No Man’s Land of Awakening

Pause

Image by Elizabeth Gadd ~ http://www.elizabethgadd.com

“After the Spiritual Honeymoon, there is a coming to terms with a new reality and way of being.
With spiritual awakening your motivation falls away.
Your personal will drains out of the system – to achieve, succeed, to be right, to be recognized. We can’t prepare for this. For most people there’s confusion as it disappears and flows out of you. Your references of what to do, why to do it, how to do it disappears. There is no personal desire. You don’t know what you want.
This is a limbo zone. There is relief from the relentless tyrant and inner critic driving you. Yet the new energy hasn’t come in yet.
It would be great if this universal direction appears, but for most people it doesn’t happen like this. There are a lot more people in this No Man’s Land now.
It is often ushered in by a powerful moment of transformation. This is the fulfillment of spiritual awakening and also a beginning. ”

Adyashanti

spiritual limbo

Image by Elizabeth Gadd ~http://www.elizabethgadd.com

I heard these words from Adyashanti and they really resonated with me.  I feel like I too have experienced a no man’s land of awakening. This is a place to learn acceptance, being vulnerable, and above all trusting in the unknown in a new way.
… And in the meantime I continue to teach yoga and coach my clients to bring them to their middle ground, discover new perspectives and find acceptance and peace within themselves. From this place, anything becomes possible.

I am grateful to have found these wonderful soulful photographs by Elizabeth Gadd. They capture this moment of pause and reflection so beautifully.

* Acceptance of the Unacceptable

“Acceptance of the unacceptable is the greatest source of grace in this world.”

Eckhart Tolle

 Isn’t it funny how certain quotes and wisdom show up just when we need it the most? I recall, not so long ago when I had a hard time accepting how things were. I had unexpected news that meant my vision for the future was no longer possible. What I thought was “for sure” became “no way”.

There was shock and uncertainty;  concerns about others; a sense of loss and sadness; a letting go of a future dream; and lots of turbulent emotions.  So much was out of my control and I really struggled because I couldn’t accept it. There was no grace here folks!

finding grace in life's lows

So, what is grace … and how do we find it when life serves us a curve ball or pulls the rug from under us? When we find ourselves in life’s lows?

I appreciate Adyashanti’s approach taken from “Falling into Grace”.

“Grace is something that comes to us when we somehow find ourselves completely available, when we become open hearted and open minded, and are willing to entertain the possibility that we may not know what we think we know.

In this gap of not knowing, in the suspension of any conclusion, a whole other element of life and reality can rush in. This is what I call grace. It’s that moment of “ah-ha” – a moment of recognition when we realize something that previously we never could quite imagine.

… Somehow the  difficult situations in our lives have a way of opening our hearts and minds the most. Its the challenging moments that often offer the greatest opportunities for growth and the transformation of consciousness.”

Finding grace and opening up to accept what is, comes when we fully embrace everything that is alive in us in that moment. 

Some people choose to divert their mind into positive thinking to counteract the negative feelings. I’m not a believer of this, as all feelings and emotions are a part of who we are as human beings. I spent a big chunk of my life looking for the positive and denying the negative … while the deepest part of me was aching. Embracing all part of ourselves is the key to our personal growth and evolution as spiritual beings.

Here are the steps I have uncovered from a variety of spiritual teachers and psychotherapists:

✳ Name what is happening. Be as factual as you can.

✳ What stories are you telling myself about this unacceptable moment?

✳ What are you feeling in your body. What emotions are coming up? Embrace your whole body experience.

✳ Make space for whatever comes up.

✳ Notice how the mind jumps in with judgments and negative thoughts. Make space for these too.

✳ Embrace everything that is alive in you. Let yourself feel.

✳ Notice if there is a part of you that wants the pain to go away – to fix it rather than accepting it.

✳ Embrace it all and let it in. This is a part of you.

✳ Let yourself become a vulnerable feeling being.

✳ Be open and fully alive to the experience.

✳ Breathe into it and allow the life energy to flow through you.

✳ And in this place of spaciousness and letting go, notice how grace appears.

Compassionate acceptance of the unknown.

* Meeting Life As It Is

… Continuing the conversation about judging, evaluating and accepting life as it is. These words from Adyashanti moved me today. May they touch you also and bring a deeper connection with your inner being and life itself.

Clarity

Image courtesy of wbhunt.com

“The greatest generator of conflict, both internal and external, is our addiction to interpreting and evaluating each and every moment of our experience.
When we continually judge and evaluate, we separate from what’s happening. We feel a certain distance from our experience, because now we have become the evaluator of the moment and we’re no longer in unity with the flow of existence and life.

As we begin to meet life as it is rather than as we think it should be, as we let go of our need to control and continuously interpret our experience, we start to open to life in a completely new way. We become deeply founded in silence.
The nature of this silence is a lack of conflict with life, and the more we open to this state of non conflict, to this state of inner stillness, we begin to fall into the grace of a different dimension of being – a dimension rooted in a deep intimacy with our own lives and with existence itself.”

Adyashanti