Psychic Surgery

For the last few years, I’ve been experiencing what, to work a metaphor, I’m going to call “symptoms” of a psychic wound from my childhood.  It’s a wound around sex and sexuality that has been deeply bound in psychic scar tissue.  This scar tissue has acted as a deadening agent, a protection from accidental re-injury or activation.  The last fifty years allowed a lot of scar tissue to accumulate, for the psychic body to develop a somatic relationship to the wound in which it has been as if asleep.

Then came awakening.  With awakening as consciousness came the slow awakening of many parts of myself, countless and previously unknown parts.  Some of these parts brought ecstatic enlightenment to my Being.  Some brought quiet joy. Others brought pain that radiated out from the essential wound of incarnation, of being in a body.  Some of these parts are small and mundane, others are large and consequential.

About two years after awakening as consciousness, I took a long and quite activating telecourse with Waking Down in Mutuality founder, Saniel Bonder called “Let’s Talk Sex.”  For me, the course opened the door to the way sex and sexuality have been shadow parts of my Being, parts that are acting on me without my awareness.  My Trillium Awakening teacher Sandra Glickman has said “we are governed by what we can’t see.”  How true that is.

I’ve often used the metaphor of a splinter in talking about psychic woundedness.  It’s as if early life events, conditions and patterns lodge in our Being, some of them quite deeply, and once their trajectory inward stops, and they come to rest, they begin a trajectory in the other direction, back out toward light propelled by the body’s psychic antibodies that form a pocket of pus around them, sometimes with swelling, irritation and pain until they work their way up to the surface level where they can potentially be removed.  Sometimes they shoot out on their own accord, like a birth.  Even if they come out on their own, they leave a trace of their passing, a trail, a residue of awareness.  But sometimes they are obstructed and require the assistance of a skilled practitioner.

My wound material has been under the skilled care of a team of practitioners.  I first spoke of the wound with my core teacher, Allan Morelock.  He’s both my spiritual GP and a highly skilled specialist. He held the revelations without judgment and offered a salve of love and acceptance.  The Let’s Talk Sex course community was a collective massage team that prodded around the wound awakening its field of feelings: pain, distress and confusion.  Over time, the confusion gave way to a pressure to acknowledge the nature of the wound, which for the first time in my life, I spoke to my Beloved partner, revealing the people, places and actions that caused the wound.  Since then, the scar tissue of the wound has softened, parts of it have been metabolized into my Being.

But the deeper parts have been more stubborn.  They have required a commitment from me, welcoming them forward.  I say it’s been a commitment from me, but of course, it’s not been me at all; it’s been the flow of Being, bringing around events and realizations, revelations that have created space around and shed light on what has been buried for so long.  It has brought me into the transmission field of teachers whose skills with healing are both mysterious and effective.  The Shamanic healers Cielle and Jeffrey Backstrom peeled away the layers of dead and decaying matter between the wound and its healing.  They’ve created the space for and called in those who are the wisdom keepers for my life.  These keepers have revealed some of the conditions that led to my wounding and as importantly the patterns that caused it to fester, darken and limit.  They’ve brought me to readiness for surgery.

Last night, I entered the operating theater via a Skype session that brought me face to face with the psychic surgeon, Allan Morelock.  There’s a way that being in the transmission of these deeply embodied spiritual teachers, Sandra, Cielle, Jeffrey, and Allan, slices through my resistance to exploration.  In their loving, laser-like gaze there is neither a need nor a place to hide. My relationship with these teachers, especially Allan who mid-wifed my awakening, is deep.  The trust is bedrock.  The loving care, the truth telling, are utterly reliable and inescapable.

Meeting Allan last night, entering his transmission field stripped me down to the deepest, ickiest place in my wound. Through conversation, we unpacked it and bathed it in light.  He guided me into a meditative state in which we could lift out each piece of the wound, both the “story” of what happened, and the ways in which the conditions and patterns of my life have caused it to fester over decades.  He held it all in the light of loving investigation, of forgiveness and release.  He drew the whole gaping wound out of my body, left a large, tender spaciousness in its place.  In the hours to follow, in recovery mode, I rested in the pain of healing.  I was exhausted with the work of Being more fully alive.

This morning, in meditation, the palliative care of body, mind and spirit, I rested in the ongoing healing of my wound.  I rested in awareness of its long history, our long relationship, the dance of accommodation.  I acknowledge the way that relationship is changing through the healing process.  Sandra Glickman has famously said “wounds formed in relationship can only be healed in relationship.”  And in my experience this is true of all healing.

There’s a way that the depth of wounding is matched by the length of healing.  What we bring in with us when we enter this fleshly experience of our Being, what we accumulate from the early days can take the rest of our days to integrate.  There’s a way in which being alive in this human body is the core wound of experience.  When we awaken as embodied consciousness, we enter into the dance of healing, of mediating the distance and dissonance of Being and Body, which are both one and separate.  Like Michelangelo’s iconic depiction of the outstretched fingers of God and Man, these bodies are a constant ache toward the eternal.

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Healing the Parts that Make Us Whole

To heal, you must be willing to disrupt your equilibrium. To go deep into the unseen, unknown places, to allow the energy there to be stirred and released.

As part of my process of becoming a mentor in the spiritual tradition I follow, I am required to undergo six therapeutic sessions–typically these are psychological, sessions of “talk therapy.” Talk therapy has long since stopped being a mode that works for me, that gets into the depths of my shadow places, the parts that are in need of exploration and exposition. Years of yoga and various body-centered energetic healing modalities have unearthed and revealed into the light of recognition long festering patterns of behavior. So to meet my six session requirements, I requested and was given permission to work with a pair of Shamanic healers who teach in our lineage.

The question I’m pursuing is not important. Although it has a story or elements of story: a who, what, where and when, and likely has a why, I’m not really pursuing those. I’m no longer interested in the story per se. It’s more like a flavor, a residue. It’s like the splinters that remain after a large sliver is removed from the flesh.

I’ve worked with these two healers previously around this particular issue, and in both cases, they brought about huge shifts for me. Each time, we met in person in small groups that were working together for a longer period, once for a week and then for a weekend. The sessions I’m doing now are happening via Skype. They begin with prayer, with calling in the elements, the unseen guides that surround us at all times. There’s a short conversation about the issue being pursued, and then there’s a long period of energetic work in which I am more or less passive, sitting, eyes closed, breathing the circular breath used in rebirthing, and feeling into what is happening in my body.

A lot happened in my body. Painful contraction around my solar plexus. Heat. Cramping. More heat. Deep vibration. My teacher held me between two crystals, one at my crown and one beneath my feet, and my body was filled with expansion. I had to loosen my shoulders from their joints and let my arms hang out at an angle. I saw the Christ and Magdalen. I saw my father and waves of light that was more than light, a sort of deeply embodied incandescence. I was the hills and the snow and the ether that holds everything.

She told me that I would continue to integrate the healing. It might show up in my dreams. Might interrupt my sleep. Might make me vulnerable, raw, irritable. To ground myself, drink plenty of water, take hot baths. Walk consciously in the outdoors, breathing the cold air, feeling the earth beneath my feet. To ask for forgiveness. To know that I was healing.

In the last thirty six hours, I’ve manifested most of the side effects she noted. I feel a deep discomfort in my body, in my Being. And yet, as she pointed out, this is how I know that healing is happening.

We are always a process. Never a product. There is no end point, no completion, no perfection. As long as we inhabit these human bodies, we will continue to unfold. When we awaken into embodied consciousness, it is a second birth, a continual maturation that along with our being alive brings a deepening into what we are. All that has come before us going back to the primordial ooze is within us to be integrated. We are not separate from all that is or has ever been. The further I go, the deeper I go. It’s a folding as much as an unfolding. I fold more deeply into my parts as they unfold within me. I’m merging with every thread and fiber of my Being.

This is an essential process for anyone who sets out to guide others on their journey. It’s a shamanic process, this journeying. We must be familiar with the terrain and be willing to face its fearful aspects as well as its shining peaks. We must be willing to upset our own equilibrium, to lean into our own discomfort, to take everything we have been given and honor its gifts. Being is a powerful master. Are you willing to learn what it has to teach? In life, the poison is often also the antidote. Learning is homeopathic. A small dose will go a long way.