Brief notes on healing and awakening and occasional personal things – vol. 49

This is one in a series of posts with brief notes on healing, awakening, and personal things. These are more spontaneous and less comprehensive than the regular articles. Some may be made into a regular article in time.

EVERYONE IS A WHOLE WORLD

Every being is a world. When someone is born, a new world is here. When someone dies, a world is gone.

If we are a conscious being, then to ourselves, we are that consciousness. The world, to us, is created within and as the consciousness we are. It’s a unique world. That world doesn’t exist anywhere else. It doesn’t exist before or after. The world, as it’s experienced by any one consciousness, is one of a kind.

That goes for every single being. An ant is as much consciousness to itself as anyone else. It is as much a world as anyone else.

What’s different is the body it operates through and as and the world it creates for itself. Each of us perceives the world differently. We have a particular body and sensory organs, we are in a unique place in the world, we have our world we bring with us from the past. The world we create for ourselves is different.

Our fundamental nature to ourselves is the same. (Very likely, judging from reports and what makes sense.) The body and content of the world is unique.

What a beautiful combination.

Image by me and Midjourney

CG JUNG: THE BRIGHTER THE LIGHT

The brighter the light, the darker the shadow.

– CG Jung

What is Jung referring to here? I am not sure, but I can find where the quote seems accurate.

The more I am identified with desirable qualities, and the more I see them as exclusive, the more the rest of me will go into the shadow. It’s something I see in others and not (so much) in myself.

There is another dynamic here and I am not sure how to talk about it: The more light, the stronger the shadow. When my system goes “up” it’s followed by going “down”. There is a sense of a lot of light coming into my system, it tends to bring up new layers of what’s unprocessed in me. This can happen, for instance, after focusing on heart-centered practices and so on.

The invitation for me here is to engage in these practices differently, in a way that opens to all of me – what’s desirable and not to my personality, what my culture sees as “light” and “dark”. In a way where there is less identification with the “light” side of me and more of a conscious embrace of all of it, including the “dark” sides.

I am exploring these dynamics right now. After the Amma experience some weeks ago, and after going into heart-centered practices, it was as if new layers of unprocessed material came up quite strongly. It’s clear that the more I wish for the light and try to hold onto it, the more the dark comes up and it feels challenging and unwanted. The more I recognize all of it as expressions of the divine and the mind, and the more I can intentionally embrace it all, the easier it is. That’s when it all can work on me and make me more consciously whole and aligned with reality and what’s already here.

What specifically has been coming up? First, grief and pain from Merlina dying. Then, a lot of anger and I didn’t always deal with that anger gracefully. Likely because I never really learned to deal with and work with anger from my birth family, and because a part of me tells me it’s bad and wrong and my mind still believes it to some extent. In addition to this, just generally feeling uncomfortable, which may be discomfort about underlying anger. The anger is partly from me not taking care of my own needs in my life and also recently.

Right now, how is it to fully embrace the anger that’s here? How is it to embrace the fear behind the anger? How is it to embrace the discomfort? How is it to embrace the messiness? How is it to embrace anything in me reacting to what’s coming up?

You are welcome here. You can stay as long as you want. Thank you for protecting me.

Image by me and Midjourney

FEBRUARY 15, 2024

DREAM: GURU & WEIRD PROJECT

I am with my childhood crush (MM). We haven’t seen each other since then, but have a very good, mature, honest, enjoyable interaction. Seems we have a good connection and may continue a friendship. (There is no romantic connection.)

I am with another school mate from elementary school. (Audun.) In the back of his car, he has some flyers. He sees that I have seen them, and starts talking about a guru he is following. He can apparently get people awake quickly without any meditation or any work on their part. I sense that he is doing something in their brains so they have the experience of it but it’s not the real or full thing.

I am with my wife. (Waking-life wife.) I tell her about a situation I find myself in by accident. It involves a piece of land somewhere and aliens and the government somehow. I know the story is very weird and outlandish and tell her that I wouldn’t believe it if I was her. She doesn’t quite believe it but is curious and open.

These are three parts of the same(ish) dream.

INNER PRESSURE

I am listening to the audiobook version of Patrick Stewart’s autobiography. He followed his passion and apparently took just about every opportunity presented to him and made full use of it.

It brings up my own distress around this. I have had several passions and lots of amazing opportunities in each area, and have not done much with any.

Why? Partly because of trauma from school where the other kids would bully me for my passion and interests.

The other side of this is that I did bring all of it to life. I had started and was passionately involved in all of it in my teens and early twenties. Then, I went against a clear inner guidance on a major life decision and was unable to follow up on any of it. I felt deeply off track and I have not been able to get back on track.

There is still a kind of inner pressure there. When I look into it, I find my inner knowing saying “do it”.

The pressure itself is not from my inner knowing, I assume the pressure is from something in me pushing against it. It comes from my reactions to it and issues around it – fear of bringing it to life, that it won’t be good enough, traumas from childhood, distress about getting off track, and so on.

FEBRUARY 25, 2024

DREAM: LOOKING AT WAR FROM A DISTANCE

I am looking at war from a distance. I see Cardassians (from Star Trek) fighting in a large hall, maybe a kind of cathedral.

This is the last dream image from a much longer dream I don’t remember.

The first that came to me was that this is how my mind learned to survive. This is trauma created in early childhood as a coping strategy. And I can learn to relate to it a little more firmly. I can remind myself more firmly that this is what it is.

MARCH 1, 2024

MAKING AN IDENTITY OUT OF NOT CARING

In elementary and middle school, I was in a class that had a very bad and destructive culture. A few core people bullied and mocked others in the class, and even led a teacher to have a nervous breakdown.

My sense is that these kids had created an identity out of not caring. They took pride in not caring and mocked and despised anyone who did.

I cared a lot. I cared about a lot of different things, so I was one of their targets. (I was also a bit socially awkward which didn’t help, although I suspect that anxiety and awkwardness were at least partially created by having to be in that culture.)

Why did they seemingly take pride in not caring? I suspect as a way to protect themselves. The mind tells itself: If I don’t care, I won’t be hurt. They were likely hurt, so they hurt others.

Hurt people hurt people.

MARCH 3, 2024

BITTERSWEET

Coming into closer alignment with reality is often bittersweet. It can bring up a mix of all sorts of different things.

First, how do we bring our conscious view into closer alignment with reality?

It can happen in a few different ways.

For instance, we can explore our assumptions and stories and find what’s more true for us. Often, this involves finding the validity in reverse and complementary stories and that we cannot know for certain.

We can explore how our perception of something is created. We can notice words and images in the mental field combines with sensations and other senses to create our world. Here, we also see that this is mind-created and doesn’t accurately reflect reality itself.

We can find our more fundamental nature. We can find ourselves as what our field of experience happens within and as. We notice we are not most fundamentally our human self. Here too, we find that our stories, identities, identifications and so on does not reflect any full, final, or absolute truth.

By exploring this, we can also invite our more visceral perception into closer alignment with reality, over time.

This process can be sobering. We realize that what we thought to be true – about ourselves, others, situations, life – isn’t, or at least not the way we thought.

It can bring up a lot of unprocessed material with an invitation for it to be seen, felt, understood (to some extent), and loved.

It can bring up grief and sadness over what’s happening in the world. It’s more unfiltered and our old defence mechanisms may not work as well as they did.

It can bring up awe.

It can bring up gratitude.

It’s humbling. We realize we don’t know anything for certain. Our mental field is only here to help us orient and that’s it, it doesn’t give us any final answers. We realize that the dynamics and characteristics we see in the wider world is also here in us. We realize that the consciousness we are to ourselves forms itself into any and all experience we have.

[…]

MARCH 4, 2024

A man walks up to Tove Janson painting a dramatic nature scene.

What are you painting?

It’s a self-portrait.

I am watching Tove, a movie about Tove Janson, the Finnish artist who is the mother of the Moomins. I love it so far, and especially that scene.

Whatever we create is a self-portrait, even if it’s just walking down the street or drinking a glass of water.

More than that, anything in our world is a self-portrait.

Whatever stories I have about it, I can turn it around to myself and find specific and genuine examples where it fits. I can find any dynamics and characteristics I see in the wider world also in me.

To me, it’s happening within and as what I am. My world is happening within and as the consciousness I am. The consciousness I am forms itself into all of it. In that way too, anything is a self-portrait.

MARCH 5, 2024

INVESTED IN SOMETHING

It’s easy for me to get invested in something.

These days, I notice I get invested in the regeneration project in the Andes mountains.

What does it mean to be invested?

For me and in this context, it means not only investing attention and resources in it. It means to get caught up in it. To invest identity and beliefs into it. I notice that a part of me use it to feel better about my life. It gives my life a sense of meaning and purpose.

That’s not wrong. As so much, it’s natural and ultimately innocent. It even serves some functions.

And yet, it also comes with a cost. It tends to cloud judgment. It brings up hopes and fears. If or when it falls away, something I have used as a crutch to feel better about life and myself falls away. It all gets sticky. It’s a sticky business.

MARCH 6, 2024

HOW THE WORLD SEEMED AFTER THE INITIAL ONENESS SHIFT

This is far enough back that I seem to mostly remember it in a vague and general way, and I’ll talk about each of the two shifts that happened.

During the first shift, when I was fifteen, it was as if the world – including this human self with its emotions, thoughts, sensations, and so on – went very far away. This human self was deeply disturbed by it and something seemed to have gone very wrong. (Later, I realized it was “just” an observer-observed duality, any identification was released out of most of the content of experience and into the observer. The idea and experience of an observer is also, of course, part of the content of experience, which set the stage for the next shift.)

One year later, there was a second shift. This time, into oneness. What any and all content of experience happens within and as noticed itself. Here, there was an even bigger shift in how I experienced the world. This psyche interpreted it as: All is the divine. All is consciousness. All is love. Everything is the divine taking that form, to express, explore, and experience itself as that.

And at a much more human level, it seemed that most humans were crazy. The focus and orientation of many or most people seemed utterly crazy. Of course, this was the divine taking that form too, and the form of this human self responding to it in that way. It was all there at the same time: All is the divine, including humans and this human self as we are, which can seem utterly baffling.

BEST WAY TO PREVENT CONSTIPATION?

This is maybe an unusual topic for this blog, but I’ll mention it anyway:

What’s the best way to avoid constipation?

For me, it seems to be going to the bathroom right away when I notice I need to poo. If I hold it back, even for a few minutes, it tends to lead to (temporary) constipation. Maybe that’s why it hasn’t been much of an issue for me so far in life.

Of course, the other side of this is eating a varied diet low on the food chain.

MARCH 8, 2024

CURRENTLY

I haven’t given a general update for a while, so here is one:

What’s happening these days?

I still notice grief about Merlina dying, and a part of me is baffled by how it happened. (She wandered off very far, which has never happened before.) It feels empty here without her.

My sleep is intermittent most nights. I often wake up with some anxiety. I think this is partly old anxiety coming up to be felt, seen, met with kindness, and loved, and partly anxiety from unquestioned beliefs about the current situation. Some of it is still, after all these years, anxiety and despair from going against clear inner guidance and feeling I am profoundly off track in life almost thirty years ago.

I am profoundly grateful for Finca Milagros, being here, and engaging in the regeneration and food forest projects. I love the sun and wind, the view to the canyon, the forest that’s here, the birds singing.

There is a snake in paradise because of the huge hotel they are building across the road from us and what it may mean for the future. Now and then, this brings up some stress in me.

I am starting my journey to go back to Norway today. I’ll be there on my own, emptying my parents’ house so it is ready for sale. There is stress here too since I have a chronic illness and will do it on my own. Also, there is a big problem with the house. (Several years ago, the municipality went against a written agreement and placed sewage lines 10 meters wide right through the garden. That means the value of the property is significantly less than it normally would be. For years, I have wanted to seek compensation but my family has rejected it.)

I am looking forward to spending time there, going for walks in my childhood forest, walking around in Oslo (the harbor, the parks, the new library), seeing family and friends, and so on.

It’s unfortunate timing, in many ways, since there is so much happening at Finca Milagros these days. There are a lot of decisions to be made about the water systems (rainwater collection, purification), energy (installing solar panels and batteries), planting (beginning food forest), regeneration (planting 1000 native trees in a few weeks), and so on. My (mostly autonomous and unconscious) thoughts about this too bring up some anxiety and stress in me.

A part of me is concerned about the world. We need to make profound changes to our civilization if we are to survive (due to global ecological overshoot), and that’s not happening. With the delayed feedback from our global ecosystems and the narrow focus of most people (which is understandable since most are just trying to survive short-term), we may not be able to change in time.

I am also seeing all the people doing amazing things in the world, which is beautiful. I am visiting regeneration & food forest projects here. I am watching videos on YouTube about regeneration, reforestation, food forests, permaculture, and so on. (This is something I was deeply into in the ’90s but I didn’t have my own place to do the projects on then.)

I had a CFS crash in December and haven’t recovered from it. That too brings up some anxiety, now and then. (With less energy, my system has less energy to process thoughts and emotions, which tends to bring up anxiety. Also, unexamined thoughts about not being able to do what I want can bring up some anxiety.)

I am noticing my nature. Or rather, my nature is noticing itself. When anxiety comes up, I notice it is made of my own nature. (Sometimes, I also remind myself it’s a flavor of the divine, and so on.)

As usual, it’s a whole big mix of things, which is also simple in that to me, it all has my nature.

MARCH 12, 2024

“IT’S MORE ABOUT HOW WE RELATE TO A SITUATION THAN THE SITUATION ITSELF”

When I was a teen, I mentioned this to a middle-aged man. His response was: Shut up until you are dry behind the ears.

I did, for the most part. I realized my “wisdom” was annoying and often not welcome.

A part of me also thought that he was probably right. What’s the truth in what he said?

It’s easy for me to find.

It’s good to not share our “wisdom” until we have some maturity and experience, even if the words may not always be that different. (In my case, the essence of how I saw things then is very similar to now.) Of course, if people ask, it’s fine. But unsolicited wisdom is usually annoying.

When I differentiated between relating to a situation and the situation itself, that’s just a convenient shorthand. Reality is not like that. In reality, both are how we relate. Both are created by us. We are the ones interpreting the situation in a certain way, and that largely determines how we relate to it. If we understand the situation differently, we relate to it differently.

It’s easy for me to find the validity in what he said.

What’s the validity of the reverse?

It’s that sometimes, it’s OK to share some of our wisdom and experience. We can share how it is for us, knowing it’s a very limited wisdom, and without expecting anything from the other.

It’s OK to be visible, sometimes. (I tend to try to stay hidden and that has brought up a lot of regret and sometimes resentment in me, which doesn’t help anyone.)

When I decided to follow his advice, it was partly or largely because it fits with hangups and trauma responses in me, wanting to stay hidden for protection and to stay safe. (Which is not safe at all. It creates a lot of regrets and missed opportunities.)

SURPRISED BY THIS HUMAN SELF

In daily life, there is a curiosity about this human self and what he will feel, think, or do next.

It’s unknown in advance. I cannot know what it will be.

He lives his own life, like anything else.

Really, what I am notices it all. It’s all happening within and as the consciousness I am. This human self and the wider world is a field that happens within and as the consciousness I am.

When curiosity and fascination come up, that comes from my human self in response to that.

MARCH 15, 2024

TWO FORMS OF REST & CFS

In the CFS world, some talk about two forms of rest.

The first form of rest is restitution. I spend energy and rest to recover that energy and (in the best case) get back to where I was before that activity.

The second is healing rest. We rest beyond recovery and don’t spend that energy on activities. Here, more energy is accumulated which the body uses for healing.

There are three ways to work with these two forms of rest.

The first is what many do in the beginning of living with CFS. We spend energy as soon as we have it. There is so much we want to do, so when there is metaphorical money in the bank, we spend it. This tends to lead to a rollercoaster ride of ups and downs, crashes and recovery. In the worst case, we can crash hard which leads to a worsening of the condition that can last for months or years.

The second is to take time for healing rest. This leads to improvement and we engage in activities at that new level. It’s a more stable phase, although we go back to spending whatever energy is accumulated through rest, so there is not much further improvement.

The third is to schedule healing rest consistently and regularly, ideally daily. In theory, this will lead to continued improvement since the body has the energy to continue healing. It’s a form of extreme rest, and I assume it takes a certain amount of readiness and intention to do it. The readiness likely comes from living with the first two approaches for a while and seeing that they ultimately are not satisfying.

I am very familiar with the first approach. It’s what I did when I initially got CFS in my teens, and also at first when it returned in my 30s.

I am also familiar with the second. It’s what I have been doing over the last several years.

The third is more unfamiliar to me, and something I notice my system craves (I am strongly drawn to be in a quiet place in nature for a long time, resting) and I want to bring it into my life. (I do have some practical things to take care of, with a timeline set by circumstances and others, so it may be that I’ll go between no. 2 and 3 for a while until I am in a situation where I can rest more fully and consistently. Although I know this is ultimately a matter of priorities. What’s most important to me?)

This goes back to the general guideline for CFS: Rest before, during, after, and extra. Resing before and during any activity reduces the impact and may prevent a crash. Resting after allows for recovery. Resting extra allows for healing.

Here is an excellent article on the two types of rest in Norwegian. The website is for the book Aktivitetsapassing which a great book – also in Norwegian – that goes into depth in this and more.

MARCH 16, 2024

FOOD CRAVINGS

Some food cravings seem to be because the body needs certain foods. I crave something, and when I have it, I genuinely feel better. There is often more of a sense of wholeness, groundedness, or aliveness.

Other cravings are more on the mind side.

For instance, I sometimes have sugar cravings. If I eat sugar, the cravings are more present. They get triggered. It also seems that the craving is not so much for the initial taste as for what happens after. It seems that the sensations created in my body from eating sugar (reasonably uncomfortable) distracts from and partly cover up sensations created by stressful and unexamined beliefs held somewhere in my system. It’s as if my mind tells itself: Yes, the sugar sensations are uncomfortable, but it’s better than being with the sensations from unquestioned thoughts.

Of course, even better is to notice all of this, find a way to befriend what’s here including the discomfort, and identify and inquire into the stressful beliefs and find what’s more true for me.

OPEN TO SUFFERING

When I am open to my own suffering, I am open to the suffering of others.

I saw a moth in the snow today. It was barely moving. I took it to a bush to find a bit of shelter.

Afterward, I wondered why it has such an impact on me. Why does the suffering I imagine when I see that moth have such an impact? It’s likely because I am open to my own.

The reverse is also true. If we are closed to our own suffering, we are closed to the suffering of others. I see this in people like Trump and Putin and others, and I see it there because I have that too in myself. I have parts of me closed off to suffering.

Being closed or open to suffering is to be closed or open to far more, including joy, awe, gratitude, and so on. It all seems to go together.

I imagine that’s why some need strong experiences to feel alive. If we are closed, that may be the only way to experience something. That’s when we may feel we need speed, loud music, and so on.

For me, a field, snow, stars, a summer’s night, already have a big impact on me.

MARCH 16, 2024

MORE CONSERVATIVE WITH TIME?

In my teens, I was told my views would become more conservative with time.

That has definitely not happened.

So what has changed? Not much, if I am honest. I have just about the same taste in music (Arvo Pärt is still my favorite composer.) I have the same view of the world. (Nondual for lack of a better word.) I have about the same political orientation. (Still vote for the Green Party when I can, or whoever is the closest.)

When I have looked at journal entries and essays from my teens and early twenties, I see that what I wrote is very similar to how I see things now.

Where did I get this from? I am not sure. In terms of politics, my father and brother are traditionally conservative in their orientation, and my mother too is relatively conservative. My friends growing up were either apolitical or conservative. I am more similar to two or three of my cousins. (I generally side with the underdogs and those without a voice, which may be because I felt like an outsider as a kid.)

In general, I can see some themes from my family in my life. My family has always been interested in nature, art, and music. My parents and their family loved being outdoors in nature, fishing, picking berries, walking up mountains, staying in the cabins, and so on. I was dragged around Europe and art museums as a kid (London, Paris, Barcelona). My parents, and especially my father, loved classic jazz.

I can find these themes in my life, although it sometimes takes other forms. I became passionate about deep ecology, the universe story, and sustainability. I did art for a while (like my father). I love all kinds of music if it’s good, whether it’s modern classical (Arvo Pärt, Philip Glass, Meredith Monk), baroque or early music, Latin, African, Asian, or whatever it is.

Of course, the oneness shift that happened when I was sixteen had a profound impact on me. It turned everything inside out and upside down. That’s what the nondual views reflect. That’s very likely why I love Arvo Pärt. That’s why I got into art, to try to convey the immense beauty in everything. That’s why I am so passionate about helping us shift into a more ecologically sound civilization.

“I TOLD YOU SO”

I often find myself in an “I told you so” situation. I usually don’t say it, but the thought comes up.

My parents’ house was empty for six months. I asked my brother to keep a close eye on the house to make sure everything was OK. When I returned last week, I immediately found a very obvious leak in the kitchen. Water has been going into the floor for months, at a rate of several deciliters a day, without my brother noticing. I told him to keep a close eye on the house because a lot of things can go wrong in an empty house, and he didn’t.

Several years ago, the municipality made a big mistake and put 10-meter-wide sewage lines directly through the garden of my parents’ house. (They were supposed to put them along the boundary to the neighbor and halfway into their property.) This led to us having to scrap plans to build a second house in the garden. I had a lawyer ready to take the case so my parents could receive compensation for the loss of property value. My father insisted that it wouldn’t reduce the value of the property and rejected any possibility of using a lawyer and taking the first step in talking with the municipality. My father is now in the process of trying to sell the house, and he and my brother seemed convinced that a developer would buy it to build apartments there. I told them that would be extremely unlikely since half of the property is rebuildable because of the mistake of the municipality. That has turned out to be true, and the value of the property has turned out to be significantly less than they thought, just as I told them many years ago.

When we designed and built a house in the Andes, it was with two other people. I told them I would do the design in cooperation with the builder (I have a background in architecture from one of the best programs in the US). They rejected it and wanted to hire inexperienced local architects who didn’t speak English. I had to go along with it. During the design process, I saw several obvious mistakes. When I spoke up about it, the architects just argued against whatever I said. I later said we had to be there during the building process, and that the main mistake people make is to not be there during the building process. The others all said it would be fine if we were not there. Again, what I said turned out to be correct. The design mistakes were big mistakes that will be expensive or impossible to correct. And not being there during the building process allowed huge amounts of mistakes to happen that would otherwise have been corrected.

When I lived in Oregon, my doctor there told me to eat a lot less salt. It made absolutely no sense to me since my blood pressure and all measures were perfectly fine, and I already ate very little salt. I made all my food from scratch, and the little salt I got was the salt I put in my food. Still, I followed her advice and eliminated most of the little salt I had previously put in my food. As we got into the hot season, I had heat exhaustion bordering on heat stroke likely because I didn’t have enough salt in my body.

The list goes on.

The question is: Why does this happen? Why is this a pattern?

It’s probably partly universal. I assume it happens now and then for everyone.

More importantly, it has to do with something in me. I don’t always stand up for my views. I don’t always let people know I have experience with something. (Often, I share something I have decades of experience with, and am treated by others who have far less as if I am a complete novice.) I often don’t make sure the others thoroughly understand what I am saying and why. In some ways, I give up in advance. Already while I speak about it, I expect to later get into an “I told you so” situation.

If I did this differently, and if I really made an effort to be heard and understood, some if not most of these situations would likely have been avoided.

MARCH 20, 2024

HEARING TURNS ON WHILE WAKING UP IN THE MORNING

When I wake up in the morning, I sometimes notice my hearing being turned on.

It’s as if a volume button is turned up from zero to normal volume.

That’s one of the things we may notice when consciousness is aware while the body goes into or out of sleep.

MARCH 24, 2024

AWAKENING DISSOLVES PARADOXES

If we rely on our mental field to give us truths, our world will inevitably appear full of paradoxes. One thing seems true, and also something else, and to the conditioning of our thoughts, they appear contradictory.

When our nature recognizes itself, that shifts. Thoughts are recognized as guides and pointers to help us orient and function in the world. They are practical pointers only, and cannot hold any final, full, or absolute truth. Each thought has some kind of validity in it, and it’s up to us to evaluate what kind of validity that is.

There are no paradoxes since thoughts are recognized as not holding any final truth, and there is some validity to all of them. (Even the more outlandish ones can be seen as holding validity, for instance, as a projection.)

Paradoxes appear when our thoughts operate from duality and from a sense of separation. And they dissolve when thoughts operate within the context of our nature recognizing itself, and we recognize the nature of thoughts.

Of course, at first when our nature recognizes itself, our mental patterns may still operate from duality so there may be an experience of paradoxes. This dissolves as thoughts reorganize and operate within our nature recognizing itself.

SUGAR

I have been a couple of weeks without much refined sugar, and I notice I feel much better. My energy level is more stable, as is my mood.

We evolved to seek sugar since sugar is naturally found in fruits and a few other energy-rich foods. For our ancestors, it was important to seek those out and eat them when they were available.

Today, that evolutionary craving has been hijacked by the food industry, and it’s used to make us eat things we don’t need. Our fruits have also been developed to have a high sugar content, far beyond what natural fruits have and what their ancestors had. (Some zoos don’t even feed certain fruits to their animals anymore because of the high sugar content.)

For me, with hypoglycemia, it’s perhaps especially important to avoid the swings – in blood sugar, energy, and mood – that refined sugars bring.

MARCH 25, 2024

WHERE DO I TAKE REFUGE?

In daily life, where do I take refuge?

Sometimes, it’s in entertainment – movies, YouTube, podcasts, food.

Sometimes, it’s in stories – in stories that either seem comforting or scary, even if I know these are stories and made up by my mind.

Sometimes, it’s in friends.

Sometimes, it’s in being more of a friend to myself and scared parts of my psyche.

Sometimes, and quite often, it’s in my nature. It’s in noticing my nature, and my nature noticing itself. It’s in resting in finding myself as that which my field of experience, including this human self, happens within and as.

In Buddhism, they talk about seeking refuge in the Three Jewels. In friends on the path. In pointers and reminders. In my nature noticing itself. That’s pretty good advice.

FINDING REFUGE OUT THERE SOMEWHERE

I notice a part of me assumes that I will be saved by someone or something “out there”.

It will happen in the future. It will happen when this thing falls into place.

That person or being can do it for me. That person can help me and will make my life complete. God will help me and save me.

It’s good to notice, and it’s good to question it when it comes up.

Is it true? Can I be saved in an imaginary future? Can I be saved by another being? Will I be completed by that person? Is it possible to “arrive”?

How would it be to rely on myself to save me? To complete me?

How would it be for my nature to notice itself, and arrive, and save and complete itself?

WAYS TO LOOK FOR THE SOLUTION OUT THERE

There are several ways to look for the solution “out there”.

We can look in the future or past. We can look somewhere else – in another state or from another being.

We can also look “out there” through entertainment, food, and so on. We distract ourselves from what’s already here.

Of course, all of these are really the same. They are all ways to distract ourselves from what’s already here – the discomfort and the solutions.

MARCH 26, 2024

HOW I FEEL WHEN I HAVE SUGAR

I havent’ had refined sugar for two or three weeks, which has been a blessing. My energy level and mood has been much more stable, and I generally feel much better.

I did have some sugar last night, partly as an experiment so I can notice more clearly what happens when I have it.

So what happened? I had a much more restless night. It feels like a kind of fuzzy “cloud” in my bodymind. I woke up with more anxiety and worry.

WANTING TO STAY HIDDEN

For a few different reasons, my system has a program of wanting to stay hidden. It seems more safe and comfortable to stay hidden.

Is that true? It may have seemed true when the program came into place. For instance, it did help me to avoid unwanted attention in school. (I was bullied and excluded for being visible in the “wrong” way, for instance by knowing the answers to our teacher’s questions and being passionate about learning and exploring.)

In reality, it’s anything but safe and comfortable.

[…]

FLOOD OF INSIGHTS

In the years following the initial oneness shift, there was an ongoing flood of insights. I wrote down pages upon pages in my journal and often woke up in the middle of the night to write down whatever was revealed to me.

The essence of it is what I am still writing about here.

During that time, there was also a flood of inspiration for paintings and music. It would often come fully formed to me, and I tried to get it into life with whatever limited abilities and means I had.

LEARNING TO LIVE WITH

If we have traumas or emotional issues or anything else that our personality is bothered with, we have a couple of options of how to work with it.

We can try to invite healing for it.

We can invite healing for our relationship with it.

These two go hand-in-hand. They are two sides of the same coin.

How that looks – for each of us and here and now – is an ongoing exploration.

Focusing on finding healing for the issue may work. We may find something that works, and we learn something about the issue which can inform us when we explore other issues.

Focusing on finding healing for our relationship with it helps us for as long as it’s here, which may be for the rest of our life for what we know. And this too helps inform how we relate to similar issues and life in general.

Similarly, finding some healing for the issue itself helps us find more peace with it.

Finding more peace with it gives some space for the issue to heal.

SLEEPY WHEN IT’S DARK & RAINY

It’s a dark and rainy day here in Norway, and I notice I am more sleepy than usual.

I think it’s a common response. When it’s dark and rainy and perhaps a little cold, many get a little sleepy.

I assume this may be an evolutionary response. It’s good to sleep when it’s dark, and also when it’s rainy and cold. It helps preserve our energy, and charge the battery for tasks when it’s light and hopefully not raining.

It makes sense in terms of evolution. The ones who got tired in these circumstances and rested may have been able to function better when it’s day and not raining, and that may have slightly improved their ability to survive and have surviving offspring. Perhaps just enough so it was passed on to later generations.

MARCH 27, 2024

SPIRITUALITY AS COMPENSATION

It seems that many who are into spirituality are driven, at least partly, by hangups. They go into spirituality as a distraction or compensation for something unresolved in themselves.

That’s not wrong or bad, but it’s good to notice.

It also means that the solution is often found more in therapy than in spirituality. Although if we take a grounded and pragmatic approach to spirituality, and use approaches like inquiry and heart-centered practices, that can also invite in healing.

MARCH 31, 2024

PICKING UP THE SYMPTOMS OF CLIENTS

When I do healing for individual clients, I often experience their symptoms in my own system. It helps me notice what’s going on.

This morning, I noticed my knees seemed very weak. I couldn’t understand why. A friend of mine (CS) came in the early afternoon for a chat and a session, and one of the first things he mentioned was that he has weak knees. It may be that my body picked up his symptom before he arrived.

APRIL 1, 2024

WANTING TO BE REMEMBERED?

When I was an apprentice of Odd Nerdrum, he once said that he painted so he could be remembered after he was dead.

I thought it was an odd (!) thing to say, for a few different reasons.

He won’t be around to enjoy it.

They will remember an image of him, which will be a simplified caricature and likely far from how he really was. (Just like it is now, although even more so.)

The remembrance of him will be gone at some point, just like him. It will just postpone the inevitable. The remembrance is a blip in time.

So why did he say it? Maybe he gets some satisfaction from assuming he will be remembered, although that seems hollow and wouldn’t survive scrutiny. It would be more direct to find peace with the changing nature of everything. Maybe he tells himself this story to add to his motivation to become a better painter, which he benefits from here and now. That makes sense, and I suspect that may be a reason. Maybe it was an off-hand remark not meant to be taken seriously. Maybe he said it to make an impression and get a reaction from others. For me, this is among the things people say that I don’t really understand and feel a bit baffled about.

APRIL 2, 2024

DREAM: TRAVELING

I am traveling with my waking-life partner. She wants us to stay for free with some others. It turns out it’s more crowded than expected, and we have to share a room with several others. They are all very nice young people, but also very energetic and set on being social more than sleeping. My partner and them all think there will be some special occurance happening that nght, involving nature and animals, and it’s based on a flimsy new age idea not based in anything real. I decide to get a hotel room for myself. This is not worth it.

This dream mirrors some waking life dynamics. She got me into a situation where I didn’t feel comfortable, and she is into astrology and similar things. In waking life, she has gotten me into situations that are very good for me as well, and I know my part in the other situations. I chose it too. In some cases, I didn’t speak up strongly enough.

She is also into astrology and some new-age ideas, which I am not so interested in. I don’t reject it, it’s just that it’s not based in solid science, I can’t easily check it out for myself, and I don’t find it so useful. I have other priorities.

FASCINATED BY HOW OTHERS TALK ABOUT IT

During the initial oneness shift in my teens, what was revealed to me is what mystics and non-dual folks through time and across traditions have described. I didn’t know that at the time since I previously had absolutely no interest in anything spiritual. I also lived in a small town in Norway, and it was before the web, so I couldn’t find anyone who had experience with it. (I did meet two when I was roughly twenty years old: BH and the then-partner of Jes Bertelsen.)

It also took years before I found any books written by people who seemed to write from their own direct experience. After some years, I found Jes Bertelsen and some Tibetan Buddhist writings, which indirectly hinted at it. It took almost twenty years before I found the ones I feel a deep resonance with: Adyashanti, Byron Katie, and Douglas Harding. These clearly had discovered the same.

Until relatively recently, I sought out teachers and writings mainly to see how people talk about it. It was – and still is to some extent – fascinating to see how people put it into words. Often, it can be covered and filtered through tradition and terminology. And sometimes, it’s refreshingly direct and clear, as it is for me with Adya, Katie, and Douglas Harding. Of course, it seems fresh and clear since these people come from more or less the same time and culture as me. Also, two of them didn’t have much of a previous background in anything, like me, and the third (Adya) has shed a lot of the terminology and ideology from his tradition (Zen).

What about other non-dual traditions and teachers? I enjoyed reading some neo-advaita books in my thirties, along with more traditional advait teachings from India. These people also clearly had discovered the same, although I felt their teachings often were filtered through a kind of non-dual ideology.

APRIL 3, 2024

BRAIN FOG AND MY NATURE

I have stronger brain fog right now, likely because of eating bread a bit too frequently. (I usually need a few days between each time.) As the name suggests, it feels like it’s everywhere.

It’s easy for parts of me to struggle with it. To think it will always be like this. To feel self-conscious about it. To worry about being incoherent and appearing weird to others if I talk with them.

That’s when it’s helpful to intentionally notice my nature and rest in and as that. I am more fundamentally what this brain fog, and anything else, happens within and as.

The brain fog is a visitor. It comes and goes. (Even if it’s been here to some extent for a long time.) It’s not inherent in what I am. Even when it comes to this human self, it’s just one of innumerable parts of what this human self is and his life in the world.

That helps me relate to it more lightly.

APRIL 4, 2024

THE INFINITE WORK BEHIND EVERYTHING

I picked up a brochure for the Wednesday afternoon 1/2 price movies at the local movie theater, and I felt moved by the thought that someone had taken time to put it together, print it out, and put it in the holder by the entrance to the movie theater.

Everything has work behind it.

With the products I use and enjoy in my daily life, someone has put time and energy into them so they could be here for me. It has been produced, ordered, transported, put out in a store, and sold. The hands and attention of many people were involved. Not just now, but going back through the generations. The things I use now result from the care and attention of innumerable people going back generations, long before historic times.

Of course, many did it because it was their work, and some may not have enjoyed it, but they still put their life energy into it. They put what’s most precious to all of us into it.

In a more general sense, all is the product of the infinite work of this universe. The air I breathe, the sunshine I enjoy, nature, my body breathing, it’s all the product of the universe forming itself into all of this and millions and billions of years of evolution of this universe.

There is an infinite work behind everything.

The candle on the table was made by several people who each had a role in the process. The wax is likely made from petroleum products, brought up to the surface by people working in the oil industry. The oil is the bodies of innumerable beings living millions of years ago in an ecosystem very different from how it is now. Someone in history discovered how to put a string in oil or wax to make a candle, that knowledge was passed on through generations of people, and several of these refined and found new ways of doing it. The sun has provided the energy for all of this to happen, and the sun is the result of other stars living their lives and then dying in an explosion creating much of what this sun, solar system, and planet is made up of. All of it is the product of the ongoing evolution and unfolding of the universe.

All of it is the universe forming itself into all of it.

All of it is a profound miracle.

All of it is a profound mystery.

How come there is anything at all? How come there is something rather than nothing?

APRIL 5, 2024

LIFE IS DIFFICULT ENOUGH

I mentioned to a friend that I have noticed a pattern in my life since early on in adulthood: Romantic relationships that feel deeply right last a short time, and the ones that are off and troubling and difficult last much longer. In the first, it feels in integrity to stay in it, and I instead find a way for it to end. In the second, being in it is out of integrity and comes from fear (unquestioned fear-inducing beliefs), and I find a way to stay in it. This pattern is very likely related to childhood trauma and the difficult dynamics between my parents.

Her response was: “That’s good. Relationships are for growth, not happiness.”

For me, that’s another trauma response. It’s the traumatized mind coming in to justify and normalize trauma responses.

Life is difficult enough. We don’t need to make it more difficult by staying in a situation that doesn’t feel right. If anything, the healthy response means to leave it. It means acting on what’s in integrity. That’s how we grow.

I understand where the view comes from. When we are in a relationship, it’s good to focus on opportunities for growth, it’s the mature way to approach it. If we see it mainly as a source of happiness, we set ourselves up for disappointment. That doesn’t mean we should seek out and stay in situations that are out of integrity.

APRIL 5, 2024

A COUPLE OF SMALL EVENTS

While I made delicious vegan chili this morning, I needed to go to the corner store for a can opener. I brought a couple of empty bottles to return. In Norway, they have a lottery when you return bottles.

Yesterday, my partner mentioned that she had asked the divine if she would win in a lottery she had bought a ticket for, and the divine said “no”. While I put on my shoes, I asked the divine if I would win in the bottle-return lottery, and the divine said “yes”. I wasn’t sure if it was accurate or just my psyche coming in. After I had returned the bottles and pushed the button for the lottery, I got a piece of paper from the machine that said: “You won!”. It turned out that the money I won was the exact cost of the can opener.

This store has been in that location my whole life, and it’s close to the elementary school I went to. (Hebekk.) My system remembers stressful and traumatic things from that time, so I notice I feel quite self-conscious when I am in this neighborhood and in that store. A lot of anxiety is coming up, and an expectation of not being treated well by others.

When I entered the store, a group of elementary-school-age boys were standing in front of the bottle return machine. I noticed the self-consciousness, anxiety, and expectations come up from when I was that age. I slipped in behind them to return the bottles, and one of the kids smiled and said: “I am sorry, we didn’t mean to block you.” They all gave me space. It was a nice reminder that then is not now. This is another situation. (I could also see his as an image of how things may be changing in me over time, but I am never sure about how things are changing. It may look one way on the surface, and I never know the full picture.) The guy working in the store was also very nice to me, and there was a general feeling of it being a meeting place for the local neighborhood. Several people were chatting with each other in a very friendly way.

WHY I TALK ABOUT AWAKENING BUT WOULDN’T SAY “I AM AWAKE”

I obviously frequently write about awakening here. I also mention some of my own noticing and experiences relating to it1.

At the same time, I would not say “I am awake”. I also wouldn’t think and mean it.

Why? There are a few different reasons.

People have a lot of ideas about it and I prefer to avoid those if possible. I use the word “awake” as a shorthand since most people have a very general idea of what it means, and I also try to avoid it whenever possible or reasonable.

Technically, there is no “I” that’s awake. Awakening means waking up out of the idea of a separate I.

Mainly, for me awakening is mostly about how much awakening there is in a system2. I know very well that although there may be some kind of general and “global” noticing of my nature here, that’s not the whole story. There are many parts of this human self that still operate from and reflect separation consciousness. Whatever may be called awakening is not by any means as clear, thorough, mature or lived as it can be. I am just at the beginning of that exploration and process. This is not false humility but pretty clear.

Awakening is a label that only partially fits so although I can write about awakening in a general sense and my explorations of it, it’s not a label I can put on myself.

(1) For a while, I wrote in a more general way and left out the personal sides of it, and now I try to include that too. After all, that’s where it comes from and where it’s alive.

(2) This is also since I can see the amount (degree) of awakening in a system with my eyes, and also sense into it to a lesser extent. It’s been that way since my mid-teens so it’s natural for me to think of it mostly in terms of degrees rather than just something binary.

APRIL 7, 2024

BONUS LIFE

The summer two years ago, I almost died from septic shock. The only reason I survived was that I was able to get to the emergency room in time, received a correct preliminary diagnosis, and was immediately sent to a very good nearby hospital and received top-notch care.

I was and am very aware that I wouldn’t be here now if it wasn’t for this luck and for modern medicine.

And honestly, every moment since then feels like a bonus. My life now is a bonus life.

WHEN HEALING BRINGS UP STUFF

I have been in Norway for nearly four weeks now, and over that time, I have felt pretty good and enjoyed myself. The only Vortex Healing I have received has been for energization, and I have put myself and situations in the grid (a healing tool) and done pujas (the VH tool).

Friday, I received a final session for my liver. I did the previous one last year and waited with this one since receiving sessions for issues or organs tends to destabilize my system quite a bit.

Yesterday, I was fine during the day, but things started coming up after I went to bed. There was an immense discomfort and some anger coming up in the background. I got up and was up for about three hours before going back to sleep. This morning, I still have this body-mind discomfort along with a sense of hopelessness, fear, and some gloom.

I know what’s very likely going on. This is what typically happens when I receive VH sessions for issues or organs. That means I don’t go into stories too much. I notice that my mind wants to make the fear about my future, and I don’t fuel it. I ride it out. I do things to take care of myself and find comfort. I take a day off.

THE NECESSITY OF DISILLUSION ON A SPIRITUAL PATH

The driver for many on a spiritual path is often based in illusions. They think it will take away their pain. They will find a state of eternal bliss. Their troubles will be gone forever. And so on.

They may also assume that they will keep their identity as this human self, and that this human self can somehow “own” any awakening and use it as an adornment. (In reality, all of that eventually falls or is worn away.)

Some also approach teachers in a similar way. They may assume their teacher is “perfect” according to some idea they have, which is inevitably wrong. Life will show them otherwise.

So when all of this is based on illusion, a certain amount of disillusionment is necessary after a while.

If people are not aware of this, and it’s not talked about, they may react by withdrawing from anything spiritual. They throw the baby out with the bathwater.

That’s why it’s important to talk about these things, the different areas disillusionment may be necessary, and what forms it may take. Forewarned is forearmed, or it can at least contribute to preparedness and resiliency.

HEALING DOESN’T NECESSARILY MEAN IT’S GONE

Finding healing for something doesn’t necessarily mean it’s gone.

In my experience, it’s often not quite gone.

What changes instead is my relationship to and with it. I find more peace with it. I learn to live with it. I befriend it. I have more wise and kind stories about it. I see some genuine upsides of it, even if I would rather it wasn’t here.

As part of that, it loses some of its charge. It’s still here, just not as strong. I am less identified with it. It’s more neutral. More parts of my system are less caught up in a struggle with it.

I noticed that earlier today. After a three-hour Vortex Healing session for my liver on Friday, a lot was triggered in my system last night and it has been with me today. Some of what came up was hopelessness and fear, which my thoughts made into a fear about the future. I saw it being here and decided to not fuel it with stories. It wasn’t necessary. There was already less identification with it. I know that these things often come up after a VH session and then go away again, like clouds in the sky. It’s a kind of routine by now.

MY WORLD & HO’O

I am sorry. Please forgive me. I love you. Thank you.

I love ho’oponopono. It shifts something in me in a beautiful way.

There is no need to ask why or how it works. It’s more about trying it out and seeing what it does.

And yet, sometimes there is some curiosity about it.

So why or how does it work?

The first that comes up for me is that my world is the only world I know. The world to me is created by my own mind. The consciousness I am forms itself into it. It’s happening within and as what I am.

If I create distress about it, I am doing it1. So why not ask for forgiveness? Why not find love for it? Why not thank it?2

It seems the wise, sane, and kind thing to do.

That doesn’t mean I always do it, or that all parts of me do it. That’s why this practice exists. It can help shift us into a different relationship with our world. It highlights the parts of us not on board with it. Over time, it can help deepen the groove of new habits. Mainly, it mimics how a more sane, healed, and kind mind works. It’s training wheels for us to notice just that.

(1) The consciousness I am forms itself into all of it. This is the bigger “I” that doesn’t exist as something in particular within the content of experience.

(2) “It” here is all of it – what triggers the distress, the distress itself, how parts of me relate to the distress, and so on.

APRIL 11, 2024

WHEN OLD EMOTIONS AND IMPULSES COME UP IN HEALING

It’s not uncommon for old emotions, feelings, states, impulses, and so on to come up during and after a healing session, or in life in general.

These are things we tried to not feel when they initially came up. We set them aside, pushed them down, tried to bury them, distracted ourselves from them, and so on.

So how to relate to them now when they surface again?

The guideline is simple: Notice and allow them as they are. Welcome them as a visitor. Be with them and be here for them as you would a scared child or animal.

And that’s not always so easy, but it does become easier with intention, practice, and habit.

APRIL 13, 2024

THANKING MY PAST SELF

I sometimes have regret coming up over bad decisions in the past.

Of course, I can’t know what would have been on other paths. The past only exists in my imagination. And bad and good are not inherent in anything, they are mind-created labels.

Also, I find it helpful to thank my past self. If I regret some things my past self did, why not also thank my past self?

Whenever I am now enjoying something my past self did, and I notice, I thank my past self. It can be small things like cleaning or buying groceries, or larger things.

I also thank my past self when I notice distress, anxiety, trauma, and so on surfacing. I thank my past self for creating this with the aim of protecting me. Thank you for protecting me. Thank you for your love for me. (I also thank myself for noticing the suffering this has created, and seeking healing and a different way.)

HEALING FOR MYSELF

When I use my original way of healing, I connect with someone’s system, receive a message of what needs to change for healing to happen, and intend that healing. It’s often a process that unfolds over some minutes. The messages come through a combination of feeling their symptoms in my system and seeing still or moving images. The way it unfolds seems unique in each case. Often, it involves removing something (energetically) from their system, which is then replaced with light that’s organized in a more healthy way.

When I connect with my own system and intend healing for myself, what comes up is to allow whatever is where as it is, to notice it’s already allowed – by consciousness, capacity, life, existence – as it is and more consciously align with that. That’s basic meditation.

In this case, it’s basic meditation combined with an intention – or request – for healing.

I can feel it’s what my system really needs now. A deepening into consciously and more fully aligning with all as already allowed.

APRIL 14, 2024

DAILY RHYTHMS

I find that my natural rhythm these days, and quite often, is to go to bed early. (Often around 8pm.) Then, one of two things usually happens. I either wake up around 2-3am, get up, get some tasks done, and go back to sleep for a few hours. Or I get up at 4-6am and start the day. Quite often, I get many or most of my tasks done before breakfast. This seems to work quite well for me since I have the most energy in the morning.

I may take a nap in the afternoon. And I usually don’t do too much late afternoon and evening since my energy level goes down then.

I usually have fruits and maybe porridge in the morning. (Oatmeal porridge with seeds, nuts, some fruit, and cinnamon.) The main meal is usually around mid-day or early afternoon. And I’ll have something smaller later in the afternoon. If I can, I try to avoid eating, or at least eating much, in the evening.

I drink a lot of water in the morning, usually in the form of herbal and spice infusions and sometimes hot chocolate. The hot chocolate is usually just raw organic chocolate powder in hot water, perhaps with some cinnamon and/or cardamon and/or ginger powder. I sometimes also have ginger powder in hot water to help with the digestive fires.

This is just what seems to work the best for me now, and quite often, and it can and does change with circumstances and situations.

HEALING INNUMERABLE THINGS VS ONE THING

We can get caught up in trying to find healing for one issue and then another, and then new layers, and related issues creating parts of the same network of issues, and underlying issues, and so on. There is always more. There is likely literally no end.

We can also get caught up in obsessively changing situations and creating some idea or perfect situation for ourselves. It’s not wrong to be engaged and making choices based on what seems the most kind and wise, and what our inner knowing may tell us. And yet, if we are doing it with the aim of arriving somewhere, we are not very aligned with reality.

So what’s the solution?

There is one thing we can change and find healing for which impacts everything else, and that’s how we relate to it all. Can I find healing for that? Can I find more genuine peace with what’s here as it is?

That’s of course the essence of Buddhism and many other approaches. We find healing for one thing – our relationship with everything – instead of trying to change everything “out there” whether it’s our own issues, situations, others, or something else.

APRIL 15, 2024

WHAT HAPPENS AS WE DIE?

I have been reading about this, and YouTube also showed me this video which is a nice brief summary.

All of it fits what has been reported previously, including from people who have had near-death experiences: Relaxation, light, a review of your life, a sense of coming home.

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