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Resistance

effortless yoga

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Resistance will come up. Recognize that what you resist persists. The best way to proceed is to take the next step no matter how small.

Step into trust and faith in the unknown. Practice Karma yoga, which is the practice of giving all the fruits of your action to the glory of the Divine. In reality, it is the Divine who is always doing it through you anyway.

In this way, the creative process flows so much more easily when you get the ego and the sense of ‘poor me’ out of the way.

Do not beat myself up as regards resisting. I sometimes feel disappointment but self-judgement only results in a house divided against itself. I have a great gift available to me. This is the ability to write about the experience of resistance.

What we resist persists—Carl Gustav Jung.

The act of writing about such resistance honours and grounds it but does not indulge it. This writing practice I call Writing Out My Soul. There comes a point when I feel calm and am ready to take the next step.

We often need resistance for the energy of birthing the new.

The baby is born through the resistance of the body of the mother. The seed gets birthed through resistance from the body of the earth. Without resistance there would be no birthing of the Boundless.

Practice not-doing, and everything will fall into place: Tao Te Ching

Boundaries for the Boundless

spiritual awakening and resistance

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Resistance points you toward personal and spiritual growth. You come up against boundaries in your pursuit of the Boundless. Resistance is the other side of expansion. Resistance means you are still alive and that Creation can still push through you.

By resistance, I mean resistance to the way Creation expresses through you. I do not mean that you should overcome resistance by harming yourself or others.

The paradox is that when resistance is fully accepted it disappears – Adyashanti

Resistance allows you to explore ways to practice kindness and compassion for yourself rather than engage with judgement and self-condemnation. Resistance is our playing safe. It is how we learned to survive in this realm of time and space.

However, it is not the best way to operate beyond time and space.

Resistance is always of the ego and the sense of the false self. The True Self KNOWS that all things are possible with God, but you have to feel your connection to the FORCE.

This requires that you move out of your overthinking mind into the One Mind. You then move back into innocence. You let go and let be.

Forgiveness

spiritual awakening process and forgiveness

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In one bedroom in our cottage, I have framed instructions related to the process of forgiveness. These instructions are on white paper held within several black frames. These frames take you through the step-by-step process of exploring the possibility of forgiveness.

They include:-

  • Desire for Liberation.
  • Feeling the Feelings
  • Inviting Grace

I usually have no issues around forgiveness except that now I find I do.

A family pattern that I have issues around has returned to bite me in the bum. A recurring dream that I thought I had worked through has returned with a vengeance. This is the dream about my hatred for my father. In this episode I knew I wanted to kill him.

When I awoke, I felt vulnerable and lost.

I stay with this feeling without trying to change it. I recognise that I don’t want to change it. I judge this as being unspiritual and then I witness the judgement. This is the best I can do for the moment. The feeling stays and I know I have to be kind to myself and this is part of the overall process.

I do not deny my unwillingness to forgive. I honor that feeling.  By honouring this unforgiving feeling I let it be. Later it might change. Maybe it won’t. It moves from hatred to vulnerability and to tears flowing as has happened this morning.

I KNOW something has moved. There is insight.

The Least Popular Practice

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It interests me that on my journey of progressive spiritual awakening that I find there is so little practical advice on the process of forgiveness. I thinkthis is not because I am looking in the wrong place.

I think forgiveness is a practice not at all popular or attractive to most people.

Imagine you advertised a program of forgiveness in your local community. How many people do you think would turn up? I suspect the place might be empty.

The only major teaching that I have found on the journey of forgiveness is from A Course in Miracles.  However, this is a metaphysical teaching with a Christian language focus and may not suit everyone.

To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you. — Lewis B. Smedes

The Forgiveness Process

spiritual awakening and the forgiveness process

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I remember leading a meditation program in an open prison.  The greatest push back was from that part of the practice where the meditator was asked to send blessings to an enemy. One individual was adamant that this was not going to happen and did not return.

I think you have to take baby steps.

To begin with you acknowledge that the process is a process. Recognise that it can be a process that benefits you most, which is the case. The first step, however, is that you have to want to forgive or at least explore the possibility.

More often than not the person you are involved in forgiving doesn’t know you are engaged in this process and might not even care if they did know.

The second step is to feel the feelings. The writer of Radical Forgiveness Colin Tipping shares an interesting insight regarding this issue which he finds, and I find, with many spiritual seekers.

Life is a Feeling Experience

Vulnerability

spiritual awakening and vulnerability

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One challenging aspect of the process of spiritual awakening is vulnerability. How willing are you to be vulnerable to how the Truth expresses through you?

For a while now I have been practicing Yoga Nidra. I find this practice really powerful. Part of the practice is stating what they refer to in Sanskrit as one’s Sankalpa. We can translate this word Sankalpa as “Your true heart’s desire.”

Over time, I have explored what this really means for me. The Sankalpa that I have found really works for me is the short phrase, “Thy will be done.”

Sometimes, however, I sometimes wonder if this is what I truly want because I find it pushes me into areas of vulnerability where I do not want to go. I know what I am created to express and I resist doing it. This adventure into following one’s true heart desire makes me feel vulnerable.

Even sharing this on a webpage makes me feel this way.

The Challenge of Being True

spiritual awakening process and feeling vulnerable

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This vulnerably centres around my relationship to the teaching of Yoga and their connection to the central teachings of the Master Jesus Christ.

The way they taught me Christianity when growing up in Northern Ireland turned me off these teachings. It was all about being wrong. It required you to belong to the “In group” so you could be saved. Let everyone else go to hell in a handbasket.

As I have journeyed into learning to love the mystical teaching (not the literal teaching) of Christianity, I would resist and declare, “Anything but not that.” It has at different times brought me to tears. I didn’t want any part of it.

What makes you vulnerable makes you beautiful – Brene Brown

This heart longing to celebrate what I feel to be the real teachings of Christianity is like having a secret Love that I forbade myself to declare.

This may not be your specific vulnerability, but the spiritual process will reveal your specific vulnerability. It is how Love intends to express through you and your ego, your separate sense of self will resist. This is because what is vulnerable within you does not fit with the image of who you think you are or who you are told you should be.

The Experience of Exile

spiritual awakening process and exile

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Part of spiritual awakening is the journey into psychological exile.

When you unfold more deeply into the spiritual awakening process, you are likely to lose friends and even the support of your family. If you belong within a religious group, then you may have to leave.

If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters–yes, even their own life–such a person cannot be my disciple. – Luke 14:26

This has happened to me on different occasions.

For a time, you will be alone and you will even feel lonely. You will enter the desert of unknowing.

However, there will be a part of you that KNOWS you are being true to who you are created to become. You have woken up to the purpose you are here to have expressed through you for the highest good.

There will be a nagging doubt in your head that calls to you to leave the Matrix (Collective Human Consciousness)  and see how far into Wonderland (Divine Consciousness) you might venture.

To begin with, it will feel anything but wonderful. You will resist. What you resist will persist until you embrace the “Thy will be done” experience.

Call to Adventure

spiritual awakening and the call to adventure

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If you refuse the Call to Adventure (as most of us will do) you do not have to venture into the challenging territory of personal and psychological vulnerability.

This is your last chance. After this, there is no turning back. You take the blue pill – the story ends; you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill – you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes. – Morpheous to Neo (Son of Man)

You can choose to remain protected by the group dynamic and group think.

There is value in this group bonding until the point when you have to choose between being true to the group belief or true to the Self.

This does not mean you can never belong to a group dynamic ever again, but you have always to put the group second to the way the Truth expresses through you and as you.

This is a real challenge especially if you are young and you have only started on the spiritual journey of awakening and have not yet experienced the grace of direct revelation.

Even when you are graced such an experience, there are plenty of the blind leading the blind who will try to convince you that the magnificence of the Light of your own Being is unreal.

This was the case with my sister Mary, who had an awakening while walking on a beach on Donegal shortly before she died. Only her group of fundamentalist Christians convinced her that her God could not Love her that much.

Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray ― Rumi

This is because such a FEELING of magnificence has not been their direct experience but merely a belief in a concept.

Tony Cuckson
Writer of Awakening the Heart - 21 Ways for Following Love's Message. Also author of Being Beautiful - Learning to Treasure the REAL YOU. Workshop Leader in Learning to Companion YOUR Greatness.