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

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

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

Becoming

Becoming 

Making the shift into who you desire to be

VanityYou have all probably heard the phrase: think it, feel it, become it.  Its often used to reference a process of transformation in becoming something that what we desire to become.  We use our thoughts to think it, then our feeling bodies to feel the qualities we want to become, and through feeling it we become it.  When we want to become something anew there is often also a process of simultaneously undoing who we have previously thought ourselves to be as frequently who we desire to be now is in conflict with what we currently think we are.  

Most of us aren’t even really aware of who it is that we currently are and even beyond that. that who we are is a choice.  We don’t realize that we carry many underlying assumptions and hidden beliefs about ourselves that are based on our life experiences.  If fact most all of who we think we are has been based on our life experiences.  How frequently does it seem that our life experiences have just happened to us, particularly early on in our lives when a large portion of our identity is formed, but even continuing through into the present?  Therefore how much do we just assume that this is “just who I am” and not question it or think that we could ever be different?  This is one of the conundrum’s of having lived disempowered and not realizing that we have always been in the driver’s seat.  If we begin to see/accept that we have chosen every single one of our life experiences (this occurs through acceptance of what was/is) then we can begin to see how our identity has been chosen by us.  This is a breath of fresh air because that means we can also choose anew at any moment.

The assumptions we have about who we are also come with a lens of perception.  That lens of perception becomes the filter with which we then view ourselves through.  Meaning say that we have an assumption that we are weak, strong, cold, warm, unloving, loving, kind, unkind, likable or unlikeable, etc. then we experience ourselves as those qualities and we also view our world from that perception of ourselves.  This is quite literally how we “create our reality”.  Our reality is created by who it is that we think we are and that lens of perception than filters everything we see.  This is why if we want to change our reality (i.e. experience of life) we must actually just change ourselves, as reality follows our perception which comes from our sense of identity.  

Final Becoming 

Relinquishing our role identities 

Surreal portraitOne of the ways to bring more awareness to the self-discovery process of who it is you believe yourself to be is to take a look at your roles, and the responsibilities and activities that come along with them.  These are often indicators as to who it is we think that we are.  Perhaps you are a business man/woman, a scientist, doctor, community leader, a father/mother, daughter/son, wife/husband, an organizer or planner, an athlete, outdoorsy, indoorsy, a reader, an adventurist, etc.  Looking at your roles provides insight into who it is you identify yourself as being.

Again who it is you identify yourself as being is how you will experience yourself and the world.  Let’s say for example that you have the role of being a “wife” or an “athlete”.  Often when we take on a role, we identify as being that role.  You think that you are a wife or an athlete and therefore that role becomes part of your identity.  Every role always comes with some level of expectation of how we must show up within that role.  That expectation could be created by us or have been created by others.  Either way if we’ve agreed with ourselves that a particular expectation lives within a certain role, and if we don’t fulfill those expectations, then we take it as a personal deficit.  

The truth is that we are not our roles, nor the responsibilities or activities that come along with them, but because we are merged as the role then when we don’t meet those role’s responsibilities or perform the activities associated with the role we feel bad about ourselves.  The self that we feel bad about is not our true self.  The self we feel bad about is only the one with which we’ve come to identify ourselves as through becoming the role.  To relinquish being merged with our role’s identities doesn’t mean that we can’t/don’t still participate in the responsibilities and activities that come along these roles.  It simply means that we don’t identify ourselves as the role.  The falling away of being merged with any and all roles is what allows you to taste and know your true self, which is beyond any and all roles.  This is the final becoming.  

Simply put the process is this.  Fully accept yourself as you think you are right now.  Investigate your roles and decipher who it is that you’ve created yourself to be.  See how that has filtered your entire perception of life.  Recognize the power of think it, feel it, become it.  Who is it that you desire to be now?  Through full acceptance of who you’ve been there is no longer resistance or incongruence with who you are wanting to become.  Think and feel your current desire of who you want to be often.  Realize that the final becoming is the embrace of all the things you have thought that you are not.  This allows you to realize that you are all and ultimately that you are the chooser/becomer of whatever becomes and not the becoming itself.

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

Claiming what you want

Claiming what you want 

Finding the fuel for change

28365465 - fictional forest hunter girl with bow and arrowThere are a thousand million reasons why we don’t claim what we want.  We think we aren’t worth it, can’t have it, don’t deserve it, are incapable of it, don’t know how to claim it, aren’t qualified, and on and on.  In fact frequently we keep our desires hidden even from ourselves.  We don’t want anyone to see what we really want because we feel shame, inadequacy or unworthy of what we desire.  Often underneath it all we feel that what we desire might un-include us from our groups, friends, families or society.  If we really investigate our relationship with desire we might even find that we have a negative relationship to desire itself.  As if desire is something bad or sinful.

We aren’t really taught to focus on what we desire.  Instead we are taught to “do the right thing”.  Meaning to do what everyone else does and what has been culturally agreed upon and accepted.  Most people are living in this way and they don’t even fully realize that they are not living in alignment or connected with what they desire.  If fact they’ve deluded themselves to whatever degree they’ve been able to that they actually want what they’ve been told they want without ever investigating for themselves if its actually true.  So it gets really tricky to see the truth of ourselves and sometimes the only way that you can notice that you aren’t living connected to your desire, but rather to simply “do” this thing called life, is a subtle sense of low energy.  Other signs are not feeling an aliveness inside, not feeling your heart open, noticing a flatness or dullness or feeling unable to connect to yourself or others fully.  

Really what needs to happen is that you need to begin to see how the activities you are currently engaged in, people/groups you hang out with or ways in which you spend your day to day activities don’t resonate for you.  It may not be that all things, people or activities fall into that category, but if you begin to really honestly take a look you will find some that don’t resonate and yet you are continuing to engage with them. 

Committing to yourself 

Energizing effort

warriorIf you are really honest you should begin to feel a sense of frustration with engaging in those things which don’t resonate for you.  Often what happens is people get to this point of feeling frustration (or sense of feeling stuck) and perceiving the frustration as bad, so they look for ways to alleviate this tension that is building.  They might watch a movie, play a video game, eat some food, drink some wine, have sex, scroll Facebook, etc.  They now feel less tension, but they also have less energy for change.  Alleviating the build up of tension will always drop the energy that is available to you to move towards what it is you truly desire.  

With this drop in energy your consciousness also drops into a state of powerlessness or helplessness to be able to do anything about your own life.  You actually believe that you can’t do anything.  That its just hopeless and quite possibly will just always be this way.  Essentially that you can’t change, and you really feel that you changing is not up to you.  That its up to some external circumstances or forces, and that unless the circumstances (which include your body) somehow magically changes, you’re doomed.  This is disempowerment.  This is disconnection.  This is lack of awareness of your self.  And it fucking sucks.  

Moving from perceiving powerlessness to realizing that you are the one with the power is a tremendous shift in consciousness and energy.  When you are brutally honest with yourself and claim what you want the power arises, the energy arises, the determination arises.  You become unstoppable.  Its going to happen.  There is no longer any doubt or question about it.  Yes there is work, yes there is stuff to be done, but rather than it feeling like draining effort it becomes energizing effort.  Effort which produces what you desire, which is always fulfilling rather than depleting even if the physical body gets tired.  This is the difference between acting from your alignment/desires versus working from a place of nonalignment with self.  When you are out of alignment everything will feel like massively hard work even if its just cleaning out your refrigerator or taking a shower.  When you’re in alignment the focus is no longer on the activity, but on your desire and alignment.  The activity itself becomes a non-issue and your desire the only thing that matters.

Discover what you truly desire.  Bring it into focus multiple times a day.  Speak it out loud.  Share it will people even if you feel timid or unworthy of it.  This will bring it more and more into the field of your awareness and strengthen your commitment to you.  

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

Everything is energy

Everything is energy 

Beyond perceiving meaning

Sacred geometry symbols and elements background. Alchemy, religiEverything is energy.  We have all heard this, but what exactly does that mean and how do you perceive it?  Well the truth is you are already perceiving energy everywhere.  Even though things may seem solid, physical and real to you as you look at and feel them, the truth is that you are really just looking at and feeling energy.  Its simply that you have been taught labels and given things meaning so what you perceive is those labels and meanings rather than what is actually there.  If you suspended all of your labels and meanings all you would see is light (aka energy) because that is what everything is.

Due to the fact that we have all been conditioned to death with meaning since the moment we were born, and most of us seek more meaning because that’s what we been taught to do, we are constantly creating separation where there is none.  Any time that you create meaning you create distinction and thus separation.  Separation equals suffering.  Ultimately nothing is inherently separate, you just keep creating that illusion in your own mind through your incessant meaning making, and thus create suffering for yourself.

Many times when people get interested in energy, healing or subtle energetics, they try to see something other than what is.  Like some other magical thing is supposed to appear to them.  Typically, at least in my experience, this strategy is not helpful.  You are not trying to see something other than what is there, you are just seeing what is there by forgetting what you’ve learned to see.  This may seem like semantics to you, but I assure that it is not.  When we believe appearances we are lost to seeing what actually is, as appearances are simply things we’ve labelled as something in particular.  

I have found frequently that as people go through this awakening of sorts of beginning to perceive what they label as “energy”, that they make it another object.  Essentially what they have done is given some meaning to the “energy” they are now sensing/perceiving and this births a whole set of ideas of good/bad energy or trying to avoid, move, or manipulate energy somehow.  They’ve taken that same meaning based strategy and pasted it onto the more formless aspect of being that is coming into their awareness.  So even though they may be learning how to perceive beyond certain meanings that they have given to things, their stage of developmental consciousness progression has not yet shifted beyond separation.  What I’m saying here is that being able to perceive “energy” in a more formless state does not make you more evolved than some other person who does not yet think that they perceive energy.   What really matters is making the shift in your awareness from perceiving separation into perceiving inseparable unity.    

Your energy bodies

Unwinding and unbinding

Outer space. Meditation.This brings us to your energy body.  We all have multiple layers to our energy body.   The first layer, if you will, is the physical body (which we are most identify as), then a subtle body (which is associated with our emotional body), beyond that a mental/wisdom body, beyond that a soul/bliss body, and beyond that the one body/being or pure awareness.  All of these bodies are accessible and perceivable to anyone, each one begin more expansive and formless then the one previous to it.  The degree of relevance for your journey at this time, and your desire to perceive the various level of your bodies, will determine your experience of them.

The subtle body, which again is related with the emotional body, is often what is waking up into awareness when people talk about being able to perceive energy as if its another object out there.  People often report seeing colors or visions, feeling vibrations or densities, hearing things and the like.  Essentially we might put all of this into the category of extrasensory perception.  It is also not uncommon that as people’s systems unwind tension that they begin to perceive in this way.  The more that we perceive and create meanings and labels, the more our spinal cords and nervous systems respond to those perceptions, and develop spinal distortion/tension/twisting patterns through which then experience the world through.  Those patterns become the filters through which we perceive everything.  We often simply experience this as tension, pain or the inability to fully relax and we really don’t know what else is going on underneath it all.  

Tension patterns keep us more bound, and thus perceiving only the physical appearance/label of things.  As we unwind and unbind, things begin to lose some that seeming solidity that we once thought that they had.  The less that we can create the tendency to label things the more our awareness will be able to progress further into our more expansive bodies.  Its important to remember that no awareness of self or of your various bodies is necessarily better or worse, its all inclusive of the previous layers.  It is however helpful to cultivate a desire inside yourself to experience yourself beyond and beyond and beyond if that so resonates with you, as it is through that desire that the path of further awakening will reveal itself to you.  

So I invite you to explore meaninglessness.  See what it is like to not know what it is you are looking at or touching.  Begin to empty yourself out of all your learned content about what is, who you are, and appearances.  Expect nothing, and that which is already, always there will be seen.  Remember energy/light is all there is, but don’t hold onto that as a concept, simply remember it and let it go.  Recognize that distinctions are illusionary and separation has never existed and you will begin to directly experience and know that world of inseparable aliveness of which you are.    

Dr. Amanda Hessel, DC, Network Chiropractor Boulder Colorado

True healing

True healing 

Learning how to un-control your experience

healing and transformationOften when we experience some type of dysfunction in our body our first response is panic or fear as we feel the threat of how things have been functioning being compromised.  We may feel the fear of loss of a certain way of living or being in this world, which is currently not acceptable to us.  Our ideas about ourselves and who we are get shaken up as this force of instability that we call disease, pain and dysfunction arises in our experiencing.  

In response to this potential loss of ourselves as we’ve known ourselves to be we often go into management mode in order to make sure that we can keep the sense of self that we’ve learned ourselves to be.  In this phase we look for the modalities, treatments and people that will fix us so that we can return to the life and who we knew ourselves to be before this situation arose.  Sadly many people stay in this phase of trying to control and manage their experience of themselves for the duration of their lives and never truly find acceptance for themselves as they are now.  Instead they stay stuck in an outdated version of themselves that has come and gone.  

Due to the fact that many people stay here trying to live as this past version of self, controlling and managing every aspect of their life, they don’t transform and come to know the new self that has emerged.  Their focus is in the rearview mirror so to speak and they keep looking backwards rather than seeing where they are at right now.  With this they will often feel sad, like they aren’t making progress, and like it takes so much effort to maintain everything.  They may frequently feel low energy, be resentful of all the compromises and the degree of vigilance that they have to have in order to maintain their previous sense of self which they are still holding onto as who they are.  They simultaneously continue to fear the unknown, fear who they would be if they accepted what and who is here now.  This is often too destabilizing for our sense of self and so we will fight tooth and nail to keep who and what we’ve known ourselves to be.   

Beyond controlling

Mastering healing & transformation

chain disconnectedWhat does is take to get beyond controlling your experience?  The first step is full acceptance of what is here now.  Zero transformation can occur if you don’t do this first fundamental step.  You will always feel like you are fighting something and “transformation or healing” will feel effortful because you are literally in a state of resistance to what is.  Acceptance is often the hardest because it will feel like defeat to your mind.  Like you are losing and something else is winning.  Again this is only because you have been holding onto a previous version of yourself that is no longer really here or relevant for you anymore.  You may still have attachment and desire for that previous version of yourself, not ready to let it go, even though its already gone.  It only stays “alive” through your mental clinging to it.

Once you accept what is, healing and transformation can now effortlessly occur.  This does not mean that there is lack of activity or doing, its simply that it becomes very clear to you exactly what you need to do, what methods will support you as you embrace this new version of yourself that is here now, and what changes you need to make in your life.  It becomes crystal clear because you are no longer in resistance/control mode.  There is no longer this aimless searching where you keep hoping that the next thing you try will fix you and you will feel like your previous self again.  The resentment and effort is gone and you are simply doing what you must do.  

What I’ve discovered through all my years of healing and transformative type of work is that when disease, pain and dysfunction arises it is always a source of destabilization to help us wake up to more of ourselves.  We live in these limited bubbles of knowing ourselves and when we come to edge of a bubble that we’ve been living in that bubble needs to somehow burst.  If we are really comfortable in our bubble it is harder for us to want to deliberately pop it and so life gives us situations (disease, pain, accidents, etc.) to make us a little less comfortable so that we will pop that limited bubble that we were previously living in.  In this way we go beyond, stretch into more of ourselves, and into a range of ourselves that we previously weren’t experiencing.  

This process is typically never comfortable.  I believe that is done purposely.  One of the gifts of having this human incarnation is that there is often a massive amount of discomfort that comes along with it.  This discomfort gives us the opportunity to accelerate our soul’s journey at exponential rates, but this requires that we walk towards the discomfort rather than palliate or try to get rid of it.  The more willing we are to let go of what is gone and accept the new, the more versions and flavors of ourselves we will get to experience and play with in this single lifetime.  Healing and transformation will be a game that we master.  We will become adepts of listening, moving with life, learning what we came here to learn and embodying the range of who and what we are.  

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

Frequency & your body

Frequency & your body 

The stuff you’re made of

silhouette of virtual human on brain delta wave form 3d illustraThere are two primary assumptions that most people make and that they don’t even realize are assumptions.  The first is that most of us tend to think that we are our bodies.  The second assumption is that our physical bodies are solid.  Although physics has demonstrated that neither of these assumptions are accurate, our belief systems have not caught up with the facts.  

The questions then arise as to what are our physical bodies made up of if they are not solid, what seemingly “holds our bodies together” and what are we really if not our body?  Our bodies are mostly empty space which is packed full of energy.  There are forces of attraction and repulsion which organize the space of our body into its particular configurations.  These forces which configure the body are based on both our individual and the collective belief systems, or said another way, form follows awareness (aka infinite intelligence).  

In your more essential nature you are pure light without a particular form.  Light is frequency and frequency is sound, some in the human audible range and some not.  When you incarnate you take that pure light frequency wave that you are and organize it into a particular configuration, which on this planet we call a body.  Again that organization occurs through individual and collective agreed upon belief systems and structures.  Now you have seeming form and that form is visible.  Some forms are less “physical” but still have some level of form.  We tend to believe only what our physical eyes can see, yet this is a limited range of the spectrum of light.  Simply because the human eyes cannot perceive a particular form, does not mean that the form is any less real, just simply less perceivable to us from our current perspective.  

You can think of the most amount of light packed into space as having the highest density of light.  When things are highly dense with light they have less physical, and thus visible form.  The less density of light that is packed into a configuration the more a physical form is seen.  Imagine yogis and monks that meditate their entire life.  They clear out their emotions, thoughts and beliefs, emptying their physical form of “heavier” substance and thus allow increasing light density to come through this physical form vehicle.  This is where things like levitation, becoming more translucent in appearance, telepathy and such come into place.   

Formlessness

Bringing awareness before form

You are billions, billions, billions times more powerful than you currently realize.  Since we don’t know our power we have to find power in things that seem to be other to us.  Examples of this can be seen as taking a drug, using some type of machine or device, or even thinking that some other person can fix us or is more magical than us.  This is called outsourcing our power.  This isn’t bad or wrong, it is a developmental stage, its just not the full picture.  The truth is that you can never really disown your power, you can only project it onto other things in your reality.  In the bigger picture all of those things are you anyways, its just simply that this individual configuration that you identify as you often times gets left out of knowing its power, so we can feel powerless.  Powerlessness is simply not knowing who or what we really are.   

Abstract audio spectrum waveformWhat if you shift your identity back to being light before the form?  What if you begin to bring your more formless nature into the forefront of your focus rather than on the form of your body that you physically see?  In my experience most of us are simply not bringing awareness to our formless-light-energetic-frequency nature; no wonder we feel so disconnected!  For some people it may be that no one has ever pointed our formless nature out to us so we don’t even know what else besides our physical form to bring into the forefront of our awareness.  For others the formless has too much to do with God, religion, spirit or other things not scientifically proven and we just don’t believe it (hence our beliefs creating what we think we are and see).  When the focus is purely on the physical we truly are lost, don’t know what we are and are completely powerless because we are acting from being circumstance (in this case our physical body) rather than the creator of circumstance.  You are the creator of your physical body not the physical body itself!

When I use sounds, tones or “languages” in working with you I am connecting with that more formless, light frequency wave that I am and that you are.  Through this I am amplifying and bringing that truer aspect of you (us) into greater awareness so that it can be known.  We often need multiple touches of finding connection to ourselves here because our default conditioning and the default conditioning of our collective conscious is so strongly form focused.  With increasingly more touches to this aspect of ourselves we begin to come to know it more and more and overtime our identity shifts from physical, body me focused into light, formless, we focused.  The more we come to know ourselves as the light wave frequency that we are the less we perceive separation, the more the nonphysical opens up in our awareness and less individual person centric we become.  

Touching into this aspect of ourselves can come in multiple ways.  It can come through using the power of our thoughts to bring focus to it.  It can come through identifying and destabilizing beliefs that are out of alignment with knowing ourselves at this level.  It can come through feeling the qualities of formless nature.  It can come through someone knowing their formless nature and thus seeing and mirroring your formless nature back to you.  With multiple tastes and the natural unfolding you begin to rest more and more into knowing yourself as the light before the form rather than the form itself.  

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

Physiology follows perception

Physiology follows perception

The filters to perception

filterWe are all familiar with the mind-body connection.  We conceptually know that beliefs, thoughts and emotions effect our body.  Something we think can produce tension in our muscles or pain in our stomach.  With this knowing many of us still do not investigate our beliefs when tension, pain or dysfunction arises in the body.  Instead we go to some physical thing that we are doing or not doing, such as our diet, exercise, or sleep that must be the culprit.  

Why is it that this is our first reaction?  The truth is most people are not adept at paying attention to their feelings and thoughts or investigating their beliefs.  Instead the relationship to feelings and thoughts is typically only to try and stop the thoughts during meditation or figure out how to get relief from feelings that don’t feel good.  Most of us don’t automatically go towards feeling the uncomfortable feeling, noticing our thoughts or investigating what is creating the feeling or thought in the first place, which is the belief.  If we did we wouldn’t need to stop our thoughts or resist our feelings anymore, instead we would get to the core or their creator, our perception.  

Perception is the lens with which we look at life.  The filters for our perception are our beliefs.  If you imagine clear perception (before any beliefs) you would simply have pure light, or pure awareness.  Think of this as your primordial state before you learned anything.  You were totally clear, pure, innocent, light.  You can see this light in newborn babies or baby animals.  That’s why we love them so much!  You will also notice in babies that they are not resisting their uncomfortable feelings, but instead simply expressing their discomfort.  Likewise they are not thinking yet as their mental faculties are not yet developed, so they have no thoughts to resist or contend with either.  In fact they are a total blank state, or pure in their perception.

As life progresses we learn things from others and in that learning we develop filters (aka beliefs) that begin to color our perception.  Instead of our perception being clear it now bends or distorts creating ripples in the fabric of our clear awareness.  This is how we begin to create our reality so to speak.  Our filters determine and decide what we see, how we see and that quite literally create the reality that we perceive.  That reality that we perceive then obeys the laws of our filters (beliefs).  It literally can not.   

Perception is chemistry 

Identified as a body

10618311 - test tubes in the laboratory on a gray backgroundOk now that we understand perception lets tie this back into our physiology, our chemistry and the experience of having a body.   Depending on your particular filters that color your perception you create not only your reality at large, but also your body and how your body functions (its physiology and chemistry).  From this perspective you can ultimately see how you are the creator.  Now most of us don’t really know that we are the creator, instead we think we are a body, but really we are the perception that creates the body.   Take a moment and let that really register and sink in.  

Now when you are identified as a body (instead of the perception that creates the body) you feel powerless or victim to how the body expresses.  You have to wait or try and figure out what the perfect conditions are that will hopefully support your health and vitality.  This comes back to why our focus first goes to the things in our environment that we can somehow physically manipulate or change.  Our hope is that by manipulating or changing these things that our physical body and physiology will change too.  Now sometimes this works, or works for a little a while, and sometimes it doesn’t.  When it seems to not work and we have tried it enough times to realize it isn’t working, we may get curious about what else is creating this situation in our body/physiology.  Here is when people may start to explore their emotions, become aware of repressed emotions, things they have buried and haven’t allowed themselves to feel, and they begin to feel them.  This is a step closer to empowerment because you are getting more subtle than just working with physical manipulation of objects and things in your environment.  You are including more of you in the process and that comes with a sense of increasing empowerment rather than simply having to wait for some physical thing to change.  

Often once you have been able to access some of the more deeply stored emotions you begin to have more inner space and with that the ability to become more aware of your thoughts.  You may start to notice the direct connection between a thought that you have, how that makes you feel and the effects it has on your body/physiology.  Once this is realized the next step is to investigate the thought and see what belief (or filter) created that thought.  Say for example you recognize that you have the thought “I’ve done something wrong” and it comes with the feeling of overwhelm and the sensation of gripping in your gut.  If you have this much awareness you can now investigate the belief that created the thought “I’ve done something wrong”.  In investigation you realize that you have a filter/belief that shines the color of there being “rightness and wrongness.”  When you can see at this level you can even begin to then transcend the belief itself and return into the primordial, pure awareness state, before anything was learned or created into manifestation.  It is from this place in awareness that you can dissolve filters and begin to re-create a new reality and a new body/physiology for yourself.  This is the ultimate empowerment because you are now in your true state rather than identified with your body.  When you are identified with your body it is very hard to make changes in your chemistry/physiology without the use of physical agents.  Once you become increasingly subtle in your awareness, starting with emotions, than thoughts, beliefs and finally pure awareness itself, shifting the physical manifestation becomes easier and easier.  Your need to rely on external agents become less and less.  

It is my theory that one of the biggest reasons why conditions, pains and disease manifest in the physical body/physiology is to help us realize more of what we are and more of our power.  They do this though showing us where we are still misidentified as something other than the pure awareness (which is so clearly seen in a baby) and where we are giving away our power.  When we can learn to use things that arise in our physical body as teachers in this way we can greatly accelerate our journey into remembering, reconnecting and embodying our truest Self or identity while here in this body on this planet.  

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