“I don’t know.” I said, choosing my words deliberately.
“I guess there’s a bunch of stuff that I am just now realizing no longer fits?” I offered tentatively.
“Or maybe it never fit?” I was doing my best to definitively describe what was currently going on in my experience; but it was coming off more like fuzzy questions rather than clear statements.
I was currently in one of those phases that was stirring up deep, DEEP stuff, so this wasn’t surprising. My journey had once again brought me to a place where words failed to aptly describe the enormity of what was present.
“Hmmm, can you give me an example?” He prompted. After almost three decades of friendship, he knew how to keep my often abstract trains of thought moving.
“Well, it’s like all of those things that I have never stopped to question about myself are suddenly coming up for review.”
“Like”? he gently pressed.
“Like, because I was born in this body, on this date, on this planet, to this family, in this country, with a history of these experiences, that there are certain non-negotiable things that I just have to accept.” I had found the thread of truth.
“I don’t believe that anymore.” I stated unequivocally.
“It’s those old narratives that keep us locked in false identities. I refuse to make a claim that says there is anything in my experience that I cannot influence and re-create!”
“Right?!” The excitement in his voice told me he’d found a thread of truth too.
“You don’t have to accept: ‘you were born with it, that’s the way it is, and you have to find a way to live with it!’”
“Your life is not a limp!” he exclaimed.
“Your life is not a limp”.
It was like someone had flipped on the light in a dark room. Suddenly, I was aware that there was a HUGE part of my inner landscape that I had cordoned off and labeled “things that are the way they are and will never change.”
“Your life is not a limp”.
I couldn’t get that phrase out of my head. Clearly it had stirred something, it just hadn’t floated to the surface. I kept watching the thought as it fluttered by off and on over the next few weeks.
“Your life is not a limp”.
This wasn’t necessarily new information. The truth that we are the Creators of our own experience is a cornerstone of not only my personal belief system, but also of the work I offer via my practice.
“Your life is not a limp”.
This was more than just a phrase that rang true, it was pointing me to something deeper. Something within my own experience was ready to be met with an open heart and loving curiosity. This was a big shift in perspective.
Luckily, Osiris popped in to offer some context and deeper insight.
“Your field is the energy you are swimming in. Think of a life like living in a snow globe. When the water is filled with thoughts and belief patterns that are untrue (in this context untrue = untrue for You) you are swimming in dirty water.
The fact that a person is even aware that they are swimming in dirty water illustrates that they have begun to awaken. Many human lifetimes are lived without ever even wondering if there is another way to be.
When you begin your journey of awakening, it is usually in response to an [internal] environment that is heavily polluted. When the awakening begins, often the primary aim is simply to learn how to still the waters so the debris can settle.
It is through this phase that one remembers how to breathe, how to feel, how to connect with the deeper layers of Self.
Through a myriad of processes one eventually learns how to calm the waters; to settle the debris in order to see and feel clearly. This is a period where one remembers how to access inner peace and stillness by temporarily shutting out the external world. As the journey continues, one realizes that eventually, they must emerge back into the world “out there”.
During this emerging period, one begins to fight against their external environment. The mind begins to hunt for the things “out there” that disturb the newly found inner peace. The limited self becomes fixated on eradicating anything that kicks up the debris. Many become rigid in their expectation that the outer world do nothing to upset them or cause internal discord. Rather than continuing to dig for the roots of the issue, they simply become content with managing the symptoms of living in the reality that they were born into. Many stay here and live their life, relying on coping mechanisms and monumental effort to control the world at large, never moving beyond this phase.
Eventually, after years (lifetimes) of trying to keep their debris settled and out of the way, many become exhausted with this conditional way of living. It is at this point that they become curious about how to eliminate the debris from their field altogether. This begins the journey of Mastery. The desire to merge with oneSelf completely triggers the awakening of the connection with the Eternal Self and opens the true spiritual awakening. By choice or by chariot this awakening will occur; it is only ever a matter of when.”
“By choice or by chariot” Here was another phrase that stuck with me. I asked for clarification on that nugget.
“By choice or by chariot is to say that regardless of whether you actively step forward and choose the awakening or feel that the awakening chooses you like a chariot crashing into your reality, the awakening will, at some point, happen.”
Again, not new information, but Osiris does possess a lovely turn of phrase!
A few days later, I received an email from someone (I’ll call her Jane) who I have worked with previously. Jane reached out asking if I could help her with some obsessive behaviors that were causing concern. After a bit of back and forth, she shared she had suffered prolonged sexual abuse as a child. She was sure this obsessive behavior was connected to the abuse. When we sat down to connect a few days later, it became clear that this was a real world example of what I had been receiving around the lesson that “your life is not a limp”.
Jane shared that she was currently seeing a therapist to help her with the obsessive behaviors. She is also really adept at working with her own inner landscape and layers of Self that need healing. She had the language, the tools, the connection, and the understanding of what the trauma had created in her life. Her confusion was centered around the fact that it was still happening at all. There were no hidden corners that she was avoiding. Presumably, she knew everything one needed to know in order to untangle this issue, so why couldn’t she unravel the obsessive behavior?
Not long after we began our work, the layer of Self that was still holding on to the abuse came forward. She embodied the role of the Survivor. She held the identity of the one who had been abused but had overcome. She illustrated many beautiful aspects of Jane’s past that had been healed.
She also shared that it was this very identity that kept the abuse program active. She shared that even the triumph of survival was rooted in the trauma.
“Without the history of abuse, there would be nothing to survive.” she shared. “To act in spite of, in defiance of, to triumph over, even to rebel in the face of something is still acting because of it.”
She shared the importance of this understanding. She didn’t diminish the very real healing work that had been done to arrive at this point. Nor was she dismissing the very real physical abuse that was at the root of this. What she was sharing was that even through all of the work to understand and release the trauma, the program of the trauma was still present. That’s what the obsessive behaviors were about. They were the little-inner-child-self trying to get the attention of the bigger-outer-human-self to let her know she was still in there.
She didn’t want to be seen as the one who needed healing.
Or the one who needed Love.
Or the one who had endured horrible, awful, things.
As well intended as those perspectives are, they were still conditional.
The journey of healing had inadvertently turned the abused inner child into something to be “dealt with” or “managed”. She understood the intention behind that perspective but she was here to be accepted as she was. What she needed was to be accepted without condition.
Not because of, not in spite of, not in defiance of.
Full acceptance of her, abuse and all, was what she required.
She is worthy because she is, as she is, regardless of what occurred in her history, and that’s what needed to be seen and accepted.
The only way she could integrate with Jane was by moving beyond the abuse completely. That included the identity of “The One Who Had Survived”.
I was finally starting to get it. This was what “your life is not a limp” meant. Through the decades of inner work, Jane had accessed much within her. The work to heal the inner trauma was necessary. She had reached a place of deep understanding, around her past. It had taken years of important work to get to the place where she could stand and gaze lovingly into the eyes of her self and Love her.
The last remaining piece, was simply to let go of the identity of the one who had been abused. It was no longer enough for Jane to know how to keep the debris in her snow globe from getting stirred up. She was ready to remove the cause of the debris altogether.
Of course, (as they often do) this client session pointed me squarely back to my own journey. Suddenly there were a whole lot of new questions to live.
Where in my life had I resigned myself to things that were well within my authority to change?
What collective agreements were currently active in my system, running unchecked, that limited me more than they supported me?
Why were there certain patterns of behavior and belief in my life that I had never questioned?
I had experienced this in my own healing journey to a degree. The bullying I endured as a kid created very real wounds. Years ago, I realized that I’d actually healed those wounds. What I hadn’t done, was get up and leave the trauma party.
“Your life is not a limp” was bringing new perspective to my own life.
Even though there was nobody in my immediate environment actively bullying me, the program was still alive. My defenses were often on a hair trigger with no clear reason. I would find myself taking things personally that had NOTHING to do with me. I would experience pockets of anxiety that had no obvious cause.
I was still playing the Greatest Hits of The Trauma Survivor Behavior Patterns not because they were part of being Andrew; but because I had not cleared the patterns of trauma from my field.
I was still living in a snow globe filled with debris. Just because it wasn’t actively stirred up or creating chaos in my field, didn’t mean it wasn’t still there. Just because I had found the perfect place to store, categorize, and catalog the history of trauma didn’t mean that it wasn’t ready to be reactivated at the drop of a hat. Even though it had been decades since those experiences, it was in many ways still happening. The identity of the Bullied Outcast had just been reformatted into the Formerly Bullied Outcast.
At some point over those few weeks, realization smacked me across the face, and it all became STARKLY clear.
I don’t have to live with my history like it’s a physical condition to be endured.
I didn’t come into this life with the trauma, it’s not an inextricable part of me. It’s not an organ that’s necessary for the function of life.
So why do I still hang onto it?
Why am I still showing up to claim that identity?
Do I want to spend ANY more time aligning myself with history, or am I ready to draw a line in the sand?
I mean, I don’t identify myself as the “One Who Ate That Amazing Meal in Paris Ten Years Ago” So why cherry pick the trauma from my history and wear THAT as a name tag?
It’s not ME I am separating myself from here, because I am not my trauma.
I am not my programs.
I am not my skin.
I am not my gender.
I am not my name.
I am not my family.
I am not my age.
I am not my sexual identity.
I am not a demographic.
I am not my programming.
I could claim all of the above as my identity, if I wanted to.
I DON’T HAVE TO CLAIM ANY OF THAT IF I DON’T CHOOSE TO.
And neither do you.
History may shape us, but it doesn’t have to define us.
Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it?
Bullshit, my dear.
It’s precisely because we don’t fully reconcile, integrate and RELEASE the history of our trauma that we repeat it.
It really is up to you how You proceed from here. So here are some questions I used to point me towards not just healing, but liberating myself from my history. My hope is that these keys will inspire you too.
Are there still areas or people in your life that make you feel like a child who has just been reprimanded?
Are there people in your life who still hold up a version of you that simply isn’t true anymore but you find yourself falling back into old patterns around them anyway?
Do you find yourself feeling ashamed, frightened, or guilty for no clear reason?
Are there individuals who use their position of authority (perceived or actual) to successfully bully you into doing things their way?
Are there people in your life who successfully emotionally blackmail you by saying “if you loved me you would…”?
While I can’t be certain, I would venture a guess that a “Yes” to any of the above questions is pointing you towards some buried programming.
I’m not saying you don’t have to take responsibility for your choices.
Nor am I saying you don’t have to do the deep work necessary to heal.
I am also not telling you what to do.
What I am saying is that your powers of creation and your Authority as the Sovereign Creator of your life are yours whether you exercise them or not.
What I am saying is that you don’t have to agree to anything that is counter to who you know yourself to be.
What I am saying is that your personal history is as dead and as irrelevant as you allow it to be
What I am saying is that it takes no more effort to create the life you dream of than it does to just let life happen by default. However, the former requires you showing up on purpose, deliberately, as clearly as you can in each and every moment.
A life of freedom and liberation is 100% dependent on what you say Yes or No to in each and every moment.
Your life is not a limp. Just because that’s the way it’s been, doesn’t mean that’s the way it IS.
Any system built on truth liberates absolutely. If a system requires one to do, say, be, act, or live against oneself, then it is not built on truth.
I love you,
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