keyboard can bring us back to the present moment.

One of my favorite sayings is this: Be where your body is. If you’re typing on the computer, allow yourself to feel your fingertips touching the keys. If you’re eating lunch, sit down and feel as you take a bite – the texture, taste, temperature, visual appeal of the food. And if you’re doing healing – notice your client and yourself in the interaction. How are they breathing – how are you breathing? How do your hands feel as you touch them or scan their energy field? How does your body feel as you move during the session?

And what other ways can you tune into this marvelous array of sensory receptors in your body to bring you into the present moment and the Divine in your daily life?

Much Love,

Cathy

P.S. – Thank you, Lisa for the inspiration for this post. You have reminded me of something I do all the time, but it has become so ingrained that I forgot to mention it! Love you! Cathy

©CathyUlrich and LargeSelf, 2012