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Some thoughts on Yogi Bhajan’s transgressions

 
We live in a time where secrets don’t stay secret for too long. Thankfully, this also means that the spiritual scene all over the globe has begun to face its own collective shadows, addressing allegations against some spiritual teachers who seem to have abused their powers and who seem to have violated their student’s boundaries left and right. Sadly, the Kundalini Yoga scene is no exception: About a week ago, a thorough report on Yogi Bhajan’s sexual and spiritual transgressions was released (click here for the link, if you’d like to read it). It’s quite an explicit document, and the ways in which he seems to have abused his position as a spiritual leader to manipulate and mistreat members of his personal staff become quite apparent throughout the report. The document cites both victims as well as people who are trying to rescue his reputation, and interestingly, both sides paint a similar picture, describing his domineering, authoritarian character in detail.

When I began practicing Kundalini Yoga a few years after his death, I didn’t know anything about the man, Yogi Bhajan. I had been looking for ways to deal with chronic pain, and a friend recommended Kundalini Yoga as a type of yoga “that does things to you, energetically, and it’s hard to explain. It just works.” Which was exactly how I experienced it. So, I only ever saw Kundalini Yoga as a collection of energy work tools, and I never followed the religious side of Yogi Bhajan’s teachings. Also, I guess I was lucky to receive my training from teachers who refrained from any kind of cult-like reverence when it came to him as a person.

Reading the report on his transgressions must be hard for those who saw him as their personal guru. Apparently, he was one of those spiritual teachers who didn’t live by his own teachings, and I feel for those who are now questioning everything.

Sexual violence is a beast, and unfortunately, Yogi Bhajan was one of many spiritual teachers who were fascinated by its darkness. I’ve worked with several clients over the years who suffered from abuse at the hands of their own spiritual teachers, and clearly, there’s still a lot of work to be done if we truly want to transmute the energies of sexual violence on this planet.

My heart goes out to all who trusted their spiritual teachers and had their trust betrayed. Life is not fair, sometimes.

#YogiBhajan
#KundaliniYoga
#sexualviolence

Image: A card drawn from Danielle Laporte’s Truthbomb Deck Vol. 1: “Freedom worships inquiry” (no affiliation, not sponsored)

Are you using your Inner Wisdom System?

Many spiritual teachers predicted that the years between 2012 and 2038 would be a transition into a whole new era.

Our consciousness would become more sophisticated, they said. And we would shift into a more ecologically healthy way of being. Life would become more peaceful, we would connect with our soul families, and we would all become the proud owners of some excellent intuitive gifts that would help us create a whole new world built on justice and freedom. 

For a while, I just assumed that this meant that we would get easy access to our intuitive wisdom all by ourselves, and that we would then automatically download our personal goals for this lifetime… and that we would basically all become happier and happier, in the process.

For some of us, this is exactly what has been happening.

For others – and I think this is the majority – it’s been different: We know something needs to change, and so we’ve been practicing Yoga and meditation, we’ve read all the wisdom teachings to get some answers, we might even have gone through some spiritual training or other, and we think we know how our intuition works.

But then again, the results we are getting from doing all of that inner work haven’t been what we thought they would be.

Our minds are still stressed, and we can’t really tell if we’re headed in the right direction. Our relationships haven’t improved much. Our intuitive guidance often doesn’t give us any clear answers. And we are not exactly sure how we can keep holding our inner strength when every week, there’s another major social, ecological or personal challenge to be dealt with (COVID-19, neo-fascists trying to undermine democracy, heat waves happening in Siberia and all across the globe… the list seems endless).

In other words, life has not magically turned into the love-fest those spiritual teachers saw coming.

Or, rather: Not, yet.

And I think that’s because many spiritual teachings are missing one important step: Customization.

It’s not enough to know that there’s a third eye in you, which, theoretically, can pick up on intuitive guidance. You need to know how, exactly, your inner wisdom is speaking to you, personally, and how you can differentiate between a thought and your intuitive insights. You need to have reference points for what your inner guidance sounds like, and whether it’s coming from your guides, your soul, your heart, or some other place like the Earth, or your future self.

The times we are living in are an invitation to begin creating a personal relationship with all of these elements that make up your inner wisdom system.

And to get answers to some big questions:

  • What is the concrete mission my soul has given me, for this lifetime?
  • Which part of my inner wisdom system can help me make important decisions from a place of integrity and self-knowing, when life is as unpredictable as it is right now?
  • How can I ground my closest relationships in love+trust+respect and transform them into mutually enriching partnerships and friendships that will survive any chaos?
  • And how can I stay connected to my inner guidance, use its wisdom to consciously evolve with a rapidly changing world, and contribute to creating a better life for us all, without burning out in the process?

These are some of the questions you should be asking yourself right now.

I would like to invite you to have a look at my new session cycle, “Your Inner Wisdom System”, and see if you feel that my work could support you in these times. We don’t have to start with a full-on, 12-session cycle. A single session or a 4-session package can be a powerful beginning.

Here’s the link:

Your Inner Wisdom System

If you like what you see, meet me for a free intro conversation via Zoom, and let’s ask your inner wisdom system to give you some clarifying insights into a particular question that is bugging you, right now. This is how all of my coaching relationships start.

Reply to this e-mail if you are interested, and I’ll send you a link to my online scheduling system, where you can choose an appointment for our intro conversation that suits you.

I look forward to talking to you, soon!

Much love,

Lilly

How long until I’m fully healed?

Healing doesn’t happen over night. Until it does.

We evolve in spirals. Arriving at the same point of realisation, again and again. Once you’ve decided to do some inner work, that same realisation will look more polished, and sparklier, and more interesting, after every round. It will start to feel like relief, and crispness, and freedom. Because every time you arrive anew, you will see a new possibility for choosing a sweeter mode of being where there was none, before.

And all of the internal shifts you have taken will have been necessary stepping stones for you to arrive at this exact view point.

And all of the energy blocks you have released along the way will have made lifting yourself up those steps easier and easier.

And all of those late nights when all you could do was to inch your way through this obstacle course called life, will have been life-giving.

As you keep doing your inner work, you will notice how, at some point, an old emotional wound will have healed. As if over night. And you will find that you’ve moved yourself another round up the spiral.

 

 

#innerwisdomsystem
#energywork
#healing

On being in relationship with money

(Excerpt from a recent client Session, shared with permission)

Look at your relationship with money as having three dimensions:

One, there’s your overall relationship with money. That’s your general “feel” for it, and your personal history with it, which has been developing over many lifetimes and which will have given you experiences spanning across the whole spectrum – from starving-poor to beautifully-well-off.

Two, there’s the practical dimension: That’s your ability for making money, and your preferences for implementing certain business models (if you’re self-employed) or for taking on certain jobs you feel drawn to. This includes your desires on how you want to be spending your money. Oddly enough, this dimension is very closely linked to who you are at soul-level: The energetic structure of your soul can tell you a lot about the practical realities that exist between you and money. 

And three, there are your personal edges when it comes to money. Those edges might be quite subtle, like that small flame of anger that sends a waft of smoke through your system when it’s time to do your book-keeping, and you just don’t feel like doing it. Our personal edges usually form around the tasks we absolutely have to do in order to keep our money flow going, and we may never actually like doing them. But they are a reality, and the act of regularly overcoming those edges can become a natural habit. Like brushing your teeth. 

There’s a lot of energy work that can be done in order to clean up all three dimensions, and all three can become beautifully clear for you. Ideally, throughout this process, you will notice that you start to feel better about money in general (dimension one), you will fall in love with the way you are making money (dimension two), and you will regularly engage in a passionate dance with your personal money edges, swirling around the flames of your emotional fires together (dimension three).

Which money dimension feels easy and flow-y to you?

Which one feels just about ok?

Has one of those dimensions been leaving you feeling hopeless?

How could you start engaging with that particular money dimension in a new way, this year?

 

#energywork
#innerwisdomsystem
#intuitiveguidance
#money 

Healing your inner children

Healing yourself can start by healing your younger selves. Give your inner children – of all ages – the love and care and truth and beauty they were missing, growing up. Take their needs seriously, and let them share their strengths with you.

Ask your inner two-year-old about boundaries. She knows all about that No.

Let your inner four-year-old show you how her Guides, Angels and Healing Beings are helping her cope, in this strange world we are living in.

Let your inner seven-year-old decide who she wants to be friends with. She knows how to read her heart.

Ask your inner 12-year-old if she would like to share her deep thoughts with you.

And let your inner 17-year-old tell you about all the ways she would like to express her soul and herself.

Here’s another sweet practice you can try:

Use your imagination to build each of your younger selves a new home, and let them furnish and decorate their new places in any way they choose. Don’t judge them for what they want to put into their new rooms, and watch how they express themselves through interior design. See how they carefully place their most cherished items within reach, and sense-see-feel how much love goes into each decision. Let them make themselves comfortable, and give them room to explore and to change anything they like, as often as they like.

It’s your imagination, where everything is possible – and where your younger selves can fully be themselves.

Enjoy!

 

If you need any help with this, let’s work together.
Helping your younger selves heal is part of what I do.

 

#emotionalhealing
#innerwisdomsystem

How to hold your inner strength

The more things are being driven into chaos all around us, the more important it is for each of us to be able to draw from our own inner strength. And because there is so much violence and fear that is getting swirled up, it can be difficult to access that kind of strength within ourselves.

Holding (and using) your spiritual strength is like the ability to control your breathing: It is like using all of those small muscles in your torso to draw in a full deep breath, expanding your ribcage and your belly, and to then let your lungs let out the air again, in a steady and controlled stream, until your solar plexus softens and gets ready to draw the next breath in.

Some energetic part of you knows how to pull your inner strength into yourself, how to hold it, and how to then release it and use it, in a very deliberate way.

For some of us, using our spiritual power means to hold our ground in a heated argument and to channel peace – even though we’re scared – and to direct all parties involved towards focusing on a specific solution to a specific problem. 

For some of us, using our spiritual power means to move with our creative instincts and to keep working on a project until it feels right, before we release it – even though fear would rather have us put out a half-finished version, instead, just to be done with it.

For some of us, using our spiritual power means to trust our intuitive senses and to gently hold space when our relationship grids are evolving into a new direction, even when our PTSD triggers would have us fall into fight, flight, freeze or fawn at the slightest sign of distress.

For many of us, it is very difficult to reconnect to that kind of inner strength.

We try to take a deep breath inwards, but our diaphragm keeps trembling, and it feels like our lungs are not filling up the way we would need them to.

And we try to push our fear-based stress responses against an ever-changing world, because we haven’t learned how to trust ourselves.

We can’t remember what it is like to let our spiritual muscles hold us, move us, keep us safe.

Try this

Developing your ability to draw from your inner spiritual strength takes practice. And you won’t be able to get there by yourself. We need each other to become ourselves. So, here are my two cents: A list of transformational practices that can help you hold your inner strength – and if you need support with any of those practices, contact me. It’s what I do. 

  • Develop a daily spiritual practice that makes sense to you, and keep it up.
  • Do the necessary healing work and release as much personal and collective trauma from your system as possible, until you feel like yourself again. This is the most difficult part. And unfortunately, it will cost you: Time, energy, money, sometimes relationships, and many illusions. 
  • Rebuild your personal boundaries – on an energetic level first, and then through action and words. Be mindful of what you will and won’t allow to happen in your relationships with other people, and be as good a friend to yourself as you are a friend to those you love.
  • Learn how to hold your personal space, and use your breath and your intent to regularly center and ground yourself into that line of light that flows up and down your spine, down through the heart of earth, and up through the center of your soul – in an endless loop, going up and down. It is your lifeline to the love and nourishment coming to you from Earth, and it is a direct hotline to your soul’s intuitive wisdom and power.
  • Get clear on who you are, at soul level, and then translate that expertise into your human life. This can be tricky, because we tend to be a bit blind to ourselves. So, find someone who can help you understand yourself. The clearer you get on who you are, the more you will be able to fully engage with your gifts and talents and bring them to life. 
  • Stay focused on your own experience, and stay close to the people you trust.
  • Keep building a world you would like to live in. And find a bigger cause you can support, outside of what you can do, as an individual.
  • Don’t get discouraged if you can “only” work on one single issue to help create a better world. That one single issue will touch many lives. Keep it up. Ask your soul to let you know how you can use your creativity to unfold that one single issue, in the best way possible, and then fill it with life.

 

Do you need help with any of these practices? Contact me. It’s all part of my work.

 

#innerwisdomsystem
#peaceperspective

 

Photo: Lilly Mackuth 
(from my “Symmetric Light Series”)

 

A state of overwhelm

Over the past couple of months, I have taken some time to learn more about nervous system regulation, which can help to address states of shut-down and burn-out, triggered by chronic stress or PTSD.
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And the more I learned, the more I could sense the deep feeling of overwhelm that seems to paralyse and frighten so many of us, sending us into low energy states and shut-down, or hightened energy states and burn-out, when it comes to the current developments on this planet. Some call it a “trauma-spell”, and it affects individuals as well as the collective.
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We feel overwhelmed when it comes to the current crash of our natural environment, we feel overwhelmed when we observe the current political shifts towards far-right extremism, and on top of it all, there’s the overwhelm that shows up when we face difficulties in our personal lives – in our relationships with others, and in our relationship with ourselves.
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And the more I learned about the energetic expressions of that overwhelm, the more I could also sense that working towards establishing a sense of self-trust, equilibrium and solution-orientedness can seem utterly impossible, when you’re in the thick of it.
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Which is why, in every one of my client Sessions, I consciously apply Yogic tools at the beginning of each Session (and sometimes throughout) to help my client get into a state of balance and ease, in order to help them tune into their intuitive guidance system.
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Because in that state of balance, where we have access to our #innerwisdomsystem – that’s where we can sense-see solutions to what is keeping us shut down, or burned out. That’s where clarity lives.

Some simple self-regulating tools

When you find yourself in such a state of overwhelm, there are two quite simple things you can try: Singing, and dancing. Both singing and dancing can help to regulate low energy states and shut-down (i.e. hypoarousal), as well as hightened energy states and burn-out (i.e. hyperarousal).*
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When you’re in a low energy state (i.e. when your autonomic nervous system feels frozen and shut down), your mind may be thinking thoughts like “I don’t know what to do, I don’t know where to start, it’s all too much”. Your body may feel paralysed and your head is probably quite foggy, eyelids heavy, focus: gone.
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Try dancing.
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It’s the simplest way to bring some warmth into your frozenness. If dancing seems to be too much of a stretch, start by wiggling your toes to a piece of music. HipHop or R&B are perfect for this. Get one part of your body to move to the music, then another. If you can, stand up and rhythmically shift your weight from one leg to the other, and back again. Left and right, left and right. Keep your knees slightly bent, and let your body become one with the rhythm. Keep moving, even if it’s difficult at first. Left, and right. Move for 10 minutes at a time, and see how you feel.
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When you’re in a hightened energy state (i.e. when your autonomous nervous system is in fight-or-flight mode, racing towards burnout), you may be thinking thoughts like “There’s so much I need to do, I haven’t done enough, I can’t stop working, I have to do more”, and your body probably feels antsy and restless. Your eyes are wide open (too wide, actually), and your whole system feels stressed. Which is not the kind of mood that would usually have you burst into song. But that’s exactly what can help you get back into a state of equilibrium:
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When you start to sing, you start to regulate your autonomic nervous system – if the style you’re singing in elongates your outward breath.
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So, find a slow, gentle song that has you singing long phrases on long outward breaths. The mantra Ra Ma Da Sa by Snatam Kaur is perfect for this. Sing along for 10 minutes and see how you feel.
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*Obviously, these tips do not replace medical care nor therapy or healing modalities. Please contact your medical doctor, your mental healthcare specialist or your spiritual healer if your symptoms persist. 
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#innerwisdomsystem

Photo: hybrid via Unsplash

An altruist’s edge

In my coaching practice, I often work with people who are altruists, who are also fantastically good at bringing people together. They are the queens and kings of party-throwing. They plan beautiful projects with dozens of people involved. They see these projects through till the end. And they sacrifice some of their own well-being for the sake of being of service to others. They see where our human society lacks justice, beauty and peace, and then they work hard to literally make this world a better place. They get things done. And they are over-worked and under-nourished when it comes to their heart’s deeper needs and desires.
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If this is you, here’s an edge you are carrying around, probably without knowing it: You have such a deep longing for being with other people that you create elaborate experiences for others just so you can connect with with them – at the expense of your own time and energy.
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The mere act of bringing people together – by inviting a diverse team of professionals to join you for a new project you just plucked out of your highly creative brain, or by having your friends come sit around your kitchen table at brunch – is highly fulfilling for you.
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But the thought that you could connect with others “without a purpose” is probably deeply uncomfortable for you.
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Imagine you would meet with someone just to spend time with them.
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To have coffee with a friend, with no other agenda than to chat for a while and to feel well in each other’s presence.
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And to then not invite that friend over to your place.
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To then also not pay for a whole party and invite all of your other friends, too.
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To just say to someone: “Hey, I would love to see you. Are you free on Friday?”
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And to not have this coffee date be about anything else but connection.
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If you are feeling a psychological edge when you imagine going there: Good. Play with that edge. Feel its shape and size, and sense where this experience starts making you feel uncomfortable: As soon as you imagine calling your friend? When you imagine that there’s no deeper meaning behind that date, that you would just like to spend time with them? When you imagine that you won’t be paying for your friend’s coffee, only for the one you are going to have, yourself?
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Sense where you have a tendency to over-give, and where you feel uncomfortable around receiving the gift of spending time with someone you love.
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And then call your friend anyway.
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Let this be awkward.
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You are trying something new.
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#peaceperspective
#relationshipping

Photo: Adam Jang via Unsplash

How to get centered and grounded

If you’ve spent a bit of time in the personal development world online, you may have noticed certain buzzwords:
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“Centered”, for example.
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“Grounded”.
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“Aligned”.
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“Tuned in”.
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For me as an energy worker, all of those terms describe very specific states of being, and they mean very specific processes that I use in all of my Sessions. I’m not so sure if everyone who uses those words online uses them in the same way I do, though. So I thought I’d do a bit of disambiguation work today. Clarify two of those terms out there: “centered”, and “grounded”. And share one of my techniques to help you actually get centered, and get grounded.
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Why? Because these two states of being are at the heart of every type of personal development. If you know how to get centered and grounded, you know how to pull yourself into yourself when things are chaotic around you, and you create an opening that lets you access your intuitive wisdom, even when your mind is spinning.
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So here goes.
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To “be centered”, in my vocabulary, means to clearly experience – and to be in inner conversation with – the essence of your soul, and to somatically feel that you are connected to your eternal self by an energetic stream (aka your “line of light”) that is flowing down to you, coming straight from the center of your soul.
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To “be grounded”, in my book, means to have an awareness and a felt sense of the physical experience of living in a human body, and to be able to follow your subtle sensory link to the living organism that gives you life: Earth.
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So when I say “to be centred and grounded”, what I mean is that you can sense a pulse, or an energetic stream, flowing through you, alternating between two poles: Your soul above, and the Earth below you. It means to me that you feel safe knowing that you are an eternal being in a physical body, and that you are fully aware of your existence, right here, right now.
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Let’s get practical:
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There is one specific technique to help you get centered and grounded that uses two chakras located outside of your physical body: Your 9th and your 10th chakras.
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The 9th chakra, also known as the “seat of the soul”, is located above your crown.
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The 10th chakra, also referred to as the “earth connection”, is located just below you, in the ground.
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To me, those two chakras are representatives of your soul and the Earth. Like pocket sized versions of the two, perfectly placed if you want to safely center and ground yourself, using these two chakras as your two poles, above and below.

Try this

Sit down comfortably. If you can, keep your spine nice and tall.
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Breathe.
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Become aware of those small movements your body naturally makes as you inhale and exhale.
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Now, bring your attention inwards, as if you were looking at your heart, and with your inner senses, follow that energetic stream (aka your line of light) that runs from the back of your heart down your spine, into the earth, and into your 10th chakra, below you.
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Sense the dense energy, the compactness, the earthiness of that chakra.
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Then, follow the energetic stream as it travels back up again, back into your body, up your spine, up and out your crown, and into your 9th chakra, above you.
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Sense the shiny quality and the bright light of that chakra.
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Keep your awareness on your line of light and sense-see-feel that pulsating loop of energy as it runs up and down between your earth connection below (your 10th chakra), your body in the middle, and the seat of your soul above (your 9th chakra).
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Feel that pulse, that flow, that stream, that line of light, as it flows up and down, in an endless loop.
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Get a felt sense of your connectedness to both poles, below and above: To your your earthiness below your feet, and to your shininess in the seat of your soul.
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Hold your awareness on that pulsating energetic stream for as long as feels comfortable.
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What do you notice?
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To close, bring your awareness back into your heart, gently focus on the way your body is breathing, feel your feet on the ground, wiggle your toes, and come back to your here and now.
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P.S.: If you’d like to have me guide you through a similar meditation, have a look at this post. Enjoy!
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#innerwisdomsystem
#energywork
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Photo: Michal Grosicki via Unsplash

The Love-Trust-Respect Triangle

“Imagine a world where your closest relationships are built on Love-Trust-Respect. Now compare that world to your current reality. What do you see?” – #innerwisdomsystem
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In my work, I often come across an energetic triangle of love, trust and respect. It seems to build a solid foundation for our most precious relationships, and when one of its three building blocks is missing, things tend to feel a bit… wonky.
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For example, if you are in a romantic relationship where you don’t trust your partner, you might be suspicious of their motives. Imagine this dialogue: Person A: “Why would you go to that gig without me?” – Person B: “Why would you want to come? You don’t even like that kind of music.” A lack of trust creates this kind of tension. Deep trust would make A and B celebrate their differences.
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If you are in a friendship where love is missing, you probably feel like you’re constantly negotiating business deals. Here’s what that could look like: Person C: “If you do X for me, I will do Y for you.” – Person D: “Ok, but only if you promise you won’t do Z in front of everybody.” Exhausting, no?
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If you are in a relationship that lacks respect, you won’t see one another clearly, and repeated anger patterns become part of your conversations. An (exaggerated) version of this could sound like this: Person E: “I love you, I trust you, but really, you should be doing something else with your life.” – Person F: “Oh really? Look who’s talking! Like you were only ever happy in your career?!?” Respect sounds different.
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Have a look at your closest personal relationships. Are the energies of love, trust and respect all present there? Can you sense that all three would like to support you?
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How would you like to increase your capacity for love, trust and respect – within yourself, first, and then, also, within your various relationships?
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#relationshipping