Today is my Birth Day – actually not my official birthday, that’s on the 6th August, but today is the anniversary of my joining Michael Neill’s Café and last year’s Living from the Inside Out program, I guess you could call it the Anniversary of my becoming fully awake and alive.
I’m going to share with you something that I wrote a short while ago, which resumes the level of transformation that I have experienced in this last year:
I felt that my life was in shambles. Everywhere I looked, all I could see was disaster. I was running around like a trapped fly to go to work that was financially insufficient.
I was a mother and felt that I was no longer a mother, I was only getting to see my children during the school holidays because of the distance and I was watching my relationship with my children disintegrate before my eyes. I was a victim – one of those people that just never have any luck, who are mistreated by every single person that they come into contact with, lied to, cheated on, abused… unloveable. I felt that I’d been treated very unfairly by the justice system – all I had done was find work, work that I had stopped for five years when my children were born so that I could look after them. I felt that I had been treated very unfairly by life itself, even by God.
I was living dead – I spent several months attempting to decide how best to kill myself, contemplating all the different solutions. I didn’t eat, I spent most of my time in bed apart from when I had to struggle to get myself out to go and work. I was working in several different schools – I lost three jobs through absence. I was afraid to go outside, even going across the road to the shop to buy cigarettes demanded a huge effort and if there were people in the shop I would get really stressed and just wanted to get out of there as quickly as possible.
I lost all faith in life, in love and in humanity.
I was in the most incredible intense pain and I had no idea how to stop it – it felt that, because my children had been torn away from me and that that was permanent, that the pain would also be permanent, that it would never go away unless I died.
I joined Michael’s Living from the Inside Out program, not having the faintest clue what it was about. I thought it would be a program with weekly techniques and exercises, that by joining his program I would become rich, get my children back and be in a position to tell the whole world to get lost, which would make me ecstatically happy.
What I did get is invaluably more than the shallow ideals that I had at the outstart. I was really surprised by the content of the first videos, I joined the program about three to four weeks after it had started. and I didn’t understand what Michael was saying but, within the time that I watched the first videos, that hour or so, I already felt a sense of calm that I had not felt for years.
The first big realization came in, I think three or four days after having embarked on the journey with Michael. I was sitting in my kitchen, smoking and drinking tea, with not too many thoughts going on in my head and it hit me full in the face – I was doing this to myself. All the pain that I was feeling was not coming from the other people, my husband, my parents, the justice system, even the loss of my children, the pain was being created by my own thinking.
Within the program Michael presented what he calls “the Possibility Project” and I chose to hang up the boxing gloves that I had been fighting with for several decades – I even imaginarily hung them up on the door. This was the first step to letting go and allowing the unfolding of life, instead of constantly trying to control everything and make life happen in a way that I thought would make me happy.
Major turn around, all of sudden I wasn’t a victim any more.
Michael talks about “the kindness to the design” I woke up on the 1st April last year and had made the decision that if I didn’t find any kind of solution within the day that I wouldn’t waken up the next morning. The kindness to the design? I could have looked on Michael’s website and there might not have been any program running, so for someone who considered myself to be an unlucky victim, it was a sheer stroke of luck that the program was running and that I was able to watch and listen to the videos and some of the calls straight away.
Watching those videos and listening to the calls calmed me down because, even though I wasn’t aware of the huge insight that would come a few days later, i sensed that there was something true in these things that were being said, even though I couldn’t understand them.
On that first day my thoughts quietened, and my feeling changed, the pain was still there but not as poignant, simply because I had stopped thinking and churning it all up for a couple of hours – and Michael’s calm and loving full presence, even on a video, meant that I could hear him.
And the insights kept coming, the lack of need to do anything to feel happy because well being was already there, the loss of ego, the growth in openness to others, learning to trust again, letting go of pain.
I joined on April the 1st. Within that first week I suddenly noticed that spring had arrived, that the trees were green, that the birds were singing, that there were beautiful flowers in bloom. I saw the most incredible orange moon. I saw beauty all around, beauty that I didn’t think I would ever see again.
Two months later, I was sitting in my kitchen smoking and drinking tea. I took a puff of the cigarette, blew out, looked at the cigarette and suddenly realized that I didn’t need to do that any more. I put it out and I stopped smoking. I did have a relapse towards the end of last year for a couple of weeks but I knew that I didn’t need it and I stopped again…. with no withdrawal symptoms either time.
During the summer, I realized the difference between happiness and enjoyment.
The turn around came in very quickly and continues to surprise me, sometimes with the most unexpected and massive insights into life and spirituality.
At the beginning of July last year, I was sitting in my living room one evening, watching some people walk down the road and I could see them thinking. The insight that came with that was that everybody thinks and that everybody behaves on their thinking. Michael, obviously, had spoken about that in the program and I could understand it intellectually, but the deep insight came at that moment. It suddenly hit me that all of the bad things that had been said with my husband, all of the stress and worry and his, and my own low states of mind had absolutely nothing personal to do with me or him, they were uniquely due to each one’s own thinking – we are just thinking beings, acting on our thoughts and doing the absolute best that we could with what was available to us at that time.
I wrote this to my husband and where we had been up until then, totally at war, I offered a hand of friendship, I told him I was sorry that at the time I couldn’t see just how much he actually loved us, because if he hadn’t cared he would never have been like that, that I could see that he was just showing love in the best way that he knew how.
And he wrote back and said he was really happy that we weren’t going to fight any more.
In August the children were due to stay with me and my husband came down for two weeks and we decided to cancel our divorce and reunite. The children moved back officially with me in October, for the moment we are still waiting for my husband’s transfer to come through. Sure, there are bumps along the way, but this understanding, that my husband doesn’t get but it’s sufficient that I get it – this understanding has saved my marriage and continues to do so.
And we’re now expecting our third baby! I’ve become a Three Principles Practitioner and am on the verge of publishing my first book, The Gentle Path to Definitive Weight Loss, which is a Three Principles based book leaning on my own experience of losing weight and my knowledge of the biomechanisms that regulate the body’s functions.
When I think of where I am today, psychologically and psychospiritually, I am aware of just how powerful the nature of thought really is and how, with misuse it can cause so much damage, yet with good use it can create so much healing, so much inspired action and so much love.
And all of that happened through unfolding – I didn’t “do” anything to make anything happen, it just happened naturally and effortlessly….
I’m looking forward to how this next year will unfold… to my next Birth Day!
Love and Light,