Empathic Protection

Originally published May 21, 2015 and updated June 3, 2017

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Most children are empaths. Many people are empaths and sometimes this is a matter of degree. If we begin to think as the empathic ability as a continuum then sometimes people are highly empathic – highly sensitive and sometimes less empathic perhaps due to circumstance and/or better boundaries. However in every social group there may be one or more empaths that may function as checks for both conscious and unconscious emotional patterns within a particular group.

A client who was an empath asked me how she could keep out “bad energy” or “negative feelings”. How could she protect herself? This is a good question. No one who is an empath stays in a feeling place all the time. We go into our intellect as a way of protecting ourselves from the suffering of the world and from our own suffering.

Emotion is analogous to flowing water.

No one can stay in the heart one hundred percent of the time without breaking down. The best parts of ego allow us to balance emotions with the intellect. It is possible for an empath, stuck in fear for example, to begin to rationalize judge and exclude others shifting themselves from the heart into the mind and using the intellect as a fortress against emotions. A person overwhelmed with emotion could be fearful, defensive and react in anger if they are unaware of the empathic abilities. Other empaths may seem to attract nothing but negative energy from others (see Shadowcatchers below) and this may originate from being scapegoated as a child and accepting the role as an adult. Balancing mind and emotions requires attention and the use of thinking to identify emotions in others and our selves. Once we engage the mind to identify emotions we can develop a plan of action to help us cope with others’ feelings (see example below).

Most people who are empathic sponges would like to keep bad stuff out and let only the good stuff in, that’s only natural.

 

The best defense for empaths is flow.

 

Let it flow through you. A metaphor for flow of emotions is a fast flowing stream, waterfall or river. Emotion is the empaths currency. Emotion appears, we sometimes process it and then it goes. Empaths ability to feel others’ emotions and identify these emotions can be developed into a skill and can trigger responses in empaths that remind us of woundings from the past. As soon as you realize you are triggered remind yourself that you wouldn’t be able to recognize the trigger unless you were ready to deal with it.

If the empath can answer these questions when feeling others’ emotions then protection becomes simplified somewhat:

  1. Does this feeling I’m feeling belong to me? (Does it originate with me?)
  2. If YES, decide whether to deal with it in current time or postpone it until you can deal with it.
  3. If NO, then either let it flow through you quickly and ground it down into Molten Core of Earth, or offer it to be burnt up in the sun, or create a column of light to the left or right of you and put the emotion or set of emotions in the column of light.
  4. If MAYBE, it’s likely that the emotions that you’re feeling are similar emotions than the persons or persons producing them and you have lessons to learn here or you feel triggered. Ask that Spirit separate your feelings from the others and then deal with the feelings from the others as you would in #3 and /or in #1.

Many times the four-question method above may not be possible. When we encounter others’ emotions we may be overwhelmed with their emotions. Their emotions may trigger similar emotions in us. Part of our abilities as empaths is recognizing the common threads of emotion that bond humans together. Two common emotions that humans feel are grief and love. Feeling love in another or in others feels good. Feeling grief can be problematic. Part of the problem is that grief can spawn feelings such as sadness, anger / rage and these can turn into depression sometimes. Recognizing when you are triggered and dealing with the trigger is a first step at diffusing overwhelming emotions.

There can be two kinds of empaths for the purposes of this piece.[1] If you are reading this and feel you are an empath then you are on the path of a Conscious Empath. However there are unconscious empaths. These people become overwhelmed without knowing the reasons and sometimes blame others or become depressed. Their childhood traumas may be so complicated and their self-images so solid with walls instead of boundaries that their empathic abilities overwhelm them and prevent them from seeing triggers. They cannot process the overwhelming emotional onslaught without help. Usually some of these people feel they don’t need help.

You may also be a Shadowcatcher.

You may be a magnet for others shadows. Shadowcatchers may be absorbers of others unconscious projections. Essentially a shadowcatcher feels the shadow of another or shadows from groups. I noticed this when I was a participant in a healing circle. The facilitator asked for loving and healing energies from the group through coming forward – for a laying-on of hands or from our spot in the circle. Immediately I felt a surge of resentment and anger that was overwhelming. It happened many times until I realized what I was feelings was not coming from me. And as soon as I grounded it out I felt the love and was able to participate in the healing circle.

Sensitive people always attract less sensitive people to them especially if one or both parties are not conscious of their sensitivities. In psychology this is called Projective Identification.[2] Our culture often brands sensitive people as “weak” when in fact the opposite is true. I grew up in a stiff upper-lip Yankee family where tears were rarely shed. My Mother would shame me for my tearful behaviors by saying – “You’re too sensitive.” Often it was she who was projecting feelings onto me that I could express and then she would shame me for having done so because she did not want to acknowledge the feelings in herself. When sensitive people become aware of their sensitivities and can name their feelings and take responsibility for them with “I feel” statements then merely on the psychological basis feelings can be owned and the blame/shame game can be reduced.

If you are an empath that becomes infected with the shadows of others and these shadows blend with your emotions, then problems can become severely compounded. As a child and survivor of ritual sexual abuse that had been repressed I was severely depressed and passively suicidal for all of my teen years. When the memories of abuse began surfacing in my 40s I was able to begin to deal with the feelings and slowly work through the most arduous territories of the abuse. Every person on the planet has grown-up in a dysfunctional family to one degree or another. If you played the role of an empath in your family and that particular family was highly dysfunctional and negative then its likely that you may be carrying your family shadow and are acting out what had been passed on to you. There are three paths of approach that may help with your healing:

 

  • A daily spiritual practice that includes working on developing a non-judgmental and compassionate observed of your behaviors, thoughts and emotions (feelings)
  • Therapy
  • A visit to a healer to assist in removing possible ancestral beings stuck in your electromagnetic field.

 

I have been engaged in a daily spiritual practice for over 40 years and more intensely during the flashbacks of the abuse.

 

 

[1] The range of empathic abilities: https://lonerwolf.com/what-type-of-empath-are-you/

 

 

[2] Shadowcatchers in psychological terms: http://drs-oleary.com/Projective_Identification.htm

 

“Why Traps” – an Affirming Present or a Future Expectation of Negative Outcomes

brain_f2 Psychoanalysis uncovers the genesis of a problem or problems rooted in the unconscious and when understood by the conscious mind there is an occurrence of healing. This is a vast oversimplification and it belongs to a world of mechanistic cause and effect relationships with an assumption that the mind unlocks healing.

Our brains are hardwired for fear and possible negative outcomes.

This myth is perpetuated into logical thought and the some of shortcomings of the scientific method. In other words psychoanalysis has perpetuated an assumption that thought and the will can overcome unconscious traumas of childhood. That would be true if everyone lived in a cause and effect world.

Fears and anxieties based on an expectation of a negative outcome is an urge some people to begin to try and think how to escape the negative outcome. This in-turn encourages more thinking to solve the problem. This is the cycle of worry or obsessive thinking. The pattern of this kind of thinking may soothe the thinker for a nanosecond but then initiates the obsessive pattern again. The worrier doesn’t use fear to attract the negative outcome to themselves but allows them to find situations were the negative pattern manifests. [People come to me and ask about romantic relationships they inevitably say they feel in-love for the person because it feels “right” and “familiar”. The root word of “familiar” is family. After a few dates I suggest some questions. If the person asking me is a woman talking about a man, I ask the woman about her relationship with her father. I suggest that the woman ask the man about his relationship with his mother. You get the idea.] The family we were raised in represented a particular world. Some offspring leave the world of the dysfunction – often cause and effect relationships for a world in the present and they may slip back into the cause and effect world when encountering a parent or two or siblings. The function of expectation for a negative outcome is key and this is often an unconscious process.

When we humans feel joy and happiness expectation falls away.

Our brains are hardwired for fear and possible negative outcomes. This took place over a long period of time probably tens of thousand of years and was based in survival against real danger, such as being attacked and eaten by predators. Eventually the patterns that helped our ancestors cope with dangers were substituted with fears based on anxieties about our negative expectations of a future based on a causal world.

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When we humans feel joy and happiness expectation falls away. These are emotions that expand and uplift and belong to a different reality than the expectations of negative outcomes and how to solve them. Expectations of negative outcomes and its solution – obsessional thinking curl us into self-protective loops that create conditions for suffering and breakdowns. Joy and happiness belong to a separate reality divorced from expectation and in the world of the present.

This takes a compassionate neutral place within our Being.

I had a friend that would ask me “Why?” to whatever subject she was grappling with at the time. I would answer that “Why?” questions assume that if one knew the reason for this or that problem then there would be a self-evident solution. “Why” questions belong to the cause and effect world of psychoanalysis. Cause and effect worlds are less complex and predictable. The Higher Worlds predicated in the present are more complex because the emotions of joy, happiness and love open us and make “Why” questions superfluous. The intellect and rational thought is not the answer to everything.

Overcoming worry and causal realities takes time and effort. Awareness is the first step. Awareness must be free of judgment. The spin of worry / obsessional thinking must be observed without judgment. This takes a compassionate neutral place within our Being. This place requires cultivation. Once the force of a witness is sufficiently cultivated we become aware when we are obsessing and have an expectation for a negative outcome.

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A conscious breath may be enough to interrupt the pattern for a second. The use of distraction, moving out pattern of thinking to feelings of hope and joy may help us shift out of the pattern. Repeated efforts along these lines are necessary throughout our lives because of the hard-wiring of our brain explained above. For a better habit to replace a bad habit- especially one that is hardwired into our brains must be continually practiced.

I have noticed that breakthroughs into other worlds and even into a “place” beyond time are possible.

 

Surrender

Occasionally I think about the arc of my life as a rainbow of possibilities replete with connections, connections of the heart to friends, relatives and lovers… Tonight I feel filled with love, blessed to live in community. I feel incredibly wealthy and blessed. Thank-you.

The community in Sonoma and in the world for all that I have touched and whose hearts have touched mine. The connections through the WordPress blogs, Facebook and Medium to name a few are also heartfelt. I am deeply grateful and honored.When I dip into the breath and down into meditation the web and weave of a greater consciousness seems to open. In that opening I have glimpsed destiny based on synchronicities, karma, perception and the oneness of the heart. It is as if my life has been written as I surrender into a higher consciousness letting go of ego for those briefest of moments.
In 1990 when I asked the question – “God what should I do with my life?” and the subsequent “answer” that led to a place of choice. I could have continued to pursue what “I” (ego) wanted to do – make video, write unsuccessful screenplays and continue to work as a Crisis Counselor or…

I could surrender to a life as a “seer” and healer. So I surrendered. However that initial act of surrender wasn’t the only one. My rebellious and bratty ego keeps making himself known and this requires continual acts of surrender to the path.

I wish I could adequately describe the feelings of sweetness connected to the act of surrender. However the 1990 act of surrender wasn’t my first. My ego remembers all the seemingly magical acts of surrender, and there were many that were failed or seemed not to produce any obvious results.
To arrive at a place in ourselves where surrender is possible other avenues of work are required to generate the energy of beingness necessary for the sacrifice in the surrender process.
Avenues of work on oneself:
Struggle: Most people have an onerous association to struggle and avoid it. Most of our struggles are successful and easy. Getting out of bed in the morning, or driving to work etc. Paying taxes may be a task we put off – so that may be an odious struggle.

Struggle is the battle between “Yes” and “No”. The cultivation of the Witness observer self helps in two ways: it allows non-attachment to develop and the observer / witness can create energy from the friction of the struggle.
Help: Most people ask for help much as a child would ask an adult for help in the same way people ask for help from God, the Divine, the Universe etc. Many people expect help will arrive because they asked and that the help will arrive in a clearly recognizable way. Help can come when we make space for it and are attentive to the ways in which it can arrive and how we respond to it.
Learning: Learning can come from books. Deeper learning comes from direct contact with a Master and /or teacher.
Surrender or Sacrifice: This can only happen in the present moment. It involves a surrender of thought, feeling and motion (somatic knowing). It involves letting go of expectation and fears. When ego is released the Witness or Observer self may be present.
In 1982 will participating with 50 or so individuals in a practice of a Gurdjieff Sacred Dance – The Great Prayer, during the last twenty minutes I experienced a divine presence “doing” the movement while my Witness Self observed. This was an ineffable experience where to use words to describe it would denigrate it.

A Radical Theory of Consciousness

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Consciousness from a Scientific Perspective

What is consciousness and from whence does it arise and can we as human even write about this without becoming befuddled? We, as humans, have a modicum of consciousness, so to write about consciousness is problematic much the same as defining a word using the word we are defining in its definition.

Most neuroscientists seek to find the arising of consciousness in a brain, mainly the human brain, although others admit consciousness could arise from a bee’s brain amongst many others, for example.

Wikipedia defines consciousness:

Consciousness is the state or quality of awareness, or, of being aware of an external object or something within oneself.[1][2] It has been defined variously in terms of sentience, awareness, subjectivity, the ability to experience or to feelwakefulness, having a sense of selfhood or soul, the fact that there is something “that it is like” to “have” or “be” it, and the executive control system of the mind,[3] or the state or quality of awareness, or, of being aware of an external object or something within oneself.[1][2] In contemporary philosophy its definition is often hinted at via the logical possibility of its absence, the philosophical zombie, which is defined as a being whose behavior and function are identical to one’s own yet there is “no-one in there” experiencing it.

Despite the difficulty in definition, many philosophers believe that there is a broadly shared underlying intuition about what consciousness is.[4] As Max Velmans and Susan Schneider wrote in The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness: “Anything that we are aware of at a given moment forms part of our consciousness, making conscious experience at once the most familiar and most mysterious aspect of our lives.”[5]

Neuroscience is reductionistic in the sense of “looking for” a seat of consciousness. Problems continue to arise with the neuroscientist as observer of consciousness. Or what is outside of consciousness? This subject object relationship becomes increasing difficult and problematic in the reductionistic nature of science.

Most theories of consciousness divide it into levels while neuroscience looks to the “seat” of consciousness. All the theories are generated from reductionistic principles.

Cosmic or transcendental consciousness as in enlightenment is consciousness and may be the least reductionistic. Though explaining Comic Consciousness and the functions of its expression requires some reductionistic thinking / writing.

 

Thoughts about Consciousness as Cosmic and its Meaning

Even to write that consciousness is Cosmic is to reduce the experience of said consciousness into a reductionistic concept based on the technology of written language and that is a problem. And even though the problem can be overcome it cannot be done within this context.

Cosmic Consciousness fits nicely with Buddhist philosophy especially when one considers that human beings or any being with a brain or neurons or complex life is a receptor or expression of consciousness.

Let’s assume:

  • All consciousness is Cosmic and pervades all.
  • Consciousness is. Consciousness is everywhere and permeates every being (elements such as rock, Earth, air and water are beings as well as all animal and plant life are beings and are receptors of Cosmic Consciousness.
  • Consciousness expresses it self through a variety of beings – human beings have a technology to assist in expressing how Cosmic Consciousness manifests in humans.
  • Enlightenment is the actionable part of Consciousness. Buddhist philosophy states that human beings are enlightened and that only illusion stands in our way of this experience.
  • Death is death of the body not the death of consciousness. Consciousness never dies.
  • Reincarnation is the journey / expression of consciousness through a variety of expressions or points of view
  • Cognitive recognition of the view of the Is-ness of consciousness expressed through a series of individuals to a state of transcendental enlightenment represents the expression of one consciousness across many lives.
  • The expression of Cosmic Consciousness in an individual human is limited by the perceptual faculties of said human
  • Illusion is created at conception when consciousness is conscripted into a set of cells and when the child learns language and delineates oneself from the unity of Cosmic Consciousness through the expression of self and the other.
  • Illusion and the creation of identity are necessary in the play of consciousness.
  • Identity allows for an illusion of separateness to exist. This is necessary to allow a human identity to create energy (light) in its journey into Oneness, the Oneness of Consciousness. The journey itself is also an illusion.
  • A human’s urge is a play between separation from Oneness to create identity and definitions of the self and the urge to be One with All That Is. This can be characterized as a struggle.
  • Struggle is the battle between “Yes” and “No”. Struggle can only be effective when a compassionate neutral witness sees the struggle. The neutral part acts as a valve to store the energy created in the struggle. Struggle without the neutral witness stays in the worlds of illusion.
  • The struggle when recognized as raising one’s consciousness can generate much energy in the form of light. This struggle is capable of overcoming illusion while acknowledging illusion as a motivator of spirit’s contact with matter to create energy to constantly surmount the small self or ego by way of the divinity within.
  • Death may be analogous to sleep, a forgetting…
  • When a singular consciousness has journeyed through many lives they are called old souls. These old souls begin to remember former lives in increasing detail.
  • The oldest of souls remember the life (or lives) after the death of the body.

 

Take a rest and come back to the material later.

 

Buddhist, Mayan and Gurdjieffian philosophies are reflected in this piece

A Primer ~ Autogenic Training

EssenceFlameEternalThe best way to learn Autogenic Training is through a teacher, guide or an instructor (an instructor has been practicing AT for many years but has not yet mastered it). AT without a teacher or instructor can be dangerous because of ego’s desire to meddle and build illusion towards self-aggrandizement.

Think of this piece as a teaser or introduction. Then look for a teacher, guide or an instructor.

Autogenic Training begins with self-observation that builds towards the formation of a Witness Self. The Witness is a cultivated dispassionate observer that can be described as “I was beside myself”, allowing us to perceive our selves with clear neutral pictures (perceptions) without judgment or opinion thus allowing divine compassion to enter and a clear picture of all our selves.

Self-observation is difficult to write about because we have no specific language for its description. Beginners often confuse self-observation with ideas, inferences and get distracted by associations which become mind-games. Self-observation requires participation from the mind, awareness of your body sensations, and your emotional state.

 

Here is an outline for starting:

 

  • Pick a simple physical activity to observe such as rinsing a dish, putting your key in the ignition and starting your car, opening a door.

 

  • Begin by relaxing your body.

 

  • Choose your pinky finger on your non-dominate hand to begin (I’m right handed, so I choose my left hand, my left pinkie finger.)

 

  • I allow sensation to gather in my pinkie finger by feeling its weight. This may appear as a warmth, tingling, energy running through the pinkie or an awareness of physical sensation there. Go lightly allow this to happen don’t force it to happen.

 

  • Once the sensation is established allow ten percent of your attention to rest in your pinkie finger while engaging in the simple physical task.

 

  • Allow yourself to be aware of your physical, emotional and mental state while performing the task in this way.

Share your observations with your teacher, guide or instructor. Always use first person – present tense when sharing you observations (remember “the past” are memories that exist in the present). For example – I notice…

See also – Struggle – It’s Not what You Think: https://psychesweather.wordpress.com/2016/05/09/struggle-its-not-what-you-think/