With Cindy Lindsay Rael
Profound or prolonged illness often times comes with fear, grief, pain and other negative thoughts and emotions. I think these are a natural part of illness. And it is natural for us to sometimes fall down into these thoughts and feeling. I also believe we can make it through the down times of illness and increase our soul, brain, and body capacity in the process. We can become something greater from illness. In this Episode we will explore how.
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I am here resting in recovery from my mastectomy surgery. And it seems to be going on forever. It has only been 3 weeks. It needs to go on longer. But my perception of it as going on for “forever” is hanging in my head and I am torturing myself with it.
I know that being in this feeling is not good for my healing. It is not making anything heal any faster. In fact, such negative beliefs and emotions are keeping me stuck and sick.
But here I am. And here is where a lot of us find ourselves when we are sick.
I also know many people have been through this and made it to the other side. They have offered me their beautiful stories. I know many are living happy, active, and fulfilling lives years after mastectomy. I also know many have been enduring longer ongoing treatments and surgeries for cancer and other ailments. My experiences are small in comparison. But they are mine and I am stuck.
But what it takes to go through all of this is a fascinating topic to me as psychologist, spiritual councilor, and patient. Sometimes I think I am doing it well and other times not. And I think that is worth expressing and examining as the down times in illness.
I think it is natural to have down times with frustration, boredom, pain, fear, grief, and even the feeling this will never end. But I remember a far side cartoon showing a professor with pen in hand poised over paper. He had several strings of Christmas light wrapped all around him.
The caption read: “The professor begins his treatise on the natural human attraction to light.”
So, I hope I am not falling into that trap—just because I have felt it, it is therefor normal. But I do believe it is normal. To live a spiritual life doesn’t mean to not have the range of human emotions and reactions. It does not mean we will not suffer or get caught in our fears and pains. It does mean we need to observe those feeling and make the effort to shift them to love, forgiveness, gratitude and surrender. In doing this suffering eases, healing is bolstered, and our soul increases.
Step One: Sharing
So that is what I am doing here today. Working through these feeling. My first step here is the sharing. And I think it is the first step. If such thoughts and feelings are held within without acknowledgement, things get repressed, they fester, they get somaticized, or they become shameful.
They can stick in the chakras and create ongoing distress which not only delays healing but can create its own diseases.
We need to look at these feeling and it is good to have loving help in that.
Though I am sharing this now in a public way, to do that I had to share in private first. I know that it has become the norm these days to post or blog or text our lives to everyone who will read or listen. But I think, if we are trying to explore our shadow side in a healing way, a soul way, we need a safer space than that.
I do think it is best to share in private and in person or at least on the phone.
I also think it is important to choose the right person with whom to share. They need to have that unconditional love for you. They need to be able to hear your darker side without judging you as that. Because in the ideal sharing they will not try to talk you out of your feeling, or tell you you don’t feel that, or that you should not feel that, or you are wrong to feel that. In the ideal sharing, they see you in your pain, but they will also know you as greater than that. And at the right time in the sharing, they will reflect to you your greatness. Sri Kaleshwar said soulmates should have this capability with one another. I know that to be true. I also know it takes practice.
But I have also experienced that sharing can go on too long or be from a place that is not helpful. It can become just repeating and engraining your pain. I have done it many ways and heard it done many ways in my time as psychologist and spiritual seeker. I have experienced, even in myself, that a few things make the difference between cathartic sharing and just repeating your pain.
Brain researchers tell us that behavioral and emotional patterns have energetic traces and build enduring pathways in our brains. These traces and pathways become stronger with repetition. After a few repetitions, our brains are wired to repeat the same responses automatically.
We have to do something differently to rewire emotions and to not wire in emotions that are not serving us.
So just sharing our pain over and over can actually be trapping us in our pain. It can be just reengaging and deepening the energy traces of that pain in us. So how to do this sharing right, deserve some attention.
First, I have observed that sharing from a place of non-ownership simply engrains the old issues. We have to take responsibility for our feeling and what caused them. Without this we give away our power to determine our destiny. Someone else or something else gains power over us to determine how we feel. But free will means we can choose how we feel, react, and act in any situation. That is our power. We need to take it and be responsible for our feeling and actions.
On some situation comedies they show someone trying to be responsible for their feeling saying something like “I feel, you are a jerk.” Ok, hopefully you see the joke there. Taking responsibility says something more like:
“My feelings are hurt and want to get past that.”
But then the sharing can move to how to get past that. That is the second thing I have observed that moves sharing to catharsis. Sharing needs to progress to observation and discussion of the origins in us and how to get past that. That begins with deep observation of why this feeling happens in the first place. What am I really feeling? When have I felt that in the past? What were my first feeling of that? How did that get to be a pattern in me? How can I change it from there?
So, here is my sharing. I feel like this recovery is taking forever. But If I really observe it, it is a frustration in me. It is a feeling of not doing, not succeeding, not getting anywhere, having nothing to do, and not being sure what I am doing. And I can even see that doing this blog is partially just an attempt to do something that feels worthwhile about being ill. I am my own personal situation comedy in this regard, my own far side cartoon.
I know where I learned to feel like this. As a kid, to be successful, effective, and efficient were the definitions of being a good girl that I took upon myself to try to be loved and worthy.
So here I am again, dealing with an unworthy world view that is deeply engrained. My false belief in being unworthy has led to a lifetime of strategies to be worthy. And once again I am in a situation that does not let me do those strategies sucessfully. Thank you, Divine Mother. You know just how to get to those hidden old patterns in me and us all.
So, now I have shared this. I have laughed at it. I have admitted it to another, who sees me as worthy despite my engrained unworthy beliefs. I observed what the feeling is and where it comes from as a pattern in me. Now I am ready for step 2-- shifting. But first lets’ take a case that is not mine and follow through how to do this first step with that.
Profound or prolonged illness often comes with fear and grief. Fear of death. Fear of being in pain. Fear and grief of loss of identity, independence, income, body image or lifestyle. Fear and grief of being alone, undesirable, or unloved. Fear and grief of losing or over taxing loved ones. Fear of being subject to things or people we don’t understand or don’t trust because we don’t have enough expertise to handle it ourselves. Grief about things not done that may now never get done. Grief at feeling mangled, mutilated or incapacitated from illness or surgery. The list can go on.
But fear, grief and other difficult emotions of illness are not good internal states for healing.
I do think the same process of sharing is the first step here. Now I recognize that my issue was a bit different, in that it was rooted in a false belief about myself. But with these fears it may be true that we will have to endure pain, or lose loved ones, or not have the same work, or income, or identity again. But the fear of that, is still not doing us any good. So, though we may not transcend these outcomes, we still need to transcend the fear and grief etc. to feel better.
Tell someone what your fear is and that you don’t want that fear to guide you. There may be childhood or earlier life things behind the depth of your feelings. Perhaps you watched a love one go through a prolonged illness with lots of pain and you felt helpless. Observe and admit those possible deep paths to fear as well.
Then let your confidant remind you of your bravery, your determination, your deep love, or your open heart and kind nature. Whatever those divine qualities are in you, let them remind you of who you are even in this illness. You are still in there. Your divine qualities are still there. Those are you, not this fear, grief or other negative emotion.
Then try to feel those divine qualities in you. Sink into the memories and feeling of those truths of you. Remember when you were feeling your best and highest self. Go into meditation. Breathe deeply and find a more restful inner place. Then grab a memory of being one of those divine states of you. Remember the truth of you till you can feel that physically in you now. Then hold that feeling.
And this gets us to the next big step after sharing: Shifting. The shift is a rewire of our emotions to divine states of love, forgiveness and gratitude. These are the healing states. These are the natural soul states of our true self. These are cures of our negative emotions.
These are cures ultimately of our illnesses.
Go back to the situations that created your response and love yourself, love others, forgive, be grateful for the lessons. Thank you Mother, you know just how to get to me.
Stay present in your current situation with love, forgiveness, compassion. Feel those states in you now. Express from those states. Dream from those states. With a little practice, you will become those states, because they are already you.
So, I am stopping talking today to go do that for myself. I will use So Ham breath to get out of my thoughts and in a more restful state. (I am happy to send you the formula for that if you email me firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Then I will use a heart math approach. I will put hand on my heart and feel the breath as if it is coming and going through my heart. Then I will recall one of my divine state moments of feeling pure love, gratitude or divine compassion in my life.
Once I can feel this state within my whole body, I will go back to those moments where I adopted my unworthy belief and my ‘be a good girl’ strategies and forgive myself, love myself, perhaps even praise myself for choosing to be a good girl. Then with inner hugs and love I will let myself off the hook. I will bring up these loving feelings that are the the truth of me and tell my inner self: “This is who we really are.” “I am worthy and so are you.”
I may have to do it many times. After all, my brain has had a deep imprint of many years and I need to override that. But the truth will win in the end. And I will keep at it. Because I am worth it. So are you.
I believe we can make it through the down times of illness and increase our soul, brain, and body capacity in the process. We can become something greater from illness. We have to.
We can become the highest inner states of our divine soul. No matter the outcomes to the body, I believe our souls can and will win.
We can do it together.
Cindy Lindsay Rael
has been an energy healer and teacher for 25 years. She has studied with Sri Kaleshwar since 2001. She is a graduate of Kaleshwar's Soul University in India and is a certified teacher of the ancient mantra and yantra systems. Prior to her work in the Vedic tradition, she studied, conducted healing, and taught in the Inca traditions of Peru. Cindy also earned a PhD. in Psychology and was a university professor and consultant.
Cindy conducts both distance and in-person healing sessions and teachings. To read more on her approach to Sai Shakti Healing see www.divinesoulhealer.com. In addition, Cindy offers Divine Baby Blessings to pregnant mothers and works with many issues of the Holy Womb (www.wombhealing.com).