SERIOUSLY PLAYING

SERIOUSLY PLAYING 

End of trying to get things done

Most people desire to enjoy life and have fun, yet most people are not enjoying life or having fun.  Yes perhaps people occasionally permission themselves to play on the weekends or to take a vacation, but few people play all day long.  Rather people are quite serious and methodical in their day to day operations and routines.  Where did we learn this methodically serious attitude about life?  Even more importantly how are you operating inside certain boxes, containers and ideas that keep you from enjoying your life fully?

The human mind is funny.  It thinks it wants certain things and so it gets you to work seriously hard in order to get or achieve those things.  When I say things I am not only talking about material things, but including all relational and spiritual aspirations as well.  There is often a general undercurrent in our psyche that runs the program that we must get things done or that we need to get something or get somewhere so that we can be happy, relax and enjoy ourselves.  This mindset keeps us somewhat constricted, limited and inside of a box of what we think we want our lives to look like in order for us to be really joyful.  There is also often some fear that if we enjoy ourselves now before we get the thing or arrive at the place that we desire that we won’t get the thing or arrive where we think we want too.  So we postpone the joy until we achieve or arrive.  This is incredibly common and I would bet most of you do this several times in any given day.  

The place where we learned that seriousness goes along with getting things done is an interesting place indeed.  We tend to think the more serious we take something means the more we care about it, and therefore the higher likelihood that we will achieve the outcome of our desire.  It probably rarely, if ever, crosses your mind to ask yourself the question, how could I play harder in order to achieve the outcome that I desire.  This question contradicts everything we have ever learned about accomplishment and achievement.  

The first thing to really understand is that its not ever ever ever the outcome that brings us the joy, happiness, rest or the resolution we think it will bring us. Instead it is us that brings the joy to the outcome.  So why not have the joy now, bring the joy now to what it is you are engaged in and with rather than waiting on the outcome to come into fruition.  It can be a long wait.  Sometimes you will wait your entire life.  Would you want to wait your entire life in order to experience the joy and happiness that you desire now?  Many people do because they don’t see any other choice.  They don’t see that than can create, permission and generate what they desire to feel right here, right now regardless of what is here inside of their experience.   

WHY PLAY? 

You radiate & serve in play

Some people rather enjoy being serious, which is perfect.  If there is enjoyment in the seriousness than there is play even if it looks serious.  However what I see more often than not is that seriousness is part of people’s personas and who they think they need to be rather than what they naturally desire to be or are.  Let’s take the one who is on a healing path or a spiritual seeker for example.  Often people are very serious about their healing journey and their path to self-realization or enlightenment.  They take all the courses, go to all the workshops, do all the programs and journeys, and see all of their practitioners and healers, yet they continue to month after month, year after year, not enjoy themselves or their life.  They feel like the have to keep working hard and that they are never going to arrive fully healed or self-realized.  They keep trying to get somewhere and keep coming up short.  They see failure and feel like the path has no end in sight so they get more serious about it, thinking that will be the ticket.

You might wonder, why isn’t that the ticket?  I mean doesn’t that mean I care and am committed because I keep showing up.  To some degree yes it does show desire and care, but the attitude or disposition from where you come from inside your seeking is of prime importance.  It makes all the difference in the world.  If your attitude is one of trying to get it over or figure it out than you’ve already lost.  There is no where to get and so you won’t ever arrive.  You can’t “arrive” until you realize that there is no where to get.  Get that.  The journey is the destination.  There isn’t an actual destination different from it.  Even if you get what you want, accomplish or achieve your goals, become healed or self-realized, get the relationship or thing that you want, that doesn’t mean you have arrived at any destination.  It simply means your mind has a check box that it can check off, that’s it.  

Why play then?  Play brings with it lightness, levity, and joy.  When you play, even if there is work and effort, its fun.  You are not attached when you play.  You create and dismantle without so much as a thought.  There is no thinking of when the moment will be over and done, instead you are present.  When you play you abundantly radiate and naturally overflow.  This abundant, radiating, overflowing yumminess is service.  You serve by being joyfully.  You can’t not help it.  It is a natural side effect.  You don’t have to figure out what to do, how to serve or what your purpose is because you are being your purpose.  

Since this is what most people actually desire you must ask yourself the question as to what you are waiting for and be willing to stop waiting.  Realize that it is not in the arriving or getting that you experience the joy of being.  You are the source of joyful being.  You are the chooser of your state of being.  You choose joy or not joy.  You therefore choose to serve through sharing your natural radiating self or to not serve.  You get to decide if you want to feel good now or if you want to postpone it until you get something you think you want or check a box off of your to do list.  Joy can sometimes feel like worlds away, but its not.  Its right here.  You simply need to choose it.  

Dr. Amanda Love, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado

ALIGNMENT IN SELF

ALIGNMENT IN SELF 

Generator of inner & outer worlds

There are many lenses to look through when it comes to your alignment.  Some people view alignment as an external phenomenon, meaning when things are lined up in either their body or life they feel innerly aligned.  Others view alignment as an internal compass, a place that they come from, their center from which everything external responds.  Whether you view your alignment as external or internal doesn’t truly matter as long as you recognize that either way you are the source of your alignment.  Self (you) generates both the inner and outer worlds that you experience and they are mere reflections of each other.  One visible in form through the senses and the other directly experienced or known without form or senses.  

To recognize yourself as the generator of your inner and outer worlds places you in the prime position of self-responsibility.  Responsibility to and for your own alignment.  You might wonder what is self and how do I align to it?  Self is you.  It is simply the knowing and direct experience that you exists.  That you are.  That you be.  It is so obvious and yet so overlooked.  That you be, is that you are, is that you exists, is what you are.  That you are is what you are.  This knowing is pivotal because everything arises out of it.  All experience is generated from the source of being.  From impulse or desire to know itself beingness shapes itself and this is what we call form.  The impulse or desire is important.  You could call that desire or impulse, that with which you align with in order to share a unique expression or flavor of being that you’ve taken on the responsibility to express.  

The next question you may have is how to know what that desire or impulse is, which is unique for you.  Said another way what unique flavor did you agree, volunteer and eagerly want to share with the rest of creation?  People often struggle over this, thinking that it has something to do with what they do.  They try to find their purpose rather than be their purpose.  They put their purpose “out there” rather than recognizing that they are their purpose.  I’m here to tell you that your purpose, your desire for being here now, has absolutely nothing to do with what you do.  The doing is simply an emanation of the being and of the desire to share an aspect of the creator through your being.   

DISCOVERING THE IMPULSE 

Being yourself

Discovering the desire or impulse that created your current configuration, location and experience is way easier than you think.  The easiest way to discover it is to feel what lights you up the most.  You can explore this by reflecting on a peak experience that you may have had, or simply just noticing what you enjoy feeling the most.  It may also help to see what you enjoy seeing others experience.  This exploration gives you the knowingness of what you are here to express and also help others experience through your being.  

When we try to do our purpose, no matter how well intentioned we are, we are not in our alignment.  Doing, that is disconnected from the flavor of beingness that we are, is just hard work.  While we might be accomplishing stuff it is never truly fulfilling.  It is more fulfilling to do nothing and be ourselves, than it is to accomplish and create a bunch of stuff while being outside of our alignment.  When you prioritize your alignment with the desire that created you than you can’t help not create that world.  The world of your alignment is what is.  Regardless of what you do or don’t do, that world gets generated through and by you being what you are.  This is not to say that you won’t also create cool stuff, but its really only truly epic and serving to all if it comes from you being you.

It only seems complex to be aligned with you because people have made it complex with all their thinking, reasoning, and analyzing.  When you instead just allow the feeling state of what you desire most to overtake your entire existence (i.e. become you) you realize just how easy it really is.  Then the only “demons” (also known as stories and attachments) you face are the ones inside your own thinking mind that tell you that you should feel or be different than you are.  The work is for you to turn everything you experience into the flavor of your unique expression of the creator that you be.  

Sometimes we are pretty insistence that something we experience is outside of our own alignment.  This can be tricky as we are constantly generating experience from our alignment.  However due to our insistence that the experience we are having is outside of our alignment we forget our alignment.  When this happens we feel victim to circumstance and become what we’ve been conditioned to think about the thing or experience rather than be what we are.  We thus fall out of service, out of alignment and into trying to get through it, which comes with survival, scarcity, and wrongness mode.  When we be our alignment rather than what we’ve been told to believe about something than we only know abundance, we only know ourselves.  There is nothing that feels safer, more perfect and more right than that.  In this way nothing pulls you out of your self and your beliefs and stories lose their grip on you.  Again none of this hard.  Its does take inner reflection and awareness of self and patterns.  It does take self-investigation, self-responsibility and self-commitment to be who you are no matter what appears to your senses.  It takes creating new habits and it takes some time in this relative world in order live fully as you are.  But none of this is impossible and the path leads to only more and more life being itself, knowing itself and serving all of creation.  

Dr. Amanda Love, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado

LOVING WORKS, DOING DOESN’T

LOVING WORKS, DOING DOESN’T 

No moment is better than another

We are all over conditioned to do.  Something must be done, we must accomplish and finish, get it done, check it off, do, do, do.  If we aren’t doing we tend to feel purposeless.  Doing provides the meaning for our existence.  Each day we wake up and think about what we must do that day.  Our day revolves around our doing.  We do our morning workout, yoga or mediation, we eat our breakfast, we work, we run errands, we make dinner, we do our hobbies and then we “relax”.  So often we are trying to get to this place where we can just relax, but we have to finish all of our doing first.  This is the pretty typical day to day human existence, thinking there is somewhere to go, something to get and some place to arrive.

Doing is so close to us that we often don’t see that we are in a state of constant doing.  We might not even think to think that there is another way of living other than doing.  Pause for a moment and ask yourself what would happen if you stopped putting any focus at all on doing, accomplishing or getting things finished or done.  The most common answer is that nothing would get done.  However do you know this to be fact?  Have you ever stopped focusing on getting something done while engaged in doing and noticed what happens?  The experience tends to be what people call a flow state, which is one of the most desired states for many.  

Why do we get so trapped in doing?  The primary reason that I’ve discovered is that people tend to perceive that one moment or experience is better than another moment or experience.  It is easy to fall into flow and joy while hanging out with friends, being on vacation, playing your favorite sport or eating a decadent meal, but less easy to fall into flow while exercising, working or running errands.  These are aspects of experience that many try to get over and done.  When you stop trying to get an experience over than there is nothing left but to be in the experience that you are in.  

The judgment, preference or bias for one thing or experience over another thing or experience puts us into doing mode as we attempt to get where we more desire to be, which is frequently other than where we are.  Doing mode takes us out of presence and is mechanical in nature.  Mechanical because it is work that is disconnected from aliveness.  It takes effort and is hard.  Its focus is only on something physically shifting or changing and does everything from a physical perspective to shift a physical thing.  It gives the appearance of getting somewhere or something happening when there is no where to get and nothing to happen.  If you were to instantly realize that you can never get somewhere other than where you are and nothing can happen other than what is, you would see how preposterous all of the doing really is.   

FOCUS ON LOVING 

Work through giving & receiving

What if rather than focusing on doing, getting it done or accomplishing something, you instead focused on loving?  What if you stopped all the incessant brain activity and brought your awareness into your heart and just left it there?  How different would your life be?  How different would you feel?  How much more would you overflow with radiance and serve?  From my experience doing doesn’t really work.  Its tiring, its hard and oddly at the end of the day I don’t feel like I did anything except make myself really tired.  Maybe actions occurred that gave the appearance that stuff happened, but nothing really changed.  The only thing that occurred was movement from place to place to place or moment to moment to moment, and while movement happened there was nothing there doing the movement, no real conscious one home inside.  This is quite honestly the state of most of humanity.  It is not bad, it just asleep, disconnected, and not aware.  

If we are to live more awake then we must realize that we are in this perpetual doing mode and wake ourselves up out of it.  This requires being more attentive to self and to your patterns of doing.  Learning to refocus your focus from the linear projected course we all believe that we are on into the present moment heart.  The heart equally gives and receives.  It is through receiving that it gives and through giving that it receives.  This is how doing or work gets done.  Work by and through radiation and invitation.  Actions still occur when you are loving, it’s simply that you are not focused on the actions themselves or trying to make anything different.  Instead your focus is on loving and that is it.  Change effortlessly and instantly occurs.  This is because that natural state of love is recognized and seen by you and through you.  

The change that occurs through loving is an opening into more.  It is through opening into more that our perspectives widen.  How we see changes what we see, not because the actual object, person or thing changes, but because we see it differently.  This is how you begin to really get that trying to shift or change an object by physical means from a physical perspective is really hard and actually maybe even impossible.  Instead loving melts, molds, and reshapes everything into its original forgotten nature. 

Doing is an elementary step in the evolution of remembering what we are.  You realize at some point along the journey that the doing mode is optional.  The more you bring into focus loving and drop into your heart the more you increase your awareness of yourself and your energy becomes more coherent.  Magic occurs, and its not even really magic, its just the way it is when you live loving rather than doing, but it seems like magic to the ordinary mind.  As always please don’t just take my word for it.  Try it out.  Experiment.  Try only focusing on loving all day long no matter what actions you are engaged in or what experiences present themselves.  Stop trying to get anything done and just love and see how you experience life.  

Dr. Amanda Love, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado

SUBTLE FEELINGS & SENSATIONS

SUBTLE FEELINGS & SENSATIONS 

Journeying deeper into Self

We all have a thousand feelings and sensations per day.  Many of those feelings & sensations we don’t fully register.  For example we often don’t register the feeling of our butt on a chair unless we have been sitting for too long, nor do we feel our feet on the ground unless we deliberately focus on those feelings.  Instead of feeling every nuance our nervous system does something that is called accommodation.  In this way we learn to tune out or become less aware of all the “ordinary” feelings and sensations that we have on a day to day basis.  

This accommodation or tuning out function has pros and cons.  On the pro side of things most of us don’t want to be feeling every single sensation that arises as it would become distracting.  We would never get things done because we would be feeling every aspect of every moment.  It would be hard to be focused on anything else.  Also for people who tend towards vigilance and/or hypersensitivity, feeling every aspect of their experience would feel overwhelming.  For these reasons the accommodating function of the nervous system is beneficial.  

Now for the cons.  On the journey of deepening into self-recognition it is helpful to have gateways and pointers.  Due to the fact that we are physically focused right now we have these bodies with nervous systems that can perceive sensations and feelings.  These sensations and feelings are pointers into developing greater awareness of self.  If we’ve simply accommodated to say the sensations of our fears or anxieties to the point that they don’t register with us than we lose valuable access points into our patterns, which means that the patterns go unchecked.  When a pattern is unchecked it runs the show of our life, but does so unconscious to our knowing of it.  

The dance then becomes the selective attunement to the subtleties of your feelings and sensations.  For some this means coming out of automatic mode and noticing those feelings and sensations that you’ve been overriding without knowing that you’ve been overriding them.  Slowing down enough to recognize that you are having a feeling or sensation that perhaps isn’t overt, but is present.  For others, particularly those that tend to be more sensitive to sensations or feelings, it’s the willingness to feel them rather than going into overwhelm or victimization to them as if they are somehow bigger than you.   

TECHNOLOGY OF AWARENESS 

Going through the sensation portal

There is an obvious difference between an overt sensation or feeling and a subtle one.  When we override the subtle ones than life has to speak to us in louder ways to get our attention for our own learning, healing and growing.  We’ve collectively agreed to call those louder ways that life speaks to us physical symptoms, which come with a set of labels and conditions.  However the subtle feelings and sensations are the ones that, if we can tune into them, the current medical model says its all in our heads because they have no way to measure them.  Its clearly not that they don’t exist inside of our experience, but instead that our current level of technology can’t attune to it.  

Good thing we don’t need to rely on external technology to tell us information about ourselves.  We have within our body some of the most advanced technology available on planet earth and in fact in this entire universe.  That technology is called our awareness.  Awareness is alert, awake, clear, attentive, and conscious.  This entire life journey is about becoming more awake, conscious of ourselves and of this awareness that we are.  One of the prime ways this occurs is through paying attention and noticing what is in our experience and what it is pointing too.  Through investigation of this we learn what those sensations and feelings are all about and why they are created in the first place.     

One fundamental thing to understand is that all sensations and feelings, subtle or overt, are simply catalyst for learning.  They arise to teach us something about ourselves, about the way we do life, about who we are and who we think we are, about what we are here to share and be.  That is really it.  No more meaning than that.  We can try to make them into problems and things that need to be fixed or changed, but in truth that is not what they are.  The perspective of seeing them as problems is viewed through the lens of wrongness and trying to make the forms of life permanent when they are not and are not meant to be. 

The more you can shift your focus to the perspective that life is about learning rather than trying to make this human experience consistent or permanent, the more flexible you will be in navigating subtle and overt sensations and feelings.  The more willing you are to slow down the more you will tune into your subtle nature and less you will bypass, overlook or accommodate to those sensations and feelings that are portals into greater understanding of yourself.  The more you prioritize self-growth, self-recognition and self-mastery the more energy that will become available to you to penetrate through all of the relevant sensations and feelings so you can see what they are actually made of, which is a conglomerate of thoughts, ideas and beliefs about self and life.  The freer you will become.  The more stable in self you will feel.  The less fear will arise because you will have seen through the roots of it.  These are the rewards of tuning to the subtleties and going in and through the sensation and feeling portals of life.  Utilize what’s been given to you.  Rather than see it as an interference, be curious and come to know the gift of it.  It all arises for your benefit and growth.  There is no other reason.  

Dr. Amanda Love, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado

BEING DIRECT

BEING DIRECT 

Showing up for what you want

So often we beat around the bush of life, holding our breath, hoping no one gets upset and that everything magically works out.  Rather than be direct, upfront and approach things face on we attempt to see what we can get away with in saying or doing as little as possible.  When we don’t face things head on we tend to experience a lot of anxiety.  We get caught up in thoughts about how things will turn out because we’ve left so much unclear and unattended too.  This is a main source of confusion for most, not the external situation but our own ambiguity.  

Why do we choose confusion and ambiguity?  Primarily because we don’t want to the lose the thing that we think we want.  The fear of loss of the desired object is greater than that of clarity and knowing and so we often choose confusion over clarity.  Let’s take relationships for example.  Say that you desire something from your partner, maybe its more affection or intimate connection, yet you are afraid to ask your partner for this because you don’t want to rock the boat.  You are afraid of their response, and beyond that, that their response will create greater disconnection or separation, which is exactly the thing you don’t desire.  By not rocking the boat your resentment over not asking for what you want starts to build and build.  The distance in your relationship grows greater even though you might still be together and your true desire for more connection remains unmet or un-actualized.  You get opposite of what you truly want, and what’s worse is that you have prolonged it. You’ve stayed stuck for fear to move forward and be direct.

In being direct you must be willing to let the thing that you think you want go.  If you can’t let it go, then you will not be free in your actions or words to move in the direction of your true desire.  Instead you will be guarded, full of agenda and trying to preserve what is, which again is what you don’t actually want.  Simply notice where you hold back, where you don’t speak up when you have something to say, or where you feel anxious in uncertainty.  These are all indicators of indirectness and of choosing ambiguity over clarity.  When you let go of the things, all the things you think you need or want, a lightness opens up in you.  It’s like the sky of your mind becomes clear again and whatever actions need to be taken reveal themselves to you.  Fear of loss is what cripples us from taking action and moving forward in our lives.  It creates missed opportunities, postponement of true desires and mixed frequencies of intent.  It’s what we call stress, but really it us not being direct with ourselves and others.   

LETTING OUTCOME GO 

Desiring & not expecting

Not wanting anything from anything or anyone is the way to be the clearest, most direct version of yourself and have everything in your life be a mirror of this clarity.  Not wanting anything from anything or anyone is not opposite to being direct and asking for what you want even though it seems paradoxical.  It’s being direct about what works for you and doesn’t work for you, what you want and what you don’t want, without needing the person or thing you are being direct with to respond or react in any specific way.  Instead you remain open.  Open to whatever the response, reactions and results are and then you take your next actions from there.  This is love, transparency and being true.  Your wants and desires drive you into a particular direction (that direction is the fulfillment of your purpose or service) while simultaneously not mattering at all what outcomes come as a result.  

As a collective we are very outcome driven.  We are conditioned to think that only the results matter.  This couldn’t be further from the truth.  In fact I would suggest that the results matter not at all, not even the ones you think you want really badly.  That might seem crazy and contradictory to some.  See its not the thing, its never the thing we want, ever.  Not the relationship, the person, the car, the house, the connection, the job, etc.  Its the state of being or feeling that thing seems to give us that we want.  That state of being typically has something to do with clarity, presence and love.  At the core that is what most everybody wants, but we project that onto people and stuff and then think it comes from them and that it looks a specific way.  

Not wanting anything from anything or anyone while still moving in the direction of your wants and desires is being in love.  We’ve all tasted this before.  It’s especially easy to experience this in the beginning of a new relationship where you simply enjoy the person without wanting anything from them.  As soon as we expect or want a certain outcome to occur the relationship feels tougher because we are no longer operating honoring the freedom that each person is.  Instead we are trying to get our needs and wants met.  For a moment simply entertain this- having wants and desires, moving boldly, at all costs and with your heart fully engaged in the direction of those wants and desires, while simultaneously not needing any of them to be met in any specific way.  If I had to give love a definition that would be it.  It is to be in full alignment with yourself, to be direct, to be clear, to allow the impulse of your desires to move you forward and guide your actions and direction, and to give all the rest of it away.  

Don’t back down, don’t be shy, go for it.  Be willing to keep your heart fully open and engaged as your guiding light and let everything and everyone have their experience.  No need to manipulate or control it at all.  Not even a little bit.  No need to dumb it down by being indirect and creating ambiguity.  No need to hold your breath and hope it all works out.  This is ease and flow, but not the light and airy kind, instead the fully open and committed to life, self and service kind.  Be bold.  Be courageous.  Let your heart speak.  Risk vulnerability.  Risk it all.  

Dr. Amanda Love, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado

YOUR BODY IS NOT SEPARATE FROM YOU

YOUR BODY IS NOT SEPARATE FROM YOU 

The catalyst of bodily symptoms

Most people don’t like it when their body behaves in ways that seem dysfunctional.  People’s relationship to novel or chronic sensations, pains, or symptoms that don’t make sense often throw them into a state of alarm, panic and distress.  The struggle to attempt to change the expression through figuring out and controlling one’s self or environment can become life consuming.  Often the journey can feel exhausting and like it isn’t achieving the desired outcome.  

If you see from the perspective that this entire life experience is about learning, then including the experiences that you have in relationship with your body is no different.  Oftentimes however rather  than viewing from the perspective that life is about learning we attempt to find some solidity or permanence inside of our experience, particularly when it comes to our physical body.  Since most people identity as their body rather than the presence that makes their body come alive many feel intimately threatened by certain bodily sensations or symptoms.  That threat can come in the form of not being able to do things we feel we want to do, loss of certain functions that seem vital to our existence and a general hopeless or powerless perspective towards the body and its expressions.  

First I want to offer the perspective that you are not your body.  Your body is an instrument of you.  It is what you utilize inside of this human experience, but it is not you.  The body also does not function independent of you.  Just like a piano does not play without the pianist, your body does not function without you playing it.  Without you your body does not make a sound, a beep, or a single move.  This is important to fully understand.  See when things go “awry’ in our body we tend to view the body as separate from us and while your body is not you it does nothing without you.  

When we view our body as acting independently from us we disown ourselves in the equation and thus any power we have.  This is why we feel powerless, helpless and try to figure it all out as if it is something other than us.  It is not that we are actually powerless or helpless to our body, but only that we have the perspective that we are somehow separate from our body.  When we see through and dissolve the story of separation we no longer perceive disconnection or otherness.  There is no other thing inside of your body running the show.  It is only you inside your body running the show.  How could there be something or someone else inside of your body?  That one that is you is the one that is playing this instrument of your body.   

EMPOWERED YOU = HAPPY BODY 

You are the Creator

All learning is to help us realize more of ourselves, and the more realized we are of what we are, the more empowered we experience ourselves to be.  To say this another way the more we know ourselves, the more aware we are, and the more resourceful we are in navigating with the forms of life because we see more clearly how we are the creator of them.  The body is one of those forms of life, one in which we are seemingly more intimately connected too.  

In times when we perceive greater separation there is often the feeling that life and our body are against us.  Maybe we see our body’s symptoms, pains and expressions as punishment for something, or as unfair, or as wrong.  However our body is not against us as that would be absolutely impossible.  That would be like saying the piano is against the pianist.  How could that even be so?  Who would be inside the piano to be against anything.  The piano is inherently neutral and so is your body.  What chooses for or against is you.  

What I am pointing to here is a high level of empowerment and knowing yourself.  Not everyone is ready to take full responsibility for knowing themselves and therefore will keep trying to fix and manipulate the form.  The form will change in response to those manipulations, however it may or may not change your experience.  This is why people don’t arrive where they hope to arrive.  They are waiting on the form to inform them.  They are allowing the form to decide for them rather than deciding for themselves.  

The way I see it is that the body’s expressions are catalyst, meaning ways to help us wake up and realize ourselves.  They are learning tools.  They are not meant as punishment, or to harm us, and they are not wrong or unfair.  They are pointers, pointing us to pay attention to ourselves.  To see, choose, act, respond, think, and feel differently then we currently do.  To expand our range of life and possibility and move beyond our current perceptions of limitation.  To ultimately turn our awareness towards ourselves rather than the stuff of life.  To come to know ourselves.  This is how I see all of life.  There is nothing in this entire universe that isn’t moving towards greater self-recognition.  That is the impulse that drives all movement, all energy and all direction.  It drives your entire life even if you don’t yet see it.  

No forms are permanent.  We all know this despite our great efforts to try to make them so.  You are on an epic learning journey with the only destination being greater awareness of self.  The one stable, non-changing element is you.  Not your mind, thoughts, emotions, sensations or ideas about who you are, but your very essence.  Come to know that.  Realize that is all any of this is about.  Find safety in yourself, not in the ever changing world of forms.  

Dr. Amanda Love, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado

PAIN OF NOT EMBRACING PERFECTION

PAIN OF NOT EMBRACING  PERFECTION

Disagreeing with the universe

In the spiritual growth community we are all so busy working on ourselves.  Attempting to do it right by clearing our trauma, healing our wounds and purifying ourselves to ever more refined versions of ourselves.  While we are engaged in this journey towards our ultimate remembering and purest expression we often lose sight of the fact that we have never left the innate perfection that we are.  Though at times we seem to have disconnected or forgotten this, the truth remains that we could never not be what we are even if it has been temporarily placed out of our sight.  

To say or view from the perspective of imperfection creates all the suffering that we could ever imagine, and which we do imagine every single day.  Imperfection implies that the intelligence that organizes this universe, including your body, mind and every single little detail of creation, somewhere made a mistake.  This is the birthplace of the view of wrongness, error and separation.  For certain aspects of creation to be included and others not is an illusion that we perpetuate over and over again which lives inside the idea of imperfection.  

Imperfection is simply an idea, a view, a judgment, a perspective.  There is no actual truth to it.  It’s preference and bias.  What one person sees as perfection another sees as imperfect.  This occurs infinitely inside of this idea of imperfection.  See healing happens the moment that we remember that we are perfect and therefore so is everything else.  We may not like what shows up on the screen of life, but that doesn’t alter its perfection.  When we get this completely through and through the healing journey ceases because it’s no longer relevant.  What is true is remembered and evident is the nature of what is.  

This begs the question as to why we hold tight to the perspective of imperfection even when we “get” spiritually that we are perfect.  Why don’t we accept our total, complete and absolute perfection right now in this moment and every moment that will ever follow?  What exactly are we waiting for?  This is a really good question to ask yourself.  What stands in the way of you embracing every single aspect of yourself and this entire universe as innately perfect?  Do you still think some things are wrong?  If so what are those things, and what will it take shift your perspective of them?  Whatever it is that you don’t include will stay un-included until you directly and consciously include it.  How much longer do you want to wait?  How much more suffering do you want to endure?  When is it enough? Only you can determine and decide this for yourself.   

SELF & OTHER FORGIVENESS 

Courage and humility

If there is a tool that bridges this sometimes seemingly gaping gap between perfection and imperfection it is self and other forgiveness.  Forgiveness “corrects” the perspective, removes the hate, and ends the insistence on rightness and wrongness.  It softens the heart and drops the veil of separation that never was.  It ends the roles of victim and victor.  It doesn’t negate or say what happened did or didn’t happen, but it clears the slate.  No karmic charge, no battle to fight, no war to be won, nothing to prove or justify.  Inner & outer peace, harmony and resolution are the effects of forgiveness.  

Forgiveness requires courage.  Why?  Because to open our heart towards what feels hurtful often seems like the wrong direction to our minds.  Our minds want to protect us from all pain and that is why we build walls of separation inside of our experiences.  It takes bravery to move towards rather than away from these experiences.  To let down our walls and allow ourselves to feel instead of continuing to choose the path of self-protection.  This must be a very deliberate, conscious choosing on our part.  This will not just automatically happen because for most people the default mode is self-defense rather than self-love or other-love.  The seeming paradox is that love it the ultimate protector, and not the mind with its defenses which are wired to keep you separate from the rest of creation.  To love one’s self (or love other) is to bravely walk into the fire of our own mind and refuse to not allow light of our awareness to shine.  To see what we are trying to hold separate, and to feel how much more pain holding separate causes us rather then feeling the hurt that we are resisting.  To then choose to feel the pain so that the energy can move through our system and the charge can find its resolution.

Forgiveness requires humility.  Why?  Because we must end our insistence on rightness/wrongness in order to forgive.  To arrive at the place of “I don’t know better than that which organizes this entire universe” is incredibly humbling to the personality we identify ourselves as.  People avoid and deny this level of humility at all costs because they want to be right and feel justified in their rightness.  What happened happened.  What I am I am.  No right and no wrong.  End of story.  End of all stories.  The mind hates this.  Some people feel this is a permission slip for people to do or get away with “bad” things or to ignore changes that need to be made.  I am suggesting neither, but instead to see what is possible through the power of forgiveness.  To see what naturally and organically organizes itself into different configurations without force, effort, punishment, or shaming when the true essence of what is is seen, reflected, and given.  I dare you.  

The power of the heart is stronger, more real and more palpable then any limiting perspective, including that of imperfection.  Choosing forgiveness opens the door directly into the heart.  Heart leads, mind follows.  This is what most all hunger for even if they can’t fully articulate it in this way yet.  The only thing standing in the way is your insistence on the idea of imperfection.  That’s it.  Imperfection really is just a thought and not an actual thing.  I know this may be hard for your mind to believe, but its worth investigating and changing this belief for yourself.  Your joy and freedom from suffering awaits on the other side of it.  

Dr. Amanda Love, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado

GIVING YOUR LIFE OVER TO WHY YOU EXIST

GIVING YOUR LIFE OVER TO WHY YOU EXIST 

Focused on the things of life

As human beings with faculties of mind and memory we create images, stories and ideas about our life. What it should look like, how it should feel, what should occur and not occur, and the like. We are nearly constantly investing our energy and attention into the things of life. This is so natural and second nature to us that we don’t question or entertain that any other way of being/doing would be possible. This investment of our resources (i.e. our energy and awareness) into the things of life creates a dynamic where our well-being is contingent upon those things. With this we become fused, merged and attached to the things of life, including our stories and ideas about them, and we lose touch with the essence of our nature and why we exist at all. This creates an inner experience of simply trying to get through life as if there is some destination to arrive at and we miss out on the experience of what it is to be living.

When our focus is on the things of life we create agendas and expect outcomes. No matter how agenda-less and detached from outcome you think you are, the truth is you probably aren’t. Most people still want things and perceive they need things and therefore subtly, or not so subtly, attempt to get those needs and wants met through their thoughts and actions. This is agenda. As long as you perceive lack, meaning you perceive that you don’t have something you need or want, you will attempt in whatever ways you can to get it. This is a survival strategy based in the perspective that something is missing right now and that somehow what is is not complete. This is the most pervasive perspective on planet Earth right now, however it’s pervasiveness does not make it accurate.

It is important to get that you are the creator of your experience.  What you think or believe to be true will generate the image that you see reality to be.  What you put your energy and awareness into will dominate your life.  This is not just a fancy new age concept.  This is how creation works.  Perception is creation.  What you perceive, meaning how you see, will dictate what you see.  Giving your life (ie. your energy and attention) over to things, images, ideas and stories about life generates a very physical experience of life where you believe that you are the physicality.  You suffer when the image doesn’t reflect what you desire because you think you are the image and don’t recognize that you are the creator of the image.  You feel powerless to the image that you have created because you don’t realize you created it.  In this way we are victims to our own selves, yet don’t see ourselves and therefore don’t realize how we victimize ourselves to ourselves.  If that confusing its because it is confusing.  We have confused ourselves to be things (which we are not) and therefore experience limitation, frustration, powerless and lack.   

THE ILLUSION OF SACRIFICE 

A soul-driven life

So if we don’t give our life over to our ideas, then what do we give it over too? If we stop focusing on getting the money, relationships, family, house, car, health, our next business idea, our next save the world idea, social status, validation, approval, and the like then what else is there? See all that is the stuff of life and none of it is why you exist. Sure you will use certain of those expressions to carry out the why of why you exist, but none of the things of life are why you exist. This is incredibly important to understand. Without this awareness you will live disconnected from why you are, from why your soul took on a body in the first place. I can guarantee you that it did not do so just to smell the flowers and get absorbed in the stuff of living on planet earth. There is a mission, a calling, a purpose for your being here in a body, and from what I have discovered it is the only worthwhile focal point for this incarnative experience. All else is just distractions.

To the you that you think you are, living in such a singularly focused way where your sole purpose is the only determiner for all of the stuff that you do through this body, will feel like a sacrifice. The one you think you are (i.e. your name, personality, profession and all the ways you identify yourself) will feel let down, discouraged, at times aimless, confused and destabilized by this shift in focus. Again no matter how agenda-less you think you are, you probably aren’t. Are you willing to let everything, and I mean everything go, and shift to your sole purpose or calling being the only determiner for you? I can promise you that if you are willing you will never feel purposeless again. You will never wonder if you are doing what you came here to do, you will stop experiencing self-doubt, and you won’t regret your life when you are on your death bed. However I can also promise you that your life may not look like or feel like you want it too. Your life will no longer be “your” own, meaning your body-mind-personality ideas of what your life is. The paradox however is that it will also be the first time your life is in alignment because you will be in full connection with yourself.

From the perspective of the person this will be a colossal and complete sacrifice in complete uncertainty.  From the perspective of the soul it will be a coming home.  The one constant is free will.  You get to decide how you participate with all of this.  If you decide to make the transition from a person-centered life to soul-centered life a tremendous amount of faith will be required of you.  Your person will not know.  It will perpetually feel like it doesn’t know.  This is just part of the territory.  This is an act of faith that you will take several times a day.  You can’t get the soul to fit inside of the personality and therefore the personality will not understand.  It has to surrender itself.  There is no other way.  

Giving your life over to why you exist instead of the stuff of life liberates and aligns you with you. It frees you to actually be of service to life in every single moment. To give to life rather than get from life. There is not a single moment where your purpose, your calling, cannot be executed. Until you arrive here and become agenda-less you cannot be of true service because there will always be some underlying sneaky agenda running the show. You being you, knowing you, sharing you is the service. You generate this world of your purpose by aligning yourself with it over and over and over again. You come to see the illusion of sacrifice is just that, an illusion, because there is nothing else worth living for. You detach from being the stuff and rest into your calling, into your soul, and experience inner stability despite the ever changing appearances of life.

Dr. Amanda Love, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado

WAKING UP FROM FEAR PARALYSIS

WAKING UP FROM FEAR PARALYSIS 

The collective freezer

We are living in a collective freezer and largely unaware of the frigid weather all around us.  These cold conditions have paralyzed many of us into a state of contraction, numbness and disconnection.   Side effects of frozenness are subtlety holding your breath, tensing your body, not feeling safe to be yourself, not fully sharing or expressing yourself in world, believing things might go bad or not work out and feeling like you are not going to be ok.  Frozenness is riddled with worry, doubt, insecurity, inhibition, vigilance and absence of trust in self, other or life.  Its focus is on minimizing disruption, change, and uncertainty at all costs.  It is not concerned with thriving, evolution or advancement, but instead solely with preservation of what is and attempting to keep things the same.

Clearly it is impossible to keep things the same.  The one screamingly obvious truth is that everything is constantly changing.  Yet despite the obviousness of this we attempt to control the change.  This state of inner non-acceptance of what is keeps us looking in the rearview mirror.  Trying to keep a version of ourselves, our body, or our environment that was previously known to us.  Perhaps a version of our life that we liked more or that felt safer because it was more known to us thus giving us the illusion of greater stability.  What we fail to really accept is that everything has a rhythm, a beginning, middle and an end.  This is true for everything within the physical universe.  All will come and go.  

It is through stretching yourself into greater acceptance of this fact of the ever changing nature of the universe that you will begin the unthawing process.  When you stop trying to hold things in place you begin to recognize the movement that is all around you.  The block of ice that you’ve been keeping yourself inside of starts to melt.  The frigid, rigid fear container loses its sharp harshness and with that you begin to notice your breath again.  A warmth arrives that allows the muscles to relax.  That which you withheld or kept separate or silent now begins to move inside of you and take expression.  You stop worrying so much about yourself and instead start living again or maybe living for the first time.  

The important thing to realize here is that you are in charge of the defrosting process.  In fact it is 100% solely up to you.  That doesn’t mean that support isn’t available, because it is, but the choice to end the choice for fear is yours.  You don’t have to keep picking up the same fear story, feelings and sensations.  You are bigger than and beyond any fear thought.   

BEYOND THE CHOICE FOR FEAR

Finding all the places that you hide out

The first step in ending your attachment relationship with fear is by finding all the places where you choose it.  See our choosing of fear is largely unconscious to us.  We simply imbibe it as part of the air we breathe and don’t do much to question it because it’s one of those collectively agreed upon assumptions that has been left un-investigated.  Its takes a certain slowing down of the mind  and recognition of our more subtle beingness so that we can attune and clearly see these unconscious assumption patterns that we have about life.  

As you begin this investigation process into yourself you may find that there are certain things or situations that arise which you feel that fear is the only choice.  Where you get hijacked and your nervous system responds with the fear cascade of attack, protection, disconnection and vigilance.  These are your growth edges.  Wherever it is that you feel like you have no choice but to respond in a certain way is a misinformed and disempowered perspective.  The key that I want to keep pointing to here is choice.  It is one thing to deliberately choose fear and allow that choice to create the programmed nervous system response for that choice, it is another thing entirely to not consciously choose it and be swept into that response.  If a lion is chasing you choosing fear and the subsequent neurophysiological cascade that follows may be appropriate unless you want to get eaten, however rarely are any real lions chasing us.  

So outside those incredibly rare moments in our lives when we truly need our survival mechanism to be activated the choice for pure survival/preservation and the attack, flight or freeze response is just a default mode.  This should feel like really great news to you because it means that you are in charge.  You are not victim to your nervous system, instead it responds to you.  Its only that you have not been aware of your choice, of what you’ve been choosing or even that you can/do choose.  

This is why at some point we have to turn our attention from the outside world and all the seeming external triggers and look within.  Sometimes this seems like a dark and bleak void, and perhaps even boring direction.  This is only because we haven’t spent much time paying actual attention to ourselves and therefore there is this undiscovered terrain of which we have not navigated before.  You may feel like you don’t know how or what you are doing, and when you first open that inner door you may not see much.  But as with any worthwhile endeavor persistence pays off.  Your willingness and dedication to continue to peer inside reveals an previously unknown or unconscious world to you.  You come to see and know yourself.  You see the intricacies of your psyche and illuminate their workings simply with your attention and awareness on them.  It is here that you dismantle your conditioned responses to life and reclaim your active choice.  In truth the choice has always been yours, but until you turn within and unequivocally see that fact, your mind will play tricks of denial on you and you will project your power outwards onto objects, situations and other people.  The choice beyond fear is the choice for freedom and an experience of life where you are present, available and fully alive.  

Dr. Amanda Love, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado

FEEL GOOD NO MATTER WHAT

FEEL GOOD NO MATTER WHAT 

Moving past the indirect approach

The “thing” that most all of us want is to feel good.  We might think that we want this thing or that thing, but that is only because we think that this or that thing will give us the state of feeling good.  This is an indirect approach.  The obvious truth is that its not the thing that brings us the good feelings, it is instead our choice to allow the thing to shift our feeling state.  Now even though the fact that we are in charge of our feeling state is relatively obvious I’m certain to get lots of objections about this as we often don’t like to take full responsibility for how we are feeling.  If we did people would move through their emotional rollercoaster ride with more ease and grace and less blame, shame, attack, repression and hatred of self or other.  With that feelings would be no big deal rather than the seeming crisis they seem to be for many.

I’m a believer that our natural state is that of feeling good.  Anything that does not feel good is added to our natural state of being.  What I mean by that is that if we do not feel good it is because we have somehow agreed to believe something that isn’t fully true.  We’ve added something on top of our natural good feeling self.  We all know truth.  This knowing is innate.  Truth always feels best, even if it sometimes stings or we don’t like it.  We would much rather have people be forthright than lie to us, to be in the know rather than left out of it.  The same is true for inner truths.  When we lie to ourselves by believing something to be true that isn’t the result is that we feel bad.  When we create a story whose tagline is about how horrible we are or how awful something is, we will always feel bad, because it simply isn’t true.  

So here come the objections.  What about murder, rape, sickness, pain, death, abuse, violation, and loss of anything in general, how is one supposed to feel good about that?  I am not suggesting that you must feel good about any of those things, however I will say that when people feel good about themselves and about life many of things either do not occur or if they do occur (like the inevitability of death) our experience of them is radically different.  For example we don’t go out and murder, rape or abuse someone when we feel good about ourselves.  Harming self or others is simply not on our radar when we feel good.  I would also venture to say (obviously hypothetically) that when we feel authentically rested in a state of feeling good, we would probably stop manifesting sickness and disease in our individual and collective body.  I would also say that when we feel good, loss seems much less traumatic.  Maybe a relationship ends or we loss our job or even lose a loved one, there is a normal grieving time, but there isn’t inner suffering about the loss.  Grief is simply the process of releasing of what was and does not have to come with suffering.  Suffering always comes when we feel that whatever happened was wrong or bad.   

WELCOME INNER CONTRADICTION 

Working through objections

Even though feeling good may feel contradictory at times I can absolutely guarantee you that you will move through whatever is occurring in your life with greater ease and grace if you do.  So I say welcome the contradiction in yourself and test out the theory.  How can you feel good about something that you have been perceiving as feeling bad?  Maybe your partner just gave you some news you didn’t like, or a sales call or job offer fell through, or you’ve had persistent painful sensation in your back for weeks, how can you take one of those things and shift your feeling state towards it?  This is your homework.  Test it out and see how it works.  

Now because we have so many objections to choosing to feel good (crazy I know, but true) here are some more things that arise.  Some of you might say well if I feel good about a “bad” situation then I allow or invite the situation and it keeps manifesting.  First off I would say the situation already is, so your choosing to feel good about it or to not feel good about it is not going to change that fact.  Secondly I would also say that when you feel good you naturally manifest things into your life that are in alignment therefore you do not have to worry about generating more of what you don’t want.  You only manifest what you don’t want when you feel bad.  

Others of you might say isn’t this spiritual bypassing?  It depends.  It’s spiritual bypassing if you don’t authentically choose feeling good.  What I mean is if you pretend to feel good, but you don’t actually feel good then you are a fraud and doing a half ass job.  You must do it completely otherwise you are bypassing because after all bypassing is simply being inauthentic, pretending to be or feel something you aren’t/don’t and staying conceptual rather than embodied in your knowing.  What I am suggesting is that you fully embody feeling good, don’t just think about it, let every cell in your body feel and know it.  I am also not suggesting that you repress emotions that are alive for you.  Believe it or not you can be in the midst of extreme discomfort, whether physically or psychologically, and still access feeling good.  It does not have to be an either/or, but rather a yes/and.  

Still some of you others might say if I don’t stay mad or angry how will people learn when they do something I don’t like.  Yes feelings of anger and frustration can be used to set boundaries, however we must simultaneously state to the other person what works for us and what doesn’t work for us.  I find that the anger and frustration we feel is typically not at the person, but instead at a behavior we don’t like or prefer (this is true for ourselves as well).  We tend to misdirect our anger onto the person rather than using the anger to say to ourselves “hey something isn’t working for me and I need to change it.”  I need to state my needs, wants or preferences and set guidelines for certain behaviors that are and aren’t acceptable for me.”  This is taking responsibility for what you feel which is a healthy use of emotions and their intended purpose.  Emotions are not meant to be felt over and over indefinitely.  They are meant to be felt and propel us into action that is in alignment with us.  

Holding onto feeling bad does not generate feeling good.  To feel good we have to change our feeling state.  The addiction to feeling bad is strong.  It’s a hell of a program, but we can decondition ourselves and rewrite a new one.  It really boils down to asking yourself what you really want and what serves.  Do you want to feel good or feel bad?  Is there benefit in remaining to feel bad?  Perhaps there is because there is something you need to change.  Make the required change as quickly as possible and then come back into alignment with your natural state of feeling good.  The bottom line is don’t let the situation decide for you either way.  You decide.  You choose.  It is 100% in your power to do so.  

Dr. Amanda Love, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration, Boulder, Colorado