Scott Kiloby: Everything that is stored in the body will resurface and have its day

 

When I first began the process of awakening, of investigating reality to see whether separation is in fact real or just a belief, I had no idea where that would lead.

I thought it was just about the mind, that machine between the ears. The idea was “wake up out of the belief in my thoughts and live in the now.” Seemed cut and dry to me back then. I had no idea what was in store with regard to my body and the rich but unconscious stories and memories it had stored through the years.

I had those monumental shifts that people often talk about. And I thought I was done. These were, for the most part, head awakenings where beliefs were seen through and stories were dissolved. For a few years after those shifts, I felt a clear transparency where my once really-busy mind had been. And this, again, made me feel like I was done. I hear people all the time proclaiming in one way or another that they are awake simply because they have had a head awakening. I listen patiently, knowing that the other shoe is likely to drop, meaning that everything that was stored in the body will resurface and have its day, until it too is investigated.

You see after the head awakening, which is that awakening into the present moment where one begins to feel as if there is no self, the body awakening is only beginning. In my experience, the body has its own memories, its own shapes, colors, stories, contractions. The last few years have been a process of gradual unfolding in the body, openings one after the other. And the road was not always easy. In fact, at times it has been quite painful.

My chest area opened early on, right after the initial awakening experience. What do I mean by heart opening? Nothing really mystical. It’s just that my chest felt clear and open, warm and loving. For eight years now, I have not felt any emotion (negative or positive) in the chest area. Just a warm, clear, transparent peace there. It’s quite simple really. The heart area is open. Nothing much more to say about that.

But the pelvic area, stomach and throat didn’t clear that easily. It took time. In my pelvic area, I began to be acutely aware of the contraction there after the head awakening. This area was dense, contracted and tight. Sexual addiction was rampant during this time. I wasn’t always acting out on it, but the addictive thoughts were there. And they seemed tied to that pelvic contraction. It’s almost as if that area of the body was screaming madly for pleasure, for release. And nothing would satisfy it for long – no sex act, no pornography. I would indulge in these things and find a temporary release of that dense energy that would last just a few days. The contraction would return and the sex addiction would come with it.

With the Living Inquiries, I finally had a tool to investigate this contraction very deeply. It was often a painful and frustrating investigation. Resting, looking and feeling into that area. Seeing pictures, words come and go, all of which seemed to be connected to that area. The pelvic area seemed as if it had its own mind, its own movie, its own set of meanings. As the meanings were distilled out of the contraction, it began to release. Warmth and space was all that was left.

And when the pelvic area opened, the vast difference between the now-open chest and now-open pelvic made the stomach and throat contraction even more obvious. The stomach and throat were the holdouts. The stomach held all the power-seeking, the intense wanting. The throat area seemed stuck, unable to express itself freely. And these areas carried their own little addictions, pain, sadness, and tightness. These were deeply embedded contractions that were resistance to almost every spiritual investigation, except the inquiries. The inquiries were the only tool that helped me open the stomach and throat. But again, this wasn’t a walk in the park. Months and months of infinite patience, of resting and feeling into those areas gently. Months of mining out the words and pictures that were embedded into the sensations in those areas.

And finally, through this gentle and thorough investigation, those areas began to open. I saw that what I had called a body through the years was actually a combination of words, pictures and energies that appeared on a screen right in front of me. For years, I thought that this play of words, pictures and energies was a body, a physical unit of sorts. Upon investigation, it all began to dissolve, slowly.

I don’t want to paint the picture of this unfolding as something that seems excruciatingly tiring or not worth the investigation. It’s been more than worth it to investigate these areas of the body. Rich, in fact. Very, very rich. Loving, compassionate and a lot of other adjectives I won’t bother adding into this post.

I had no idea in the beginning that awakening is not just about the mind. It is as much, or maybe more, about the body and the stories that are deeply engrained in it.

The body awakening has been the most eye-opening and rewarding part of this process of unfolding. I know now that one of the biggest traps is to proclaim that one is done. Yes, the seeking can end. Yes, one can have those shifts into what feels like non-dual space or oneness. But the unfolding continues to happen, with or without our consent. And it is largely an unfolding within the deepest caverns of our physical bodies.

If you are going through this embodiment, just know that there is support out there. There are many of us who can and will support you. You don’t have to buy into the religion of “I’m still seeking” nor do you have to buy into the religion of “I’m done.” You can watch the process unfolding naturally and organically with people who are also going through it with you or who have gone through it.

If you are interested in knowing more, join us in the Scott Kiloby Living Inquiries room. And if anything in this post is confusing or makes you feel defensive, that’s ok too. I’m merely sharing my experience. I’m not saying it is your experience. Only you can speak to that. I’m not trying to put any carrots out there to chase. I’m merely saying, in effect, “join me, because the pathless path to embodiment is painful yet extraordinarily wonderful and rich.” I feel so luck to have this human body, to watch it unfold and open in this way.

– Scott Kiloby on Facebook

Yes, yes, and yes. This fits my experience very closely.

In my teens, there was a clear head awakening followed by heart awakening. Then, after several years of “honeymoon”, there was the beginning of the dark night, which was also a deepening into a belly/body awakening. This has been a long and at times painful and difficult process, or – at least – that’s what a thought may call it. And it has been supported by several helpful tools such as Breema, The Work, and – more recently – the Living Inquiries.

A shift in center of gravity

 

Here is a shift I find difficult to put into words, perhaps because it’s not very clear to me yet.

In my late teens and twenties, Spirit recognized itself as all without exception. Yet the center of gravity was in the clarity, the light etc.. And that was also the center of gravity when looking at whatever pain or confusion surfaced. There was a slight identification as light, clarity and love, and although the rest was recognized as Spirit too, it was slightly “other” as well.

Then, in my thirties, there was a shift. Spirit still recognized itself as all, yet the center of gravity – the point of view – was more from within the confusion, identification and darkness. There was, and is, a finding of healing from within and as the confusion and pain. Spirit couldn’t anymore identify more as light, clarity and love. This shift helped point out the previous slight, almost invisible (to me!) identification and preference.

This also seems like a shift from head and heart center, to heart and belly center. A shift from a slight identification with/as the head center and it’s clarity and light, to becoming more familiar with and as the belly center, with its luminous darkness and womb-like quality.

It makes sense. Spirit is all of it – light and dark, clarity and confusion, nonidentification and identification. So even a slight identification with one or the other, with – in this case – the thought or image of being more light and clarity than darkness and confusion, is out of alignment with reality, and reality will move to correct it and bring the conscious and felt view more into alignment with reality.

And all of this is images and labels. It’s all Spirit and a thought saying a particular appearance of Spirit is light and clarity, or darkness and confusion, or nonidentified or identified mind, or a slight identification.

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Working on knot in belly

 

I woke up several times last night, briefly, noticing activity in the center of my belly, the tan tien area.

There was a sense of an intelligence working on a central knot in the belly.

I had asked my angels/guides to support me the evening before, around a specific topic. Perhaps there is a connection.

In any case, it’s interesting., and it’s all just a story – images in my own mind offering innocent suggestions about what it may be, what it may mean, etc.

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Way of the Womb: The Womb holds all manifestations in unconditional embrace

 

The Womb holds all manifestations of life, form and light in unconditional embrace. It has been deeply revered and feared, as it is also the great transformer and transmuter of all that is not True; all that is not sourced in Love; all that is not Life supporting or Life affirming. Egoic structures dissolve in this embrace. Even the darkest of wounds can be so loved with such a purity, to be returned into Original Innocence.

– Way of the Womb in Facebook

This fits my experience with the belly center, with the divine as filtered through the belly center.

The divine takes over

 

This sequence (the first one, up to 3:20) from The Fountain by Darren Aronofsky illustrates a process that’s getting to be more familiar to me than I – the surface I – wanted.

The conquistador really wants the tree of life and what it offers, and then realizes in terror that it requires everything of him and doesn’t look at all like what he expected. First, he chased the tree, then the process took over and he didn’t have a choice anymore – as if he ever had a choice.

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Cannonball sprouting

 

From a session with Barry:

The image and feel of a cannonball surfaces. It’s resistance, personal will. It’s what’s resisting what’s happening, resisting life. I see how I fight it, and it doesn’t work.

It’s in the forehead, head, throat. Then it falls, it sinks down into the belly.

I stay with the image and feel of the cannonball in the belly. The cannonball sprouts, green soft sprouts emerge out of it. The cannonball softens, becomes soil, nutrients for these sprouts.

I stay with the cannonball, the soil, the sprouts. A tree emerges from the cannonball and the sprouts.

Then my whole body sprouts. My whole body becomes soil, nutrients for these sprouts. All of me becomes soil, nutrients.

A while passes. Then the whole Earth sprouts. The whole earth becomes soil and nutrients for the sprouts and trees.

The cannonball, my body, the whole Earth are soil, nutrients for the sprouts.

I am gone. All of me is gone. All of me is soil. All of me is nutrients for the sprouts. It’s all one field of soil, nutrients and sprouts.

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Childhood nightmare – luminous black – diamond

 

Notes from a session with Barry:

Recurrent nightmare

As a child, I had a recurrent nightmare.

I climb up the ladder to the attic, and as soon as my head enter the space everything disappear and I fall through the darkness. After a while, a witch appear stirring a large cauldron. She looks up at me and grins. I am about to fall into the cauldron and wake up.

I stay with the different parts of this dream. What happens if I fall into the cauldron? I dissolve. Everything I am dissolve. I emerge with a light-body – a body made up of the black and golden luminosity combined. The witch transform into a young woman with the same light body. We merge. We are one. We always were one.

In the dream I dive headlong into my greatest fears. I have no choice. The witch holds me to it. She gives me no choice. That’s why she appears as a witch to me. My fear of my fears makes her appear as a witch. In reality, she and everything is love. The process is love. It helps me find my wholeness, it helps me discover who and what I am.

The attic is black.  The space I fall through is black. The witch and the cauldron is black. It is all held within the deep velvety luminous blackness. It is all the luminous black. Soft, velvety, nurturing. Infinite love.

It is OK to lose control. It is OK to fall. It is OK to dive into my greatest fears.

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Head, heart, belly

 

Something else I keep coming back to…

There is a clear sense of awakening happening at the levels of head, heart and belly, even if those are only metaphors.

And as they happen separately and in different combinations, there is a clearer sense of the qualities of each one.

The head awakening happened for me in my teens, then combined with heart awakening and what I can only call “cosmic consciousness”. More recently, there has been times where there has been a clear head awakening on its own. The head awakening is a clear seeing of all as God. No separate I to be found anywhere. Ground awake to itself. Content of experience awakening to itself as a field, all as awakening, as no thing appearing as something, inherently absent of an I with an Other. This human self is living its life on its own, as everything is. There is no doer. No thinker. No chooser. No observer. No witness. Just the field.

The heart awakening is a love of everything as God. The love of God for itself, when all is recognized as God and this is lived through a human self. This love can be independent of content of experience (of feelings, emotions) and only appears as love when it comes out in actions. This is the love of the right hand helping the left, simply, effortlessly. In addition to this, it can also come out as content of experience, as a feeling, emotion, a bitter-sweet love. Bitter because of the suffering in the world. Sweet because it is love and it embraces whatever/whomever comes up, independent of its characteristics.

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Dropping into the luminous black

 

I keep noticing how each way of allowing experience has a different quality and flavor, and how the luminous black is what I am invited to explore more now. Dropping into the luminous black, and from there see, feel and love whatever content of experience is here, as it is, as if it would never go away, and with a special emphasis on feeling.

It is difficult to describe the luminous black… although the energy drawings give a hint. It is experienced literally as luminous black, no metaphors there. (Apart from what is inherent in any word.) It is velvety soft. It seems to be an aspect of emptiness, moving slightly into the form side. It is inside of any form, and that which all forms are. (In addition to emptiness/awareness.) In the body, it is centered in the belly, and it invites emotions to reorganize from reactivity to a sense of nurturing fullness.

It is an allowing of experience that has the feeling aspect as its focal point, inviting in and deepeing a belly awakening – a felt sense of all as God.

Energy drawings

 

I got the inspiration to make some energy doodles last week. As usual, I don’t assume they reflect anything you would actually find in the energy system. (Although it could happen). Mostly, I take them as projections telling me something about where I am right now. (Even if they did reflect something actually going on energetically, they would still be important and useful as projections.)

What I mostly see in these is an emphasis on the luminous dark below the body. A velvety luminous blackness, seen through and in everything, centered in the body in the belly, inviting in a healing at the emotional level and a felt sense of all as God.

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Trust

 

We can have trust in something, but if we do we depend on whatever we have trust in being available to us, and we are also likely to be disappointed.

Another approach is to realize that this trust awakened in us by something in the world, is right here now. It can be found independent on circumstances. And it is really just trust. Not in anything in particular. Or maybe, in life, existence, what is.

One way it may emerge is through certain explorations, such as wholeheartedly allowing any experience, and being open to investigating any belief.

When I wholeheartedly allow what I am experiencing right now, especially those experiences that seem the most scary, I find that it is OK. I can be with it, allow it, as it is, as if it would never change. It may be more than OK.

Even as the content of experience stays much the same, there may also be a shift into a sense of nurturing fullness and a quiet joy. A quiet joy in just experiencing, independent of the content of experience, revealed when I don’t struggle against it.

And when I investigate beliefs, including those that seem most untouchable or create the most stress for me, I find that the belief, and what it refers to, also are OK. And again, it may be more than OK. I may find the gifts in the reversals of the initial belief, a release of identification out of the initial story and its reversals, and clarity.

In both cases, I may find a genuine appreciation for what is, as it is.

There is a receptivity of the heart and mind, and this invites in a sense of trust in nothing in particular, or in what is, as it is.

And this trust eventually is experienced in the belly center. It becomes a deeply felt trust. A sense of nurturing fullness of the belly center, and in experience in general.

Energy hole and hara

 

I have mentioned this before, but I noticed again today.

I used to have a moderate scoliosis in the lower back, with the most noticeable misalignment right at the level of the navel. And that is exactly where I have noticed an energetic hole since the initial awakening. Along with this, there was a sense of a generally weak hara, and also a neurotic pattern of irritability over certain sounds. (People eating loudly, rustling loudly with the newspaper, talking loudly in public, etc.)

Since I started doing Breema, my hara has been filling up more, and has a much higher baseline level. After a while, there was a sense of the energetic hole filling up, and the scoliosis is much weaker. (I have also received massage for the scoliosis). And  following that, I have noticed that the neurotic pattern has lessened quite significantly and is often absent in situations where it used to arise.

My sense is that the Breema helped the hara fill up, with a nurturing fullness and trust, which in turn invited the neurotic pattern to shift, helped along with The Work inquiries on people making sounds. And the massage invited the spine to realign, probably helped along with the energetic shifts in that same area.

Journeys and belly center

 

Visiting my birth family, I see more clearly the different aspects of my journey so far in my relatively short life…

The main one may be to embrace more of who I am, as a human being. Finding peace with it. Being ok with it. Including not being ok with it, sometimes. Finding myself as the wholeness beyond and embracing body-mind. Actively getting to know the parts that has been excluded from my conscious identity. (Wholeness at the human level.)

Then, discovering what I am, as this field of awakeness and form, inherently absent of I and Other, center and periphery, and so on. (Head center.)

Finding appreciation for life, more independent of how it shows up. (Heart.)

And finally, what I am noticing most right now because it is more recent, the belly center. How a weak/fragmented/fractured belly center leads to a fear-driven life, and how fears leads to just this depletion of the belly center. And how a fuller, nurturing belly center gives a sense of deep nourishment and trust… in life, existence, what is. My background is definitely one of a weak belly center, which continued through the initial awakening (head/heart centered.) Now, through Breema and other practices, the belly center is finally taking center stage more.

Belly center

 

I keep noticing the effects of the belly center… the sense of nurturing fullness and trust. Just trust, not in anything in particular, so in a sense in existence itself. The trust that comes when emotions are less reactive and there is less fear.

I also see that this is what was missing for me during the initial awakening, in my teens. The heart and view centers were blown open, all was seen and loved as God, but the felt-sense of all as God as missing. View and head had reorganized within this new context of all as God, but the emotions had not yet. That took longer.

The fullness of the belly center gives a sense of nurturing fullness and trust, which helps our human self in its daily life. In an awakening, it gives a felt-sense of all as God. And it also invites an awakening, through allowing this human self to relax and let go of attachments a little more. It is held within this sense of nurturing fullness and trust, so it is easier for what we are – awakeness – to notice itself.

So before awakening, when the centers are more alive, there is a more fluid view (head), a more open heart (heart), and a felt-sense of nurturing fullness and trust (belly). All of this makes it easier for us to notice what we already are (awakeness), and it also helps our human self reorganize to express this more easily when it is noticed.

And when what we are awakens to itself, the centers allows it to see all as God (head), have a felt-sense of all as God (belly), and love it all as God (heart). Our view, emotions and heart reorganizes within this new (newly noticed) context of all as God.

How do we work with the belly center? Any body-oriented practice may help, and any energetic work in the belly/hara region. I also guess that some thorough, felt-sensed, shadow work helps the process. Maybe most importantly, whatever other work we are doing, we can invite in a felt-sense of our experience, including any insights we may have.

Upsides and downsides of energetic and soul level buffering

 

There are many ways to invite in a form of buffering at energetic or soul levels, being held energetically or within the alive presence in ways that helps us get less caught up in reactiveness.

We can fill up the hara through Breema and other practices. We can receive different forms of energy transmissions, such as the bands of power munai-ki rite, that serves as a buffer, filter and protection. (I am noticing the effects of that one right now, which is what prompted this post.) We can invite in the soul level, the alive presence, through prayer and other practices. And more.

The benefits are pretty obvious. Our lives at a human level typically becomes far easier. Fewer things bug us. There is a sense of not being touched by what we previously got caught up in. It makes it much easier to be who we take ourselves to be if we are identified with stories, and it makes it easier for this human self even if we are not. We get a sense of how it is to live released from being in the grips of stories and identifications. We see that something else is possible.

Our human self may also reorganize and stabilize within this new context, releasing identification more and more over time. It may even lead into what we are noticing itself, finding itself as awakeness, and this field of awakeness and form inherently and always free from an I and an Other.

But there are also some possible drawbacks. We can get complacent, happy with being protected by the buffer, not taking up the invitation to explore more in depth the hooks and rings of identification and beliefs in stories. And that is exactly why any buffer is only temporary. It is within the realm of form, it is content of awareness, and as any form and any content, it will change. When it fills, it only does so to empty. And when it empties, it does so only so it can in turn fill.

It is cyclical, as anything else, and throughout it all is the invitation for us to investigate the hooks and rings more closely. An invitation for what we are to notice itself.

Any buffer is a buffer or protection for who we are, for this human self. And the invitation for what we are to awaken to itself is there independent of buffers or not.

Dream: Wounded God

 

I am with a group of people doing healing work, most of them from Breema. I talk with a small group of men, and one of the points out how life is inevitably wounded, and the perfection in it. It is God experiencing itself as wounded. There is a very strong atmosphere, similar to what happens in Breema intensives. It is rich, full, deeply nurturing, joyful, free.

I had this dream the first night on my visit to Norway, after having noticed the family patterns quite clearly the night before. Strangely enough, I experienced it more as an outsider, and didn’t take it so personally. I can see the lack of belly center fullness, and also how this has shifted for me since the last visit. There has been a deepening into it, and a sense of that nurturing richness, fullness and trust that comes with a fuller and more open belly center. And this has happened, at least partly, through Breema. I can see the wounded patterns in my family, and find freedom from being caught up in it, including wanting it to change for them, and instead find sincere appreciation for it. It is one expression of the inherent woundedness of human life, and it is beautiful. (Especially since I have found some freedom from it myself.)

It is life exploring and temporarily experiencing itself through one flavor of woundedness. It is God, experiencing itself as wounded.

Dream: a new dance

 

I am visiting an old friend in Norway (JGH), someone I haven’t seen for many years. He lives in a nice apartment in Oslo, and there is a dance there in the evening. Lots of people come over and the dance is something I have never before seen or experienced.

It is a group dance, but also individual. The group moves almost as a school of fish, with one person initiating a slight variation of the moves and many or all of the others following. The new patterns ripple through the group in a very organic and playful way, and it is clear that everyone is enjoying the dance deeply – both what comes up for them individually and what moves through the group in such a seamless and playful way.

I am struck by the atmosphere which is intelligent, playful and soulful at the same time, and which allows such an individuality yet also forms such a seamless flow of patterns on a group level.

I also notice how there is a wide open field embracing and going deep into polarities such as individuality and group, receptivity and initiation, slow and fast, rhythmical and playfully breaking of rhythms, sensuality and intelligence, and much more.

It is clear that this is a mature group, and one that is intimate with themselves, each other and life, in a way I have rarely or never seen before.

I realize that what is different is that they move, in a mature, intimate, playful and effortless way from the three centers and with an emphasis on the belly center.

It is completely different yet also intimately familiar, as something I have for a long time been looking for, yet had not thought I would find. A deep gratitude comes up for me, and a longing and desire to stay and join in on their weekly gatherings.

During the dance, someone mentions that there are groups doing this form of dance in New Zealand, Australia and Europe, but not in the US because it doesn’t fit into their culture.

Afterwards, my friend shows me a book called “God as WE” and asked me if I know of other authors on that topic. I see that it is an anthology with writings by Adi Da, Andrew Cohen, Saniel Bonder and others, and realize that this is an area that is close to my heart yet has been neglected over the last period of time. The only other author I can think of is A. H. Almaas.

This is a big dream as Jung called it, one that made a big impression and seemed to have more significance than most dreams. It is a dream that shows me a whole new different realm of being and life.

A being and living, in a mature, playful and effortless way, from and as the three centers, and especially the warm nurturing felt-sense fullness of the belly center.

The atmosphere in the dream and the dance was very similar to Breema, yet also more dynamic, playful, and with ripples of patterns at a group level I am not used to.

It is a bringing of the belly center qualities into the group level, in a more mature way. It is God exploring itself as WE through an inclusion of all three centers, and especially the belly center.

There was no coincidence that the dream was set in Oslo since the qualities of this dream were more alive for me when I lived there… the soulfulness, playfulness and intelligence all together at a group level, with my friends there.

In the dream, someone pointed out that there were groups doing this form of dance in New Zealand, Australia and Europe, but not in the US because it didn’t fit into their culture. This reflects my ambivalence about living in the US, enjoying many things here but also longing for the intelligent and playful soulfulness I find more easily in Europe.

There was also a synchronicity here: At the end of the dream, I talked with a woman for a while. I remember the quality of her presence and looks, but not the content of the conversation. This morning, a woman came over to look at a room we are renting out, and she was a very close math to the person in the dream. (Not many are.)

Belly center neutrality

 

Each center has it’s own form of “one taste”, and each one can appear in different ways.

Over the last few days, I have noticed a new form of neutrality which I this morning realized was a belly center neutrality. It is difficult for me to put into words as this is a new variation, another flavor of the rounded nurturing fullness of the luminous blackness, and of the warm rounded fullness of the physical senses. This time, it seems more in and of the body, rather than just the senses. It is a steady presence, and gives an odd sense of “one taste” to any experience. Whatever is going on at the surface, there is a dwelling in and as this soft, rounded, nurturing fullness in/of the body.

The One Taste of the head center, when more fully realized, is a seeing of all form as the play of void, of the whole field of what arises as the awake void taking a fluid form, absent of center and an I with an Other.

The One Taste of the heart center, when more fully realized, is a loving of all forms as the play of the void, as the always fresh and evolving form aspect of God.

And the One Taste of the belly center, when more fully emerged, seems to be this bodily, almost substantial sense of soft, rounded nurturing fullness, independent of experiences, situations and content of awareness. It is transparent to the void, yet also substantial in a certain sense, in its fullness.

Each of these can be present in awareness to various degrees, from a sense of it, a hint, a taste, a brief glimpse, to something that is more clearly present and recognized. My guess is that the way they present themselves will continue to change over time, both in terms of being more in the foreground or background of awareness, and in its unfolding.

Belly center and nurturing fullness

 

From the previous post:

If the head and heart centers awaken, it gives a clear seeing and loving of all as Spirit, and if the head center is fully awakened, a realized absence of any separate I anywhere. But if the belly center is not, there is no deeply felt-sense of all as Spirit, and also no deep reorganization of the emotional level. There will still be fears and so on triggered by the usual situations, only now seen and loved as Spirit. So it is of course OK, although still limited.

This was the situation here following the initial awakening – a nearly full awakening of the head and heart centers, but definitely not of the belly center. There was a clear knowing that it was missing as well, that it could be quite different. And when the early belly awakening happened last fall, a knowing that this was one of the missing pieces of the puzzle.

Two things that seem to allow for this reorganization of the emotional level is the belly awakening itself (invited in this case through Breema and then shaktipat), and also The Work – allowing beliefs to unravel through the system including the emotional. I am sure there are many other out there, but these are the two I have found so far.

When the belly awakening runs its course and the emotional level is reorganized, the old patterns of (emotional) reactivity unravel with it. Fear, anger, sadness and so on are not triggered in the same way anymore. There is just clarity (head center), love (heart center), and a sense of nurturing fullness (belly center).

In short, the emotional reactivity which is still there when only the head and heart centers are awakened, is exchanged with a felt-sense of nurturing fullness when the belly center awakens.

It is still possible to trigger any of these old emotions, although now in a conscious way and arising as wisdom energies.

I should also add that the awakening of the three centers can happen (relatively) independent of each other. If there is only an awakening of the head center, there is a clear seeing of all as Spirit and an absence of any I with an Other, but it also feels a little cold and arid, lacking empathy. If only a heart center awakening, then a loving of all as Spirit, but less of a clear understanding. If only a belly center awakening, a felt-sense of all as Spirit, but missing the seeing and loving, at least in a more fully unfolded way.

And before a more full awakening of each center, they can certainly awaken to different degrees. In terms of the belly awakening, Breema seems to be a good way to invite in the sense of nurturing fullness, and The Work is great for unraveling beliefs throughout the system, taking emotional reactivity with it.

Three centers and Buddhas

 

laughingbuddha.gif

I wrote another post on this a while ago, but wanted to revisit it (as with some many topics here) to see what comes up now.

The three centers – heart, belly and head – each filter Spirit, Existence, life in different ways…

The head center is the seeing of all as Spirit. When the view is split, it reflects and creates a dualistic experience centered around a sense of I and other. When the view is of all as Spirit, it reflects a more nondual realization.

The heart center is the loving of all as Spirit. When the heart is split, it too reflects and creates a dualistic experience of I and Other, us and them, the situations and beings our heart opens to and those it closes to. When the heart recognizes all as Spirit, the circle of care, compassion and concern effortlessly leaves nothing and no-one outside.

The belly center is the felt-sense of all as Spirit. When the felt-sense is split, there is a sense of comfort and relaxation in some situations, and discomfort and (emotional) reactivity in other situations. In general, there is a lack of basic trust in existence and life, a lack of feeling deeply nourished and held by life. When there is a felt-sense of all as Spirit, of all as God’s will and God itself, then there is that deep feeling of being held and nourished by life, independent of circumstances.

An awakening (even an early one) of the head center reorganizes the view, from rigid and dualistic to more receptive, inclusive and reflecting a more nondual realization. An awakening of the heart center reorganizes the heart from being often closed to being more receptive and open in any situation. And an awakening of the belly center reorganizes the emotions from reactivity and unease to being deeply nurturing and a deeply felt sense of trust in life, independent of how it shows up.

There is also a mutuality among the centers. The movement of one in the direction of a deepening split, or of reflecting all as Spirit, tends to be reflected in a similar shift in the others. For instance, when there is reactivity in the belly center, the view tends to become more rigid and deepen the sense of I and Other, and the heart closes down. When there is a deeply felt sense of nurturing in the belly center, the view tends to be more receptive and inclusive, and the heart more open.

In terms of practices for each center, inquiry works well for the head center, revealing what is already more true for us. Heart center practices include gratitude practices, rejoicing in others fortune, well-wishing, tong-len, heart centered prayers, and so on. And the belly center practices include any body-inclusive practices, and maybe especially Breema which seems to very clearly open for a deeply nurturing felt-sense of trust in life, and all as Spirit.

And each of these centers also have Buddhas associated with them, as an image reflecting their qualities when all is seen/felt/loved as Spirit.

For the head center, Manjushri Buddha. For the heart, Avalokitesvara. And for the belly, Hotei, the laughing Buddha.

(For some reason, the belly Buddha is often left out in Buddhist teachings, as the belly center is often – although certainly not always – left out in spiritual teachings in general.)

Hotei is a particularly good image for the belly center.

He has a big belly, drawing attention to that center, and also reflecting the sense of rich, full, nurturing abundance experienced in the belly center when it is more open, when there is a felt-sense of deep trust in life. (He sometimes has a big sack that never empties, reflecting the same sense of abundance.)

And he laughs… when there is a deep felt-sense trust in life, independent of how it shows up, and there is a deep sense of a nurturing fullness and richness coming from the reorganized emotional level and the belly center, it is naturally expressed in an heart-felt laughter.

Hotei is often seen as a more folksy and naive representation of Buddha and is left out of the more formal teachings in the different Buddhist traditions. But, at least in the context of the three centers, the image of Hotei is as profound and significant as those of Manjushri and Avalokitesvara.

Quick journey: heaviness and velvet blackness

 

I woke up this morning with an unusual and very strong heaviness, centered in the belly area. I stayed with it for a while, and then decided to explore it through a journey (tracking, allowing the process behind it to unfold, similar to active imagination although using any channels including visual, sound, sensation, movement, etc.)

  • The heaviness is everywhere, then becoming a quickly contracting sphere centered in the belly area. As it becomes very small, the movement stops.
  • Attention stays with the small sphere there for a while.
  • Then, everything else – the whole world – contracts into the same small area, and then disappear. Leaving only nothingness.
  • After a while with nothingness, the smooth velvety round full blackness emerges as a field.
  • Followed by the world of form again appearing as an overlay to this velvety blackness.
  • I see how this is an invitation to notice the world of form as the smooth full blackness, in my daily life. It is there, and I can bring my attention to it more.

After following this journey, which probably took half a minute or so, the body went out of bed and started on its morning activities. The heaviness is still there, but now as a nurturing smooth fullness, with the qualities of the velvet blackness.

A felt-sense of all as God

 

The belly center has to do with a felt-sense of all as God… a sense of deep full nurturing, of all as safe, a trust in life and existence, and the emotional level reorganizing in this context.

At the relative level, all is of course not OK for the body… it can be temporarily OK, but disease, accidents, and old age are just around the corner. The body is doomed. So to say that it is all OK in this context does not make sense, other than as a temporary state.

But at the absolute level, all is OK… we find ourselves as awake void and whatever arises, free from an exclusive identification with anything arising in content, including the body. And within this context, freed from being identified with and taken as a separate self, an I with an Other, the body can deeply relax, find a deeply nurturing fullness, find a felt-sense of trust in life and all as OK, God’s will, and Spirit itself.

There are several ways into this…

One is through inquiry, allowing identifications with identities fall away including with the body. As long as the body is taken as I, there will be a sense of unease and tension in the body, it is guarded. The emotions and behaviors are, at least in some areas, reactive. As this identification falls away, there is a deepening sense of comfort, relaxation and alertness, and of a stable nurturing fullness from the emotional level.

Another is through body inclusive practices, such as Breema, where we drop into this sense of deep nurturing fullness and support from the hara (belly area) and the emotional level. We have a taste of it, and as we continuing practice, it deepens and becomes more and more stably available. Through this process, the identifications with body etc. gradually seems to wear off.

So we can allow beliefs to fall away, revealing the inherent nurturing fullness of the body to surface. Or we can drop right into it, allowing identifications to wear off over time.

As we explore this, we see an apparent paradox: no matter what happens with the body at a physical level, there can be a deep felt-sense of all as OK, a nurturing fullness, an absence of emotional/behavioral reactiveness, a stable support from the emotional level, a felt trust in life and existence, and a felt-sense of all as God’s will and Spirit itself.

Of course, we still do what we can to take care of the body, with less drama and probably more effectively than when it is identified with. But even if it is going through disease, pain, old age, dying, there is still the felt-sense of all as OK, of a trust in life as it is, of all as God.

And this is far beyond what we can make any conscious decision about, or what our conscious thinking-mind and beliefs can even touch. It has to come from genuinely seeing through the identifications, or certain body-inclusive practices, or both.

Three centers

 

These are some things from preliminary explorations of the three centers… or rather, how Spirit is filtered through the three centers, and then in turn filtered through this human self. (As it is alive in immediate awareness.)

How Spirit is filtered through each…

  • Heart… as alive presence. In general as a field of alive presence, in the heart region as the indwelling God, this alive presence specifically for this individual.
  • Head… as awake luminous void, and all form as this awake void, inherent absent of an I with an Other.
  • Belly… as smooth velvety round full luminous blackness.

Each of these are a field… what form arises within, to and as. Each one, transparent to the Ground, and no other than Ground itself. Each one, impersonal and personal (specifically for this, and any, human self) at the same time. Each one, infinitely loving, intelligent, receptive, and responsive to this (and any) individual.

When these centers are awakened, even in an early phase, it allows for a seeing (head), loving (heart) and feeling (belly) of all as Spirit (Big Mind, Brahman, Tao). It is Spirit filtered through each center, and then seeing/loving/feeling itself through them.

At the human level, an awakened (even partially) center, allows for…

  • Heart… receptivity, seeing myself in others, recognition, empathy, sense of intimacy, no separation.
  • Head… receptivity, seeing stories as only stories, seeing the grain of truth in all the reversals of any story, revealing the inherent neutrality of the situation.
  • Belly… a felt-sense of deep trust, safety, allowing for a deep reorganization and healing of the human self, especially at the emotional level.

The three centers are really one system… the deep felt-sense of trust from the belly center invites for a receptivity of the heart and head centers. The receptivity of the heart centers invites a receptivity of the head center, and also a deepening felt-sense of trust and safety. And the same goes for the head center.

The beauty of Spirit filtered through these three centers is how it allows for the impersonal aspects of Spirit and also the personal, the ones specifically for this and any other individual. It naturally and effortlessly seems to allow both into the foreground of awareness.

I also see how they each have come through in different phases of my life, allowing for an easier differentiation of each one. During the initial awakening, the head center awakened allowing for a seeing of all form as awake luminous void, inherently absent of any separate self anywhere. Then, the heart center awakened strongly, allowing for a loving of all as God, as Spirit. Then, over the last few months (partly through Breema, and partly through the endarkenment shift) the belly center, revealing all form as luminous blackness, velvety smooth, round, full, allowing for a deep sense of safety and trust for this human self, and a reorganization especially on the emotional level.

Heart center + head/belly flavors

 

I have been exploring how the heart center combines with head and/or belly centers for different flavors.

When the head center is included, there is the usual empty luminosity and clarity of the head center there. A very yang brilliance (compared with the smooth fullness of Spirit filtered through the belly center, it is stark, almost a desert quality).

And when the belly center is included, there is the smooth, round fullness of the belly center, which allows a felt-sense of the heart qualities.

And together, there is even more sense of fullness and richness… the love of the heart center, the empty luminosity of the head center, and the velvety smooth round fullness of the belly center. The loving, seeing and feeling of all as Spirit.

I also notice, as I did early on with the belly center awakening, that bringing in the head and belly centers together invites the heart in as well. Although it is certainly possible to start with any one, and bring either or both of the others in.

Of course, there is not really any “bringing in” of anything… all three are there, but it is possible to invite one or more into the foreground of awareness… shifting each one more into the foreground or background.

Hara area

 

Since the shift into endarkenment a few months ago, there has been a great deal of activity in the belly region, especially along the spine and in the kidney area. Since my teens, I have been aware of an energetic hole there which corresponded to a twist on the spine (L3-4). The twist (scoliosis) has gradually improved since then, and the energetic hole has filled up a great deal, partly through Breema and even more so through the endarkenment.

I have also noticed how the hara seems to be connected with a felt-sense of a basic trust in life and of being held by life and existence. The energetic hole seemed associated with a lack of this felt-sense, and as it is filling up, this sense of a basic trust in life and Existence is becoming more embodied, there is a felt-sense of it, the body knowing it in its cells.

The initial awakening was filtered through the head and heart centers. There was a clear seeing of all as God, as consciousness, beyond and embracing all polarities, and a loving of it all as well. But the felt-sense of it was not there, it was not (yet) filtered through the belly center. This made for a lot of stress happening on a physical level.

More in general, I see how this felt-sense of basic trust, of being held by life and Existence, allows for more fluidity of views, more receptivity of heart and mind, and more transparency of the sense of I and Other. Where a lack of this trust makes for rigidity of views, a closed heart and mind, and a deepening sense of I and Other, the trust allows for an reversal.

Another flavor of luminous blackness

 

Three of us from our local diksha group (not quite sure what to call it as it moved beyond that a while ago) got together last night to receive another transmission. This one called Ilahinoor, or divine light in Turkish. It is another of the many, probably innumerable, ways the soul level can be filtered, like a light through a prism. Here is my report from the evening:

Hi B & K, and thanks for the ilahinoor transmission tonight!

I think all three of us were somewhat lost for words in terms of describing it, but I’ll give it a try. It definitely seems to be in the same general family of the dark feminine, although I experience it as gentler… a whisper, blackness, soft, velvety, clear as water.

  • It started at the crown, then moving down to the belly area and arms.
  • Both R and I experienced this velvety whispery blackness as a soft hand holding on the left side of our face for a while.
  • As A got ready to give to me, I experienced a deep feminine black fullness descending on me from above. It was very tangible, and quite similar to what I experienced when I received transmission from K on Saturday night.
  • At one point, while receiving it from A, I experienced it, and then myself, as this clear velvety black void/space with no boundaries anywhere.
  • While receiving from A, I also experienced it at one point as very gentle descending swirls in my upper body.
  • When I gave, it came to me to use some simple Breema holds, first both hands on top of the belly, then one on top and one under the back, then one on top and one at the heart, and finally belly and forehead.
  • The ilahinoor soul quality is quite similar to other velvety blackness qualities I am familiar with, but also different, so even if it was clearly present, I found myself scanning around a little before falling into it when giving. As you said, all that was needed was to trust it.
  • While giving, it started out with me as a channel, then it all happening over where my recipient was, and then all here with me – knowing that this would invite the recipient into the same space. The last one was by far most comfortable and easy for me, partly because it is what I am familiar with from Breema (finding it in myself, which allows the recipient to fall into it.)
  • Breema has Sufi connections, and the ilahinoor soul quality seemed very compatible with it… Breema also invites in a sense of alive presence, fullness, deeply nurturing and comforting, a deep quiet peace, very much hara/belly centered.

That’s all that comes up for now. I am sure it will shift and change with time!

Dazzling dark

 

When I shifted into (very early) endarkenment some weeks ago, there was first a sense of fertile darkness… Smooth, full, a ground of all form. Somehow connected with the belly center. A dark fertile womb. Healing and reorganizing at an emotional level. Formless and a void, yet also the source of all form and all form itself. Selfless.

Then, some days later, an alive luminosity came up, infinitely loving, intelligent, receptive, and – when invited – active, and connected with the heart center.

And then, a combination of the two, of a luminous darkness, smooth, fertile, alive, infinitely loving, intelligent and receptive.

Dazzling Darkness

Some days ago, I found an anthology of writings from Christian mystics called A Dazzling Darkness, which is a term that seems to describe what I have called luminous blackness.

Searching on “dazzling darkness” I found this

. . . it is all still here, both the shining dark void and the experience of myself coming into being out of, yet somehow in response to, that radiant darkness. My whole consciousness of myself and everything else has changed.

When I read it, I initially thought I was reading something I had written…! It is a close description of the shift that happened for me some weeks back, and written by an Australian by the name of John Wren-Lewis.

Then he goes on…

I feel as if the back of my head has been sawn off so that it is no longer the 60-year-old John who looks out at the world, but the shining dark infinite void that in some extraordinary way is also “I.”

My sense is of a shift among 2nd, 1st and 3rd person relationship with the luminous darkness, and they are often there simultaneously. The darkness is You, then I, then both, then an it when I write about it. (The sawed off head is not my experience, but that may be because I am already familiar with this shift of 2nd, 1st and 3rd person perspective.)

And what I perceive with my eyes and other senses is a whole world that seems to be coming fresh-minted into existence moment by moment, each instant evoking the utter delight of “Behold, it is very good.” Here yet again I am constantly up against paradox when I try to describe the experience.

Yes, it is all always fresh, new, different. For me, that came up during the initial (head/heart centered) awakening some years ago, and is still with me, so I don’t experience it as especially connected with the endarkenment/belly awakening, but I can see how it is if that is the first form of awakening, if that is the initial gateway for someone (as it apparently was for JWL.)

For me, the endarkenment shift included a felt-sense, with body and emotions, how it is all very good. It is as if this this luminous dark void as source of all form, holds it all, embraces it, as a womb, with a deep full nurturing felt-sense of all as infinitely OK and good, independent of the particulars of form.

These things only appear as a paradox if our view is mostly dualistic. After a while, it becomes more familiar with functioning within a more nondual context, and it is not experienced as a paradox anymore. Both poles of all polarities are more naturally included.

Thus, in one sense, I feel as if I am infinitely far back in sensing the world, yet at the same time I feel the very opposite, as if my consciousness is no longer inside my head at all, but out there in the things I am experiencing . . .

Hm… Not the way it is for me now, but again, I can see how it can appear that way immediately following an initial awakening. For me, the empty awakeness is evenly spread out, as a field leaving nothing out, embracing anything arising outside and inside of this individual, which is just a small thread in the overall tapestry.

Felt-sense of all as one

 

When I woke up from the detective (lila) dream, I took some time exploring the felt-sense of I and Other, and also what happens when I bring in quality of many as one – from the dream.

I went through a parade of people, from those I know personally to those I know from the media, and those there is an attraction towards and aversion towards. What happens if there is a felt-sense of the two as one, as one character playing many roles, as it was in the dream?

What I found was a physical and felt release of tension, of deep relaxation, of fullness, ease, a felt sense of one as many… appreciating the diversity, yet also knowing that there is only one I.

Including more of our being

Putting it in words, it may sound very similar to seeing all as Spirit, as in the Big Mind process. And that is one aspect of it. But to feel it, to have a felt-sense of it, bodily, is quite different.

There is a whole other realm of fullness here, of being it more fully, of the basement being included (the client & target from the dream was in the basement when I found him, maybe for that reason… It was all about the felt-sense, the body, the belly center, the first few chakras.)

Three centers

Through the head center, there is a seeing of all as Spirit. Our view is reorganized within a nondual realization. This is Big Mind in the Big Mind process.

Through the heart center, there is a loving of all as Spirit. Our heart is reorganized within all as Spirit, open to all forms independent of how they show up. This is Big Heart.

And through the belly center, there is a felt-sense of all as Spirit. Our physical body feels all as Spirit, and our body and emotions are reorganized within all as Spirit. This could be called Big Belly (Hotei). It opens up a whole other realm of fullness, depth, nourishing, substantiality, groundedness, lived reality of all as Spirit.

Vulnerable animal

It is our individual human self, the vulnerable animal, that is reactive, contracted, fearful, blinded, hopeful, lashing out, clinging on, fearing death, feeling a sense of lack and something missing… It organizes in this way within a context of a sense of separation. It is a vulnerable (and wounded) little animal, and reacts in all of these ways as all animals do.

And the felt-sense of all as Spirit allows it to reorganize, to relax, to soften. It allows the little animal to feel safe, to gradually heal, to feel nourished, a sense of fullness, of nothing missing.

All is Spirit, reflected in the physical body and emotions

Of course, even here it will take care of itself in all the common sense and practical ways, through food, exercise, getting out of harms way and so on. But it will do it within a felt-sense of all being OK, of nourishment, fullness, a deep safety beyond conventional safety and danger.

This felt-sense of all as Spirit, of nourishment, fullness, of being held, of all being OK independent of what happens to the individual, comes from Spirit – not from the individual. It is Spirit awakening to itself, reflected deeply in the individual, in the body and emotional levels of the individual. And if deepened in that way, then they are there, no matter what physically happens to the individual.

Head only, or including belly

If Spirit is filtered through the head center only (or head and heart), there is a conventional awakening. Spirit awakens to itself as the ground of seeing and seen, and there is no I anywhere (or all as I). The individual is reorganized in this context, to some extent, but may also have wounds and hangups left. These too are also recognized as Spirit… Spirit arising as wounds, so in an absolute sense, it is OK.

But when the belly is included, it allows this individual, this vulnerable little animal, to reorganize at a deep level… Deep wounds are invited to heal, all these wounds created from a sense of separation… All the fear, desire, longing, terror, dread, cruelty, hopes, wishes, clinging… All of the ways the vulnerable little animal reacts to protect itself, when it lives from a sense of separation. These are all invited to heal, in a deep way.

The wounds soften, melt, gradually heal, gradually reorganize to reflect a felt-sense of all as Spirit. And as this happens within form, there is no end to how far this can go. There is always one more bit to heal, one step further to go, new ways to reorganize within a felt sense of all as Spirit.

Taking care of what we are, and who we are

Another way to put it is that we not only take care of what we are, but also who we are.

When Big Mind awakens to itself, as awake emptiness and form absent of I anywhere, and becomes familiar with itself in this way, while still being functionally connected with an individual human self, we take care of what we are.

And when we allow our individual self to deeply reorganize within this new context, through the head, heart and belly centers, we take care of who we are. And this is an unending process, there is always further to go, a continuous deepening, healing, reorganizing, maturing.

It is a process of deepening into what we are, as Spirit awake to itself, and who we are, as an individual soul and human self, reflecting Spirit awakened to itself.

What we are offers the realization of selflessness, of an absence of I anywhere. And who we are offers the opportunity to live and explore this in and as form.