The root of shame
Wanting to hide from others and self
We have all experienced shame. It comes with the feelings of not wanting to be seen by others or even to see our own selves fully. Though we may feel an underlying discomfort simply in existing we don’t allow ourselves to see ourselves in the entire range of how we feel about ourselves. If we did this little shame game that we play with ourselves would be over because we would be blasting the light of our awareness on our massive misperceptions of ourselves, misperceptions that currently feel very real to us, and they would be seen, no longer hiding out only in the recesses of our mind.
Within shame lies those aspects of ourselves which we reject the most, those that we feel are unacceptable, despicable and from which we decide whether or not we are a worthy human being. Now some people may think or say that to blast the light of their awareness onto themselves would feel too bright, they would see too much, too much that they are not yet ready to forgive or love. This is valid and why typically there is a “process” to healing. This process of healing is simply the preparation or readiness time that we need in order to reach this state of full love and forgiveness of self. The healing itself happens in a moment, an instant, of pure presence and love with self for self. There is no actual process to it.
The fundamental key here is awareness of self. Often we are not fully checked in to ourselves. Not seeing ourselves. Not noticing or being aware of how we feel about ourselves, what we are thinking about ourselves, etc. Sometimes we are a bit like walking zombies, not awake, not aware, and using whatever we can to distract ourselves from paying attention to ourselves. When we notice discomfort rather than turn away from it we must turn our awareness towards it so that we can see and illuminate (i.e. shine our own awareness onto) ourselves.
Moving into awareness of self
Seeing self, loving self
The root of all shame is lack of awareness of self. If we were fully aware of ourselves shame would not exist because we simply would know the full scope of who and what we are. But because we do not know ourselves and are not fully aware of ourselves we experience shame. Shame comes with the limited lens or set of perceptions that we are wrong, bad, not enough, impure, unholy, and the like, which we have come to believe about ourselves because we don’t know the full truth of ourselves. Being human is to experience these perceptions or see through this particular lens of confusion. If we identify with only our human self then we will believe that we are only these things and the shame we feel persists.
To wake up is to begin to know yourself beyond simply being human. Yes you are having a human experience, there is no denying that, however I want to invite you to entertain that you are something more than human. You are literally God in form. That is the truth, but what will it take for you to know it?
The first step is to investigate, rather than move away, from uncomfortable thoughts and feelings about yourself. Be willing to see what you are believing to be true that is creating the feelings of discomfort or shame. Are you believing that you suck, that you’re bad, that you’re not good enough or worthy or not lovable. Investigate and see. Through this you are illuminating yourself. Beginning to wake yourself up more and more to yourself. Seeing your patterns. Only from this seeing can a new perspective and knowing of self begin to arise. This new perspective is not something that you have to do or figure out, it simply emerges as you begin to investigate and know yourself more and more.
As you know, see and wake up to more of yourself the more capacity you begin to have to embrace and love those aspects of yourself that you have been illuminating through your process of investigation. Your heart opens more to those human parts of you that may feel like they have done wrong or are inherently bad. You begin to embrace the human parts through this waking up to self and simultaneously begin to realize that those parts are God too. The parts that have been feeling left out, separate, alone and isolated begin to know God too because you are shining your light awareness upon them. In that their truth is revealed and they re-integrate back into the whole of which they have always belonged.
Dr. Amanda Hessel, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado