CHOCOLATE OR HEAVEN?

 

 

All these years, for me,

Chocolate was heaven;

My go-to;

My comfort; My friend.

I travelled miles

In distance and money

To have it.

I told myself it was love

A “Fuck you world

I don’t need you!

I have my friend,

She wont hurt me.”

 

The tingle on my tongue

As I took a bite,

A sigh of relief:

There was something good in my life.

 

Did it bring me wealth

Or success?

No

Did it bring me a home?

Love?

Self worth?

No. No…No

Did it make all my dreams come true?

No.

 

In fact, my need for it

Added to my shame.

I chose it before company,

Friends, health…

In fact, it lied to me.

It didn’t bring me joy at all.

It just gave me a fix,

A place to hide.

 

That’s Addiction** for you:

It drives your life.

You wake looking for the next fix.

You lie and cheat for it,

To yourself and others

It prevents you from finding

What’s real.

It will drag you to hell,

Everytime you inject your heart

With whatever your fix is.

It becomes the God

You worship,

As it slyly pulls you down

Its slippery slope,

Heavy chains weighing down your soul.

 

So, if you want to fly upwards

Makes sense, it will have to go.

You’ll need to leave its weight behind,

Resist its pull.

Keep you eyes on the blue skies

Beyond the clouds,

Where we choose something

Truer and greater.

 

Jonathan Seagull* knew this.

He flew higher and higher,

Believing in something greater.

He found himself in his flights,

Discovered there were

No limits,

But his choices.

 

He needed nothing but the

Desire for three things:

Truth,

All he could become,

And what or who created him.

Eventually, he flew close to the light

Of the Greatest One,

And found heaven.

 

The rewards of heaven

Were beyond anything earth had offered.

Far, far outweighing the desperate lives

Of his brothers and sisters:

Their belief in stasis; tradition;

Playing safe; fighting for survival,

Craving scraps; getting their fix

In repetition, need and numbness.

Just as I’ve done.

 

A life led by the next fix:

Clouding my vision;

Shrinking my heart;

Hiding my soul:

The real me.

 

Jonathan Seagull moved my heart,

Confronted my beliefs,

Gave a taste of heaven,

Where I can glow in the light

Of the Greatest One.

It’s now my choice

And yours.

 

Chocolate is just one of many things

To leave behind

In the name of finding so much more.

What will it be

Addiction or Love?

Truth or Lies?

Chocolate or Heaven?

 

@Maxine Bell 2019

I gave up chocolate this week. I have done so before, but have always said, “oh well it won’t be forever.” But in the end I have replaced it with something else or gone back to it because I have felt what I am using the chocolate for. There is a great clip in the 2014 assistance group where Mary tells a story how she made some cacao balls to bring to the group until she realised she was using them to avoid her fear. When she realised this she didn’t want the cacao. An exchange occurs between Jesus and Mary and a participant who’s anxiety that she may never have chocolate again was so vivid. How many of us feel like that? Never have chocolate again? What!!? The world would agree with us too- why would give up such pleasure?

I realised, we’re missing the point. If we never have chocolate again so what? There is a bigger picture here – the potential of a beautiful eternal life, as described in the Robert James Lee Trilogy and as Jesus and Mary are teaching. That’s what Mary understood – that the cacao didn’t matter and it wasn’t loving to avoid her emotions. The loving action was to feel her fear, let her soul expand with e-motion.

So this time I gave up chocolate with the thought that I may never have it again and that was okay.  I have lots of other addictions to deal with too, but this was a tangible one to experiment with. Besides, if I was a heroin addict, I wouldn’t be telling myself, “oh you’ll be alright to have some in a few months – you just need a break.” Or others, wouldn’t be telling me to not give up the pleasure of it – why deprive yourself.

We live in a world full of people with quite a small vision for themselves. But it seems God has a much larger one for us. So its, instant gratification vs eternal benefits.

*                   *                    *                    *

*Jonathan Seagull refers to the story by Richard Bach called Jonathan Livingston Seagull. It is an amazing story, an analogy of the life of Jesus, is my intepretation of it: vision, love and tremendous courage. If you read it, make sure you get the complete edition with the rediscovered Part Four.

**When I talk about addiction I mean any physical or emotional thing we do that helps us avoid emotions. It can range from things like chocolate, which can seem quite harmless, through to co-dependency in relationships where we barter. eg If you make me feel safe, I will cook your dinner every night. The thing is no addiction is harmless – it involves a huge compromise of ourself, our values, morals and ethics. We harm ourselves and others. You can recognise addiction in youself, just by your reaction when you don’t get it – you get irritated, angry, demanding because addiction is a feeling of desperately needing something or someone. It is selfish. We all have many many addicitions. We can’t have addictions and Love. We will in the end have to choose.

DRIVING

cruella-deville-crazy-driving

(Image from 101 Dalmations – Cruella da Ville) 

I am taking more notice of my life these days and I have discovered that the truth is in the everyday things we do and how we live. For instance, driving: something most of us do most days.

I started to pay attention to what kind of driver I am and my emotional reactions to it and to other drivers. It told me quite a lot about myself and I don’t think I have discovered all of the truth its revealed yet or even assessed it all correctly, but I am attempting to.

A few weeks ago, I had a minor car accident, when someone drove into the front left of my car as I pulled out of my drive way. She was driving too fast, but if I rewind to how I felt that morning I see that I got into my car, ungrounded and pushing down emotions I didn’t want to feel. I had woken up really not wanting to go to work: I have been struggling with work since I got back from Australia (my trip to Australia shone a light on my life and nothing I thought was real has felt real). I felt very tired and upset and really had to force myself to get ready. I was a bit late and I did that very English thing (maybe not just English) of “pulling myself together” and got into the car, pulled forward, looked left quickly, didn’t see any oncoming car, pulled further out and then there was this big bang, a jolt, everything went into slow motion and then I was sat there motionless, stunned, with bits of my car and the other drivers car on the road.

I’m not certain, but I think it happened to show me I wasn’t paying attention to how I was feeling: I was “shoulding” myself, pushing myself, telling myself to be responsible and go to work. (My facade is SO pushy, a bully). It was nothing about the truth. It was all about the lies that made me do something I really didn’t want to do and avoid what I felt: sadness, fear, pain, frustration, powerless. It was also a few days after a disgreement with my mother, where she didn’t like what I said; where she wanted me to maintain a facade of myself that she wants me to be to suit her view of herself as a good mother. The car was written off and it was a car she had bought for me – a first financial gift from her that I had infact accepted insincerely, feeling it was owed to me. I ignored my conscience and led with my fear ( my old car was not in a good state) and anger at the time.

Before the accident, I had started paying more attention my driving, because sometimes I am really shitty to other drivers: impatient, judgemental, critical, pushy, nasty even. A lot of these things are how I am with myself at times, but why am I like that with other drivers? Either way it’s very unloving.

So everytime I started to get angry, judgmental, condescending ( all parts of my facade)  even I started to ask why? What was going on under that? Being angry meant I wanted an addiction met. Wanting an addiction met meant I had a fear or other emotion I didn’t want to feel.

A few examples:

“Come on drive faster! Should you be out on the road? Do you need your eyes testing, you keep putting your brakes on?” 

ie you should drive the way I think you should drive! I want to be in control or I’m afraid you’ll cause a crash.

This happens when I am late for work or something else and there are a number of different emotions and layers of emotions going on, depending on the situation. I may be judging myself for being late or angry with myself or angry that I even have to be at the place I am meant too. Then under that I am afraid of what others may think of me or I may be “found out” in someway. I am often also avoiding some sadness and pain over areas of my life and how limited it is. The layers can go on, into my lack of self love or worth.

“Arsehole, you cut in front of me and it’s my fault!?” ( as a man makes rude sign and swears at me)

I don’t like the anger being projected at me, but rather than feel the fear and sadness, I project back at him. I deny how it really made me feel because I don’t want to feel powerless and terrified.

There are many other examples, but I hope you get the drift of it. Looking just at my driving is showing me how unloving I can be; how much my facade controls everything; how I want it that way because I am afraid and/or unwilling to feel the other emotions that I judge as weaker, or wrong or I am just so used to suppressing. I believe this to be normal and in fact observe it around me in so many others. I deny there is another way to be, push aside my hurt child and deny any chance of the real me being present.

But it has been so useful too of course. The truth of my unlovingness isn’t good to feel, but it is the truth and I find if the anger starts to come or it just happens, I catch it quicker, breathe and ask myself, “What’s really going on Maxine? What don’t you want to feel?” This sometimes lead to me feeling some of the fear or some sadness ( tiny amounts at the moment). Or sometimes I have a really good scream and rant in the car, but not at others.

So two main points here:

We have a choice: to be unloving or to love (ourselves, others, our environment)

Truth is revealed in the everyday things – what annoys us, irritates us, how we react to minor events, other people etc.

God doesn’t keep secrets – he’s telling us all the time: we just need to pay attention – desire to know, see, hear, feel. Have the courage to see the truth of our life: we can’t change what we deny, ignore, minimise or judge.

 

 

How do we know what is our facade?

facade self

We need to talk about our facade if we want to change: we need to understand why we have it, want it and feel about it to change and we can’t have a relationship with God in our facade. God wants a relationship with the real us. Today, I was talking to someone about our facades and how ingrained it is: how convinced we are that it is us and so live in a lot of denial that we live in this facade at all and hate it being confronted because we want it so much. In fact, in our current society we are even encouraged to live in facade: through social media, celebrity, vanity, work, families and constantly judge anyone who does not fit our version of “the norm.” We are constantly projected at to not be ourselves and we do the same to others. The older we get the more ingrained our facade gets so it can seem like an almost impossible task to crack through this tough shell. It isn’t easy and Jesus describes the deconstruction of the facade as the hardest thing you’ll ever do.

A blog I wrote 2014 was about this cracking of that shell: https://thetruthofitall.co.uk/category/the-three-selves/ . When I read it now I can actually see that I was in a lot of facade writing it. I had had some intellectual realisation, but not a soul-based emotional realisation and hence here I am still in facade most of the time… I am clear evidence that without emotionally feeling about my facade, why I have it and the sin in having it, nothing really changes.

I don’t think in 2014 I really understood the depth of my facade or my fears about letting it go; my addiction to it and its addictions. I am still learning, but I am now trying to pay more attention to it and this involves a lot of cringing; a lot saying to myself “Maxine, you’re in facade, what are afraid of feeling; what are your avoiding?” or not paying attention and staying in facade for whatever reason i.e.  I want something from my environment/ am willing to barter myself for this.  I thought it would help if I share what helps me and some information that really gives me no excuse for not knowing when I am in facade. I will put the links below this post, if you want to read or watch in more detail.

In 2014 Jesus and Mary ran their second assistance group which contained essential information for anyone wanting to know how to progress, including information on understanding the three parts of ourselves that currently exist: the real self (the undamaged self God created), the hurt self (created by your environment and yourself) and the facade self (created by your environment and yourself to avoid the other two selves). Jesus had talked about this material before, but these talks brought together previous information in a very clear and direct way. Part of the reason was many people had been listening to Divine Truth for years by then (it was 2 years for me at the time, but of course it’s 7 years for me now) and showing no progress, because they had not understood or more likely not wanted to know that they were in facade and why that is such a big problem. I recommend listening to these talks as many times as you need to.

But also on the website Jesus published an outline for each talk and I have printed off the “Understanding Self: Introduction” because it summaries why we are stagnant and don’t develop our real selves and gives a fairly comprehensive list of adjectives about each self and I use this list to help me identify when I am in facade.  For more detail, please refer to the links below this post.

But just to give you an idea, this is what Jesus says and it taken directly from his outline on www.divinetruth.com:

My real emotional self:

  • Is sensitive, aware, perceptive and insightful
  • Is expressive, animated, communicative, open and unrestrained
  • Is honest, truthful, sincere, frank, candid, blunt and transparent
  • Is adventurous, courageous, daring, bold, creative, brave and audacious
  • Is curious, inquisitive, questioning, probing, searching and enquiring
  • Is emotional, feeling and sensing
  • Can develop to become wise, intelligent, clever, gifted and logical
  • Can develop to become sensible, practical, responsible, accountable, dependable and rational
  • Can develop to become loving, caring, kind, gentle, considerate and compassionate

[Beautiful hey?]

My hurt emotional self:

  • Is pained, hurt, aggrieved, wounded, injured, upset, and distressed
  • Is timid, nervous, shy, fearful, hesitant, apprehensive, cautious and concerned
  • Is fragmented, disjointed, uneven, suppressed, dormant, undeveloped, concealed, embryonic
  • Is humiliated, shamed, embarrassed, disgraced, unfavoured, and self-conscious
  • Is rejected, discarded, unwanted, and unneeded by others
  • Is angry, rebellious, self-absorbed, self-centred, and lacks awareness of surroundings

Now wait for this one – it’s quite a list and when you start to feel your facade it’s going to feel pretty yucky and you can see why it’s not good. Do you recognise yourself?

My façade emotional self:

  • Loves addiction, compulsion, obsession, urges, cravings, fixation and mania
  • Loves bullying, force, harassment, oppression, repression, coercion and manipulation
  • Loves abuse, cruelty, nastiness, meanness, brutality, viciousness and unkindness
  • Loves resistance, conflict, confrontation, disagreement, quarrel and squabbling
  • Loves arrogance, condescension, superiority, conceit, disdain, pride and egotism
  • Is insensitive, unaware, lacks perception or insight
  • Is un-expressive or false in its expression, pretending and made up
  • Is unanimated or false in its animation, lethargic or forced vibrancy
  • Is closed, reserved, controlled, forced, guarded and untrusting
  • Is dishonest, untruthful, insincere, lacks frankness, opaque and is not candid
  • Is prying, interfering, snooping, nosy, meddling, intrusive, invasive and pushy
  • Is unemotional or falsely emotional, unfeeling, unwise, dumb, stupid, and illogical
  • Is fixed, immovable, predetermined and rigid
  • Is apathetic, lazy, disinterested, uninvolved, bored and unconcerned
  • Is unwise, imprudent, thoughtless, irrational, reckless, irresponsible and careless
  • Is selfish, self-absorbed, self-centred, narcissistic and vain

So there you go, it’s a great list and very helpful. Now don’t be, as I have done, hard on myself about it (that’s your facade and an addiction anyway) – just be honest and if you want to understand more see the links below. Hope it helps and thank you to Jesus and Mary for such great information. . I am a beginner in really starting to understand this so please refer to the experts, so to speak – those who have deconstructed much of their facade (walked the walk)  and know the benefits of doing so, including understanding in their hearts God’s truth on this subject.

Each link is either a document of the outline of a talk and/or the YouTube video of the talk itself. This is not a comprehensive list, please go to the divinetruth.com website under downloads for the complete series of talks in the assistance groups of 2014, which introduce the topic and 2016 where there is more wonderful information on the creation and deconstruction of the facade and development of the real self.

https://www.divinetruth.com/docts/2014/20140729-1400-1400-jesus-dt-agp-lintro–Understanding%20Self%20Introduction–en-outline.pdf

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VXaVvi0xXck&feature=youtu.be

https://www.divinetruth.com/docts/2014/20140730-1100-1100-jesus-dt-agp-lintro–Understanding%20Self%20Deconstructing%20the%20Facade%20Self–en-outline.pdf

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-qDtsGiikA&feature=youtu.be

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTjpad9xQGU&feature=youtu.be

https://www.divinetruth.com/docts/2014/20140731-1145-1145-marym-dt-agp-lintro–Introduction%20to%20Addictions–en-outline.pdf

https://www.divinetruth.com/docts/2016/20160604-1410-1410-jesus-dt-agp-ledmls–The%20Creation%20of%20My%20Facade–en-outline.pdf

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ynXrm3omg6Y&feature=youtu.be

Anger, Addiction, Suppression, Resistance and Denial: The Dark Night of the Soul.

dark and fire face

It has been a long time since I have written my blog. I have thought many times to write and then changed my mind, which relates to the comings and goings in my own soul: the feelings of overwhelm  – which I still don’t like and then dipping ( bit of an understatement) into resistance – preventing the flow and making words difficult. But I do have a desire to share so that it may help others just as other people words and experiences have helped me, so here I am.

I was completely blocking God and God’s truth out for a while, struggling with other issues in my life and stubbornly being self-reliant and following old patterns and addictions ( emotional and physical). But during the last couple of months my desire for change and to learn more has come back and I have been spending more time listening to videos and reading about God. What I have found really useful is journaling as soon as I wake. I scribble away about sleep state, dreams, things that that I felt the day before – just about anything, without restraint and I am learning things about myself all the time.

I love what I read about God and the universe we live in, most of the time, but sometimes the contrast between where I could be and where I am hurts and that is what I am going to write about.

To understand more of what I am about to talk about, it will really help you to listen to “How the Human Soul Functions” and “Emotions and Feelings” on the Divine Truth FAQ Youtube channel and on the Divine Truth channel, “Understanding your Emotional Self” from 2014. ( Also found on divinetruth.com)

I am going to list many of them and then explain further below: (please also see the glossary page for some short explanations of some of the vocabulary I use)

  1. I am an absolute Master of suppression, resistance, and denial.
  2. I am full of anger – mostly adult anger, related to my many, many addictions that I use to suppress, deny and resist more painful emotions such as fear, shame, grief.
  3. My anger is there every day ranging from mild annoyance to full blown rage. I do not allow it to be felt.
  4. I believe that controlling/denying/resisting my anger is a good thing, but God’s truth is if it is in me it is coming out into my environment, being projected at others. Denying it is the worse thing.
  5. God’s truth is my anger is very, very damaging to myself and everyone around me. It is hellish and whilst I have it in my soul I am in the Hells.
  6. I have not awakened to the sin (something out of harmony with love) of what holding onto my anger is doing to myself or others.
  7. I hold onto my anger as I feel in control and more powerful. I do not want to feel weak and vulnerable.
  8. Ironically, I am currently more able to be manipulated and controlled by spirits in my current condition. The feeling of power is a facade, but one that I like and I am willing to be in addiction with spirits to maintain it.
  9. My huge amount of anger and addictions is covering about a huge about of fear and terror that I don’t want to feel. I am very desensitised to most of my emotions, in fact.
  10. I am the creator of my own suppression, denial, resistance and substitution of emotions – though I was also taught how to this as a very young child, by my environment, but I have honed the skill!
  11. The original causes may be from my childhood, but I have added and added to them and in fact, whether I like this or not, I am the only one who can release all of my emotions. I am the only one who can allow the expression of my anger – allow it to flow.
  12. Expressing my anger must be done alone to be done in a loving way.
  13. The anger is part of my facade as are my addictions and it is will take an EXTREME use of my will to release and break down my facade. It will be the hardest thing I do, ever, I feel.
  14. Living in suppression and resistance and denial has not made me happy and has led to suffering and pain and will continue to do so if I continue to hold on, especially now I have heard God’s truth on this.
  15. But the suffering and pain is God telling me something is wrong – it is a message to call me to correct it, to try a new way: it is an act of love – something I struggle to understand emotionally as being shut down to emotions, also means I am shut down to love.
  16. God is offering me a solution in every moment, but I need to make use my free will in a loving way and allow myself to become sensitive emotionally, ( as God designed us to be), to develop a desire to love ( allowing myself to feel is loving), a desire to receive Gods love ( which will speed up and help the whole process), a desire for God’s truth and a desire to be humble to truth and love and feeling all my emotions.
  17. When I accept all that I just said in point 16 emotionally, my life will change dramatically.
  18. When I accept point 17 emotionally I will know this.

 

This is a really important point that Jesus (AJ ) mentions again and again. We cannot KNOW something until we feel it emotionally. Our soul, which governs everything in our life, is emotional – it learns and experiences emotionally or for many of us now – it’s not learning much because it’s do full of error-based emotions. I can vouch for this from my personal experience. I am an intelligent person. I pick up a number of things quite easily. My IQ is pretty good.  Even Divine Truth I can spout off the theories and things I have heard Jesus and Mary say pretty well. However, despite all the things I “know” intellectually my life remains quite small and restricted. How come an intelligent person like me can’t sort that out? With all the information I am holding in my brain I should be in a high-flying career possibly, in a good relationship maybe and out there in the world, doing more, even having a few adventures. But also, I have listened to the Divine Truth teaching for 6 years and yet only a few small changes have occurred and in fact I am still dodging the big stuff all the time.

From that, it is logical and obvious that I don’t really know it. I have just retained information. If I really knew that Divine Truth and God’s Love would change my life in wonderful ways wouldn’t I be doing it every minute of the day? I am on my third reading of the Robert James Lee books, where there is such incredible information on the how everything in this universe is based in Love and how much God is doing to call us home to know our true selves and to know Him, to be happy. I do cry  when I read some parts of it. It does touch me in some way, but if I really believed everything Aphraar tells us in that book, I would be living and breathing those truths every minute of every day. I am not. Therefore, something is stopping me from truly knowing and understanding it and it’s not my intellect. Also, I am very determined about something when I want to be. So I have a strong will, but it is questionable in how I am using it right now.

So if it’s not my intellect and not a weak will, as such, it has to be emotions. Over the years I have tried many ways to heal – Christianity, atheism, psychology, therapy, hypnotism, NLP and various other new age methods, yoga, meditation, chakra clearing and the list goes on. They helped somewhat for a short while, but inside lay this deep despair at times, a feeling of lack about myself, a hopelessness about love, confusion about life and much self doubt and poor decision making.

So it is and has to be emotions in me. I haven’t known the truth emotionally indicated by my life and how I feel. For instance, at work I have had a facade of confidence, capability, but many times I would go home and cry, criticise myself, feel crappy, eat a lot to comfort/suppress and also get mad at people for not helping or making me feel better ( addiction).

The world is currently in a state of avoiding and being terrified by emotion. The world is currently in a terrible state: wars, lies and deceit, secrecy, fear, poverty, children are being murdered by the millions. Our desensitisation is not working! Our hidden dark emotions of anger and fear rule our lives. It is so obvious really. We have created many things from our intelligence – space rockets, computers, medicines, but we can’t feed everyone, or provide shelter for all, or take care of the plants and animals that actually help us sustain life. Something is wrong and it is not our intellect.

So despite all my “efforts” at healing, I am now in the place of having to face the truth of the layers of what I feel is protection and safe, but actually, is just a pile of addictions and anger to avoid how I really feel; how  much fear and shame and sadness is still in my soul. I keep trying to skip the anger as I was taught it is not something that is not “ladylike” to express; I have to be a “good girl;” if I express I am damned to hell forever; I will be punished, denigrated, shamed and blamed; I am selfish and horrible; afraid of what expressing my anger will mean/where it will lead.  All these false belief systems that I live in and ignoring God’s truth that I am allowed to express my anger ( lovingly) and it is good for me to do that as it’s the top layer; it’s loving to myself and the world to let emotions flow.

Firstly, I am letting the people who taught me all that still rule my life and I am shutting out the one parent, who loves me unconditionally. My God is fear, a prison of my own making. But WE CAN ONLY CHANGE THE THINGS WE STOP DENYING and I guess I am moving out of the denial phase. I have been doing that very slowly for the last couple of years, but now I am facing up to the fact that i do have a big pile of unloving emotions in me and sitting on top of everything is my anger/addictions and a huge facade.

I need to and am beginning to want to swing the pendulum of my strong will across from suppression, denial, resistance, substitution and fear over to one of truth, love and humility. Even as I say that I can feel how difficult love is for me and I feel overwhelmed with the task ahead, but fifty years of destroying my life in many ways so what is another fifty sorting it out – though the more desire I develop for Love, Truth and humility the faster I will progress. But in perspective I will have a much longer time of good things that the fifty years of hell I may have been in.

I am curious and that helps me: What is it like to be an emotional being? Can I really feel that God exists and that She loves me? What would heaven be like? What is love like? What is it  like to be truthful and fear less? Who am I really without all this “mud” stuck to me? So many questions and curiosities stirred by discovering these teachings and witnessing first hand two people walking that walk.

So what will help me/us?

  1. Developing a sincere desire to Love and be loved, particularly from God.
  2. Developing a sincere desire to receiving God’s truth.
  3. Developing humility – the sincere desire to feel all my emotions all the time and to receiving truth.

These three things will include help me have a strong will to release my anger, my addiction and break down my facade. From then underlying emotions will be able to flow out more easily. My hurt child will be able to grieve, my fear will be able to be felt.

Please note  – in saying this I am saying what I have learnt from Jesus and Mary who DO know this because, unlike myself yet, they have done it – they are doing the experiment and they and their lives have and are changing. But intellectually, it makes some sense to me – having tried pretty much everything else!

In the new age world, the dark night of the soul refers to feeling painful emotions, suffering in some way. I now feel that it may be difficult to feel certain emotions, but that is not where the dark night of the soul is. The dark night of the soul is the denial, suppression and resistance we are in; the life of physical and emotions addictions we live in day in, day out, where we cling to our “comfort” and “security” , but are in fact living in dark prisons of our own making, thinking and feeling small; living lives far away from what God intended. We are living in a dark, grey world from our souls’ perspective and the only way to bring in the light is stop the denial.

I have so much more I would like to say, but it is a long blog and well done if you have gotten to the end. I will write a follow up. The Divine Truth teaching shakes us to the core, but goodness we need it. Looking truthfully at ourselves, at our world right now will change everything.  It’s not pretty, but it’s not permanent, but we need to take the first step.

WE CAN NOT CHANGE THE THINGS WE ARE DENYING AS THEY DON’T EXIST UNTIL WE SEE THEM.

@Maxine Bell

 

BADGER CULLING: HOW DO YOU FEEL?

badgers

This post is a bit different from my normal posts, but it is still about love. This time it is about my love for animals and specifically a protected species that is being mindlessly killed by the thousands here in the UK: Badgers. I have decided I want to stop the badger culling that is happening. To save them, but also to pay back something to the animal kingdom as I used to be a meat eater and I can now feel how awful that is and for me helping the badgers is a step to atone for that unloving action.

To give a bit of background, I became a vegetarian back in 2001, but didn’t do it very well and became malnourished and ate fish again for a about 2 years or so. I obviously still had some emotions about food and eating to work through. Since my son was born in 1994 I had gradually gone off different types of meat, the last thing being chicken. Bit by bit I suddenly saw and felt the “meat” as a living breathing animal. I couldn’t disassociate anymore and then eventually the same happened for fish. I have now been vegan since the end of 2015, though I was hardly eating much dairy by then. I did it for health reasons and then watched the film “Cowspiracy”  which not just talked about the animals, but also the impact on the environment of the meat and dairy industry, and that completed the transition.

Since I have become vegan I have over time found it harder to understand why people eat meat. I know it is not nutritionally necessary, but I guess there has been an emotional shift in me that now it seems very odd when I see people buying and eating meat and even at times, if I am honest, I am repulsed by it. I “see” the animals and I sometimes hear their cries.

Then lately, I have the feeling I want to atone for the sin of eating meat. This is not a judgement on those that do, but just how I feel within myself. The badger culling has upset me since I first heard about it and I signed a petition, but now I am wanting to do more if I can so I hope I can contribute some awareness to start with.

The reason for badger culling, so the government say, is to reduce the incidence of bovine TB, which has devastating effects on the farming industry and their families. (Of course if we didn’t eat meat or dairy this wouldn’t even be an issue as farming would be plant-based).

Here are the facts:  (source the Badger Action Network and Wildlife Trust)

  • This year 19,274 badgers were culled ( and this doesn’t include the number in West Somerset or West Gloucestershire)
  • Next year 33,841 are targeted
  • A scientific study was done between 1998 and 2006 where Lord Krebs concluded, ” badger culling can make no meaningful contribution to cattle TB control in Britain” and “Culling is not a viable policy option.”
  • The primary cause of the spreading of Bovine TB has been shown to be cattle to cattle.
  • In fact, Bovine TB exists in the countryside and has been found in everything from soil, earthworms, cats, sheep pigs and more.
  • Badgers were protected by the Protection of Badger Act in 1992 and the Convention on Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats because they are a crucial part of an ecosystem. When one badger is killed the number of foxes doubled.
  • The badger cull has no support from the British Veterinary Association, the public or any wildlife charities.
  • There is  no evidence that culling has changed the level of bovine TB. In fact prolonged culling has been shown to increase bovine TB levels because it affects badger behaviour and the location of badger setts.
  • Badger Culling is more expensive than vaccination. Between 2012-14 £16.8 million was spent on the culling of 2,476 badgers which works out at £6785 per badger. Vaccinations cost £293 per badger
  • Most scientists and wildlife experts believe that vaccination is more effective as it does not  disrupt badger behaviour.
  • More research also needs to be done on biosecurity to prevent cattle to cattle spreading of the disease.
  • Here is a short film by some leading wildlife experts: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JhojkHMyaJg

So it all seems very clear and we can take actions: sign petitions, join local groups and write to MPs and much of that has been done. In fact, there has been a huge public outcry about this so why isn’t it changing? Why are the government ignoring experts and its voters and continuing with this illogical and awful killing?

I believe it is the same reasons, people still eat meat. We have become hugely disassociated from our emotions about animals and nature in general. We look upon our survival as dependent on us and our actions. We don’t accept emotionally simple facts, such as without trees, we won’t have oxygen; without flies, we would have piles of bodily waste products sitting on the planet. We don’t FEEL how much we need nature and in fact because of our development how we are the custodians of this planet and all the creatures in it and that possibly this beautiful place is ours to enjoy without the need to destroy it or the any living being who lives here with us. We still have very arrogant and maybe have religious justifications for “lording it over” animals, thinking we have a right to their meat, to their reproduction. Therefore, we don’t feel all our fears that underlie this: our fears about our own survival, for instance.

In the video, one expert stated he understood the farmers angry emotions about the impact of bovine TB on their lives and that because of this they wanted someone to pay. How awful, that it is now the badgers that are paying for the fact that farmers feel helpless, don’t want to feel helpless and want something to make them feel better: so let’s kill badgers and despite the evidence to the contrary. To be a farmer, you must have to become emotionally detached from animals and their suffering to varying degrees, whether it is sending them for the slaughter; putting newborn calves in tiny pens the same day as ripping from their mothers; killing hundreds of thousands of male chicks or forcing cows to produce gallons of milk time and time again after forcibly inseminating them.

But none of us are innocent in this. We demand dairy products, we love our cheese, we want our steaks and we want someone else to provide it for us, to kill the animal for us, to take the baby calf away so that we can drink it’s milk. We want that. So despite the fact than many of us are up in arms about badger culling, and we want animals to be recognised as sentient beings we actually are hypocritical every time we put on our leather shoes, or cut into our Christmas turkey. We won’t look at our real emotions – the un-lovingness in each of us that allows these things to occur and asks another person, a farmer to kill on our behalf.

We can not change things we are lying about. We can only change things when we face the truth, emotionally, of what is  happening. If you really want to stop this awful culling, you can take some peaceful actions, but you can also ask yourself about how you really feel about animals. Watch things that will trigger emotions, such films as “Earthlings,” and don’t cover your eyes or press pause. Face the truth, feel it. If thinking was the answer all the scientific evidence would have changed things. It hasn’t. For some reason the culling is continuing so this means we are not recognising something we need to.

To not eat meat again I have had an emotional shift, over time that deepens over time. There are many who become vegan for lots of reasons and it is currently quite fashionable, but if the shift isn’t in your heart you will feel “tempted” to eat meat again, you will find it difficult or you will become anaemic because of your fears around plant-based diets.

We need to do the same for all our treatment of animals. Stop disconnecting, face the truth and chose Love. We ignore what is staring us in the face because it is not convenient, it challenges our “comfortable” lives and addictions. Ironically, that is the  point, to change everything, we have to challenge and question all the ways we are doing things and seek the loving solution and the real truth. We will make mistakes, but the seeking of the truth is a very good first step. It is the that step which created this blog in the first place: an experiment, a searching and seeking for change.

I want to save the badgers. I want to learn what love is. But other times I am still very angry, in pain, wanting addictions and presenting a face to the world that isn’t me. That is the truth: a battle of my soul, a seeking and searching, making mistake after mistake and getting a few things right. But I would rather try than do nothing. As Roosevelt said:

“The best thing to do is the right thing. The next best thing to do is the wrong thing. The worst thing to do is nothing.”

Prayers for the badgers and all the beautiful creatures that share this world with me.

@2017 Maxine Bell

 

 

 

 

Eating Meat Is Destroying Our Planet

Discoveries Along The Way

Hi my name is Pete Lytton-Hitchins. I was born a country boy and ever since I can remember all I wanted to do was be a sheep and cattle farmer. I remember the first time I killed a kangaroo, the first time I fell off a horse and I used to think all I would ever do was be a sheep and cattle farmer.

With the help of my family over a period of 20 years we own and killed over 100,000 sheep and 10,000 head of cattle.

In 2015 we sold the farm and stopped making money from meat farming. I say the words “meat farming” because when we farm animals we are in the business of producing kilograms of meat for human consumption.

I gave up what I thought was my life long passion. Once I released that eating meat and killing animals was wrong I no longer…

View original post 1,301 more words

SOMETHING’S GOTTA GIVE

goldfish

“You use your strength to separate yourself from everyone, but it’s thrilling when your defences are down.”

This is a line said by Harry (Jack Nicholson) to Erica (Diane Keaton) in the film “Something’s gotta give.” I am not writing a film review, but I watched it because having never heard of it before it came into my view twice in 12 hours   – firstly, it was mentioned at dinner with friends and then the next day I wondered into a charity shop so see if I could find a film to watch and there it was standing out among the DVD’s on display. I felt I was being guided to watch it and so I bought it.

It came under the guise of a romantic comedy, about two people, who in their own way had shut down the idea of the possibility of a deep love and connection, both for different reasons. They were thrown into the path of each other and despite a tricky start they fell quickly and deeply in love. However, fear came up and one of them pulls back. I won’t say too much in case you want to watch it. It is funny and touching and I waited to see what it had to offer me.

On one hand it is obvious, I am terrified of giving myself to love and I struggle to receive love. I am very suspicious of someone saying they love me, because love has meant departure, manipulation, feeling used, disappointment, confusion and pain. In truth none of that IS love. I know this intellectually and I have a small feeling deep down there is something much more special that is truly love, but my emotional wounds, my parent’s/ environment version of love, like many of us, was wrong, is wrong and now I am attempting to understand what love is, but I am scared. Scared by previous experiences and my emotional knowledge of love. Yet to keep saying this is also an excuse and an addiction and re-educating myself about love is within my own power and choice.

Then on the other hand is this issue of strength. When this line was said it struck me – it was me. I use my “strength” to separate myself from everyone. I have noticed that I call my mother the bounce back queen. Despite all her own lack of self love, the damage she has done to herself and to others, how she has treated her body, she still survives, she still keeps going. She has a chronic illness- temporal arthritis which requires horrible medication, including lots of steroids. Because of this her bones are fragile and the smallest fall she breaks a bone. This year she fell and smashed 6 ribs, had a metal plate put in to fix them. She was home within 3 days. Last week, she discovered she had 2 fractures in her neck, that had gone undetected for a week and she still got on a plane to Spain for a week. Many will read this and think, wow she is strong. But is it being strong or is it being self-reliant and avoiding her vulnerability?

Last week at work, someone asked me some questions about myself, which I answered honestly and their comment was, “you are one strong lady.” It was said in a way, that I should be proud of myself, proud of my strength. It has been said to me before a number of times. But right now I don’t want to be strong. What does it really mean? I am addicted to it. I am addicted to “being strong:” to surviving through many things, to getting back up, to pushing on, to keep going. I am addicted it, but I am sick of it because it is as Harry says my strength has become the space I use to stay separate, to avoid relationships, to avoid love, and to avoid feeling. It also involves appalling self care at times because I ignore so much of my pain.

I can feel the damage it is doing to me, emotionally, spiritually and physically. I have pain in some part of my body daily and I don’t take analgesia. I haven’t for long time and I used to consider myself to have a high pain threshold. I do, but this is not a good thing, this is shut down of feelings. And there are many of you out there who do the same thing.

There is no judgement is this because we live in society, that celebrates this kind of strength, this way of coping. I am English and we have had a long tradition of stoicism, that “stiff upper lip” nonsense: “chin up!” In other words, pretend it doesn’t hurt, don’t be emotional, just grin and bear it. The words that aren’t said here are “don’t be emotional because that will trigger all my emotions which will make me and everyone else around me upset and we don’t want to be upset because we don’t want to feel our emotions either. Avoidance, facade and all of us meeting each other’s emotional addictions.

What I feel now, is that this is incredibly sad. It is incredibly sad that we are so locked up, that I am, because when I lock up my negative emotions I also lock up my positive ones. So I can not experience my joy and happiness as I should. It is the way our soul works – suppress one emotion and we suppress another and it builds up to the state of numbness and de-tunement many of us live in.

I am not happy being like this and I am sick of being “strong.” It means I am overly self-reliant and I don’t let others in and I don’t let them help me. Then I feel alone and then I feel upset and angry that no on will care for me: a vicious cycle. Compassionately, I have reasons why I became “strong:” it was a survival technique and in fact I was taught to be this way, to support my mother and to care for my brothers and I certainly wasn’t encouraged, like many, to feel or acknowledge my own needs. I may be “strong” to the world as it currently is, but the truth is I am weak in knowing myself, and allowing myself the real strength and courage to feel all of my emotions.

There is small part of me that wants to be vulnerable and the times I have allowed that have been the most amazing times and I have felt almost beautiful. After the crying, we often feel more peaceful, especially when it is a causal emotion. I long for that peace and yet I must have a greater desire not to feel at the moment, to hold on and if I really want to progress more quickly something’s gotta give.

Being vulnerable is something I don’t emotionally understand properly. I feel inside it is weakness, as many do. Most of freak out when too much emotion hits the room. We can cope with a bit, but if it goes on too long, either with ourselves or others we judge it, we get fidgity, distract ourselves, talk ourselves out of it, eat ourselves out of it, drink ourselves out it; anything to lessen the “drama” of a roomful of emotions.

But emotions are E – motions. They are meant to move in and out, like a river. Often, instead , they sit in us like a rock and despite on some level we feel the weight of stuck emotions we have become experts in pretending they are not there. It is similar to being very overweight, we keep buying bigger clothes, bigger chairs and bed, put elastic in our belts so we don’t have feel too uncomfortable and aware of that extra flesh.

Being vulnerable would be to put on those trousers we can’t fit into, feel how uncomfortable they are now, walk out in them, feel exposed and allow all the feelings of that to come. So for me this acts as a key to accessing my vulnerability – getting out my comfort zone.

In November I did a four day workshop called Solo Autobiographical theatre. I had 4 days of being outside my comfort and it was transforming in the sense that I faced fears, didn’t live in them, felt emotions, felt exposed and at the end felt empowered discovering bits of myself I hadn’t before. So now I am signed up for 2 terms of this and I keep looking for ways to get out of my comfort zone. Actually, I think I will call it my addiction zone, because I would say most, if not all, of my so-called comfort zone is full of emotional and physical addictions. It is pretend safe zone, but truly an avoidance zone and the truth is, the reality is this addiction zone may give me some sense of gratification, but it has not brought me real happiness, love or joy. So, on an experimental basis I would say that experiment has failed and it is time for  new experiment. No real love in our life is no real life at all: it is living life in the greyscale, instead of vibrant colour.

I have so much to learn about vulnerability and blocks to work through to allow it more in myself. Then I feel, I will also learn more about being strong in the true sense, strong enough, courageous enough to feel, to feel my emotions, to feel my Self and awaken all my senses, and start waking up to truly living again. It is in there, because God made us that way. She didn’t create robots after all, she created living, breathing, dancing, singing, creating, thinking and most of all, uniquely of all, emotional beings: all that makes us human.

The ability, the desire to feel all of our emotions all of the time is humility. Humility allows vulnerability to be present and allows us to move those negative emotions out of us and let in the new, more joyful ones in. Our current definition of strong for me is rigidity and denial: a painful holding on: the inhale. Vulnerability is softening, allowing, surrender: the doorway to more truth, joy and freedom: the exhale. Sighing…

“You’ve got to learn how to fall, before you can learn how to fly.” (from the film).

@Maxine Bell 2017

THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT…ROBBY

me and robby edit 2

 

This is a topic I have been thinking and feeling about for a few weeks and I had a big fear about writing it and being “wrong” and there is still some fear there, but in the process of feeling about the topic of Robby, so to speak, I have come to some new awareness. Robby and I are currently apart. We have not lived together for over a year now. During that year we been apart, and then drifted back together, tried to make a go of it, but it has not worked.  It has been very confusing, sad, scary and at times frustrating. By October, Robby had had enough of the to-ing and fro-ing – and over the next few weeks it became apparent that we were not resolving anything and going round in circles, nothing was clear except that and so we are now just friends. However, for me, in my own pondering and feeling about all this, no matter what seems to happen, and unlike other relationships I have been in, there is something about Robby that I cannot shake off. When we are apart, I never feel quite separate from him …there is a pull in my heart in his direction that in many ways makes no sense when I look at what our relationship has been so far. So what is this strange and curious journey we have been on and in some ways are still on?

In the ‘About Me’ section of my blog I talk a little about my relationship with Robby and the feeling that we may be soulmates, but also that we don’t know that because we both have a large amount of emotional injuries that impacted our relationship and in fact any relationship we may try to have still. We have been on a roller coaster over the last 4 years a bit of good, but a fair bit of bad and ugly too.   Robby has given me permission to talk openly about our relationship and he has a strong belief in the power of my writing to help others and discover my true self along the way.

The issue of soulmates, sexuality and gender wounds is a massive one for all of us and it impacts our world greatly. Jesus and Mary teach about soulmates, but they have also experienced their journey together and so talk very much from personal experience. I will give a brief explanation of soulmates, as taught by Jesus and Mary, before talking more about Robby and I. I highly recommend listening to the Soulmate Relationship talks from 2010 on the Divine Truth website (or go to the Divine Truth YouTube channel and search under soul mate) for a fuller understanding of what I write. I also found the talks on Sex and Sexuality very helpful. There are also shorter talks on Partnerships on the Divine Truth FAQ channel.

Jesus teaches that God created billions of souls (her children), who before they incarnate on earth are not conscious of themselves as individuals and it is the incarnation process that allows us to discover our individuation. Each soul has a unique personality and quality that is a gift to our life. When the time is right to incarnate a soul is drawn to a parent in a law of attraction for the parents so that they can progress in love: the child reflecting back unhealed emotions, (that is the current situation in our state of error). Before it incarnates a soul splits in half and one half incarnates first to one set of parents. The second half incarnates sometime after, anytime from a short time up to about 20 years after.

God, our parent, has both male and female qualities. Each whole soul can have a mixture of male and female qualities to a varying degree. Most souls are fairly even so that one half will be born into a male body and one half into a female body (heterosexual). Some complete souls will be predominantly male and will split into two males bodies (homosexual) and some will be predominantly female and will split into two female bodies (lesbian).

Our soul represents the true us, containing such things as our personality, emotions, memories, intentions, passions and desires. Incarnation is the time we individualise and learn about love. When we incarnate we gain two bodies: a physical body and a spirit body that exist at the same time and are encompassed by our half of the soul. Currently, when we “die” our physical body dies, but we continue to live in our spirit body and we continue to live our lives as we have, making choices, experiencing and living. Spirit world contains many spheres, from the lowest to the celestials. We move up the spheres by progressing in love: some through the natural love path, reaching the sixth sphere – the highest sphere attainable through that path. Others choose the Divine Love Path and can pass into the celestial spheres, of which, there are currently 36, but development there is infinite so there may be more in the future.

During our life on earth we can all meet and be with our soulmate. However, because our current soul condition on the earth is nearly all equivalent to the first sphere because we have so many emotional injuries we may never meet our soulmate whilst on earth, or we do and don’t recognise them and/or reject them or sometimes we could be married to them and not know they are our soulmate and in fact still have a very co-dependent addictive relationship: so we are in a relationship with them, but it is a damaging one, on a soul level and is not really a soulmate relationship. As I understand it, being in a soulmate relationship requires the main qualities needed on the Divine Love Path (also called The Way of God’s Love): truth, love and humility from God’s perspective as well as desire to progress in love from each half of the soul. In the end, if one half of a soul progresses to a high state of love the other half will automatically be drawn to them.

Currently, on earth, we are not taught about soulmates or it is told incorrectly as it was to me through the Twin Flame teachings, so we grow up not even aware we have one soulmate, one perfectly made mate, just for us: one of God’s gifts to us. Our soulmate will have similar personality traits and in their progression the same main desires and passions. If the soulmate halves choose the Divine Love Path and get beyond the 7th sphere they can continue to progress to the 36th sphere and join again in Soul Union. This is what Mary and Jesus have done and is the only state that allowed them to choose to reincarnate. I don’t think words can convey the state of bliss that must be and it is not something I feel qualified to comment on. The Robert James Lee books and the Padgett messages give some idea of what it is like in the celestial spheres as well as the power of the soulmate relationship. (See the ‘Extra’ section on my website).

soulmate

So where am I? I can only give the perspective from my current viewpoint, but I do feel that all the information given by Jesus and Mary is correct. It just makes sense to me. It is clear and loving. God created us to innately seek two things: God and our soulmate so we all have this ember burning in us somewhere and many of us have memories of feeling this longing, for the One. These days it is often decorated in Hollywood and Mills & Boon ideas of romance: we meet, we know, we seek, we find and once we really decide then that’s it – happiness with little or no problems: remember that final screen kiss which silently promises all?  But we all know from experience it is not that simple and in fact there are more songs and more movies about the loss of relationship than about successful true love. I have come to the truth that with my experience of “love” from my environment as a child, I do not know much, if anything, about real love: love that is unconditionally without demands or expectations, that just exists and lives regardless. We believe we have it for our children, but as a parent, I do not always unconditionally love my son. When I am tired, angry, afraid I do not love him regardless. I do not have that level of development. I want to, but I do not and I know I have little, if any memory, so far of being unconditionally loved as a child, so what do I know of it?

I decided it is better to start from the truth I know so little and try to discover the truth, because the reason I currently struggle to love or to receive love is because the “love “ I have experienced has been very conditional. This is true for many of us, including Robby. He does not remember being loved at all. His father was strict and emotionally distant and his mother was so wrapped up in her own woes and anger at men she could not love as a mother should. They provided a secure physical home and food and clothes, but no affection, only rules and regulations and harshness.

My mother’s emotional injuries mean that she was such a wounded child she could not give us love, but in fact demanded through projections that we love her, make her feel better and provide her with things that no child should have to. As the eldest, I particularly felt this: my mother’s neediness and instability. I felt like her emotional husband and carer/parent.  My father left when I was about 4 or 5 and I had two stepfathers all of whom I felt rejected by in various ways. There was domestic violence, alcoholism and day to day drama. Where were lessons in love in any of this?

During my adult life I had relationships of course. The first serious one was just like my father: irresponsible, chauvinistic and at times frightening. After that I has boyfriend the complete opposite: passive, but still wanting looking after and I did it because I had looked after my mother and I knew nothing else. I had a few brief affairs that were painful and finally a more caring relationship, but we were more friends than lovers. Following this was a “big connection” that was just a highly addictive and damaging relationship. (Not coincidental during my interest in New Age ideas that encourage and feed this “I just felt this amazing connection” stuff). By the time Robby had come into my life I really did not want a relationship. In fact I told God I would wait as many years as it needed until I found my soulmate, as that was the only one I wanted. I had the desire, but it was a desire, coming from pain and disappointment and fear of more pain and disappointment, though I don’t think I knew that at the time.

I was working as a healer and doing readings in Glastonbury when Robby and I met. I had just come across Divine Truth, but was still uncertain and still trying to understand why the “big connection” had come crashing round my ears and was still working as healer/ card reader. Robby came thundering into my little room asking for a reading and I remember this feeling of feeling slightly knocked sideways by his presence. I composed myself enough to do a reading and found him to be unusually honest about himself. For him, he had a relationship at the time that was coming to an end, and he had had a feeling, and told her so, that his soulmate was nearby, without having a clue what he was saying.  But over the next few weeks, he used to pop in to say hi and we became friends.

During that summer we bumped into each other sometimes and one day he came on a trip with a Dutch friend down to Tintagel. Robby is Flemish so they could chat in Dutch. We had a great day with her and my son and I was touched by Robby’s playfulness. I ran into the sea and Robby joined me and I remember this point when he came towards me, didn’t touch me, but I felt something. Only I was aware of it, but it frightened me and I pushed it aside. There had been other times before that when he would text me, intuitively knowing when something was up and when I saw him, he began to disturb my equilibrium, which I kept trying to ignore and I still like his company.

Then one day I had been to see a friend at the Ashram and afterwards I had a strong urge to go to the orchard behind Glastonbury Tor. All the way there, I kept hearing Robby’s name, “Robby, Robby, Robby,” again and again. Unbeknownst to me he was sitting in that orchard telling God he was ready for his soulmate. A few minutes later I suddenly appeared. He didn’t tell me at that time about his prayer, but we sat together. I did not feel relaxed, (my equilibrium blown again) and he touched my shoulders at one point and it made me really nervous. Nothing was said between us, but I could not shake the feeling that something was going on.

As friends, we had made a deal of honesty right from the start, so after a couple of days of feeling this, I decided I needed to be honest and confront what I felt was happening. I knocked on the door of the caravan where he was staying and asked him if he felt something was happening. He honestly said he didn’t know. However, something did change and we arranged to meet for a coffee the next day before I drove off to a friend’s wedding for a few days. By that time, Robby was often sensing me and he knew before I arrived back a few days later that I was about to appear and I did. This sort of thing continues until today.

For two weeks we had a wonderful time and then he lost his accommodation. Without a doubt I suggested he move in. Not normally what I do, but it felt right. We were big into “signs “ then and numerology and we took the he “sign” of a rainbow and the number 2222 appearing, as well as a love song on the radio as signs this was the right thing. Robby moved in and I think we had another couple weeks of a honeymoon period and then the shit started to hit the fan, so to speak.

Robby’s anger and the issues from his previous relationship with an alcoholic, my sexual issues from my previous relationship – both related to deeper causal emotions. Lots of things got triggered. We made attempts to understand, feel it, but we weren’t very good at the feeling part – still aren’t. We were both heavily suppressed as children and so allowing too much emotion terrifies us. Over time we settled into a pattern, which actually became a heavily co-dependent relationship. So regardless of being soulmates, or not, we not really loving each other. Co-dependence is a bartering system and is never loving and in fact degrades our soul. If we are soulmates, that of course, impacts our whole soul.

One of our big co-dependent emotions was Robby wanted to be rescued and I was addicted to rescuing. Robby’s desire to be rescued created neediness in him, and was part of low self worth and not feeling loved. It meant he often projected a lot of fear.  My rescuing was something I have been doing since a child to my own detriment, but I would say in later years has also become part of my horrible control addiction. For me, control feels like security, but it is an unloving and ugly addiction, creating a lot of angry projections.

As you can imagine, this is not the making of an open and passionate relationship. We also, like most, have many gender wounds: layers of anger and hurt. There was and still is so much “Stuff” in the way it is a miracle we are still even friends. But we are and when we decided to try and break that co-dependence things improved individually. Robby learnt to stand on his own two feet more and I felt less drained and demanded of. We have been at least trying to feel what is really loving in some areas.

The other thing we do trigger some deep emotions in each other. For instance, I trigger a lot of Robby’s injuries about his mother. He struggles to see me emotional and I have let him shut me down many times (something I am also used to letting happen and choose to). His mother was constantly sad and crying. He triggers lots of things in me: anger at men, hurt over being used for what I can give rather than whom I am and many things. These triggers are a gift if we have humility – the willingness to feel all of our emotions, but I have not been good at that, though I am getting better in some areas.

But all I know is right now, I look at Robby and I have such compassion for his injuries. I see and feel his struggles – sometimes more than I feel my own. I see both of us blundering along and have compassion and understanding that right now to be intimate is almost impossible until we heal more, but mostly until we have a real desire to be humble in relationships, a real desire for complete truth and a real desire to learn about love, to love and be loved. John Bradshaw, in his book, Homecoming, talks about when we have unmet needs as a child, when we are not validated and accepted and loved for who we truly are, we lose our authentic self, we create a facade and become what our parents and others want us to be. We do it to survive as a child and by the time we are adults we forget and continue with our facade, which grows ever stronger as we continue to live in our hurt. So how can we be intimate, be our true selves with someone when we don’t have a clue who that is. He says it is impossible to be intimate if we have no sense of self. That makes sense in my life and my relationships. Neither Robby nor I have much sense of self.

For me, the other big emotion is abandonment. When Robby recently said he felt open to a relationship with someone else so that he could experience something more loving, I felt numb. I am disassociated, but when I let some feeling come, inside I felt “Well I expect it, they all leave; I will never be the one to be the one that wows them – I am just not enough. I don’t blame them, I am just not lovable. No one will love me forever and I am not surprised.”  My wounded child is so hurt she believes it, I believe – emotionally. That is the grief that I am afraid off – it seems so overwhelming still. But there it is.

Normally, through all the difficulties I would have totally given up and not been too bothered about seeing that partner again. But with Robby it is different. The truth is I have some big emotions, a huge amount of fear that is even preventing any desire for a relationship – until I think about Robby. I don’t feel I want to go back to what we had – there was much wrong in how we were doing things. And sometimes, I look at other men, and I find them attractive and I know Robby has felt the same with women. Yet now even, when I do, I often think, “oh but that’s not Robby.” I know I have a ton of stuff to heal and a lot to learn about being loving in a relationship and still a lot of anger, fear and sadness about men to release. That will remain as such, until it doesn’t, but if I try to truly imagine being with someone else, I can’t. I also, don’t know how it could work with Robby, but I can’t break this feeling that he is somehow part of me.

Only time and my willingness to heal my emotions will reveal the truth of him being my soulmate or not, but in the meantime here is the punch line….

Quite separately, Robby got offered a new job and took it. I applied for a new job and took it. It turns out we are now working for the SAME team and work together every day! It is proving hard to get rid of each other… lol!

So watch this space….

THERE IS ALWAYS A GIFT OF LOVE

gift-box

This summer has been extremely busy for me. I have been working and selling and packing up my bits to move to a smaller – and more importantly cheaper place to live. But mostly, I have had the task of helping my son set up his new life following his graduation from college where he achieved an NVQ in Hospitality as well as a number of other qualifications and certificates. He has worked hard for three years at the most progressive college in the UK, as far as I can see: Foxes Academy.

I drove round hundreds of miles to check out different colleges, but nothing stood out like Foxes and when we visited I got that feeling right in my gut that lets me know: this is it! This is the place! (Or the person or the thing to do) When it comes to my gut feelings about Ben it has always worked out.  I have fought many a professional, found my voice on behalf of him many, many times and followed my gut, listened to my heart, had faith and quietened the fears created by professional opinion and “realism.”

I have spoken up on his behalf much better than I have for myself. I have discovered a strong assertiveness and determination with regards to helping him create a meaningful and happy life more than I have for myself.  On reflection, this is an error, as in God’s eyes I am no less important than Ben; in God’s eye’s I am equally loved and equally have the right to a happy and meaningful life. Intellectually I get that; emotionally I have yet to. But that will come – when the error is released.

In the meantime, Ben has not had the ability to speak up as he would have needed to or access to the right information or understanding to fight for his own needs because Ben has Down’s syndrome.  He has had to grow and learn and experience in a body and brain messed up by an extra chromosome – well that is the physical cause.  The emotional and soul based cause is multi-generational, including myself and his father: error based emotions eventually impacting the physical world so much as to “disable” a potential healthy human body, which in turn impacts the soul. Of course we have the potential to help our children to heal by correcting the emotional error and false beliefs in ourselves.

However, I did want to talk too much about Ben’s dis-ability, but rather his capability. I am not trying to brush over the struggles and pains of having a disability or of being a parent, but this summer, I have just felt the beauty in Ben, the silver lining, the way God uses every situation to Love –  and I wanted to share it. I may have been Ben’s voice many times; I may have drudged my way through a ton of paperwork, phone calls and meetings to get basic rights for him whilst ignoring the doctor’s so-called predictions of what he wouldn’t be able to do, but in the end it has been Ben who has done it.

The truth is Ben has proven them wrong many times: crashing through their thinly disguised pessimism. The truth is Ben has a soul based knowing at times uninhibited by fears of looking silly or sounding ridiculous. The truth is he like many people with learning disabilities, smash through our complicated thinking with a simple, heart-felt answer to the big questions about life and love. The truth is I may have helped Ben at times, but he has helped me and others in deeper, more meaningful ways ten-fold over.

What I find amazing is that even though it is human error and arrogance that has caused these problems, a gift has been created for us and in this gift is another demonstration of Love – the love of God: pure, simple and powerful.  This is what I want to demonstrate today.

For my son it is not an easy at times: he is frustrated he cannot speak clearly and be understood easily. He has limits on his intelligence that mean he cannot just go out in the world independently – he has to rely on the help of others. His dreams are restricted compared to others of the same age.  For instant, he cannot just hop on a plane to Japan if he wishes; he cannot go to the bank and sort out a mortgage.

In our materialistic, economy-based Western world he is unlikely to be seen as a success because he is unable to earn lots of money to plough back into the money market, or become a celebrity, or get a degree in Astro-physics and design a rocket to Mars. We have encountered people who ask what a person like Ben can contribute to society. Are they just not a drain on the economy? (This included a cardiologist we once met in a famous London hospital!).

There are two reasons this is both arrogant and ignorant. Firstly, Ben did not choose this. He did not choose to be born in this body; he did not choose to have a learning disability or a heart defect or poor eyesight or poor speech.  It is not his fault. Ben has to try to survive against the odds in many ways and has no choice, but to need help. He is part of the most vulnerable in society – not by choice, not by harming himself or others, but just by being born as he is.

Secondly, not realising what Ben and people like contribute is to really lose touch with what being human is or created to be.  To value only the material, the physical, the monetary is empty: a house built on sand.  Ben demonstrates every day his humanity, his love, his openness, his free spirit. He is as capable of being inhibited by external forces; including me of course as any person is, but mostly, I have tried to allow him to just be him: loving, cheeky, fun, kind and brave.

Ben demonstrates to me how to let love flow through you, he reminded me how to be silly again. He taught me spontaneity, living in the moment, how to be free in that moment. I let go a bit with him. I happily would sing out loud on my way down and around the shops with him in his buggy. We would make up songs and rhymes to teach him colours, numbers, shapes, animals. I sang “Chitty, chitty, bang, bang” for hours and hours.

He gave me a chance to love freely. My heart skipped a beat to watch him sleep, to wonder at this miracle of life that lay before me. When he was born, it was traumatic – discovering he had Down’s syndrome. It was traumatic that first year before the holes in his heart were repaired.  But I always loved him from the womb all the way through. My heart ached, not knowing what he or we were going to go through, but I knew he was innocent and he needed care. I was a single parent, for most of the first ten years. It was tough at times: I didn’t know what I was doing. I didn’t know how to love myself, so loving someone else wasn’t always possible.

I would struggle, but then the magic would happen. A trip to the supermarket became a dance down the aisles or me running about picking up clothes he was trying to remove. Nothing was “normal” and yet it felt more alive than normal. He walked three years earlier than they predicted: he was out of nappies three years earlier than they predicted. He loved to dance and sing. We had our own secret sign for music. He walked further than they said he would. He was incredibly fit following his surgery; he never got fat and he never had mucus and the hearing loss they predicted.

He was and is a near- fearless climber, loves to free-run, break dance and can drum for hours.  He learns the drums by listening to music over and over, repeating it many times until he knows it. He can recognise a song from the first two notes. He is a romantic and loves feeling “in love.”  He wants to marry one day. He is a stronger and braver swimmer than I and a good athlete.  He is incredibly perceptive about people and his reaction to someone says a lot.

Music, sports and food are his loves. When he eats he does not talk and will not talk with you. Instead, he sits and tastes passionately every mouthful. If he goes out for the day, the first thing he will tell you is what he had to eat.

At college he was challenged to go beyond any previous pre-conceptions of what an adult with a learning disability can do.  For years, post 16/18 education has been much the same old thing: life skills, gardening, craft and animal care, possibly a bit of catering. There was no particular goal except to teach some life skills and give them something to do for 3-5 years. Foxes have a different view: they are getting them ready to have a life – to live as independently as possible, to find meaningful work and interests and relationships, including love and sex relationships. Foxes are all about outcomes.

Since he left for college 3 years ago, I went on quite a journey within myself: a grieving and a lot of facing some harsh truths about my parenting.  I tried to be the parent I didn’t receive myself, but not having a clue I have made many mistakes.   When he left for college I spent a day sorting through the 5 boxes of paperwork from his years in education and the health system. It took over 3 hours to burn it and I cried over most of the papers I read through. I told myself I was letting go, but it took a bit longer than that and in truth, is ongoing.

The first two terms Ben did well, settled in, enjoyed his work and social life, but he also had some problems with a girlfriend who was controlling and bossy and was easily influenced by others. He came home for the holidays and we had some sticky moments. It took a while for the penny to drop, but I started to see that I was micro-managing too much – in fact trying to control his choices, as well as project demands at him.  At times he was aggressive with me and/or himself.  I was doing too much for him and expecting him to fulfil emotional “holes” I needed to fill myself. I started to see I was harming him and what I was calling love wasn’t.

Over the next few months I focused on “un-hooking”, watching out for my addictions with him and try to own the feelings and fears. It wasn’t all perfect, but goodness a change happened in him. At college, the penny dropped that he was there for himself, for his own aspirations and dreams. He started to do much better and cope much better with the challenges that came. Last year he was second outstanding learner and he has come out more mature, more confident and capable. He is bold and decisive and chose a new life, living with a friend, away from me, with support workers to help him. He was fully involved in interviewing and choosing his support workers and we are currently settling him into his new life.

I still have to watch myself, to step back. I encourage Ben to tell me when I am being to bossy or interfering, when he wants me to not be around or not to help. We are really working on a more honest relationship and he is speaking up more clearly and assertively. His courage is incredible and I am honoured to see this young man grow. He has such character, such a sense of fun and incredible love in him. He also shows a perception about life and talks about wanting to teach others how to have an open heart.

I feel stiff next to him. I can feel the walls around my heart built up from my injuries – from my childhood and what has happened since.  Yet I have this son – well God’s son, this soul in my guardianship demonstrating to me that opening is the way forward. He is lighter and freer than I and I long to feel that.

As parents of children with disabilities, the trauma of discovering your child is not quite what you thought, what you may have been through with them – through illness, or schools or other care needs creates a strong protectiveness.  We can feel them so vulnerable that our fears and unshed tears drive our actions, which we may think of as love, but isn’t always, especially as emerging adults. We can feel an internal pressure to make them feel okay, to feel better because we don’t want to feel vulnerable about them ourselves – somewhere inside we may know unconsciously we have some responsibility for what has happened. Whatever our feelings, and for their sakes, we need to own our emotions – our fears, our grief, our anger, feeling overwhelmed, exhausted –  we need to be brave and honest and unselfish.  Like any adult, they need room to breathe, to explore and to experiment. They need room to make mistakes and learn how to cope with that and to learn to live in a world they probably don’t really get, but one they can benefit from given the right help balanced with the right freedom to choose and live.

We must not patronise them, they are great teachers:

Ben’s bravery shows me I need to be braver.

Ben’s openness shows me the freedom in breaking down those walls around my heart.

Ben’s spontaneity and joy is there for my inner child to awaken again.

Ben’s pleasure in simple, everyday things demonstrates an unspoken gratitude and acceptance.

Ben is happy in his own skin, happy to say he is handsome, he is a dude, and he is a good dancer. He is not obsessed in judging his body as I have mine. He is just “this is me and this is okay.”

For Ben, life is now, in this moment – whether it is eating something delicious, doing a cartwheel, drumming to Muse, or singing along to Lazy Town. He is not wasting energy mentally fretting over yesterday or tomorrow. The only real time for him is now and therefore he gains more from the moment than I do.

Ben has compassion. He is not happy to see a man sleeping in a doorway, or a child screaming or a dog yelping. He “feels it in his heart” that something is not okay and he wants to change it – with Love and kindness.

Because of all this, Ben is closer to God than I at the moment. These qualities he demonstrates are qualities and attributes of God.  There is the gift: God appears in many ways, through many people and the way they live their lives. Even in what can seem a tragedy to many, God finds ways to express and demonstrate Love, to help us see where we can improve, where we can be more honest and reflective, to create change.

I don’t believe we have to have a world with people with Down’s syndrome or other disabilities to demonstrate all these qualities or to bring out these qualities in ourselves. This is unloving as having a disability is not easy and I have seen grief and confusion in Ben at being “different,” but until we learn we have a choice in all these things, until we turn to God more and our own spirituality and soul, we can be good guardians to these brothers and sisters, whose worth is equal to our own. They often help us open our heart, have more compassion and understanding.

They can give us a taste of our Father, a doorway to heaven, by their own demonstration of love, fun and kindness, but also by what they bring out in us: patience, tolerance, humour, love, compassion and kindness.

In many ways, Ben is a man and in many ways he is Peter Pan – never growing up.  But I sense none of us really understand what being grown up is. We live in a world of injured souls, whose need to control their environment and “manage” life is seen as being an adult.  So in this way, Ben helps me question my own “adulthood”, my addiction to control, to avoid fear, what true responsibility is.

Maybe the Peter Pan’s of this world remind us of what Jesus said,   “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to those who are like these children.”

(Matthew 19:14)

So thank you Ben, and all the “Ben’s” out there. In adversity, you shine, with no self-pity. In a controlled world obsessed with what others think, you dance and sing, no matter what; you are freer. In a world full of competitiveness and hierarchy you only see equality; no man lesser than yourself. And most importantly, in a harsh world – you love.

love Maxine “mum”

mj-ben

Warts and All

I think this has been one of the most difficult posts for me to do and it happened almost accidentally. About two weeks ago, some emotions came up ( hurray!) and some realisations about my cancer, the surgery and most importantly my facade and my addictions: the part of me that exists to avoid feeling the fear, sadness, grief and other emotions: it does not want the hurt self to express itself. It is also about how incredibly good we are at self deception – how good I have been and how resistive we can be even when faced with a life-threatening disease. Crazy hey? Maybe, but true, especially when fear is your God, like it has been for me, for a very long time.

We all have a Facade Self (see my blog about this called “In Search of the Real Self: Cracking the Shell” from December 1, 2014) . It is initially caused by our parents, when they shut down our real self, by suppressing our emotions in some way and it continues to develop every time we don’t feel an emotion. As a child the Facade can play the role of protector, as we create a persona our parents are happy with and where we can avoid punishment or harm. We have created many facades to deal with many situations. As an adult we don’t need to continue with this but we do.  The truth is it is not a very nice creature: it is untruthful, arrogant, condescending, arrogant, addictive, insensitive, unemotional, irresponsible,  resistive and so forth. ( Jesus gives a great talk on this – I will put a link below).

So I had some realisations and I tried to journal them. I journal a lot. I always have done since I was a child, but now I do it more often and it helps me keep track of what I am learning, truths and untruths, memorable events and I now even jot down points from the talks I listen to that are very relevant to me. It can also be cathartic and enlightening because as you write you can discover things you didn’t realise before or express emotions through writing. I have written a few “letters” to God and others this way.

But that night, I could write – my hand froze, but I wanted to express myself, I wanted to talk. So I switched on my PC and made a video. It was just for me at the time, though as you will see I address to an unknown audience too. I even forget to mention my name until the very end! It is very raw and very rough. If you choose to watch it you will need you volume up maximum as I was only talking into the laptop microphone. Also, hang on in there past the first 10 minutes or so as I waffle, but I find my way a bit more as I go on. There was no plan, or no structure at the time, just feelings and thoughts. I have sat with it for the last two weeks to make sure I didn’t want to publish this in an emotional addiction of some sort. I don’t think I am, but I have been wrong about that before. But that is part of the journey – being prepared to be wrong and feeling fears, but not living in them and this is also what publishing this video is about. (It is an hour long )

The good thing is, these last few weeks have been a turning point for me and this video and what was going on for me at the time is part of it. Watching the video back has also been a useful tool and I hope it will help you as well – that is my intention in posting it. I know some of you who read my blog have been listening to Divine Truth for a few years like I have, and have been stuck and resistive to personal truth like I have. I believe my soul darkened during this time and now I finally have a desire to stop this, to choose love and to start to switch from fear as my God to the God that loves me and wants the real me to really live and be happy. So I have started doing a number of things to develop my will to love and to live more truthfully. It is a tiny start, but a start – but that is another blog, another time.

With love, Maxine.