Goodbye to the 'enemy image'
It was with great delight and a deep knowing that I met two things recently. One was the term 'The Post-Dualistic Era', thanks to a book I am reading by Clemens G Arvay titled 'The Healing Code Of Nature'. (I'm excited to gather data about our kinship with all life and this is the book for that!) Finally! a term that encapsulates where I reside heart and soul. No more judgments, no more black and white, no more good feelings and bad feelings, no more good people and bad people. No more 'right' and 'wrong', 'punishment' and 'reward', just the impulse of life longing for fulfillment. I sense that the primary invitation of the post-dualistic era is a return to our natural capacity to live from and through our compassionate hearts. We are hard-wired for it, we've just been educated away from it.
The birth of this post dualistic era is not some intellectual musing for me. It's gotten right under my skin. If I had held onto the old dualistic paradigm in my life, it would leave me in the place of judging my violent father as the enemy, as being 'wrong'. Creating in my own being an 'enemy image' of him. But I knew this would weigh me down, creating a cold spot in my interior, when all I'm longing for is warmth, all I've ever longed for is warmth.
Seeing the fullness of it all, the pain and trauma I suffered at his hands, and at the same time the terrible pain and trauma in his own body - through a compassionate embrace - has given me eyes to see and a body to sense the full spectrum of being human. Moving from an either/or framing to a 'both'/'and'. Both things can exist at the same time in me and outside of me - both valid - one does not negate the other. Interconnectedness.
I also came across 'Prison Abolitionism And Decarceration'. And I said, 'Thank God!'. May there come a time when we look back on this form of punishment aghast and ask ourselves 'What were we thinking!' I realise this won't happen in my lifetime, but I am so glad to be alive now and hear of it's movement. How did we ever imagine that teaching someone the 'error of their ways' was going to soften their hearts and connect them to the hearts of those who suffered as a consequence of their actions and help them to find the agency and resources to live differently?
This brings me back to the premise of Marshall Rosenberg's work where he says; 'Behind every action, however ineffective, tragic, violent, or abhorrent to us, is an attempt to meet a need.' And if we are to hold this as 'true', then we need a non-dualistic foundation in order to cultivate the depth of compassionate presence that can hold the path of violence that has been expressed by humans on and to our planet and to one another.
Where do we start? Right here with you and me. As long as we are undertaking the compassionate re-membering that we are hard wired to offer this world, it will become impossible to undertake any action that might lead to the harm of another being. And seeing as how we only ever have today, the day we wake into, then today is the day to bring this about.
Today I put two spiders outside who might have gotten vacuumed up otherwise, and I sat under a tree and asked for it's support to talk to you about these precious things that are close to my heart, I knew I couldn't do it alone, not without entering a belonging and a holding with all life and as I listened with a compassionate heart to the limits of my ageing body.
And, I'm sharing this with you today, a gift of compassion. May it ripple out and into all the frozen places.
Resensitisation Through Compassion Teacher & Coach
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