Self Love/ Self Experience: The symphony of relationship to other and worldOct 31, 2013 01:18AM ● By Leesa Sklover, PhD
“I use solitude now like a lamp to illuminate corners I’ve never seen.”
~ Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening
In this age of unlimited information, we need to look deeper beneath the surface of things within the world and in ourselves to encourage the blossoming of the self in all of its possible fullness. For some, this means time in solitude to run inside yourself to “hear” your soul. Instead of looking for all the answers outside, most can be found on our own inner journey, away from the tribe.
There is a need for people to be devoted to go inside, to practice “inner-ing” in order to know their way and their truth. This can mean walking alone, meditation, sipping tea, singing, yoga, creative play or intentional contemplation, to name a few. Knowledge and information is everywhere, but wisdom is more elusive. Wisdom requires the experience of space, openness, listening, meditation, connection and trust. It grows with experience. It cannot be taught but rather learned. We are each here on earth to participate in our own creation of our journey through self knowledge and self growth that comes from experiences of play, exploration and vulnerability.
Science now proves the benefits of yoga and music therapy and that our brain is more musical then verbal. Just listening to the right music or better chanting produces a dopamine response and vibrates our entire being into a pattern we can choose. We have the awareness, research and tools but do we take the time to journey within?
In our relationships, we need to trust, connect and communicate. It should first be in place with ourselves and then we can transfer to our relationships with others. Without soul time for ourselves, we lose our imagination and ability to hear our inner longing. We become stunted by conditioned attitudes and adaptations to otherness that lacks our own thinking and imagination. The soul protests, potentially causing us to become weakened and lose our power and resilience. Sometimes this learning comes later in life, after years of stepping in the same hole several times. We are then ready to listen to our soul voice. With so much information available today, many people, including our youngsters, think they know everything. The great things cannot be taught or learned on a computer, they must be personally experienced with the Self. The ability to be alone with the Self and enjoy your own company is essential. Take yourself out to lunch, drive to a beautiful place to do yoga or write alone. Feel the difference. We all need ways to put things in to perspective. It is your own imperative to create a siesta or sadhana in your day, in whatever way works for you.
There is so much on this topic of self growth and improvement that it can seem like one more thing to add to our endless lists. A shift in purpose and awareness is needed to make the choice to slow to a rhythm where you “heal your mind to heal your life.”
The human spirit is sometimes held prisoner by overdoing and filling up every free moment. The art of self-reflection, contemplation and self-honoring can be called Self-ing. Tuning, charging and energizing the Self is our essential purpose and duty with every tradition following this principle.
As Brene Brown has shown in her research, shame and lack of worth keeps us from risking and being vulnerable. Although we all suffer in this life, we are in need of connection to the spiritual . When one experiences this connection, there is a synchronicity of events and we feel flow.
Ideally, we must be responsible for our own personal truths in order to be the best imagined self for others. In her “A Collection of Souls - Journey to the Soul Family Tree” book, Leesa Sklover, PhD presents on the ways we create our soul family and soul world tree and foster authentic trust to understand intuition. It is about the ability to sense wonder, be open and wise about what you let into your heart, knowing disappointment is possible. You are then able to notice the beauty in the individuals you may meet for a moment or a lifetime and those you have a magical connection with. Synchronistic events of connection are how you build your soul tree with family, friends, colleagues, strangers, animals and the natural world of your choice. Symbols and experience become your reality. You can live in reality and non-reality at the same time because you know how to listen to your heart and soul.
We need to know solitude and our inner song, but we are never alone, not to our ancestors or the magic of the world, in the meditation class or elsewhere. As Ralph Waldo Emerson says in Self Reliance, “great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.” To know conscious awareness, mindfulness, presence and to hear your own soul sing in the company of others is the best gift we can give ourselves. The great Zen master Dogen said the path to awakening and liberation is not a line but a circle. We are here to pause and remember and recall our true Self and the ongoing oneness of our life on Earth.
Leesa Sklover, PhD, LPC, CRC, CMT, IKYTA practices in integrative health areas, counseling and Relationship/Wellness consulting/coaching in Fairfield, Norwalk and Glastonbury. She can be reached at [email protected], 203-313-2327 or LoveLifeProductions.net.