Getting Honest with our Spiritual Path to Peace:

Over the past months, I’ve had the opportunity to have great conversations with colleagues, participate in various trainings and witness many clients and reiki students make profound discoveries and advances in their lives. Just as I have. The common thread that seems to make its way through all our stories is the very real and honest and RAW conversations we have had to have with ourselves and those who support us.

Many of us who have gone through the fires of transformation more than once know that awakening to our soul and the purity and peace of Spirit is a journey of sweat and hard work equal to that experience of joy and exhilaration in the discovery and feeling of inner peace and purpose. This journey is not without its blisters and bruises and stripping away of layers of raw emotions that have plagued our minds and hearts with toxic heaviness and difficult relationships and lives out of balance.

Whatever symbol or metaphor you use, the yin/yang symbol, the tetter-totter, Jung’s concept of the shadow, you encounter both the light and the dark, the day and the shadow, the up and the down. We are not exempt from the shadow, the dark, or the down. What we do in these moments is what defines our character and essentially our spirituality. Furthermore, the deeper the awakening of who we are, we also encounter the parallel shadow aspect of ourselves and of life. We realize the more we know the less we know and the more strong and humble we must walk. And that’s life…to embrace the paradox of being spirit as human being.

We are inundated with ways to alleviate our shadow sufferings quickly and easily. We all want to feel better both physically and psychologically quickly and without incident. Contrary to the magical thinking of what has been deemed as “prosperity theology” by the likes of the Secret and the Law of Attraction, we are meant to release our pain and distress by embracing the truth of what we feel and the authenticity of faith we have that God/dess/Spirit/Divinely Sacred can work through our distress to gift us with wisdom, grace and compassion.

We are not here to escape our emotions and wounds, rather to truly be honest with what is and to truly allow ourselves to be aware and PRESENT to what we feel. Being in the moment is a challenging principle because it requires us to BE AWARE of what we are feeling in the moment and be PRESENT to the grief, the joy, the anger, the frustration, the excitement, the empowerment of all that lies within the moment. It is the only way where true resolution AND PEACE within us takes place because we surrender to a soul healing and awakening, rather than simply manipulating the ‘healing’ of our personalities.

A recent Spirituality &Health magazine editorial by Stephen Kiesling states that we now need a time for ‘reality spirituality, to bring spirituality back down to earth.’ Hooray! A recent training workshop I went to in Toronto, Fred Gallo, a psychologist of energy psychology, stated that tapping our emotions away simply to suppress them is not healing. I breathed a sigh of relief to finally hear professionals acknowledge that we cannot escape our grief, our sorrow, our trauma, by simply tapping them or balancing them or creating illusions that we have snapped them away without truly being present to the process of soul healing!! It is not that these techniques don’t work and are not effective, but our INTENTION in using these techniques makes the difference as to whether the healing creates authentic whole self peace that extends to all humanity.

So what are we to do? Ancient traditions and practices of spiritual healing remain tried and true for many. Religions around the world contain seed truths that have brought great meaning and power and sustained great faith for centuries. Perhaps the doctrines and political agendas of these religions have not, but core truths that lie within their centre remain as common threads that still give life to any real spirituality or any ‘new’ method created today. Many people still quote the ancient sages and enlightened beings from the past. Their truth is still a thread that evokes confidence in us that we have the strength and compassion to face the raw emotions of our wounds and hurts and traumas. These are the moments of transformation that define us because we open deeply to ourselves and the essence that makes us both human and holy. This is Grace!

I have also noted over the years of my study and experience that most people in most times and places are broken in the midst of being with others, that is, we are broken ‘in community.’ Here a homeopathic principle applies for me where like with like creates a transformative, healing effect. I have witnessed and equally experienced within my own life, the power of sharing my hurt and wounds with another, whether professional or personal, someone who is genuinely present with me in the Spirit of love and compassion. I heal, as others have, in the presence and by the love shared ‘in community.’ I often tell people that grief or shame is healed in the presence of a loving other, not in the singularity of self-relationship. When we are honest in community, everlasting healing takes effect!!

Get honest with how you feel. Suppression only hurts us and those around us and harms those we love. Repression doesn’t work. It just creates poltergeists of raw emotions running around loose as energy asteroids smashing into people, as a teenager recently remarked to me. Using energy healing to ‘rush’ away our grief and pain without honestly being present to it to gain the deep awakening from the insights and accompanying lessons is only a temporary fix. Eventually, our ‘fixes’ need to increase and we lose the sense of empowerment that we first intended to create within ourselves. We have then misplaced our responsibility to gain wisdom from our own experience into the hands of another. This way does not heal us, nor our planet.

This year I am taking another step of living Grace by walking the path to peace. I’m beginning to teach about peace-building conversations out of my experience, study and training. The journey of peace continues to demand honesty of myself and the way I interact with others regardless of whether I am afraid. The courage and strength in Peace as the Way and Grace as the Holy experience is my mission that moves me, and those of you who learn and join me, gently onward. Peace be with you.

©Shirley Lynn Martin