Inner Alchemy

Inner Alchemy 

Philosophy, practice & the Philosopher’s Stone

alchemy moon sunAlchemy is a philosophy and practice that has its origins in ancient Egyptian and Greek times.  There is both an inner and outer expression of alchemy.  The outer being the scientific, exoteric or objective experience that was associated with the transmutation of natural substances such as turning ordinary base metals like lead into more refined metals like gold.  It was also concerned with finding external elixirs to remedy all diseased conditions with the goal of perfect health and immorality.  This outer alchemy became the foundation for the now modern field of chemistry.  We can see evidence of this in fields like pharmacology that alter the chemical structure of matter in order to change its form and function.

There is also an inner alchemy that is spiritual, esoteric or subjective in nature that is associated with the transmutation of the inner immaterial being or consciousness rather than the outer material form.  The idea is the same however in that its goal is the purification and refinement of our essence from an ordinary state of being into an extraordinary state of being.  The resultant experience of this process is the knowing of our truer, more distilled, purer, refined self.  In modern times this can also be explained as the process of enlightenment or waking up that is spoken about in psychological and spiritual groups.  

Within the philosophy of alchemy there is a search for something called the “philosopher’s stone.”  The philosopher’s stone was the “substance” that allowed for this transmutation into something more refined or evolved to occur.  The core tenant of alchemy is that everything is evolving into a state of greater perfection.  This includes metals, plants, animals, humans and consciousness itself.  There is question as to whether the philosopher’s stone/substance was an actual stone or a metaphorical stone.  Clearly in the modern field of chemistry this substance/“stone” would be chemicals as that is what shifts the composition of the material.  When looking for this substance from the inner alchemical perspective the substance would be spiritual power aka life force, love or the soul.  The soul being that element or substance which allows for transmutation from ordinary beingness into extraordinary beingness.   

Your Inner Alchemist 

Soul metamorphosis 

3d illustration of an Angel in heaven land,Mixed media for bookWe all have an inner alchemist.  It is called our soul.  Some people are more familiar with their inner alchemist than others, in fact some people don’t know or deny the presence of it altogether.  Whether you are aware of or deny your inner alchemist or not does not make it any less real or present.  In time all gets revealed.  

The soul is that immaterial substance that breaths through all forms.  Forms being physical bodies, trees, plants, animals, rocks, as well as thoughts, emotions, feelings and sensations.  Soul is what is actually alive, intelligent and present within all things.   Other words for soul are life force, love, God, beauty, breath, energy, awareness, intelligence, consciousness, light, Sun, life.  Soul is the agent of life, vitality, movement and change.  When we are not aware of soul life seems to be happening to us as we view ourselves as objects that are done onto, we perceive things as random and disorganized, and the seamless connectedness of all of life is absent from our awareness.  Life appears as separate pieces and parts and never is the picture seen as whole.  

On the other hand when we are aware of soul, interconnectedness is evident and intelligent design is no longer denied.  Instead of life happening to us we realize that we are life.  This is fundamental to our awakening and the essential ingredient that makes the shift from ordinary being to extraordinary being and from the perspective of separate to one with/as.  The intimate knowing of soul bridges the gap, is the alchemical elixir, the inner philosopher’s stone, the transmutational esoteric substance that allows for the knowingness of the divine perfection of all to be revealed.   

Soul is a metamorphosing agent.  It is pure intelligence.  It knows how to perfectly unfold, reveal, and evolve itself.  The process of soul being realized is a metamorphosis that all are experiencing in every moment.  All consciousness is growing and moving towards the light of soul.  Soul is like a ray of sunshine that is constantly guiding, illuminating, informing and growing you, and you are continuing inch by inch, getting closer and closer to it.  The unification with it is the realization of it as you.  The real you, not the personality-body you.  This is the full acceptance of the divine self as you.  

Soul then is awake in this body-mind vehicle.  The most refined, distilled aspect of light shining through.  Free agency having realized itself as abiding in these forms, and all forms.  This is the inner alchemical transmutation of consciousness.  This intelligent design is the pre-programmed program of all of life.  All consciousness will wake up to itself, realize itself as the life principle, as the one creator.  This is the end of forgetfulness and beginning of eternal life.  

Dr. Amanda Hessel, Chiropractor, Network Spinal Analysis & Somato-Respiratory Integration

Holding Your Breath

Holding Your Breath 

Waiting for the shoe to drop

16854815 - funny young woman with colorful air balloons enjoyingSo many people are holding their breath, waiting for the next shoe to drop.  It seems to us that if we can just keep holding our breath then we won’t feel what is about to happen next.  Why is it that we don’t want to feel what will happen next when we don’t even know what will happen?  It is because our minds like to create the most potentially devastating stories about what things mean and how something that might occur might threaten us.  So we live with this lurking feeling of potential threat and we hold our breath in attempt to not feel it.

This holding of our breath is conscious for some people and unconscious for others, meaning you might be really aware that your breath is not fluid, rhythmic, deep, easeful or full or you may have no idea at all.  We often need contrast to become aware of ourselves and our patterns.  This applies to our breathing patterns as well.  If you’ve had experiences in your life where your breath was labored or challenged it becomes really easy to recognize when that is not the case because there is contrast.  However if your breathing has been relatively stable throughout your life you may not yet realize that more expansive or restful breath is possible because you have not yet experienced that something more is indeed possible.  

Breathing occurs naturally.  Air comes in and out of our lungs without us needing to think about it or make it happen.  Yet when this feels like it is not the case, for example if we feel short of breath or the breath feels shallow, there is quite naturally an added survival panic response that results.  It is like throwing more fuel on the fire.  As our anxiety heightens then our breath feels less and less full, the more resistance builds up in our body and the harder it feels to breathe.  Resistance is the primary ingredient that interferes with the natural process of breathing in the first place.  

This brings us back to the feeling sensation of waiting for the next shoe to drop.  When we clench or grip to protect ourselves from feeling something we put our body in a state of tension aka resistance.  Resistance makes everything more challenging including our breath.  Many people are not aware of how much they resist or attempt to prepare themselves against the impact of something potentially bad happening to them.  In fact it is this preparation or “on guard state of being” that is far more uncomfortable then simply feeling the impact of thing we are attempting to not feel the impact of.  

While this all seems rational and we might get it conceptually, particularly if nothing feels super uncertain or turbulent in our life in the moment, allowing ourselves to get it physiologically is another thing entirely.  To convince ourselves to feel the thing that everything in our mind is telling us is unsafe to feel or that we don’t want to feel is the perpetual dance we do with our defenses.  See for most people their defenses are running the show pretty much all of the time.  We tend to not notice this and think that we are in charge and not our defenses if our life seems to be going relatively well and we are in agreement with what is showing up in our reality.  However when our life shakes up a little bit and something arrives in our experience that feels unknown or undesirable we get a front row show to just how much our defenses are really in charge. 

Story of our Defenses

Bridge from concept to direct physiological experience 

perspective of wood bridge in deep forest crossing water stream and glowing light at the end of wooden waysSo you might be asking what is the story with our defenses.  First of all it may be helpful to know we all have them and their job is to protect us from harm.  They develop as mechanisms of survival for this body-mind organism.  Some of our defenses develop when we are really young and are more primitive.  They are more easily recognized as they tend to be more reactionary, emotional or physical in nature.  Other defenses develop when we are a little bit older and are more sophisticated, rational and logical.  These more sophisticated defenses are much tricker because they are based on socially acceptable rules of engagement.  We often think that we are these defenses and it is more challenging to see that our defenses are running the show of our life because we just think it is who we are.  These defenses are also more thought based meaning they are activated in response to memories of past experiences and anticipation of future events.  

Though the job of our defenses is to protect us from harm this comes with a cost.  That cost is fragmentation, separation and disconnection.  We have quite normalized living disconnected partly because we haven’t had a ton of contrast as to what it is to live connected, so disconnection seems normal.  The long term effects of fragmentation, separation and disconnection are far more reaching then any of us might currently realize.  

Bringing this back to our body, physiology and breath we must ask ourselves how we bridge this gap between knowing conceptually about our defenses to being able to move through them and feel the experiences that they are attempting to push away.  The result of this being that we open our system, relax and allow breath to breathe in and out of this body in its full, rhythmic, expansive, vital and deeply nurturing ways.  

If for a moment you think of breath as life, as what you are, rather than all of the rest of the stuff that you identify with, how would that shift your focus and change your relationship to breath?  In seeing that when you create tension patterns based on unconscious and conscious stories created inside of your own mind, that interfere with the movement of breath in and out of your body, what you are really doing is resisting life.  Creating resistance to breath is the foundation for resisting life.  Life is a myriad of infinite expressions and comes with an entire gamut of sensations, feelings, emotions and experiences.  Some of these sensations, feelings, emotions and experiences will feel amazing and others will feel horrible.  There is no real way around this unless you completely 100% shift your perspective to seeing only divine perfection in everything making every experience blissful, which for most people at this stage in the game is not impossible but highly improbable.  Due to this improbability at this current time/space nexus we must cultivate another strategy that will open us to life rather than close us down to it.  That strategy is willingness, self-permission, allowing and inner invitation to feel, sense and experience the entire gamut of whatever experiences show up in our lives no matter how uncomfortable or undesirable they are for us.  

This is a tall order I know.  Yet the only way to the other side is through.  Going through means feeling and experiencing all of it so that none is left out, split or fragmented.  This is how we arrive at the experience of connectedness and wholeness.  We leave nothing out.  We reject nothing.  Through that we arrive at wholeness.  Breath, life, moves in and out of these bodies, free and unimpeded.  

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

Impermanence

Impermanence 

Pleasure & pain principle

Four season treeMost people assume that things will always be the way that they are.  In fact this assumption is one of the the prime causes of suffering and disconnection.  Whether life feels painful or pleasurable we tend to default into thinking that it will always be this way even though from a more rational or practical perspective we know that it won’t be as everything is always changing.  Yet we are often in denial or oblivious to the fact of the ever changing nature of life.  

Why do we deny the blatantly obvious changing nature of life?  It almost always comes down to not wanting to feel loss of something.  Change means that things will come and go.  Some things we don’t want to let go of because they feel so good to us.  This could be a relationship, a family structure, the state of our body or health, the place we live, some possession we own, a job/career, etc.  We desire it and thus grasp onto it at all cost.  We feel pain at the thought of losing something we love or cherish in our experience.  This is a natural part of the human experience and yet the root of our suffering.  It is also the motivation for our attempts to control or manage all aspects of our life.  This is not only exhausting to us on a mental-emotional level, it also affects the health and functioning of our body.

The other side of perpetuating the illusion of permanence is when we don’t like our experience or what we tend to call pain.  For example we may be in a relationship we don’t want, have a sensation in our body that we don’t like, or dislike our job/career and yet we feel hopeless and like there is no way out or through.  We feel like it is just going to always be this way permanently and we find ourselves trapped in the illusion of solidity and fixation rather than realizing the ever changing nature of life that includes each and every expression and form. 

The uncertainty of things coming and going leaves us feeling like we are tethered to nothing at all and this experience of freedom is too much for most minds.  Minds like to know what comes next and will do their best to create certainty even if that certainty comes in the form of something we don’t want or prefer such as an uncomfortable body sensation, a job that we are over or a relationship that has ran its course.  The thing is that we don’t live in a certain, stable or known world.  In fact we live in the exact opposite.  Our resistance to uncertainty, instability and the mysterious nature of life keeps us trapped in a prison that lives only inside of our own minds.  This prison is home for most and what they believe reality to be.   

Embracing the Comings  & Goings

A gateway to gratitude 

Wave Hollow Inside OutIf asked, most people would say they prefer freedom and joy rather than constraint and suffering, and yet most people choose constraint and suffering without even realizing that it is their choice.  The way that we choose joy and freedom is through fully accepting and inviting in the ever changing nature of life.  By embracing the comings and goings we find ourselves in a perpetual state of gratitude and awe for life rather than attempting to manage and control it.  

Take for example the novelty of a new relationship, job, house or any other exciting thing.  In this beginning stage we often find ourselves elated and what many would name as “in love”.  We are in love because we are not taking anything for granted nor making anything too solid or permanent.  We don’t yet have assumptions about what will occur, as we don’t really know yet.  We have lots of excitement, but not too much attachment because there hasn’t been much of ourselves invested yet.  We feel hopefully for possibilities and yet remain in an open state of being in regards to how it all looks and feels.  There is much to be revealed, determined and experienced as we live it.  Most people love being in this novelty phase of unfixed excitement, yet it doesn’t take long for the mind to come in and attempt to make things more solid.  Particularly as we develop routines with these new aspects of our lives and they become more “integrated”, ordinary, solid or real.  

As soon as things become increasingly and increasingly more fixed we simultaneously “lose” that feeling of love.  This is not a coincidence.  What we really “lose” is novelty and the unattached state of gratitude that comes with it.  We create solid where there is not really solid and then when our sense of solid either become too solid (where we feel suffocated) or becomes less solid (when we we aren’t wanting it to change) we suffer.  

The less moveable and flexible we are with the comings and goings of life the more we will experience suffering.  Again these comings and goings include everything: your body and its sensations and the expressions of ease or dis‘ease’, your relationships with yourself and others, the state of your physical comforts or discomforts, financial resources, business failures or successes, the range of your emotional body, etc.  All of these things are always going to be in a state of constant flux.  Though there are times when your experience will be that some of aspects of your life are seemingly more stable, this too is just an illusion.  Its simply that the relevance/teachings that you are learning from those experiences takes longer or serves you and/or the rest of the creation more so they hang around for a longer duration of time until their relevance is complete.

Everything constructs and deconstructs, stabilizes and destabilizes, binds and becomes free again.  This is simply the nature of this universe that we live in.  Learning to ride this wave through embracing the comings and goings will keep you in a perpetual state of gratitude, awe and love, which is truly what we desire more than the constant appearance of any aspect of our reality being fixed or staying the same.  

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

Giving Everything Back to Source

Giving Everything Back to Source 

Tendency to hold on

Studio shot of worried and upset caucasian woman holding hands in pray near chin, squeezing it tight and begging for something, smiling nervously and standing with closed eyes over gray backgroundAs human beings we tend to hold onto everything.  This perpetual holding on gives us a sense of security and like we can somehow manipulate our external reality if we just hold on a little bit tighter.  Holding on is our attempt to control the spontaneous, unpredictability of life so that we are not caught too far off our guard where we perceive that things might get or go “bad”.  This holding onto life keeps our life looking a particular way and provides us with the illusionary experience of consistency and sameness.  While a part of us feels better when this illusionary experience of life appears to be intact, another part of us feels stifled and like it can’t breathe inside of delusion we are perpetuating.  

We not only hold onto material things like homes, jobs, relationships and such, we also hold onto thoughts.  In fact we are almost never entirely without a thought.  For many people to open into the spacious, emptiness beyond thought is terrifying.  I believe that most have never done it for much longer than a second or two, if even that, which means that we are always holding onto something.  Why the terror to let go you may ask?  Perhaps we fear that this world that we live in now, with all the things that we know, will disappear.  Perhaps the tastes we’ve had of freedom have felt “too free” and we prefer some constraint and limitation over our freedom.  Maybe we’ve created the story that we don’t know how to let go, or maybe we don’t even know that we are holding life in the grips of our own mind.  

Regardless of our reasoning or our lack of awareness into ourselves as to our patterns of holding the result of holding is the same.  Holding on always creates some level of tension in our body-mind.  That tension then becomes the filter with which we interpret and experience everything and with which we come to believe what is.  Tension patterns also create disconnection from source or from the larger organizing principle of creation.  This is the inherent function of tension patterns, to be self-protective of this individuated body-mind organism that we call ourselves, and yet simultaneous with this comes reinforcement of the illusion of perceiving yourself as separate from the rest of creation.   

Reconnecting with Source 

Its easier than your mind thinks

Happy girl jumpingRe-establishing connection to source is always easier than our mind thinks that it is.  It is the job of our mind to make things way more complicated than they are in actuality.  People’s minds like to talk about how they have to do this or that, change this or that, or how they just have to surrender and let go already.  Yet for most this simply stays in their mind as another thought or idea that takes up space inside of the infinite spaciousness of ourselves.  I find if people are talking about their need to surrender and let go they are quite far from actually doing it.  Why does letting go or surrendering stay in the mind rather than become our direct experience?   It is because ultimately we don’t really want to let go of what we say we want to let go of.  We prefer our uncomfortable (or unnoticeable for some that have less awareness of themselves) tension patterns and delusional stories of reality over ease and truth because more than anything else we fear what we might lose.  

So fear of loss runs the show of our lives until we boldly and courageously decide to no longer let it.  Not until we are willing to lose everything can we truly experience surrender.  Few people arrive here without exhausting every other possible route first.  We quite literally exhaust ourselves into the truth.  Our beliefs in scarcity, lack, and wrongness, that we won’t have enough, be enough, achieve the right things, things won’t last or turn out, that we’ve failed, will be alone,  etc… triumphs.  

How do we walk this path towards surrender step by step?  I have found that to give everything back to source is the quickest route.  This means making the commitment to first tune into yourself and develop awareness of your patterns of tension and disconnection.  As tension patterns arise at the body level immediately release them.  Don’t try to figure them out or process them at length, simply just drop the tension.  Rather than continue to hold on to it, let it go, just like that.  You will notice instantly more ease and breath in your body.  You will also begin to realize just how powerful you are and how you are the creator of your own tension patterns.  Second is the willingness to let go of your thoughts as they arise.  This will take consistent practice for most.  If you get fixated on a thought recognize the fixation and then let the thought go.  This is important particularly for thoughts that really grab you and bring you into a less resourced and often fearful state.  

As you do this more and more you will be developing your skill set in giving back to source rather than taking from or holding on as if nothing else will ever come your way.  Whenever we give back we are instantaneously rewarded with more energy and aliveness.  What we hold onto we maintain.  At best our energy state stays neutral which means life looks the same and feels mundane most of the time.  However what we give back to life, to source, frees us up and thus we become available to exponentially greater and greater states of energy.  This also means that we almost never know what will happen.  We are in the moment of ever present aliveness, trust, and knowingness in the perfection of it all.  This is what at our heart of hearts we all desire and seek no matter how much our minds want to interfere.  

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

Power of Love

Power of Love 

Infinite Life Force

16152518 - beautiful lotus backgroundMost all of us make claims to the power of love.  On some level we know that love is the ultimate everything and yet when things get “serious” or when we get caught up in our emotional or thinking bodies the power of love is forgotten.  Why is it that we drop love or downplay its position as the grand orchestrator of all of life when things get messy, unclear or uncertain?  Why does our thinking mind along with its linearity and rationality become the prime ruler rather than the heart?  

First of all let me just say that love is the source of infinite life force.  Life force is love, love is life force.  Life force is what makes everything come alive.  It is the breath of the universe and everything within it.  This is why when we feel like we are in love we feel alive, awake, alert and juiced up, because we actually are.  Love, whether for self, other or just as a state of being, brings with it infinite, inexhaustible life force.  It can not because love and life force are one and the same.  

Life force, energy and love are terms that can be used interchangeably.  Life force is the quite literal energy source that powers everything in the universe including your physical body.  It is fairly common knowledge at this point that everything in the universe is energy.  When all matter is broken down into its most basic components all that remains is vibrating energy.  That vibrating energy is life force/love.  Patterns of thoughts, beliefs and perceptions then give shape to that energy and the world of forms that we see with our eyes.

As powerful as our thoughts are in their ability to bring forms to life, they are nothing without the energy source of love to back them up.  Pure, unconditioned love is the most coherent, whole energy source that there is.  When we have thoughts that are fueled by less coherent states of energy, such as fear, rage, or rationality, they are much less efficient or effective and therefore the forms they create are not as optimal, complex or productive.  Less coherent states of energy are simply states of energy that are not as aware of their inherent wholeness.  Love knows it wholeness which is where its extreme power arises.   

Fall from Grace 

Perception of Wrongness

Spiritual conceptual image of a female angelWhen we think about the power of love without being connected with the knowingness of love our power is greatly diminished.  True power does not come from thought alone, but from the intimate acknowledging and resting into love so that its power naturally expresses.  The primarily perception that keeps us disconnected from knowing love intimately is the perception of wrongness.  

When we view through the perception of wrongness we create separation where there is none.  Separation creates a less coherent state of energy because within separation implies a lack of wholeness.  Wrongness means that something must be thrown out of the whole and when that occurs there is less energy/life force available to the system (individual or collective).  Say for example you (or your culture) judge multiple things about yourself, another person, or the environment as wrong.  The more you judge the more you shrink your perspective.  With this comes a sense of confinement and limitation.  Simultaneously the less innately good you feel and the less energy you have available to you.  Manifestation feels more effortful and there is greater disorganization in what gets created. This is a state of decreased coherency where your knowingness of love and ability to utilize the power of love is diminished.  This does not mean that love is actually diminished, but only your perception of it.  Again this happens at individual and collective system levels.  

Perceiving wrongness also brings on both sides of it righteousness and shame.  To defend one’s rightness or hide in one’s shame birth the entire gamut of defensive patterns of self-protection.  This is our fall from grace or love.  This is the imposition of limitation on life force.  This is the disconnection from our power, which is the power of love.   To restore connection and remember the power of love we must dismantle our belief in our own or others wrongness.  To know love rather than think love requires this.  

Love has no boundaries, it penetrates all.  Love brings light to even the darkest dark, to every recess of unconsciousness.  Nothing is brighter than love.  To stand in the radiance of love is to illuminate the entire world.  All healed, all whole, all intimately aware of itself.  From here the purest and most efficiently organized forms of creation are created.  Life force vitalizes all.  This doesn’t happen independently of you, it happens because of you.  At some point we must all surrender to love.  It is inevitable.  We must give away our addiction to less coherent thoughts of wrongness, missing and lack of wholeness, and open our system into greater coherency, full force life force and the power of love.  

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

Grounding into Love

Grounding into Love 

Finding presence

37167614 - green leaves in heart shapeGrounding is a term that is used by many people in spiritual growth communities.  Often the idea is to feel one’s feet or to have the sense of more fully being in one’s body.  Due to the fact that most people spend a great deal of time in their heads being absorbed in their thoughts this idea of grounding is useful as a strategy to be more present or embodied.  

All of this begs the question as to what exactly is it that we are grounding into when we ground?  Most people will tend to create the sensation/felt experience of grounding into the earth or into their physical body.  They may go sit by a tree, lay on the grass or go for a hike to support the creation of this experience for themselves.  This time-out of sorts can help us decrease our focus on our thoughts and bring us more in touch with our sensorially body experience.  This frequently creates a temporary sense of ease, calmness and steadiness that we associate as being grounded.  When we give ourselves the space and environment to permission ourselves to unwind from our thoughts we naturally become more present.  Presence is what people are ultimately striving to achieve through this practice of grounding themselves.  Most all of us hunger to feel alive in the moment and not bogged down by thoughts about the past or the future.  To be presence is to be responsive, attuned and in the magical, effortless flow of life.  Thought or the process of thinking is the primary distractor of presence.  

Although presence is the true goal of grounding, sometimes people confuse grounding as the need to become more physical. Grounding truly has nothing to do with becoming more physical, or becoming “more your body”, or even having your awareness be located only inside your body.  To attempt to become more physical is to merge yourself further with the appearance of your body.  This may lead to a different sensorial-feeling experience, but does not necessarily lead to greater presence.  

You are the awareness having an experience of grounding rather than being the one that becomes more grounded.  Said another way, you are the one that knows grounded-ness or presence rather than the one that becomes grounded or present.  Grounding at its best is used for this purpose of turning your focus back onto yourself or onto awareness having the experience of having a body rather than focusing on trying to feel more of your body from the perspective of being inside of the body.    

Creator & Creation

Resting into Awareness

Illustration of spiral arrangement in nature. Fibonacci patternAwareness is all pervasive and non-local, meaning it is everywhere and inside of every“thing”.  For that all pervasive, non-local awareness to be aware of all aspects of creation, inclusive of your body, would be the definition of a fully conscious or enlightened creation, meaning a creation that knew itself as not independent or separate from the creator (which is awareness).  To be rested in and eventually as the creator is the ultimate ground, what some call the ground of being.

This brings us back to that initial question of what is it that we are grounding into when we ground ourselves?  Clearly it is not our body or the earth or really any thing whatsoever as that would be grounding into a changing, unstable appearance which would not feel very restful once that thing decides to change.  If we are attempting to ground into an appearance (our body, a tree, the earth) we will never feel or know true stability and we will find ourselves continually needing to “ground” because our ground keeps changing.  I would call this the illusion of grounding rather than true grounding.  Understand that many attempt to do grounding in this way.

What we are actually grounding into when we truly ground is our own very nature as awareness/creator rather than some aspect of creation.  Sometimes when the word creator is used we think of a person.  Our minds create this idea of a separate person that is creating, but the ultimate creator is not an individual person.  It is just intelligent, infinite awareness.  Intelligent, infinite awareness creates all of creation, which includes universes, dimensions, densities, suns, galaxies and every single being and form.  Some people call this intelligent, infinite awareness by the name God, Source or Love.   

As we ground by turning our focus towards awareness rather than into or on appearances all appearances simultaneously get illuminated as awareness.  The duality between form and formless, creator and creation dissolves.  One is not more or less important then the other because there is just one.  You can not get any more intimate then creator and creation as they are the same.  The creator expressing and making itself visible as creation.  You’ve always been looking right at the creator, right at infinite intelligence and yet you have only seen your labels and definitions of forms. 

For many this awareness of awareness or awareness of infinite intelligence is veiled and thus appearances are what seem to be the only true reality.  Whenever this is the case we will always think that we have to ground more into the physical aspects of reality in order to be more present and impactful.  The recognition that the physical and nonphysical are one in the same and that formlessness (the creator) comes alive through form (creation) is to be in direct realization of what makes all come alive.  It is here that we find ourselves rested in and as the ground of love.  It is here that we are most present to ourselves and can have the most impact, symbiosis and harmony with all forms of creation.  

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

Field of the Heart

Field of the Heart

Going beyond the physical, emotional & personal

17361305 - cloud heartWhen most people think about the heart they tend to think solely of the space inside of their chest where their physical heart resides.  Some people that are more aware of the subtle energetics may even refer to the space around their chest as their heart, including the heart chakra in their definition. While these are aspects or components of the heart, they are not the heart in its entirety.  

There is also frequently an association made between the heart and one’s ability to feel emotions, so many refer to or think of the heart as the emotional center.  While its true that an opening of or into the heart can allow us to experience more feelings and emotions, the heart is not the seat of the emotional body.  The emotional body is more connected into this physical form through our belly rather than what we tend to call the heart.  

I find that the heart really is not emotional, physical, or even personal in nature.  That doesn’t mean that the heart does not impact or influence the emotional, physical and personal aspects of us, but the heart is not contained or defined by them.  The heart is also not just our heart chakra, meaning a subtle energetic structure.  The heart instead is a unified field of all pervasive awareness.  Unified in knowing that it is just one.  It is not just in one part or one location; it is in all locations and all parts.  It goes beyond ideas of you and me and knows inherently the nature of inseparability and oneness.  

Often times when we touch or open up into this heart field our mind will jump in and try to figure it out by labeling or creating ideas about it.  Yet when we can simply allow the mind to rest and be still then we don’t create ripples within that pristine field of love and it remains undisturbed.  When undisturbed we experience the purity of this field of love without insisting on trying to dumb it down into a concept and make it something that our minds can understand.  This also allows us to be pure transmitters of the information and energy that this field contains.  

Experiencing yourself as Source 

The “New Normal”

Light burst with starsWhen our awareness expands to include the heart field, magic and mystery arrive as our lived experience.  We begin to know yet don’t know how we know what we know.  We write, speak and move and the impulse for all of our thoughts, words and movements is not our mind or thoughts.  There is a guiding source that writes, speaks and moves these bodies and all things that have appearance or form without the filtering of mind.  This source is pure intelligence, it is the true self or the true you.  Ask yourself, “where does all information, love and movement arise?”  This will draw your awareness inwards, in to yourself, so that you can directly experience yourself as the source rather than as the forms and appearances.  

You may be curious as to why you don’t always or perhaps ever experience life in this way, meaning as source rather than appearances of source.  It is because you, like most all of us, were taught to focus on appearances and not on essence.  With the repetition of focus on appearances you fused your awareness with the appearance of you and are now lost in the projection of yourself rather than being rested in your actual self.  When you touch in, taste or rest into the field of heart you make contact with yourself again.  For many this experience feels so foreign to them that they doubt, question, analyze and try to make rational their own selves to the appearance of themselves. They feel like something is happening to them, like they are being moved by something other than them, when in truth they are simply allowing themselves to be moved by their true self rather than by programmed and learned responses.  For others that perhaps have less conditioning or are less fused with the appearance of themselves, when they touch in, taste or rest into the field of the heart they remember and feel a sense of being home.  It is an instant recognition and remembrance.  They do not doubt or question themselves as much and there is more trust, allowing and knowing of the goodness that they are.  When we don’t know our inherent goodness and that love is our natural state, then we will fear or push it away when it arrives.  Pushing away can occur through rationalization, deflection, emotional hijacking, stories about heightened sensations and the like.  

Many people are talking about the “new normal”  these days, what that is, what our world looks like with various measures of physical (appearance) distancing and self/other protection.  I like to dream that the new normal is where more and more people are rested in the field of the heart, know themselves as the source of love and are less fused with the physical appearance of themselves.  Imagine how powerful and resourceful we are when all are rested in the complete unification and inseparability that actually is.  When we stop waging war on and fighting oneness.  It’s true, we are all in this together, including every single appearance and aspect of creation that’s been created.  We can’t exclude or try to eliminate some aspects and expect to experience harmony.  We couldn’t be separate even if we tried really, really hard and we have been trying really, really hard for billions of years unsuccessfully so.  Separation is and has always been an illusion of appearances.  You have never been an appearance.  You have always been the source of all appearances.  That source is the field of the heart.  You are the source of love.  May that knowing become your new normal.  

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

Appearances

Appearances 

Seeing the surface

Enchanted mirrorEverything that we see, feel, touch or somehow sense is an appearance.  The world of appearances can be equated with the physical world that we see including our physical bodies.  Most of our daily attention and focus is on these appearances.  Appearances come and go.  That is their nature.  None of them are permanent, hence the seeming impermanence to this thing that we call life.  Despite this quality of impermanence and constant mutability most have come to believe appearances to be the most real, physical, and solid thing that exists.  It is with this seeming realness or physicality that we’ve created our baseline for what we think is, what we focus on and what we believe to be important and valuable.

With so much of our attention focused on appearances very little attention is brought to what is underneath or deep to appearances.  When our sense of stability and knowingness of what is, is fused with the appearance of things then when appearances change (which they always do) so does our sense of knowing what is.  If people are completely fused with appearances then when appearances change they will call it a crisis and the typical response they feel/experience is fear.  If people have some recognition beyond appearances then they will sense the subtle undertones of what is going on past what simply appears to be going on and will see/feel opportunity rather than fear.  If people are completely unfused with appearances then when appearances changes they will be completely undisturbed because their sense of knowing what is has not been affected in any way.  

It is good to take an inventory to see how fused you are with appearances because when you are fused with appearances you are unable to see what is actually there.  One way to easily assess this for yourself is to see where you feel an emotional charge about something that is occurring.  Emotional charge is an indication that there is some fusion with the appearance of what is.  That emotional charge and be positive or negative, meaning it can be either excitement, eagerness or anger, frustration towards something that is occurring.  Either way that charge will focus your awareness on the appearance of the experience that is occurring rather than the essence or unchangeable nature that is deep to all appearances and experiences.   

Diving beneath the  surface

Neutrality and unchangeability

Woman in a white dress under water.Your capacity to be unaffected, undisturbed or unshaken by what is occurring is a measure of how you are able to fully focus your awareness on the unchangeable aspect of your nature.  It is your ability to focus your attention in such a way that you go deep to appearance and feel the stability of yourself that never changes, never moves, and is always present.  When you are rested here, in the core of your being, every single thing in your appearance based world (including people, relationships, financial resources, jobs, state of your physical body or health, self-image, reputation, etc.) can all fall away or change dramatically and yet you remain in a rested state of never ending well-being.  This well-being is neutral, meaning without charge, yet the experience of it is safe, well, blissful, and abundant no matter what appearances are or aren’t in your experience.

This neutrality to those that have not experienced the well-being that comes along with it may seem boring or dull.  Some people will prefer the drama and chemical responses to charge over neutrality as the derive a sense of identity within experiencing life in that way.   To not be swayed and influenced by the ups and downs (typically what we call stress) of the appearance based world may feel like an “un-human” life, yet what are we if not evolving into the next version of new species on this planet that includes and transcends being human?  What does it take to bring that consciousness here?  It requires us to perceive and be anew.  To emit the frequency of well-being rather than be pulled out of our center each time we experience a new set of appearances.   

There are times when you being rested as the stable source that you are, that you must pick a bias.  Where you seemingly pick a side, preference or position on something in the world of appearances.  You may find yourself needing to express an underrepresented perspective to a group of people or find it of service to take a particular set of opinions and behaviors.  People who have not yet realized themselves will often confuse you as the ideas you are representing because again people tend to focus on appearances rather than essence.  Other people’s perception of you is simply them judging their own projection of you until they reach the point in their capacity to focus their awareness beyond appearances and know their own stability.  When they reach that point than all they will see is your essence and everything that they previously painted on top of you simply vanishes as a focal point.  It is for those that have found their own stability that the taking on of biases and preferences is simply in service to helping others realize that same source inside themselves.  

Being unswayed and stably present is one of, if not the biggest gift, that you can be and share with others that don’t know it yet.  Being that source of brilliantly bright stable safety allows everyone and everything around you to relax and rest.  You are not their source of stability, but rather you mirror their own stability to them so that they can experience it. 

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

Finding your Power

Finding your Power 

Moving beyond fear & accepting uncertainty

colorful color splash paintbrush rowWhen people perceive uncertainty fear often strikes.  The key here is perceive.  The truth is uncertainty is the perpetual state that we live in moment to moment.  Nothing is known until the moment that it is experienced and lived.  In this way we are always looking onto a blank canvas and waiting for the next stroke to appear.  What we frequently don’t realize is that we are the artist.  We are the one drawing each stroke and our perception is how we draw.  What we perceive is the picture of life we paint ourselves.  

It is in this way people are not living in the same reality.  There may be the surface appearance that we are all living in the same world, meaning we both see the same objects, and yet how people are experiencing this surface reality of objects is radically different.  It is truly in this way that you are the master-creator of your reality.  It is no joke or just new age spiritual nonsense that you are in charge, you actually are.

So the question becomes why then are we living so disempowered?  Why is it so hard for us to see, know and taste our power?  It is because the veil or covering of fear clouds our awareness and thus only allows us to perceive through its lens.  When fear is our lens we see/perceive threat.  Fear reinforces the idea of separation and promotes self-protection.  Fear is lack of faith and lack of trust.  It’s constantly doubting and questioning because it feels scared and alone.  This is the miserable state of being that most people are living in most of the time.  Know that ultimately fear is just one state of being from which you can choose, yet our tendency is to default to this program of fear whenever we perceive uncertainty.

On a lighter note this state of being of fear is what most of us came here to see through and overcome in order to help bring forth new possibilities of a reality that is lighter, rested, and more joyful for those that are ready for it.  Understand that not everyone is ready for a new reality and that is ok.  Sometimes holding onto patterns of fear are our only known way to create a sense of stability for ourselves.  The desire to hold onto the external sense of stability, as wavering and unstable as it is, outweighs accepting the truth of uncertainty.  However through accepting the truth of uncertainty you allow yourself to rest into it rather than fight it.  The relinquishment of your own inner resistance to uncertainty is what propels you into your power where you find true stability.  Stability in your own beingness that is independent of any circumstance, situation or condition.   

Changing your programming 

Being in the Driver’s seat

Hacker using the Internet hacked abstract computer server, databHow is it then that we change our default response?  How do we reprogram ourselves to a new patterned way of perceiving?  I wish I could give you some elaborately beautiful answer, but Nike said it best with their slogan just do it.  Understand that when we aren’t ready to change, change will seem really complex.  We will feel lost, confused, stuck, frustrated, and like things are impossible or hard to see.  We will think a lot, weigh options, blame, justify, rationalize, validate, but that is all preparation, or said another way, postponement of change.  When we are ready there are no more questions, we just simply see clearly and in that clear seeing we choose differently.  At the end of the day its really that simple.  

It takes however long it takes for us to stop postponing our own change.  It should in some way come as a relief to know this, as it means your ability to shift how you perceive and thus change your programming and the reality you experience is always up to you in each and every moment.  It should feel empowering to know this because it puts you back into the driver’s seat.  The truth is that you have always, always, always been in the driver’s seat, you just haven’t realized that you where.  This is what is called unconsciously creating our reality.  It is based on previous learning and experiences and it tends to just run on automatic in the background.  It doesn’t require much energy and feels somewhat static, which gives the illusion of a consistent or same world in which things can’t change, won’t change or don’t change.  Its not that things don’t change, it’s that you don’t change and when you don’t change the world looks the same day in and day out.  

The key here is that there is no right and no wrong to this.  There is not a right or wrong perception/experience.  There is only your preference.  What is your preference?  How do you want to perceive/experience?  Do you want to look through the lens of fear or the lens of safety?  You are not choice-less in the matter, you are the chooser.  When you get that life is not based on circumstances, but instead is based on you, you will have gotten what it means to live empowered.  

When you live empowered you are consciously, deliberately choosing your perception.  This means that you are free.  Free to decide for yourself.  Free to no longer allow circumstances, conditions or other people and their actions/non-actions decide for you.  No more having to play nice to hope to get what you want or control other peoples actions or responses to you.  Free to see how you desire to see.  Free to live in your preferred reality rather than the one that has been spoon fed to you.  Freedom from backlash or negative impact because you realize that you are in charge and that is true no matter what occurs.  This doesn’t mean that potential “negative” things won’t ever occur, but it does mean that you are the one deciding what you choose to term negative or not.   Again remember not everyone is ready for this level of freedom.  Not everyone wants it yet.  That is ok and perfect.  Do also realize that this freedom is always here, always present and always ready for you once you ready for it.  

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

Love as a Technology

Love as a Technology 

What is technology?

Concept of human intelligence.When most of us think about technology we think about devices, typically electronic devices.  Whether those devices are the personal equipment we use such as our computers or cell phones, the advancement of software and information systems, electric cars and other transportation devices, or medical equipment.  From our current perspective, technology is seen as advancements that assist us in being potentially more connected, creating opportunities for greater ease and efficiency, and opening up our external world in ways that create novel avenues of experiencing life.  

There is much debate about whether this advancement of technology is good or bad for us, but undeniably we can all agree that the advancement of technology has radially changed our lives on this planet and there is no doubt that technology will continue to improve and advance.  Our technological advancement focus has largely been on the design and creation of inanimate objects rather than focusing on advancements of our own neurological systems and software.  It is almost as if we have collectively failed to see that these bodies and nervous systems that we have, are some of the most advanced “pieces of technology” that are currently on this planet.  It’s too obvious in some ways, in plain sight but overlooked, and the focus has been on the advancement of lifeless objects rather than animate ones.  In this way we have given more power to inanimate objects to advance our life experiences rather than recognize the power of the most intimate animate object that is currently in our existence, our physical body.  

What is it like to see your body as technology?  In spiritual circles we often talk about the body being a vehicle for the soul.  Whatever information that a vehicle (or technology) is wired to tune into it will express.  Said another way, the wiring determines what information and energy can be experienced.  This is as true for our physical vehicles as it is for our inanimate vehicles as well.  Inherent in the system of Network is the advancement of the neurological architecture and circuitry so that you can tune into a wider range of frequencies that allow you to access different information.  This is one of things that makes Network unique among many systems out there.  Its focus is and has always been on advancement of the neurological system.  This is the advancement of our biological technology if you will.   

What’s Love got to do with it? 

The most advanced technology

Blue heart fantasy nebula in spaceThe uniqueness of animate vs. inanimate objects is the capacity for sensorial, emotional, mental and soulful experiences and expressions, rather than just basic input and output of commands.  The capacity and range of these body vehicles that we each have is extraordinary.  Part of the spiritual journey is the development of pathways through this vehicle that allow us more and more access to our soul, which is that next level of development beyond the mind.  So many of us that are here right now have the wiring and/or are creating the wiring, which is allowing for soul energy and information to come through our physical vehicles more and more, which is key to the integration and evolution of our biological advancement to the next level.  

Just as sensations are the information of the body, feelings the information of the emotional body, thoughts the information of the mind, love is the information of the soul.  Many people are attempting to use their mind to understand love or to understand the information contained at the next level of our development, yet the mind is not wired for that function.  This often creates a sense of frustration or hopelessness for many on a spiritual path who keep trying to use their mind to understand love.  This is also why dismantling the idea of you as a separate mind or person has to occur to some level before you can directly experience your soul otherwise you will just keep run up against the edge of your perceived sense of self as a separate person-mind not being able to “see” beyond it.  The primary force, if you will, that dismantles this idea of separateness is love.  

Love heals.  In this way love is a technology in itself.  The most powerful one in my opinion.  Love heals because its knows its already whole and perfect state.  We all know love heals and we preach the power of love, yet we have a tendency to forget it particularly when other parts of our system get activated.  When this happens all of our energy diverts into those other aspects and the information that we receive becomes about survival sensations, intense emotions or habitual thoughts depending on where we get looped.  

The conscious generation of forgiveness of everything and acceptance of all blows the heart open.  When the heart is open your system gets saturated in love.  This love then works on your system.  It creates new pathways, patterns and access points.  You then begin to access and express different information.  The information of love is community, togetherness, interconnectedness, wisdom, grace, awe, pure light, unity, and one.  

Love is the most advanced technology currently available to us.  Some of us have more access to it than others, simply meaning the pathways are more grooved in our systems to express it through this body vehicle, yet love is free, unbound and available to all who have the hunger for it.  I invite you to remember and reconnect to love as often as possible and recognize that this technology is the number one key to the advancement of this entire human race.  

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