A big barometer of self-love is how well we are able to parent ourselves through difficult times, mistakes, disappointments, grief and other challenging emotions.
All too often, this is where our wounds are triggered and we enact ways of being that perpetuate the cycle of wounding within our psyches. If we keep treating ourselves and our inner worlds the way we internalized, the way we learned to treat ourselves, then we continue the cycles of pain in our lives without realizing it.
This is the realm of the death mother and one I see most common in clients and my own soul life.
Grief is a very common reaction not only to loss but heartbreak or rejection or disappointment. We make mistakes. We are human. Life has its ups and downs. Things happen. We feel things in response to it.
The "patriarchy” doesn’t have to just do with men or the masculine principle. Everything is a part of the wholeness and the wholeness lives within all things. There is also very much a feminine counterpart to the patriarchy, a system designed to function through domination, control and power.
This is a system that rose from the transition of worshipping mother nature to seeking to domination not only over mother earth but over our own feminine nature deeply tied to the earth body itself.
The death mother is the counterpart to the death father. These are archetypal energies that exist in the collective psyche. If they did not, there wouldn’t be the kind of situations we are dealing with on the earth at this time.
These archetypal energies influence each of us and are confounded even more if they’ve also arrived into the blueprint of our nervous systems via our actual parents.
The death mother is the shadow part of the feminine who seeks to express herself through power, domination and control of the elemental feminine, of the soul of both men and women. She represents the "cultural subjugation of the wild and unruly feminine (Toko-pa)" and to survive she's become like the death father in order to thrive. Her soul was stolen and now she steals to feel like she has one.
There is a collective theme through the dreaming brought to me in sessions, shared with friends and in my own dream realms. It is the archetypal feminine via the wild cat that is circling, attempting to enter the psyche in order to merge with the soul. There is also resistance to this primal energy, a pushing away, building of fences, an attempt to control or destroy or run away from while watching the outside world try to kill her.
It’s Persephone returning from the underworld wild, raw, fresh and whole that threatens the parts of ourselves that truly long to embrace and restore this energy in our hearts but are terrified of it at the same time.
This is the pulse of where we are in our relationship to the feminine, longing her return and yet fearing all that comes with reigniting her flames within our hearts. A world we can only make safe by allowing her love to enter us, to blow our ideas out of the water of what swimming in her love really is.
There is something we must let go of in order to let the wild cat in and claim her in our hearts.
Your soul is your vital energy; it is life force expressing itself as you. It is your expression of creation. It is creation expressing itself as you. It is the essence of who you are.
The amount of goodness and beauty and love that you really are is indescribable by any words, in any language.
There is nothing that you cannot transform in your life. There is no reason that life cannot be a wonderful experience for you. There is no need to blame karma or fixed astrology as identity and excuses for suffering and pain or why things aren’t happening.
The Universe is flowing and expressing itself through you, there is nothing that you cannot transmute back into your own divinity. Even your feeling of separation is an embodied experience of this sacred life breathing you. Even shame.
Shame is a liberating pathway back to embodying your innate goodness.
Shame: a complicated experience wrapped up in painful thought cycles fed by deep, often unconscious, unmet needs for love.
It’s relational. In other words, it is something that is triggered in the context of relationships and belonging. It touches us right down to the core of who we are and often cuts us right there at that core. It is the soul wound.
It’s a complex belief system based on the experience that there is something fundamentally wrong with you. It’s the pain of original heartbreak.
It is fear. It is anger. It is all the feels. It is also the cultural air we breathe and water we swim in.
It’s the feeling of unworthiness, of not being enough, not being good enough.
It is misunderstanding the nature of pain, it is having no idea what to do with pain. Pain was there when the seeds of shame got planted. When we feel pain and no one sees it, our emotions are shut down. Caregivers are unhappy or we get in trouble for being in pain or having emotions, being told to stop expressing emotions. We feel the loss of love and attention, and feel hurt or abused or neglected.
It is so common, we just think it is normal. Normal does not mean it is healthy.
I have struggled with self-love on a daily basis for a lot of my life. I use the word struggle here specifically because it seems to be a word that is "bad," and associated with "blocks" and negative mindsets. Yet the inner conflict, the inner struggle, is quite real on an energetic, emotional level. For all of us.
I think we are allergic to talking about pain and inner struggle, relegating it somewhere behind closed doors, dirty little secrets or a thing we make bad or wrong. Like it is bad to be in pain; I am yet to meet a single person who is not in some kind of inner pain.
The only way out is to talk about it, metabolize it and work it through. With love.
We make pain wrong though. It's not wrong, we just don't like to be in pain. We fear if we go into it, we will drown in it forever,. But the ignoring of it actually keeps us oppressed by our own pain more than anyone or anything else.
Patriarchy doesn't like pain because healing pain awakens awareness, empathy, love and compassion which is the opposite of that gnawing emptiness inside that we search to fill with something while trying to paint perfect pictures of ourselves for each other.
We are taught that pain is a “selling point.” If we are in pain we will continue to need to buy stuff.
We long for connection. We long to be loved. We long to be free of pain.
Shame is pain inside the heart; a deep hurt that feels like you aren't good enough, aren't worthy in some way, that something is deeply wrong, that you are deeply flawed or somehow missed the memo on humanning well. It's this emptiness that feels bottomless and disconnected.
It IS the soul wound.
Shame has taken up residence in the center of your original heartbreak, at the core of who you are. There are a million reasons we all experience soul wounding and soul loss. It's been said that this is such an endemic at this time.
It's this undefinable yet very alive experience that is constantly running in the background of our subconscious. It is the emptiness that our consumer culture thrives on. We live in a shame culture. A trauma culture. A money culture. These things are so intimately wound up together culturally, our nervous systems cannot quite tell it all apart. As long as it feels like there is never enough or that you aren't enough, you will continue to seek outside of yourself for an experience of wholeness that money cannot buy.
This is the place where wanting more and more becomes the addiction wearing the costume of perfection and abundance and attacking ones core self like a construction project in the hopes that personal enlightenment will bring all the things we've been promised. It just doesn't work this way. It's all perpetuating itself and making most of us feel crazy and desperate. So much so, we are then distracted by what is happening in the world and people are hurting other people. Aren't we perhaps the only species that turns on itself (each other and ourselves)?
This is one of the most important things to me that needs to change. I often wonder what the world would be like if no one ever felt like there was something wrong with them. If we want to change our culture or heal our planet, we simply must start to talk about this soul wound, this sense that somehow being human is bad, that we are flawed, that we need to try to attain some state of divine perfection to transcend it.
Yes, being human is fragile and painful at times, scary even. But, shame is NOT a natural part of our programming. No thing in nature experiences shame or thinks that there is something wrong with it. It is NOT normal to feel this way about ourselves. It is not the natural frequency of our soul.
Fear is afraid of fear because it is protecting something. It's become unsafe to feel fear, which is a little strange and funny at the same time. It seems really important to not throw the baby out with the bath water, which means that it feels vital to the health of our collective hearts to find a different way to navigate and understand our innately emotional experiences that naturally arise in the course of living life as a human being. I am reminded of that really old paradigm saying that children should be seen and not heard. I hate that saying, but I believe that this still pervades our collective unconscious as we have inherited and internalized these models of the patriarchy, which we use as inner models for relating to ourselves. This is our soul wound.
Children need to be heard in order to feel deeply seen. We, as adults, are absolutely no different. When we dismiss our fears as all the same, as "fear-based thinking" (which arises out of the body holding on to fear, which is real in the body) we try to rationalize away or use mind strategies to attack the body for trying to tell it's story. This is in fact not seeing or hearing the core of ourselves. In a sense, it is putting salt in the soul wound.
Our body stores every single experience we have ever had and, if uncomfortable, we try to get rid of it without understanding it. This is not healing or loving. Healing is creating a space of love for the meaning and understanding to arise. It is only in that meaning and understanding that what is needed informs how to transform this energy into wisdom and love. This is self-love. It is hard to understand this if we have never felt emotionally loved or held, which is more common than you think. Emotional neglect is far more common than the patriarchy and media and marketing and most people would like you to know. We think the way we treat ourselves and others emotionally is normal and health. Normal is not always healthy. (Like encouraging people to put themselves out and share their voice, and then tear them down when they do and accuse them of having too much fear based thinking to really put themselves out there....)