“Tell a wise person, or else keep silent;
for the mass-man will mock it right away.”
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s The Holy Longing
Many of us are conditioned to reach outward for confirmation, affirmation, approval, validation, and/or understanding from others, with mixed and often deeply frustrating results.
This is particularly true if we have been and are marching in any way, shape, or form to our own proverbial different drummer, which pretty much means that we’re in some way different from the cultural norm.
The different drummer category has long included introverts, empath-sensitives, psychic-sensitives, artists, creatives, innovators, and nonconforming horizon-edge-walkers of these and various other kinds.
In Human Design, those of the Projector profile, for instance, often live into greater awareness of this frustrating conditioned habit of seeking recognition, acknowledgement, understanding, and approval from those who cannot or will not give it.
The same is the case with empath-sensitives or any of the other types of constitution and expression mentioned above.
The more we seek understanding, affirmation, recognition, acknowledgement, and/or approval from those who can’t or won’t give it (e.g. the withholding thing I’ve mentioned in recent posts and in the Empath-Sensitive Series), the more that one-way energy flow becomes a drain.
When there is a one-way energy flow, there’s a win-lose proposition afoot. There’s a lot of that in our culture.
When there is reciprocity or energy balance, called Ayni in the Andean tradition and by other words in other ancestral-wisdom traditions, there is energy balance … everyone benefits.
I’m always revisiting these reminders, and I’m glad for it.
With all of the churn-and-swirl in the psychic soup or collective ‘mind field’ now, it’s more and more important to tend this balance.
This is one of those ‘energy fundamentals’ that seems straight-forward and easy enough, yet can be one of the greatest challenges while also being one of the most important energy mastery lessons.
In Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring, Bilbo Baggins tells his old friend and wizard, Gandalf, that he feels like “too little butter spread over too much bread.”
That’s what being dispersed feels like. That’s what being dispersed is like.
We know this already — our energy follows our focus and attention.
With so many people, circumstances, and an over-abundance of seductive distractions calling our attention (and thus our focus and energy) ‘out there’, we find ourselves again and again overly dispersed … ‘pulled thin’ like too little butter spread over too much bread.
When we’re ‘stretched thin’, we’re much less centered, rooted, anchored in our body and on the Earth, and we’re much more vulnerable to the chaos of all that’s swirling in the shared field or ‘psychic soup’.
It matters not how skilled we may be in being aware of and working with energy and the psychic stir that swirls in it, though the awareness, experience, and repertoire of practices we’ve gathered into our ‘magic backpack’ can help us to notice it and gather our energy back to center more quickly.
With so much upset and turbulence being stirred up on a regular basis, it’s become more and more important to tend to our own energy hygiene, and going back to the basics, the fundamentals, and drawing back from the over-complexity and into more simplified center-ground.
Needless to say, this also means drawing back from the conditioning of being in perpetual motion, busy-busy-busy, telling ourselves we don’t have time for the practices that help us to slow down, gather ourselves and our energy and our focus back, ground, and center.
It also asks that we draw back from and ‘re-condition’ from the old, deeply conditioned habits of being ever-‘nice’, ever-pliable, overly available, like the supply pipeline for others (and supply for the Narci-types as well!).
As a spiritual mentor once told me of her own experience, “When I don’t go to stillness, stillness comes looking for me.”
She meant that when she ignored the need to let the swirl settle and let herself slow, gather back, and center, she’d get sick or something else would very surely slow her down, but this forgetful way is much less pleasant, as we know.
Another ancestral-wisdom-traditions teacher reminded us that, “When we don’t consciously choose which energy stream we’re aligning with, we automatically align with whatever is dominant and swirling in the collective field. We know that’s not helpful.
When we choose to honor this energy hygiene need, and prioritize it, we’re reminded yet again that when we’ve slowed down, gathered back, and centered, we allow the chaotic swirl drain, calm, and become the ‘still, calm lake’.
From this, we tap the wellspring from which we restore and rejuvenate, and can be much more resource-full … and magnetic to what’s most aligned with us versus the strongest current of what’s wafting willy nilly in the psychic-soup.
We can’t control and sometimes we can’t even influence what’s ‘out there’, but we can choose to cultivate the quality of our own energy and focus, though it may take practice to overcome the conditioning otherwise.
In doing so, each time we do so, we not only feel better ourselves, and are able to be more resourceful and skillful in responding rather than reacting, but we’re more able to be a blessing and ‘good medicine’ by our very presence.
Here are a couple of related Sophia’s Children musings on this topic:
Calling Home Our Exiled Selves
Reclaiming Your Power from Unconstructive Criticism
… plus a few recent articles like Chiron Quest and Sensitivity to Energy Gunk.
You’ll find more inspiration via the links and tags you’ll see below — there’s a whole lot here on energy hygiene and energy mastery.
For more personalized counsel-and-coaching on these mastery areas, check out the Current Offerings — you’ll find the Feminine Mojo programs there, too, with audio-lessons on various energy mastery practices.
Questions or comments?
Share your comment or story below, or send along a direct email if you prefer a more private conversation (info ‘at’ sophias-children ‘dot’ com).
Big Love and Be Well,
July 22, 2016 at 4:55 pm
“nonconforming horizon-edge-walkers” – I love this! Thank you for taking the time to share! 🙂
July 22, 2016 at 7:09 pm
“When I don’t go to stillness, stillness comes looking for me.” Well, ain’t that my truth, big time, Jamie! Thanks for this really sensible and grounded post. Great points to remember. All good wishes Anne
July 26, 2016 at 2:52 pm
Pretty funny, right Anne? 🙂 I’ve found it to be a ‘big truth’, too. I’m glad you enjoyed the post, and thank you for the good wishes. 🙂 To you as well. xo Jamie
July 22, 2016 at 7:10 pm
ooops! Anne, I mean. More hurry…
July 26, 2016 at 2:51 pm
July 22, 2016 at 11:45 pm
July 26, 2016 at 2:50 pm
Thank you, Liza. I’m glad you enjoyed it. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by. Blessings, Jamie
August 4, 2016 at 9:49 pm
Thanks, Jamie, so much wisdom in what you say, here and elsewhere. I’m rereading this article because it’s so apropos! Made me remember Anne Morrow Lindburgh’s book Gift From the Sea and the word “zerrissenheit,” meaning “torn-to-pieces-hood,” apparently originally used from William James.
“…I believe most people are aware of periods in their lives when they seem to be ‘in grace’ and other periods when they feel ‘out of grace,’ even though they may use different words to describe these states. In the first happy condition, one seems to carry all one’s tasks before one lightly, as if borne along on a great tide; and in the opposite state one can hardly tie a shoe-string. It is true that a large part of life consists in learning a technique of tying the shoe-string, whether one is in grace or not. But there are techniques of living too; there are even techniques in the search for grace. And techniques can be cultivated. I have learned by some experience, by many examples, and by the writings of countless others before me, also occupied in the search, that certain environments, certain modes of life, certain rules of conduct are more conducive to inner and outer harmony than others. There are, in fact, certain roads that one may follow. Simplification of life is one of them.
Ah, so helpful (when Saturn is stationing square my ASC, conjunct my natal 4th house Moon on my IC, square transiting Neptune and the North Node on my DESC, and all nearly square/opposing my natal 10th house Venus-Jupter; Uranus is square my natal Uranus, Mars (acck, that Aries ruler–don’t just descend into primal rage!), and Sun, while it is opposing my exact natal Saturn-Neptune conjunction; also while Pluto is conjunct natal Chiron in my natal 5th house and opposing natal Uranus, and all during the approaching eclipse season, whew–September 1st’s). Indeed, finding simplification and centering is hard when I feel turned into a vast whirlwind, a whirlpool, a perfect storm! And also paralyzed. There is so much traditional emphasis in astrology on reasons for negativity here, yet at the same time I feel great surges of creativity and possibility as so many of the structural supports that hold me in place whirl off into an ocean of energy. I have been reading a lot about narrative theory and how unlocking what we think are closed stories from our lives can open up so powerfully and so full of revelation and healing possibility. And that’s happening. (Yikes.) Yet slowing is so hard and even terrifying, feels like just falling down and collapsing! (Scary behind me, scary in front of me, scary all around me.) Patient slogging through and grounding is the hardest thing. My oldest strategy, collecting more and more info and throwing myself into envisioned projects (so alluring a salvation!) only accelerates the vortex, yet I need this liberating tearing apart into the unknown creative energy as well–? Gardening right now has been a great centering power, just being in the natural world nurturing, being nurtured. I was teaching a class on art and meditation, but find I have no wherewithal to keep going, it’s too much focus and too much demand. I am reduced to the utmost simplicity–an attention restoration of silence and stillness, the least ripple propels me off . . . the gathering back’s inchworm progress so easily panicking me except when gardening or doing art, yet many times I can’t even gather that much focus, can only rest, while unable to avoid criticizing my own evil-feeling incapacity–so easy this Virgo Moon day. I know that life is teaching me patience, stillness, the faith of a deep trust when everything is dissolving–it feels like any other conscious strategy just undoes me. And undoing is the process I have to let be, there isn’t any escape.
Meditating on Chogyam Trungpa’s bad news: “There is no ground,” in contrast with his good news: “There is no ground.” Yep, take it or leave it; I’m faced with that fundamental enlightening choice here. 🙂
I also remember Pema Chodron’s flooring advice: “Life is a good teacher and a good friend.” Ah, the best koan to practice with. I am truly undone by it.
August 9, 2016 at 4:05 pm
I think Pema also had a quip about getting kicked out of the nest again and again (must have signed up for that one!). 🙂 The Chogyam news … yes indeed. It’s a deep and daily practice, that one, isn’t it?
With the Neptune Pisces and your Virgo ASC (and perhaps other mutables … Virgo, Gemini, Saj, Pisces?) there can definitely be a dissolving thing going on – you shared:
“I have been reading a lot about narrative theory and how unlocking what we think are closed stories from our lives can open up so powerfully and so full of revelation and healing possibility. And that’s happening. (Yikes.) Yet slowing is so hard and even terrifying, feels like just falling down and collapsing! (Scary behind me, scary in front of me, scary all around me.)”
Yes. Having been pretty thoroughly Neptuned (call it by whatever name, eh?) and still in the Neptunian Mystery and Mastery School, I can really, truly understand. (At least you’ve still got your sense of humor! That’s no small thing, and a saving grace to be sure … ‘scary before me, scary behind me ….’ :).
The Neptunian wisdom goes straight at the conditioning of the Western Mind Disease, er, Western Culture super-dominant ego/mind/left-brain uber-norm. Not for the faint of heart, but it’s often not really a negotiable with some of these passages, is it? 🙂
It can be very challenging to slow, still, not panic, etc. … it’s messy more than any illusion of perfectism.
Lots of love and benevolent blessings to you, Melody.
Sounds like you’ve got some worthy wisdom allies in Pema and Chogyam (etc) and your own awareness (evident in your comment).
August 4, 2016 at 9:52 pm
Dang, my Virgo ASC makes me say, there should be an end quote mark after: Simplication of life is one of them.”
August 9, 2016 at 3:57 pm
Ahhh, you’re a Virgo Mystery School Tribe member this time around, then. 😉 Funny on the ‘simplification’ thing. That’s helpful regardless, isn’t it? Easier said than done sometimes, but good medicine none the less.
And there is all of that beautiful Virgo magic; here are a couple of musings on that one.