Presence 40: I am Alive To Myself

That phrase, “I am in charge of myself”, has felt so powerful these last few days – like if I just quietly repeated it over and over til the end of the year, I would be doing myself a great service. As if taking healing daily medicine.

When we are in charge of ourselves, we are able to re-charge ourselves at will. Your qigong is a ‘charging’ practice. As is your meditation practice, both sitting and walking. Any time you plug yourself in to the Now moment, (and hop out of Time) you are ‘charging’ yourself. Only You, and your Freewill, can conspire to get you to tear yourself away from the comfortable ‘Dream Time’. 

November’s so dark… And after the clocks change… (June solstice = 16 hours of daylight vs. Dec solstice = 8 hours of daylight!) It’s hard to energise my healthy practices… I know, I’m looking at my phone a lot. Scouring for ‘news’. We’re in Pandemic Lockdown 2 this month! Yesterday was 11/11. I’ve been in once place a great deal. I’ve left the village in a car maybe 4 times in the last 6 weeks…?

Dear soul, all is well! You are doing the work! We see you – daily, running the gauntlet of Presence. We see you, watching emotions arising in your felt-perception, and staying with them, burning them off. 

Yes, this morning, in my meditation, I felt with every out-breath like I was blowing fire out of my nostrils, like a dragon! I could feel the stress and distress of yesterday [major tech issues as I spoke (about my own mental health) at the national conference of my industry’s main professional body] being used as fuel, like Michael Brown describes. Look… [We’re on Week 6 of TPP. My emphases.]

Up until this point in The Presence Process, we have explored three perceptual procedures:

1. We learned how to perceive the surfacing of unintegrated memories as reflections in the world. We call this identifying the messenger.

2. We learned how to access insight from the felt-content of these surfacing memories. We call this getting the message.

3. We learned how to unconditionally feel the pain and discomfort contained in these surfacing memories. We referred to this as feeling unconditionally.

The emotional integration procedure combines these three steps into one integrated perceptual tool. When used consistently, this tool charts a new pathway for our awareness that transforms us from reactive to responsive individuals.

With each application of this tool, we integrate charged emotion that was imprinted in our emotional body during childhood. As the heat – the discomfort in our emotional body – becomes integrated, those mentally entrenched belief systems that arise out of our emotional charge are dismantled. In turn, this decreases our need to gain attention and hence reduces the drama we manifest. It also unplugs the cause of self-medicating behavior. The consequence of this is that the quality of our experience is transformed. (The Presence Process, p178/9)

So a major lesson for me across this lifetime is that of: learning to FEEL the FEELINGS. I’m sure this is common to many, particularly in… ‘affluent’ societies? It was good over the last week or so to work with that ‘Doesn’t Care’ charged emotion. I started by aiming it at another. In the end, once I’d sat with the emotions, (rather than lunging them at another), I got the message: Does Care…. and it had to start with me caring enough about myself to take the remote control of my own life, and be ‘in charge’ of myself.

Tell me more?

Your efforts in this monastic year of silence, of non-movement and of emotional burn-up, are of significant value. This goes for all of you Locked Down in place. Do not underestimate the amount of emotional burn up that is going on globally this year as people learn to sit with themselves rather than wheel-spin,  react, create drama and avoid integrating that which is there to be integrated. Know in your Heart that you are all on the right track. This is a year of reckoning, and the souls of this planet have shown themselves to be Alive to themselves – and to each other. Your work today is to be Alive to Yourself. This means bringing a sense of Alive Awareness to your moments. Just as you affirmed your being In Charge of Yourself this week, now affirm this: 

I am Alive To Myself


The Presence Process on emotions as ‘fuel’ for transformation – further reading – my emphases:

The highest application of the mental body is when it serves to navigate the focus of our attention, while the highest application of the emotional body is when it fuels the momentum of our intent. The mental body is the navigation system of our capacity for being, and the emotional body is the fuel tank containing the various emotions, rather like different grades of fuel, intended to activate varying intensities of movement. This means that our charged emotion doesn’t require healing, as if it were broken. To imagine our imprinted emotional charge as something that requires healing or fixing, instead of integrating, would be no different from a can viewing a can opener as something that requires healing. The can opener simply needs to be put to use, as does our unintegrated energy-in-motion. In other words, dormant within our charged emotions is the potential to “open us up” to unrealized possibilities. Charged emotion is like an untapped fuel cell, which through the process of integration empowers authentic movement. This movement manifests as irreversible perceptual shifts. When we really grasp this, we realize that our childhood imprinting is a means of endowing our body with fuel. (TPP p176)

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