Love as the ultimate self-protection
There is an inherent impulse to protect ourselves when we feel a threat. In these situations self-protection often looks like closing off our system and reacting from a place of survival. With this there is a cascade of hormones and other biochemicals that are released in our body, which are collectively known as the sympathetic response (or in some cases the primitive parasympathetic response) of the nervous system; or what people commonly know as the fight, flight or freeze responses.
These biological, primitive responses are the first place in which all experiences that we experience get filtered through. When we have an experience we first filter it through the lens and level of “am I safe”, meaning will I survive or is my life at threat. The second level which we filter through is if our sense of identity in relationship to ourselves is at threat (meaning how we feel about ourselves) and thirdly through the level and lens of if our sense of identity in relationship to others is at threat (meaning will others accept or not accept us). If any of these levels feels at threat then we will react with some level of closing off and shutting down our system. Some defensive responses are more sophisticated then others, but nevertheless there will be a physiological response where we feel separate from other selves and the primary objective that we will seek is survival of the body and preservation of our sense of self.
In order to perceive a threat we must be in a dualistic frame of thinking. Meaning we must see a separate you and a separate me. If instead we were able to perceive as the oneness that is there would never be anything to protect yourself from as you would see everything as you. Since most of us are not perceiving from oneness we have such a relationship with life that we must defend ourselves from it and continue to make sure that we are ok. We do not sense the support that is there and therefore can’t feel what there is to rest into besides our own sense of an independent self that must continually look out for itself. This is how most people live.
Can love really keep me safe?
Becoming the field
The heart opens us into the field of one being, but we first must learn how to move our experiences up through the first three levels. If we can’t allow an experience to move up through these levels then it will get lodged at the place where we can’t process it and we will be unable to integrate the experience all the way through our system ultimately into love and seeing it in its true essence. When we can’t integrate an experience we get developmentally stuck there. The experience gets frozen in space-time and we continue to replay it as if it’s solid, fixed, unchangeable and what we call “reality”. When we recognize that this process is occurring this is when we often seek healing and support for ourselves.
When we can move our experience to the level of our heart (the fourth level) this is where our capacity to remain open, instead of defended and protected, in the face of experience first arises. The distinction between self and other selves gets softer and more fluid. As your awareness opens at this level you realize and become more the field between selves rather than an individual self. At the level of field awareness you are more present and thus have the capacity to attune more to what is really going on. There is more awareness, energy and intelligence available to you, as you, at this level. Thus your attunement as the field directly effects the field, and since there isn’t a separate you at this level your perception of the experience will directly effect the outcome which you experience in its entirety.
This is the level of awareness where having clarity in intention and opening the heart-mind to the knowing that the best possible outcome will be the result will directly effect the reality that you experience. This is where love becomes the ultimate self-protector because it’s working at a level beyond individual selves and seeing all selves as one. Deliberately and consciously creating your reality also occurs here. To the separate, individuated mind this seems like an impossibility. It doesn’t, nor can it, understand how this would be possible because it only has domain over the separate self as that is all it knows itself to be, and yet you are more than that.
The biochemical cascade that is created in the body when the heart opens into love and into the awareness of one being is that of developed parasympathetic ease. You physiologically feel the support which you can rest into, the container that is larger than individual self that feels that it needs to take care of itself all of the time because it doesn’t know anything beyond itself. You realize yourself, this existence, as an expression of one being, and your nervous system connects in with the larger nervous system of that one being.
Amanda Hessel, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado