We are living through the time of the Great Upheaval. Everything in our world that was built on the foundation and for the purpose of fear, power, oppression, and control is in some form of collapse. Governance, education, healthcare, the capitalistic-corporate culture, the industrial model, etc. etc. etc. Everywhere we look, we see systems on the verge of collapse.
As is true for all experiences of loss, there have been several responses to this collapse:
Denial. Bargaining. Depression. Rage. Sorrow. Acceptance.
Denial: “Everything is fine. Nothing’s wrong with the current system. Let’s just continue with things as they always have been.”
Bargaining: “If people just had the work-ethic of my generation, all would be well. If younger people would just get off their devices…”
Depression: “I had to close my business because no one would work.”
Rage: “It’s ‘their’ fault that the world is like this. Let’s wage a war/protest against ‘them.’”
Sorrow: “I’m deeply sorrowful for the changes I see happening in our world.”
Acceptance: “I see and understand all these external symptoms as signs of impending death and I am hopeful for the new world that will come forth out of these long-needed changes.”
The world in which we have been living and the systems that have created this world are not and have never been sustainable. We have created for ourselves a feudalistic system in which the many are slaving away for the benefit of the few. Corporations and their shareholders are reaping the benefits of their employees work while hoarding wealth for themselves. Educational systems are geared toward churning out obedient workers for the system while ignoring the growing needs in our culture for innovation and creativity and the specific educational needs of those primed for the future and not for the past. Post-secondary education has turned into a capitalistic/money-making corporate scheme. Healthcare flounders because it is no longer geared toward the care of the patient. Instead, healthcare has become about profits and the wealth of stockholders.
These are just a few examples of how the upheaval is presenting itself in the systems in need of change.
Other examples of this upheaval are evident in those who were born to help bring about the change and who are here to plant the seeds and nurture the growth of the new world. Let me offer a few examples as I have witnessed them as both a mother and an advocate to the generations who are bringing forth this change:
- Young adults refusing to work in environments where their needs for respect, a living wage, work/life balance, etc. are not being met.
- Young adults finding innovative and create ways to make a living (entrepreneurial ship, online businesses, social media, making a living through their creative abilities, etc.)
- Technology: our young people intuitively know how to work with emerging and the ever-increasing advances in technology. They have harnessed this ability and daily come up with new ways to use technology for the greater good of our world.
- Global Awareness: The younger generations think globally and locally, with an eye to how our local actions impact the larger world.
- Acceptance of Diversity: The younger generations are far more accepting of diversity and are finding increasing ways to honor and celebrate this.
- Education: Children and young adults rebelling against an educational system that doesn’t work for them. Young adults refusing to invest in a university education because that model no longer guarantees good work with adequate pay, more importantly, the current model of higher ed has not changed to meet the needs of a changing world.
- Connectivity: Our young people are more connected than we ever thought of being. Thanks to technology, they are able to communicate with the world, have found their tribes, and are working together to bring forth change.
These are only a few examples, but ones that are likely to spark judgment and condemnation from those benefitting from the status quo.
This judgement is another face of grief. If we judge the young ones for their “strange behavior,” then we can condemn them and continue in our comfort with the status quo while ignoring a world on the verge of collapse.”
As is true of any death, it is appropriate to grieve, but we can only remain in denial for so long. Eventually the truth comes to bear. Death is the only outcome of a system beyond repair. When we open our eyes to the symptoms of that death and look toward the possibility of new life on the other side of this death, we find comfort and hope. I, for one, am beyond excited for what the youth among us will do to bring forth the new world after the current one is gone. The good news is that they are already doing. We must simply open our eyes and release our temptation to judge, then we shall see it clearly.
What are you seeing as signs of a new world coming into form?
There is a quote that has been attributed to Buddhism that I have found to be uncompromisingly true:
“What you resist will persist.”
In my own journey of self-actualization and in the 25 years I have accompanied and guided others through theirs, I have witnessed the proof of this. To this statement, I would further add:
“What you resist, avoid, ignore, suppress, repress, deny, try to escape, etc. will persist.”
As much as we might try, we cannot run from our demons. That which we do not acknowledge and work on healing will find its way out sideways in non-loving and compulsive behaviors either toward ourselves or others. That which we do not heal as a culture/world is doomed to repeat itself. In this repetition, the oppressed becomes the oppressor; the abused becomes the abuser; and we end up marrying our unhealed wounds. We cannot escape this truth and we don’t need to look very far to see the proof of it. Most often, the proof is as close as looking in the mirror.
At the center of the process of human development is the healing of our wounds. By no effort of our own, that which is unhealed within us will make itself known for the purpose of being acknowledged and healed. When we ignore those wounds, or refuse to do the work of healing them, they don’t go away. Instead, they become magnified and compounded, making our journey even more difficult. Our compulsions become addictions. Our guilt-driven conditioning becomes a cycle of self-loathing which we feed through a wide variety of means. The places where we have felt rejected become a co-dependent drive to find someone (usually unhealthy) to love.
Ignoring, suppressing, repressing, denying our wounds only causes further harm. As long as we are bypassing our pain, we are its prisoner. We will never be free as human beings until we heal our wounds.
One of the great challenges to healing these wounds, however, are all the systems/programs/self-proclaimed teachers/conditioning that encourage distractions or denial over the gritty work of transformation. “Get over it and move on.” “Let it go.” “Offer it up.” “Just keep busy:” “Think positive thoughts.” “Just be grateful.” “It could be worse.” are all platitudes driven into us by systems that have failed to do their own healing and who are then projecting their unhealed wounds onto their followers. Anything or anyone that tells us to ignore/deny/suppress/avoid our pain is detrimental to our emotional, mental, psychological, and spiritual wellbeing; and is thwarting our path to true freedom.
While complete freedom can never be fully attained, our Soul compels us to continually seek it out. Confronting and transforming our wounds, and the conditioning that created them in the first place, is the only sure path to that freedom. Anything that tells us otherwise is a lie.
To learn more about transforming unhealed wounds into freedom, check out our online course Authentic Freedom – the Hero’s Journey:
We are living in a truly upside-down world. Everywhere I look I see division and heartbreak. People hating people. People hating the planet. People hating themselves.
When did our world become a world of hate? Or perhaps it’s always been this way and only now, with the advent of the internet with its instant global information, are we seeing the underbelly of humanity as it has always been. Are we doomed forever to be a species that places division and separation above all other human traits? The very real fear, is that if we continue with all this hatred, we will soon find that we have destroyed ourselves. Who will be left to tell the story of a species that destroyed itself and the world through all their hatred?
I’m not convinced, however, that destruction is our only fate. I have seen the good in humanity and believe that we can do better. We can do soooooooooo much better.
While fear causes us to divide, humanity is also capable of great love. Everyday we are witness to this love – in the face of a parent as they hold their newborn child; in the hand of a caregiver reaching out to bind another’s wound, in the arms of a husband holding his beloved in their death, in the voice of the advocate who speaks out on behalf of those who cannot speak for themselves.
I believe that Love is our natural state, whereas division and hatred are unnatural. The challenge is that for so many, fear was the environment in which they were raised, so division is what they learned. The key to healing humanity (and therefore our planet), is to heal the traumas that have caused us to divide. When we do this, there is quite naturally, more room for Love.
Healing these traumas and the fear that has caused us to divide is no easy task, but it can be done. I have done it myself, have guided hundreds to do this for themselves and have seen others find their own path to this healing. The resources available to support us in this healing are abundant – we need simply seek them out and we will find them.
The desire for healing and for creating more room for our natural state of Love is written in our DNA. We need simply pay attention to the restlessness, frustration, impatience, and longing that plague us and allow it to lead us. The Love that is our natural state will never steer us wrong. Where is it leading us? Back to our most natural and original selves. Back to Love.
Where is Love leading you?
I find myself at a loss for how to begin this post. For years, it seems, we have been in the death throes of an empire in collapse. Just when we think we can breathe and it seems as if there is a light breaking on the horizon, another hammer falls. As we begin to believe compassion has gained a leg up, that leg is torn out from beneath us. Texas’ successful ban on abortion and the U.S. Supreme Court’s refusal to take action against the ban is the most recent in a long line of seeming victories for patriarchal oppression. Voter suppression is another of those patriarchal “victories.”
Between the events of our nation and the personal attacks against compassion I have witnessed on social media, it has been a discouraging time for many. Those of a compassionate heart see and understand the dire need facing the oppressed in our culture. Today, the oppressed include all people of color, women, the jobless, the underemployed, the poor, homeless, mentally ill, cognitively diverse, sexually and gender-diverse people, the planet itself – essentially anyone/anything not benefitting from the current system. We see the need. We feel the need. We are likely experiencing some level of that need ourselves. And, we want to see significant societal and systemic change to remedy these needs.
On the other side of the need, however, are those who benefit from a system of oppression, or see their own need as somehow the fault of the oppressed (in psychological terms, this is called transference). These folks are fighting to maintain their privilege. Many are fighting dirty. When the compassionate come face to face with this violence, it feels like an attack, because it is.
These are challenging times as we find ourselves, literally, as a nation at war with itself. When we really think about it and cast a wide net, we could also say that we are a world at war with itself. The likely question is, “Who will win,” but the deeper question is how can we be a vehicle for change in a way that brings benefit to all? This is the question compassion would ask of us, but the hard reality is that to bring compassion and balance into our world, those benefitting from a system of oppression will have to let something go. Hence, the violence behind their fight to maintain power and control.
We must not lose hope, however, as the other hard reality is that the current system simply cannot sustain itself. By its own hand, the system will fall……and falling it is. The increasing violence against the oppressed is itself a symptom of the system’s impending collapse. The harder the patriarchy clings to its control, the more swiftly it will slip through its fingers. This is the nature of control. On the surface it may look as if things are getting worse for the oppressed but, it is the death throes we are witnessing.
As we witness the death of an imperialistic system, we are invited to discern our role. We cannot stop the death, neither should we try. We can, however, be a source of support for each other, for those who may be called to activism, and for those who are suffering in the increasing violence brought about by this death. Like every good death we all have a role to play. Most importantly, we must take care of ourselves, because if we are not caring for ourselves, we are no good as a source of support for others as together we witness the end of the patriarchal system of oppression and the hopeful birth of something new.
Today my heart is troubled. I have dedicated my life to the work of Love, inspired by the life and teachings of Jesus and further embodied through Mary, the Magdalene. As I have studied scripture and brought these stories deep into my prayer, what has become increasingly clear is that Love is Jesus’ only message and that his life’s work was to help people free themselves from the inner and outer obstacles to living that Love. Mary, given the honored title of “Magdalene” was ordained to continue this specific work in Jesus’ stead.
Being called into, accepting, and upholding the mission begun by Jesus and continued through Mary, has been no easy task. Oh yes, it has been a great joy and I am humbled to do this work. Still, it is hard. To fulfill this work, I have been brought deep into the transformational tools that have, indeed, been “hidden in plain sight.” I have resurrected these tools and reformulated them into something that can be understood by a modern audience.
Before sharing these tools, however, I had to master them myself – a mastering that continues. These are the tools that invite us to look deep into our own souls to confront all within us that is serving as an obstacle to Love. Love of self. Love of (what some might call) God. Love of others. Love of creation. While looking within, these tools also invite us to look outside of ourselves – at all those things in our lives, our actions, our behaviors, our choices, that are keeping us from living in the freedom and peace of Love. In letting go of, and healing and transforming the wounds that cause these non-loving attachments in the first place, we are freed to not only know, but live and embody the Love about which Jesus and Mary Magdalene spoke and to which they dedicated and lost their lives.
No, this work is not easy, but I find I can do no other. It is what I was made for and every single experience in my life has pointed me (or dragged me kicking and screaming) to this work. I do it gladly and am humbled and in awe of all those who have found their way to this work and who have had the courage to stick with it. No one said the path of Love was easy!
And yet, what troubles my heart greatly, and frequently, are all the ways in which humanity continues to seek the easy path to Love. The path that is lined with shiny objects and empty promises. The path that is more about profit than prophet. The path that uses the names of Jesus or Mary Magdalene to further a political, divisive, or capitalistic agenda.
The most heartbreaking part of this is that these are the entities that garner the most attention and gather the largest audience. Prosperity gospel churches filled to the brim, appealing to the privileged masses by justifying their privilege and condemning those who have less, preaching the falsehood against which Jesus himself spoke: “God favors His chosen ones.” Alternatively, are those capitalizing on the Magdalene by harnessing her already mistaken history as “prostitute and whore,” and using it to further their own agenda. I think more lies have been written about the Magdalene today than can ever be found in scripture.
The vulnerable and human part of me feels jealous over those who have become famous and rich in the pandering of their shiny objects, while I continue to be, “the world’s best kept secret” (as many of my friends, clients and students have called me). When I step beyond my jealousy, I know that like the Magdalene, I have chosen the simple life and that I much prefer invisibility. There is (authentic) power in being unknown. And sometimes the unhealed parts of my heart feel hurt over what sometimes feels like rejection.
The other piece that troubles my heart today is the same piece with which Jesus and Mary themselves struggled – a humanity unable and unwilling to hear, embrace, and live the truth of Love. As I am certain Jesus and Mary came to understand, humanity will never change. It will only and always be the few and the very brave who will hear the message and do the difficult work of living Love while the masses will continue on their merry way, ignorant to the harm they are doing to themselves, others and the world by living in ways contrary to Love. Humanity will always find a way to justify their selfish and non-loving beliefs and actions because it is much easier to look the other way than to be a source of support for those who might be struggling. It is also much easier to cast a finger of judgment on those who are suffering than to look into the mirror as to how our own actions or behaviors might be contributing to that suffering. Like Jesus who was left with only a few who truly understood and went on to live out his message of Love, I know that my efforts will only reach the hearts of a few. For these I will always continue, and on some days it is just really hard.
I am writing today with a deep sorrow in my heart. We have come upon a time in our human evolution that is painful for all. And it’s not over yet.
As the pandemic rages and it seems the U.S. in on the brink of “The War on Terrorism Part 2,” (just in time for the 20th anniversary of 9/11) more and more truths are being revealed – truths that may be painful to witness. Some are collective, and some are deeply personal. Let’s start with the collective:
The War Machine
This morning as I was preparing my coffee, it hit me how deeply insidious is the “war machine.” As I posted on FB this morning:
I understand the value of the military and I am grateful for those who have made sacrifices to serve the cause of peace. I sometimes wonder, however, how much is actually for peace and how much is to fill the pockets of rich white men. How many young men have to die so that the corporate war machine can continue to make their CEO’s and shareholders wealthy?
The next question that hit me is, “Who all is involved in this?” When I asked this question, a really old white man for whom I cast my vote, presented himself before me, swiftly followed by an old white woman who I was glad hadn’t won the nomination. I have become increasingly convinced that none of “them” are innocent.
I will leave this here simply as something to ponder. This is indeed an existential question – how deep and how wide is the corruption of the system that (for example) keeps us in a constant state of war?
The next question arises in response to the pandemic. What the actual F..k? To date, 38.6 million Americans have contracted Covid-19 and 635,000 have died. And still we are fighting about vaccines and masks? Without going down the rabbit hole of collective finger pointing, I will simply ask this question: WHO BENEFITS FROM A PEOPLE DIVIDED? The short answer: follow the money.
Now let’s look at where the collapsing veils are hitting us in the most personal of ways….
People Showing their True Face
As the outside world grows increasingly strained and people are reaching their last nerve, their true faces are being revealed. Many are stepping up to the plate and proving their mettle. They are reaching out for support when in need and are being open and honest about their anxiety, frustration, and fear. For the authentic, and willing to be vulnerable among us, their true strength is being revealed.
Such is not the case for many/most. Instead, what is being revealed is a whole range of defense mechanisms that will eventually prove to be their downfall. Defense mechanisms like: secrecy, deception, betrayal, an attachment to control, guilt as a weapon, manipulating through victimhood/martyrdom, giving over their power to an outside perceived authority, looking for fulfillment outside of ones self, hoarding their perceived security, self-centered narcissistic behavior, deflection, blame, and soooooo much more.
It’s one thing to witness these behaviors in strangers, it is another to realize these as long-standing patterns in people close to us. As we continue our movement toward the collapse of the world as we have known it, peoples’ true natures are becoming increasingly apparent.
We cannot control whether people are willing to do the work necessary to deal with their shit. We can, however, deal with our own. WHEN we are triggered by those far from us and those close who are engaging in unhealthy defense mechanisms, first we deal with the wound in us that is being triggered by that behavior. Then we grieve. We grieve for our own loss of innocence (isn’t it a lot easier NOT to see people’s true face?). We grieve over what this new found knowledge might mean as it relates to the relationship in question. We discern a change in boundaries if necessary while holding the other in compassion. Then we move on to continue to do our own work. As the airline safety manual tells us, we have to put on our own oxygen mask before we can help others with theirs. This is the model we must follow if we hope to survive what is yet to come as the world continues in its collapse.
If you find yourself in need of support and guidance as the world falls apart, do not hesitate to reach out. www.authenticfreedom.love.