I thought I'd write about what appears to be minor blips and glitches in life, and how even those can be cleared through Ho'oponopono too. In addition, they are often interrelated to other seemingly bigger issues where innate harmony and well-being are yearning to be restored.
A friend of a friend is staying at the same house I am right now. I'm still getting to know her, and today she shared that she's been constipated for at least three days. She is sensitive and aware of energy (and truthfully, New Orleans can be quite the underworld of subconsciousness--a great place to go to stir all that is hidden), so that could be it. A few months ago, she experienced a spiritual awakening so I intuited that things would show up more subtly in her system. Alot of purification (purification--which is not perfection, btw-- is synonymous with Ho'oponopono) occurs pre- and post-awakening at an accelerated pace (see Jim Tolle's video "Spiritual Awakening and the Purification Process" and his article "Spiritual Awakening and the Purification Process" for extra context).
The interesting thing is just before she shared this I'd been worrying and re-running all kinds of old ideas and patterns in an endless loop in my head. The essential nutshell of this re-run had to do with fear of not being supported by this exquisite Tree of Life (silly, of course if you think about a branch worrying about the tree not tending to its own complete being). These thoughts and beliefs and worry-mongering bring up tangible, physical symptoms of anxiety (a whole other post, as the other person staying at the house these days also shares my sensations of existential anxiety and cortisol overwhelm--so I'll address anxiety, endocrine system and adrenals in a future post soon). I even cite recent evidence to back up my claims of "not being supported by Life" which in actually are closer to perceptions and interpretations rather than any type of truth (as there is more than ample evidence that I am). Yet the throughline nonetheless continues unabated despite intellectually knowing that I'm making and shaping this up as a particular interpretation of facts and circumstances, and that throughline is essentially that I'm "not supported," "not enough," and a feeling of uncertainty about survival that brain and hormones beat as a thundering drum so loud and insistently that it's hard to hear or pick up signals of anything resembling guidance or grace.
So as my friend was speaking, I was already online and so started to search on the symbolism of constipation in order to understand the root of constipation well enough that I could then begin to apply Ho'oponopono and begin clearing.
With Ho'oponopono (and actually it's also true in my spiritual path which may be, if we need to categorize it, be called nonduality) there is no other person externally or "out there" that I'm treating and healing. It is more like the entire collective universe is essentially one organism, or one Being, that is being treated. All the treatment does is remove stuck patterns--it's like gently and lovingly lifting up the needle on a record player that's stuck on a groove in a music album that's now repeating over and over and over (yep, dating myself on that one). I may feel my focal point of attention and awareness to emanate as a unique branch within a tree of life. Note that a branch is also the tree. As a wave is also the ocean. In this way, if there appears to be dis-ease (not necessarily in terms of illness always--may show up in terms of discord, confusion, alienation, war, poverty, and other dis-eases of disharmony in communal life) affecting my finger, even though I may see and express myself as a nose in this universal "body," I am keenly aware that I am the finger just as well and it is in the best-interest of the Whole tree to care for the finger rather than ignore it by insisting "Oh, that's a finger; that's not me. Me, I'm just the nose."
I'm going to continue to use the metaphor or symbol of a tree for the Whole or the Totality or the Infinite (all synonymous for the ineffable which Dr. Hew Len also calls the Infinite or the Divine) and my sense of individuated expression as a branch on that tree throughout this post.
Googling Louise Hay for the handy symbolism she often provides, I found that the essential symbolism is: "Refusing to release old ideas. Stuck in the past. Sometimes stinginess." Also, in her book, You Can Heal Your Life, Hay adds:
"Even if constipated people are not actually stingy, they usually do not trust that there will ever be enough. They hold on to old relationships that give them pain. They are afraid to throw out clothes that have been in the closet for years because they might need them some day. They stay in stifling jobs, or never give themselves pleasure, because they must save for that rainy day. We do not rummage in last night's garbage to find today's meal. Learn to trust the process of life to always bring you what you need." - You Can Heal Your Life, by Louise Hay
This resonates for me. When I find myself with $10 (or less) to my name (and I've no credit cards or other so-called safety nets), it seems logical and sane to assume and agree with this statement, "There is not enough." And view the process of life as NOT bringing me what I require for survival because there's only so much you can buy with ten bucks in the U.S. of A these days.
Yet, in the last week, these friends that moved in temporarily (the one reflecting the symbolism of constipation and the one reflecting anxiety and adrenal issues above) have brought with them an abundance of fresh, healthy food that filled the fridge and kitchen to the brim. They share everything they prepare with me. Another day, another friend with no electricity (yeah, it's a little like a frontier here at times) came by with a ton of produce and asked me to make some warm soup (for all of us, too). This past Saturday, I was blithely returning home from an artists' roundtable discussion on digital art (and in the soaring mood that can burst forth into jubilant skipping and humming) when I serendipitiously happened upon the grand opening of a community acupuncture clinic--they had the most beautiful, homemade, sensuous banquet artfully arranged with fresh, colorful, bright foods including edible flowers in the salad, tropical fruits like papaya, banana, pineapple and a rose-hibiscus-nettles herbal tea. Then, that same evening, I went to an art installation literally called "Banquet," that featured an endless cornucopia of food where the artist fed you (and it was amazing interactive social experiment as well between the artist and the "audience" since only one person at a time sat at the table as others watched). (Serendipitiously, learning more about the "Banquet" artist, I find she hosts visiting artists in an informal artist-in-residence program that opens her home to guests. And it actually all connects to this particular post, as you'll see.)
Earlier in the week, go figure, I had "logically" entertained the fear of starvation. This fear you'd think would utterly dissolve in the face of grace and evidence to the contrary--and yet, there is the thought that arises unbidden fixated on imaginary futures--"And what of tomorrow? What if there is no food tomorrow? What then? What then? What's next?" And it all feels like habit, not truth. Reeks of the way habits become addictive behavior, become karmic even. A stuck pattern; a rote defense. It is in moments that are re-runs of memory that is the space to invite Ho'oponopono.
Usually before I apply Ho'oponopono I try to understand the habitual pattern deeper. It's easy to pull weeds out if you just clasp them by their top, and it may even appear temporarily nice to have a smooth garden free of those straggly unwanted weeds, yet if their roots are still underground it's only a matter of time before they pop back through the ground into the light of day. My intention is to get to the root, or heart, of the matter, not just treat surface symptoms.
I happened to find a used copy of a book last week at Maple Leaf Books (yes, there are times when spending $5 even when you're down to $20 and no inkling of where future cash flow may happen as your leads aren't turning up any potential gigs is absolutely the thing to do that moment anyhow). This book was vital and instrumental to me years ago when I was trying to reconcile the business world I was in with the spiritual path (at that time, I leaned Buddhist). It's called The Diamond Cutter, by Geshe Michael Roach. I often wish I had a copy with me--and now I do. It has some very insightful things to say about "stinginess" too:
"Stop being such a cheapskate in your business dealings and your personal life. Give, give, give to others; make sure deals are win-win for both sides. Again, it's not the amount of money involved, it's maintaining--all day long--a truly generous, creative, flowing state of mind that wants to see everybody prosper. Ben Franklin was perhaps the greatest statesman, scientist, and businessperson in America's history--and his response to competition was to invite all his competitors to join a new society called a Chamber of Commerce, dedicated to finding ways to work together to expand markets, and make everybody involved richer."
To be continued in Part 2.