Level III An Advanced Practice
Are you are at a stage of tending new insight, a new song or calling given to you, and find yourself seeking a contemplative space reverent to your creative process?
We can only know and feel humanity in the one human being which we have at hand. It is by penetrating deep into ourselves that we find our brothers in us—branches of the same trunk which can only touch each other by seeking their common origin.Salvador de Madariaga
The ultimate offering one gives to the world is in a single movement, a single moment of stewarding and cultivating the unique gifts given from the One who has no form, who can never really be known, who is everywhere and always for us all.
There is considerable discernment necessary before and during engagement at this level.
So, what must be discerned?
Discerning Accountability, Sincerity, and Desire for Spiritual Refinement: With confirming and accepting a spiritual gift comes discipline, accountability, a responsibility to steward and cultivate that gift with sincerity, a particular commitment of heart that is filled with real desire and hunger for spiritual refinement beyond any of the rewards that this world can tangibly offer (affirmation, pleasure, gain, status quo). It supercedes the “Not now, later” that is in us all, always, sometimes tamed, sometimes not so much. Spiritual direction helps hold and strengthen the concentration, away from evasion or procrastination, especially when old patterns sneak in and try to nudge you away with subtle yet profound invitations to enslavement.
Discerning Insight Into the Stakes: Understanding must be clear, although always uncertain, about one’s unique stake in taking ones’ own path. In other words, if you go off the path do you know what you have to lose? If your response is “nothing,” believing there is no stake in the engagement, there will be no outcome. The “something” is revealed in self knowledge born of humble self-reflective work and the capacity to courageously and compassionately know, with minimal distortion, one’s temperament, values, wounds, weaknesses, personality and life experiences.
Responding to a spiritual calling or seed is quite different from seeking self improvement or self-affirmation to attain an identity of success, worth, and belonging to this world. Rather, it is about building the relationship with one’s soul, the big Self, LIFE, HER, and soul journeying where the stakes continuously rise, bringing you into unknown terrain, naked of roles and identifications that belong to the world, not you yourself.
The little self (ego) needs to be strong and disciplined enough to be the student of the Self, the soul, and acquire real understanding. Books carrying the wisdom point and serve as tuning forks and projective screens until we arrive into real understanding, slow movements of heart understanding gained through practice. Heart understanding births essential humility, self-compassion, and contemplative practices. As we align to the Truth of our center in practice, we align to our becoming where hunger for more insight slowly burns away self-consciousness and self-interest.
If you understand even a small seed of what is being said here in your solar plexus, call for a consultation.
Has the Student Arrived? The student welcomes the myriad teachers, people or trials that show up unexpectedly to actively reality test existing self knowledge, resources, and sincerity. While the student doesn’t pursue adversity, the student shows up and makes good-faith attempts at real resolution, willing to experience tension, the creative tension that exists between conformity and change.
This tension carries the movements of perpetual imbalance dancing with the still point of balance. The task is observing and tolerating tension as it is, where it is, when it is without losing oneself or identity to them. This is a challenge we are perpetually succeeding and failing at in this dance of life. As we learn, the “status” of things becomes less and less relevant to awareness, the goal that threads us together into the quilt of transformational wisdom.
Emotional Toolbox: One must have the internal emotional capacity to tolerate some ambiguity, paradox, and process with a neutral teacher, bowing through the tensions of internal resistance with some claim to your Mysterious Holy Yes, Holy No, and Holy Maybe (which is not ambivalence).
It is a time to remember…. you are “not a mere thinking machine, set to prove a theory, nor an actor on the world stage, singing a well-built poem, well built at the price of many a compromise; but a whole human, with all your affirmations and all your negations, all the pitiless thoughts of a penetrating mind that denies, and all the desperate self-assertions of a soul that yearns for eternal life.”Salvador de Madariaga.