News and Views From The Psychic Access Community

Do You Prefer Spiritual School, Or Life School?

Click Here for a FREE psychic reading right now at PsychicAccess.comYour life path was designed by you and your guides, for you to evolve as a soul. This means everyone is on a spiritual path, whether they know it or not, and whether they believe in spirituality or not. We do not ‘have to’ consciously work on ourselves. Life is the ultimate teacher, and you will learn what you came here to learn, one way or another. Whether you learn well, or your learning is average, or if you don’t learn much of what you came here to learn (and have to come back for a do-over) life and life circumstances will teach you.

How much and how well you learn is completely up to each individual. If you decide you want to consciously work on yourself, that does not, in and of itself, make you a better person or more advanced than others. What matters most concerning a choice to do conscious work on yourself is how you take on the work and the energy behind your choice.

If you think you are broken, or you want power and prestige, your work on yourself runs the risk of being inauthentic and even abusive towards yourself. Choose to work on yourself because you are unhappy in life, or something, some energy, is ‘nudging’ you to learn more regarding self-mastery and being an authentic being, living with integrity, morality and ethics. You might want to read Awakening Loving-Kindness by Pema Chodron, as a starting point to better understand your choices regarding doing conscious work on yourself.

We are sent into the world to live to the full everything that awakens within us and everything that comes toward us ~ John O’Donohue

Did you have difficult childhood and feel those wounds are still having an unpleasant influence in your current life circumstances and decisions? Are you a restless soul who knows and feels that this life is not all there is. If so, where do you start? Follow your heart? Use your intuition? What if you are an unhealed wounded person? What if you are an unhealed wounded person, and you don’t even know that?

You will be led by your wounds, and all the protective behaviors you learned and implemented over the years, in order to survive and keep living with your wounds, until, hopefully, one day you wake up, come out of denial and begin the journey of healing, personal growth and soul evolution.

If you are part of the ‘walking wounded’ you will have issues with trust – trusting others and trusting yourself, including not trusting your choices regarding how you pick people to interact with, or be in a relationship with. The walking wounded often start off either isolating themselves, or hanging out with people crazier (even more wounded) than themselves, so they feel more sane compared to them.

Some try to find people that will tell them what to do, because they are so empty or broken inside. This leaves the walking wounded very susceptible to being manipulated by people who are only too happy to tell them what to do. Quite often, the walking wounded get drawn to religious extremism or cult practices, where the ‘leaders’ thrive on telling their  followers what to do, and even what to think and feel. For the walking wounded, with a history of neglect and abuse, as well as a lack of trust and faith in themselves, this will feel like ‘home.’ One can get lost in these circles of isolation and bad choices for decades.

Our unhealed wounds will often misdirect us with so-called ‘guidance’ cloaked in ‘meant to be.’ Your wounded self will be drawn to dysfunctional, and even painful or abusive ‘meant to be’s’ – especially those dressed up as ‘feel goods,’ such as love bombing, toxic positivity and interesting, but ultimately unhelpful, ‘narratives’ told to you by other unhealed and untrained spiritual gurus. And you will not be able to distinguish these nuances, because your radar is broken. It was broken and reset based on your wounds, so you will be easily manipulated into ‘feel good’ strategies.

Moving into healthy challenges is the heart of healing, self-healing, and soul evolution, but in the beginning healthy challenges will trigger anxiety and fear in the unhealed. The challenges in your life are actually ‘meant to be.’ You designed them and set them up for implementation before you ever incarnated. What is not ‘meant to be’ is your suffering.

When we talk about our feelings, they become less overwhelming, less upsetting, and less scary ~ Fred Rogers

Challenges are arduous, but suffering is optional, and you and your guides did not set up challenges for you to fail or be entirely overwhelmed. You set them up for you to grow and evolve through the process and actions of taking risks, making mistakes, having patience, being persistent and developing faith – all of which are a part of learning. Recovery, healing, building trust in yourself and others means you will have to take risks by changing your behaviors, your choices, your actions and feeling your feelings, all of them.

Where do you start? There are no rules, and each individual journey will be different based on your history, your character and integrity, your cultural and family background, gender, age, and so much more. There are however some things to keep in mind.

First off, as a wounded person you cannot heal in isolation. Even the shamans and monks that live in caves in the Himalayas have teachers, though some do study with pure spirit, but then you are looking at that as a practice and lifestyle attained by decades of discipline and pursuit. If you want to live in the everyday, modern world, and not pursue decades of austere arcane practices, you are going to have to risk taking a chance working with a teacher, or with a group.

If you have fear of being dominated or controlled working with a self-directed, spiritual group, something like a 12-Step group is probably a good first step for you. There is no ‘leader’ in 12-Step and it is not a self-help program; it is a spiritual program. There will be enough humans there to be resources for you, and points of contact in helping you to work with your Higher Power. The learning you will receive will come from listening to and hearing shares in the group, without the fear of working with a leader, or a person who might aim to dominate or control you.

However, if you have a colossal ego, or you are a major control freak (a symptom of deep trust issues), or a devoted people-pleaser, you would probably prefer to jump off a cliff, rather than show up in a group. People pleasers and those with a falsely bloated ego (the walking wounded often create a false bloated ego as a defense mechanism in order to avoid feeling shame) will look for a ‘cool’ person to be their teacher, so they can seduce or suck up.

If you are a people pleaser, having a leader you can orient yourself around, so you can adapt your behaviors to win approval, is your powerful dysfunctional pattern and it will call you, at first, on the beginning steps of your healing journey.

In any given moment, we have two options: to step forward into growth or to step back into safety ~ Abraham Maslow

If you have created a giant, false ego as your coping mechanism in life, you will want to win the approval of some powerful or ‘gifted’ (in your mind) leader. That coping mechanism will help you to (falsely) feel good about yourself, by association. In other words if a cool teacher accepts you, it will help define you as cool or powerful too. It is a fantasy, but it is also a very common coping tool of the walking wounded, and a powerful tool used by cult leaders to manipulate potential followers.

You can and should read books, watch videos, and self-educate. But at some point you are going to have to actually practice or put into action, what you are learning. How will you evaluate those efforts? You will need a trusted person to observe you, listen to you, talk to you, and give you feedback. You cannot simultaneously practice new learning, and observe and evaluate yourself in new behaviors.

Can you use a good friend or relative? Perhaps. Most good friends will not risk the friendship when giving opinions, observations or feedback, meaning that they may not be able to have difficult or challenging conversations with you. This is why people choose to work with a mentor, someone who has made the journey themselves. In order to determine if a potential mentor is the real deal, you will have to spend some time observing the person, because everybody these days has a good ‘back story.’ In fact as far as I am concerned, the better the ‘story’ about being ‘chosen’ or ‘gifted’ or ‘called,’ the more skeptical I tend to be.

Look at behaviors and actual lifestyle as compared to ‘presentation.’ Listen with care and read between the lines. Authentic people are not consistently consistent. I personally look for inconsistencies, because that is a sign of authenticity. I choose to work with people whose inconsistencies are acceptable for me, within the boundaries of my parameters on what constitutes a good human being. For me a quality person is honest and transparent about who they are, and does not hide their emotions by presenting a smooth or non-reactive front.

I need to look up to and respect the mentors I work with. Some people can dislike their mentor and are comfortable merely ‘using’ someone, because they want what their mentor has (or think they have) such as a ‘gift,’ talent, connection (for career or love), or because they somehow think this mentor will ‘save’ them.

For some people it is built into their family or culture to use people. There is nothing wrong with using someone in a healthy fashion, if you are honest about it and don’t add in sucking up or people pleasing, or other manipulative techniques to try to ensure a (unhealthy) connection. Mentors are used to being useful, and really that is their job. They are not your friend, or lover, or savior. However, if you add in emotional seduction to your relationship with a mentor, it will definitely muddy the waters.

Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate ~ Carl Jung

Some people cannot work with a mentor without adding in emotional or even sexual seduction. It is what they learned as a child, especially if there was sexual misconduct or abuse. This is another danger of working with just one mentor, and not a group, or at the very least a mentor combined with a group.

Until you are well on your way of coming out of denial and into at least the first stages of recovery, working with a mentor and having no group participation at all, you can expect drama and also loss in your mentor relationships. This is not meant as a threat, rather it is information for you to use to prepare yourself. Prepare for the worst and expect the best.

You can have more than one mentor at a time, however I would suggest they not be in the same area of recovery, as that can become confusing. For example you can have a 12-Step sponsor, a meditation teacher and a health (nutrition and exercise) coach all at one time. The same holds true with groups. You can work with a church group, 12-Step, an artist group, and an incest survivor group, all at the same time (should you be so inspired). This might be a good choice for you until you have a stronger version of discernment regarding what is healthy for you.

Setting up a network of support is a good choice. It means you will have some checks and balances in place to try and offset your tendency to be guided by your wounds, or to inappropriately bond with a mentor or teacher. I don’t care how introverted you are, if you refuse to be part of any group, even as a listener, you are more committed to being ‘right,’ ‘looking good’ or staying ‘in control’ than you are in your own recovery and growth.

You are a human and until you can embrace your humanity you will use your isolating techniques (or excuses) to avoid fully participating in the journey you signed up to do when you chose to incarnate. In groups you cannot manipulate, suck up, win approval, or manipulate the feelings of yourself or others, at least not forever and not with everyone. In groups you learn to hold your own space in your own recovery work. Speaking in groups is the only way to expunge toxic shame. Speaking in groups gives you a chance to practice social skills. Where else can you safely do that? Being in a group teaches you to be able to tolerate the emotions of others, without trying to hide or fix things.

You don’t ‘have to’ do anything. Life and the situations and circumstances your life brings to you, were arranged to happen, by you and your spirit guides when you were still a ball of light. Life will teach you. Life will force you to change and grow. Life will force you to work with groups, such as in-laws or co-workers, so you can change and grow.

Life will also send you teachers and mentors – usually they are the ones that hurt and betray you the most, as that is how many deep lessons roll in…with pain. You can also choose groups and mentors, and be willing to accept your lessons, rather than trying to resist them or ‘manipulate’ the Universe to ‘get what you want.’

Either approach is fine. Some people get a career or make a living by going to school, while some do so without going to school. Some never even have the opportunity to attend school.  Some of us prefer to go to ‘spiritual school,’ and some prefer ‘life school.’ Be aware of your choices. Only then can you move at the pace of guidance.


About The Author: Nonna

Nonna lives in Southern California, and is a professor of psychology and a teacher of psychic development, energy work and meditation, who has recently finished her PhD. She has been a counselor for both humans and animals for thirty years, removing energy blocks through her expertise in the spiritual arts. She also has numerous years of study and practice with classic psychological therapeutic models, family work, twelve-step processes, nutritional and body/mind/spirit healing, complementary, alternative, and quantum medicine. Nonna is brilliant at unearthing the gems in every client's soul and polishing them to a fine finish. To release your own soul's sparkle, contact Nonna at PsychicAccess.com.

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