Sunday, June 23, 2013

Sacred Intimacy Training, Homework

Part of my homework is to list five things that touched or inspired me about my own life from reading Soulcraft: Crossing into the Mysteries of Nature and Psyche by Bill Plotkin. I tried to write down anything that was relevant while reading the book.

First, I believe I have a sacred wound surrounding kissing my best friend in first grade. This is something I've worked with and explored. I sense there's more work to do here. I believe this is when I began withdrawing from my authenticity. I believe this time in my life is when my loyal soldier began protecting me by helping me hide my true nature and to be invisible. It didn't work. I was still seen and I was seen as weak. The universe began reflecting my self-doubt. I've learned to expose my body and be physically intimate, but I still censor my thoughts and feelings. I overexpose my body so that I can feel seen. I don't feel comfortable speaking my mind. I always feel on guard and wary. I can't let my guard down. I am uptight. Dorothy's story in Chapter 4 reminds me of how I “Sacrifice [my] one true life in order to make [myself] and others comfortable.”

Second and related to the first, I related to Bob the introvert in chapter 12 who was irritated with trivial extrovert conversation. In attempting to protect myself by hiding myself, I developed a rich inner life. I lived with hiding my attraction to men and sex with men for a few years. I spend time deep in my journal. Crowds of people exhaust me. I listen much more than I speak. I avoid speaking unless I have something to say. I often hear people speaking for what I perceive as the sake of speaking. It annoys me and I suspect it's because I am jealous of their extrovert nature, although I value being an introvert with a rich inner world. I wish people didn't exhaust me.

Third, I have another sacred wound. I visited a mental institution for a few weeks around 1989. I had fallen in love. I was under pressure as I had just come out to my family and was trying to figure out how to survive and put myself through my last year of college. I hadn't been eating right. I was exhausted. I lost the ability to sleep. I could see auras. This was at the end of summer and I had done LSD at some point over the summer. I believe I had a messiah complex. I was sure I could heal people. I was afraid I would be overwhelmed by people coming for healing, but I didn't know how to heal. I was afraid that the crowds would become angry and kill me. I thought about running into the woods and hiding. I avoided whatever call this was. In the institution, I diagnosed myself as being out of phase with the present moment. I believed I could use the right-hand-rule-of-thumb to move forward in time and the left-hand-rule-of-thumb to move back in time until I was back in sync with the present moment. At some point, I heard a friend who wasn't there say that he had to leave. At that moment, I felt I was back, but it took me a few days to trust myself again. I later learned my friend had become a born again Christian.

Fourth, In Chapter 13 I revisited an idea that arose from reading the section called “A sensuous connection with mysterious images” The following comes from a journal entry on Monday 6/17/13: Again, I come to the concept that everything I perceive is within me. The house I see is actually my perception within myself of the house. I've heard this described as a sophomoric philosophical exercise, but I believe it is worth pursuing. In thinking about it, you may consider that there's a mini-you watching your perceptions on a big screen TV in your brain. Where is the observer – the perceiver? My understanding today is that I am all that I perceive – including the perception of my body and mind. How do I explain this? Inside this objective body lies a world constructed of my perceptions – everything I see, hear, feel, taste and smell. What I perceive as my body is only my perception – it is not my objective body. The idea of “me” is as much an artificial construct as the tree that I perceive within that exists as something unknowable without. I am not the mini-person inside my mind watching a big screen. I am the big screen, and everything projected on the big screen. I am my perception of the tree. I am all that I perceive. Within this objective body, there is no distinction from me and the tree and the grass and the house and my naked body and my thoughts and feelings. This is my world. I am ultimately alone in this objective body except for God who is also me and connects me with every other life form in the universe.

Fifth, in chapter 12 I relate to the idea that sexual love is spiritual as well as carnal. Originally I just wanted to know that sex wasn't sinful, but my desire grew to know that sex was spiritual and to explore that union. After Dear Love, I wanted to use erotic touch for healing. Starting with my Yoga of Sex class, I began self-touch rituals dedicated to my intentions. From Chapter 1, I related to how the religious world demonizes or ignores physical needs and desires, physical pleasures and the divine feminine. I want to heal that division. There may be cases where sex can cause harm, but that tends to be more due to suppression and repression. I believe we need to begin respecting ourselves as thinking erotic beings, to end the war between body and spirit. In Chapter 2, the author mentions Pan whom I love. “Pan, the Greek's horned god of the forest was transformed into the devil of Christian mythology.”

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