Summer Solstice arrived again. I sat there stalled… knowing it really was time to clear. Time to recognize my intention and see what I had set it upon.
We often think of setting intention without looking at where we left it last … or how far from there it drifted when at long last left unmoored. Intention is always there. We think to consider intent at auspicious and naturally supported times. Times like Solstice, as I am doing now – when the real and the symbolic sunlight leaves less dark for us to hide of ourselves – the parts that are work to see. So we ceremonially look at this shadow side by placing intention that we should see it. While forgetting still, the enormity of intention sustained, in keeping the dark as a place to hide it.
It isn’t evil we hide in our hearts… but the secret of how and where we are broken
We can be in so many places at the same time by intention. Even more still, if we confuse intention with the ideas of “wanting” or “thinking.” Pieces of us hidden in layer upon layer, one underneath the other. If we believe of ourselves that intent is the powerful and creative force aligning purpose with destination – seed with fruition – and that we found it waiting for us whole and unoccupied with no peeling-away or digging-up to find it. Claiming our intention proudly when the universe is working favorably on our behalf… while it carries us to the height from which may actually be our next lesson in falling. Do we simply create another layer to rest ourselves upon until it slips into expanding dark, while our vision like the days run shorter? Intention like solstice can be a cycle for expansion in purpose – or merely a pattern that goes around one more time.
A teacher in my life spoke of this near the time my spouse David was preparing for his death – and while I prepared to be here without him. David asked me to see my heart. To see all of it – fully- with the love and compassion that he did. I knew what he meant. This Mystic I loved and married knew what he sustained in me … and was handing me the reins. Every time I sat in front of him, I knew I was completely naked. At first you want to cover up… hide parts of you. But then you discover how wonderful it is to sit uncovered – to be fully seen in the gaze of eyes not merely unoffended – but even enraptured. I began looking at my naked heart as he did- and feeling to cover parts of it again. I’m alone, and I am uncomfortable sitting naked with myself – and even that truth of myself I kept hidden.
It isn’t evil we hide in our hearts… but the secret of how and where we are broken. No sooner had I asked myself to sit naked, than did all I was protecting show of itself. You don’t get to look, find and free yourself just once like in hide and seek. There is no olly-olly-oxen-free for things hidden of our heart. No, this is a broken relationship, if we are not cultivating, caring for and nurturing it by growth. Spiritual seeking – our path to enlightenment – whatever you wish to call it. This pilgrimage holds the same opportunity for us to hide and to seek – equally, discriminately, and thoughtfully unaware.
This teacher and Shamanic Practitioner I mentioned; In the midst of this contemplation, presents to us what he referred to as “Spiritual Bypass.” In his words with his permission if you’re reading this; “spiritual bypass, which is the use of spiritual beliefs to avoid doing one’s inner work. Spiritual bypass is a way of avoiding shadow – aspects of oneself that one does not wish to acknowledge.” Tomas Bostrom
I didn’t catch this minor detail within myself. I could see this among others – as though it were others that haven’t the willingness and fortitude to look fully at themselves – their motives – their shadow. And under this shadow judgment, is where I hid my own. Who would have ever looked there? Not me.
I’ve long said- “If you’re lying to yourself, I won’t brand you as lying to me.” To find my own aversions hidden underneath my integrity – genius! But I know I can’t now keep both. You can’t, once seen – not and live powerfully and masterfully in your purpose. Do I keep my aversions or my integrity? A question we all face of ourselves. This is the core of intention. This is where my work begins – perhaps everyone’s.
Just as I could only give my whole heart to someone from whom I could not hide parts of it. To be whole, I have to learn to equally acknowledge my light as well as my shadow. This is where my intent belongs – if it is ever to be of service – if it is ever to be undivided.