At the retreat last weekend, Sam led a two-hour session on past lives. She has done this frequently, and is very good at it. Diana had a strong sense of having been an American Indian woman in 1652. This is interesting because she has always had an interest in Indian crafts, even when she was a small girl. She learned to make Indian baskets, and taught her sons' elementary school classes to make them. One question Sam asks when doing the meditation is "what was the purpose of this life?" I had gone back to the early 1800's, where I was a woman, a farm wife. The purpose that came to me was: "to serve".
Actually, Sam and I don't believe that we wee necessarily previously reincarnated in these past lives. There are several other explanations for much of what we felt. But whatever comes up is clearly very much in tune with the unconscious mind, and holds a message, rather as dreams do. Sam used to be very afraid of fire, to the point where when her smoke alarm started chirping that it needed a new battery, she would start shaking and would be unable to climb on a chair to replace the battery. She asked her mother whether she had ever been burned or had a problem with fire as a young girl, and was told that she hadn't. When she fist did a past life regression, she went back to a time when she had been burned at the stake as a witch. For whatever reason, reliving this experience allowed her to release her fear of fie, and she immediately felt no further fear.
Another things Sam did was to lead us into a meditation where we visited our higher council, those beings that council us before we reincarnate, and with whom we choose the kind of life we want to have. It's interesting that you don't even need to believe in such a thing in order to find this to be a very powerful meditation. You ask them to remind you what the purpose of this life is, and how to realize it. And whatever other questions that might come up.
I found this meditation to be very powerful. I asked the purpose of this life, and the answer that came back was "to learn trust". I asked whether I should marry Diana. The answer almost blew me away: YES! Whew! I asked whether I should take a job or stay "retired". The answer came back "Pffft!". It's of no lasting consequence.
Do you think thee might be a certain connection between learning trust and marrying Diana? Yes, I think there is!
I have been seeing one of the leaders of this workshop for what usually feels more like coaching than therapy, but occasionally can get petty therapeutic. Yesterday I saw her and we discussed this issue of trust and marriage. She had me get into touch with the side of myself that distrusts Diana and all other women. She had me saying "I don't trust you! I'm not going to commit myself to you! I'm afraid you'll hurt me! I'm always going to keep an "out". I'm always going to hold back!" Ugly stuff. And I did feel it. And the teas were leaking out of my eyes as I got in touch with the sadness and resignation that underlay this attitude.
My life was indeed well set up to make leaning trust difficult. I had severe colic the fist six months of my life, and spent a lot of that time screaming. My mother did not breast feed me. She was a scientist, and was not especially warm. She also believed in doing the right thing, so if I wanted something, that mattered not at all--what mattered was whether it was the right thing for me to have. I was fed on a schedule, every 4 hours (as was the custom of the time)--again, my wants were irrelevant.
So my early experiences of the universe were that it was filled with pain, and pretty indifferent to what I wanted or needed. Which has made trusting from my heat a challenge.
I have indeed come a long way. And my heart is in the right place. My mind still has a ways to go--it still judges, still brings up fears, and, most damaging of all, still finds ways to defocus my energies by suggesting this o that or another thing that might be better than what I already have. As far as my mind is concerned, getting married is equated with resigning myself to Diana and giving up any hope of ever having anything better. As far as my heart is concerned, what I have with Diana is so good, and getting better, and the sky's the limit.
In our workshop last night, we discussed dynamics. We often make choices, o feel we need to, when it is more resourceful to see the bigger picture and fit our choices into it in a dynamic way. Being able to see that certain times in our life call for certain behaviors, and other times call for other behaviors, works better than being stuck in one o the other. So there is a place for spontaneity and a place for discipline, for example, and owning this tension within us works better than picking one and rejecting the other.
I recognize that the real issue for me with Diana is whether I can keep our heart connection vital and growing. If so, I can handle anything my mind kicks up into my face. If not, I'm ripe for the picking. I have two previous marriages where I failed to keep this connection going. And I am scared to make it three. Being willing to stick it out, no matter what it takes, is the key ingredient that has evaded me. The negativity came rushing in at the first stumble or problem. My challenge is to embrace the positive, the possible. And learn to trust.
Thank you for reading.