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Perspectives: The Programmed Mind Pt.2 – The Vessel of Light



“What if I’m in charge of my own damn light switch?”

– Jandy Nelson

Some time ago I was in the beautiful country of Zimbabwe. I  was there to study and work with plant medicines. It is a country that respects the ceremony and serious work with plant medicines and the healing they can bring about. (More on these later). 

While I was not on the medicine that day, I was called into the ceremony of a medicine woman who was. She had – or rather, the medicine working through her – had a message for me. Paraphrased it went something like this:

”We are nothing. We have to be a vessel. Nothing of us, not our personality, our sympathy or compassion, our opinions or judgement can remain. Only light. When we are light, nothing can stick to us, nothing can gain a foothold in us.”

Now, I don’t know about you, but if someone in this clear state of consciousness has a message for us, it is highly advisable we listen, even if we do not yet understand all the ramifications of such a gift.

The tangled web we weave

At War with Self. All rights reserved.

In part one (click here if you missed it), we looked at some of the myriad of ways we can be led on a merry dance by the mental programs that feed on our light and energy. 

Since that blog I have received interesting feedback about how this phenomenon is known to many spiritual traditions (thanks Keith). It goes by other names such as ”’e’epa” by the Hawaian kahuna shamen; ”wetiko” by author Paul Levy (taken from North American Indian traditions) and ”Archons” in the Gnostic tradition. They may sometimes even be referred to as ”entities” and, in their extreme form of enslavement, ”demons” of the mind that can completely overtake our psyche and physical actions. They are  undoubtedly known by other names in other traditions.

In any case, we do not live in a bubble and are constantly interacting with others who are entangled in mental programs of their own. Let us first look at some more of those.

Families: Dr. Hellinger, a psychologist is the founder of ’Hellinger work’, better known as Family Constellations. It examines the phenomenon of how we inherit more than our ancenstors DNA. At an energy/consciousness level we also inherit the wounds and traumas, negative programs and unresolved issues of our family line. This is then played out in his workshops, using members of the group to represent members of our family – living or dead. 

It is truly astounding how messages can be delivered via this process through people who know nothing of our history but nevertheless ’channel’ highly relevant information about how the knots in a family web were created. A skilled facilitator can work with these symbolic representations of our family to reprogram some of these dysfunctional behaviors to break the chain of suffering and victimhood.

Jacopo da Empoli 16th century National museum of Warsaw

So let us now look at a few of those family programs:

 Parents: 

Our parents are usually our first programmers as well. We might spare them a compassionate thought though. After all, they just didn’t read the parenting manual they never received.*

”Wait till your father gets home!” ”Don’t do that, it would break your mother’s heart.” ”Be a good girl/boy.” ”Do as your told!” ”Never show weakness.” ”Stop crying.” ”Don’t be a burden.” ”Why can’t you be more like your sister/brother?” And of course there are many more.

Probably the most damaging program our early care-givers can give us is to abuse us in some way and then tell us it is because they love us. In an odd way they are telling the truth because everything begins as love. It just gets screwed up along the way.

It is the responsibility of each generation to resolve these patterns in themselves lest they pass them on to the next generation and it becomes their problems

We must break the cycle of misery, mistakes and the suffering these inherited programs cause.

Friends and lovers: There is a Greek saying: ”Friends are the gifts we give ourselves.” In part one, caution was advised in choosing the company we keep. What attracts us to certain people may not be the attraction of love or true friendship at all however.

It may merely be the pattern-recognition of our programs that see a chance to amplify a certain negative pattern through another person (for my blog focusing upon on this particular subject click here)

Here are some methods to check whether we are with true friends or partners.

•  Does being with them make us feel good about ourselves?

•  Do we feel energized or drained after being in their company?

•  Do we inspire each other to our greatest good or do we reinforce each others negativity and cyncicism about the world through complaining, criticism and indulging problems but not solutions?

•  Do we feel we must limit or edit ourselves to avoid conflict?

•  Are we made to feel inadequate or not quite good enough for them?

•  Do we indulge in emotional blackmail to stop them from disengaging from us – or do we allow them to do that to us?

If any of the above feels familiar to us then we are enmeshed in the program-recognition of parasitic ‘software ‘ posing as love or attraction. Such relationships are not our true friends or partners. How could they be when they have not managed to even recognize that they themselves are lost in the tricky program-ridden labyrinth of their mind?

The merchants of misery

Some time ago, I witnessed two middle-aged women greet each other. One came limping with a walking stick while the other could only raise herself with difficulty up from her chair to greet her. 

The conversation almost immediately turned to their many and varied health issues, each complaining or making the appropriate sympathetic noises when the other was listing their litany of misery. Over the course of this short encounter I noticed their already weakened state became visibly weaker as their bodies reacted in turn to the mutual reinforcement of their misery programs. 

© Doug Savage

Surprisingly, there was also a gleeful pride behind their stories in how they could elicit these shocked or sympathetic responses in the other. They were unashamedly revelling in their tales of woe as if they were mythic figures enduring the world’s hardships in some vainglorious quest. Their strange sense of satisfaction came from having their identification as sufferers confirmed by each other.

The same patterns can be seen in those that are under the grip of addiction (and the self pity/indulgence cycles that accompany that) but never change their ways. If we stay around them we risk being dragged into their destructive patterns.

We would do well to avoid people that actively reinforce these programs and try to spread them to others. Such individuals have no interest in real change. Their mental programs are merely looking to feed. Politely decline to be another energy source for them and disengage as soon as possible.

The beauty trap

The obsession with youth and the hopeless quest to ”Stay young and beautiful” is another program that feeds on and amplifies our neurosis and anxiety. It is often part of the greater cultural programs we discussed in part one.

Billions of dollars are extracted every year from anxious people brainwashed by the beauty illusion and willing to pay for a chance to fool noone that they are aging.

This impossible task was memorably summed up by model Cindy Crawford. When told by an interviewer: ”Millions of women around the world wish they looked like Cindy Crawford.” she replied: ”Yes, so do I.”

The beauty illusion is merely a symptom of the ”I am not enough.” program. It is only when we become more accepting of ourselves and more comfortable in our own skin that true attractiveness shines for everyone to see. 

”Without you, I’m nothing”

This was the title of a stage show and subsequent film by performer Sandra Bernhard that covered a range of topics about the difficulties of relationships and the human condition in general. It is really a phrase that comes from low self-esteem – that base energy-sucking program responsible for so many dramas, tradgedies and comedies.

In relationships, it takes the form of co-dependency (for more on that topic click here: Codependency sometimes looks like love in some respects but it lacks something love does not: self respect and self love.

If we cannot love and respect ourselves (because we have allowed mental programs to tell us otherwise while they feed on our light) it will be impossible for us to truly receive love from others. Why? Because we cannot see what is not yet conscious in us. 

On the contrary, we may very well reject or sabotage real love because we either do not recognize it or cannot accept it. Instead we will find ourselves ”looking for love in all the wrong places” while being constantly disappointed by the poor substitutes that they are. 

So how can we break the chain of these meddlesome programs that prey on our light?

Become the love and light of truth we are looking for

This is the only cure for this kind of parasitic infestation. We literally have to en-lighten ourselves. That is, consciously reclaim our light as our own. Accept no substitutes. Make no deals. Do not entertain any gray zones or exceptions.

Strategies for a program-free life

Make a conscious effort to be aware when we are being taken out of our heart and back into the mind that is always jumping between sentimentality about the past and anxiety about the future.

Establish a daily ritual of gratitude. By practicing gratitude we become more aware of and reinforce the light we already have in our life. Gradually, we find more and more things to be grateful for and attract and create what we truly need.

Develop quiet periods away from electronic and work stimulations by practicing meditation

Do an inventory of all our relationships to others –  friends, family, partners, work colleagues. It may be painful or difficult but we need to weed out those dysfunctional relationships. They may have served a purpose in the past but they will not take us (or them) further by indulging them.

”A sound mind in a sound body”: Clean up dietary indulgences, avoid stimulants and chemicals in food. Develop a gentle system of regular exercise that appeals to you. This will help guarantee you make it part of your life.

Prevention is better than cure. Get regular treatments like bodywork, healing, acupuncture, sound baths, water and spa cures and the like before we develop health issues.

Get in contact with nature as often as possible. It can be as simple as a barefoot walk on the grass to hiking, spending time with the tress in the forest, swimming, surfing and mountain climbing.

If you feel called, investigate plant medicines with experienced guides in a ceremonial setting. Here is a (very) quick primer about some of the main ones used for inner work and healing:

Cacao: The bitter, pure chocolate drink with a sweet aftertaste that softens and opens the heart to be more receptive to our inner voice. 

Hapé: A mix of organic tobacco, medicinal and sacred plants that is used to alleviate discomfort in the body, focusing our intention and receiving messages from within.

San Pedro: A cactus preparation that amplifies truth, empathy and compassion. It is also a healer of the body.

Ayahuasca: A combination of sacred plants that can put us in contact with pure consciousness to reveal truth about ourselves.

Iboga: The bark from the roots of a West African tree. It’s  message is the truth that resides in the body itself independant of the deceptive mind. 

The vessel of light

© Alex Grey 2006

The reality is:

The very idea of ’self’ has to die

It is not real. It is just a story we have told ourselves to create a false and ineffective protection against our endless anxiety created by programs that are not us.

We have to get out of the way of this created self image and its endless justifications to become our true self. Our true Self is nothing less than light, love and peace. It is beyond being happy or unhappy. 

It is a state of self-less equilibrium

In this state we are the calm eye in the storm of programmed ’reality’ that roars around us yet we are not touched by it. It can no longer stick to us because we don’t indulge it and give it a foothold back into our life.

That doesn’t mean it won’t try. After all, the mind is trying to mess with us 24/7. To put it bluntly, we just have to have to remember ”It’s not my shit.” and leave it at that.

To be a vessel does not mean we become an unfeeling robot. It is the realization and practice of non-attachment. Non-attachment to drama and suffering. 

Only then are we free to truly love as we no longer have any imposed conditions on that love. We also no longer need to fantasise about love. We are love. We are enlightened because our vessel is open to the light that is always there. 

We are at peace.


*To prospective parents, this is something you may want to consider and investigate before having children.



© Jeremy Halpin all rights reserved. All images are the author’s own unless otherwise indicated or if the original source is unknown at the time of writing. You can subscribe to this blog by clicking the button in the bottom right hand corner of the page – or share it on the social media of your choice. If you have any wishes or questions regarding subjects to be discussed on this blog use the contact information below. Jeremy is also available for seminars, lectures and personal consultation: info@jeremyhalpin.com

Perspectives: The Programmed Mind


“We are kings of bliss, begging for misery.”

-Nick Mulvey

We come into this world from light, love and the peace that they contain, nothing else. That is also all we exit with, nothing else. It is our responsibility to be vigilant in making sure nothing is allowed to come between that and us.


Along the duration of our life any disturbance to that peace is what we allow to enter.

This suffering and misery is not us however – although we can make it seem so by nurturing it and weaving it into the story of ourselves.

Once inside us and left unchecked, such disturbances can become so ingrained that we can no longer tell what is us from what is this viral, replicating ’program’ that thinks in our voice most of the time. We nurture it to the point it becomes part of our identity. ”Well, that’s just who I am. That’s just the way it is.” Ahh, but don’t you believe them…

What is a program? 

Programs are mental parasites – often leading to physical health consequences as well. Their purpose is to feed on our light. They disempower us, make us forget who we truly are and may even convince us that everything is futile and inevitable. They depress our joy and make us cynical, fearful and depressed. At the physical level they can age us before our time, making us weak and sick.

It may seem very much like we have been under some kind of sinister spell. Once we become aware of them however it is the beginning of a true life change.


The tricky thing about programs is that they have no immediately tangible substance. We cannot see, touch, taste or feel them in the tactile sense. We can however, experience the results of their directives. Like wind in a wheat field, we may not be able to see the wind itself but we can see how the wheat reacts to it.

If we do not pay attention and dis-identify from them they can drain the life force from us. And that is the real damage – what we do to ourselves while trying to avoid, ignore or repress them.

We will drain ourselves in endless compensatory activities, compulsions, addictions and neurotic behavior, all to avoid the anxiety these programs generate in us.

It is their ability to convince us to harm ourselves in subtle and not so subtle ways that makes them so destructive.

Let us now take a look at some of these programs to understand them a little better.

Cultural programs and the super-ego.

Culture is not our friend. What we call culture is really only an arbitrary set of vaguely shared values and assumptions about what is important in life. Culture and its values are conditioned by time and place and certain socio-cultural economic groups that can include factors like race and nationhood. It is in fact, a super-ego.

NBC News

The personal ego (sometimes confusingly called our self – in lower case) may be defined as the story we tell ourselves about ourselves. It is a program that is constantly striving to bring attention to itself to justify its existence.

It is the babble of the mind, the constant commentary, the anxiety, the problem causer and, conveniently, the offerer of a labyrinth of false solutions to those problems. As long as it is front and centre to the energy of our attention, that’s all that matters to it.

The super-ego is merely the collective version of this. It winds stories around itself in the search for identity, solidity and certainty: ”Ours is the one, true God!” ”My country, right or wrong!” ”The American dream!” ”White supremacy!” ”Black power!” – there are endless examples.

It desparately wants to convince us it is real but it is not. It is a (collective) program. It is also highly subjective. None of these ’values’ are universal.

Perhaps most importantly, cultural programs serve to control individuals and groups with rules based upon these arbitrary values. Feelings like pride, predjudice, guilt, shame, envy and feelings of unworthiness are natural consequences.


A few examples

  • A while ago I read an article in a major newspaper reflecting a typically materialistic approach to life based upon the culture is was in and written for. It outlined the ’problem’ with each decade of adult life. One’s 20’s were supposed to be filled with anxiety about finding direction in life and not ’missing out’ climbing the ladder of acheivement. Apparently, one’s 30’s were overly concerned with the accumulation of debt and responsibility with the expansion of family and material possessions and so on. Finally, it only reached as far as the 70’s, whose major obstacle, in this article’s view, was feelings of morbidity about death(!). It read like a training manual in how to be weighed down and eventually crushed by life, ending by instructing the reader when death was expected of them.
  • A client, 51 years, came to see me in clinic. He was quite overweight, lost most of his hair while the rest was white/grey and even the smallest adjustment to posture elicited puffing and grunting noises due to the apparent effort. He self consciously caught my eye and said: ”Well, of course you have to expect these things after fifty.” My reply was: ”Do you?”

Note how both these examples contain those deceptive, unconscious assumptions that so easily lead us into negative outcomes.

Anxiety programs

pinterest.com

Actually, there are many programs in this category, each contributing to the same result: the entropy of the human spirit and eventually the body along with it. 

Let’s start with an obviouis one. After all, it hides its intent in plain sight: It proudly advertises its ’programs’ right out of the box…

Television

Ahh yes, that tried and true anxiety generator. One never really watches TV to relax – even if we tell ourselves that. When we are not receiving carefully filtered news that almost exclusively features negative stories then we are being ’entertained’ by morbid levels of violence, the sexualisation of everything or merely having precious hours of our life wasted in triviality and banality.

If that wasn’t enough, our viewing habits are being targeted with equally anxiety-generating advertising posing as helpful or caring solutions – to the problems they insist we have! What we are left with are feelings of anxiety about these problems – which is precisely the point.

Media

This includes the many ways we consume it. Mostly it revolves around our connections to the internet – mobile phones, tablets, computers and so called ’smart’ TV’s. Unlike television which is passive, the internet offers the illusion of enpowerment through interaction.

Illustration by Cali Rossi. All rights reserved.

While we think we are making a contribution through watching/reacting/commenting/liking or supporting certain causes, interests or sites we are actually being even more monitored and controlled than with television. The advertising too is even more craftfully tailored to our perceived profile.

It has become all too clear in recent times that we can be manipulated collectively via this medium to serve the interests of others.

So why do we mysteriously spend so much time online then? Two main reasons:

  1. Because it is designed and ever more refined to be addictive.
  2. Because we are trying to distract ourselves from this nameless underlying anxiety that, ironically, we are only fuelling through our internet habit.

That last statement can apply to any of the anxiety/misery programs. Here are a few more of them


  • The promise of comfort and security. Pension and insurance schemes. The effect is to increase our insecurity and focus on ageing and death
  • Consumerism and the lure of the next new thing to complete us. What it really does is reinforce a feeling that we are not enough
  • Pornography – the itch that can never be scratched, guaranteeing return business while numbing our capacity to make intimate connections with others
  • Gaming and gambling – a self destructive, anxiety distraction pattern posing as the escape to the excitement of another reality than our own
  • Alchohol and drugs – the need to be ’comfortably numb’ in the futile and health sabotaging search to be free of our anxiety programs
  • A constant need for affirmation outside of ourselves that can never be quenched. From this root flowers endless self destructive behavior
  • Food obsessions (for more detail about this one click here) – nothing will ever be enough to dampen or satisfy the parasitic program of anxiety
  • Constant economic struggles with spending and debt and a feeling of poverty and fear that we can never overcome

Of course many of the above programs work in tandem by reinforcing and feeding off each other. We can even feed off other’s negative programs. After all, misery loves company and we can bind each other in it. So be mindful of the company you keep.



Illustration by Andrea Wan

Don’t get with the program


The truth is, our original state is happiness, joy, love and peace. Irrespective of changing outward circumstances, our light inside is our right and we must stand up for it and not let anything or anyone distract, corrupt, seduce or bully us into thinking and feeling otherwise.


We do not need to fall for these programs. They are not normal at all. They are not even truly ours unless we agree to them and make them so. So, refuse to put up with them! Grow beyond the search for happiness and the fear of unhappiness and into who you truly are.

When we understand this true state of ourselves then there is no other option. It is neither hard nor easy, it is the recognition of truth and the choice we make from that understanding.

Beyond the matrix

So where do we go when we leave the program? Well, I’m so glad you asked because next time we will be looking at some of the ways we can wake up from this uneasy, hypnotic dream and integrate back into ourselves.

——END PROGRAM—–


© Jeremy Halpin all rights reserved. All images are the author’s own unless otherwise indicated or if the original source is unknown at the time of writing. You can subscribe to this blog by clicking the button in the bottom right hand corner of the page – or share it on the social media of your choice. If you have any wishes or questions regarding subjects to be discussed on this blog use the contact information below. Jeremy is also available for seminars, lectures and personal consultation: info@jeremyhalpin.com

Working with Intention – a change of heart

 

 

 


“Your intentions are your nonphysical causes that set energy into motion.”

 

Gary Zukav

 


 

 

We are now well into the New Year and perhaps already some of our best intentions, under the guise of New Year resolutions, have already been compromised. Perhaps some of those were regarding our health: to finally ’get into shape’; eat a healthier diet; put aside time for meditation or yoga practice; attend those workshops that had piqued our interest last year but we never quite got around to and so on.

 

 

 

 

Does our failure to follow through on some of these mean that the whole concept of intention as an aid to self development is flawed? How do we gently direct our yearning heart and restless mind towards what we desire to experience? The Conscious Health blog investigates…

 

 

 

”It’s a bum rap I tell ya!”

 

The concept of intention has received an undeserved negative reputation. This is largely thanks to the oft-used quote: ”The road to hell is paved with good intentions.”1 It argues that intention is not enough and must be followed through with consistent action. It also suggests that stated intentions only gives a head start to those who would undermine them. One of those people may even be ourself – but more on that shortly.

 

While it may indeed be a good idea to ”not let the devil know your plans” it does not automatically follow that intentions are useless or even counter-productive. On the contrary…

 

 

”Yi, Chi, Li”

 

This simple, three word statement from Taoism shows the importance of intention. ’Yi’ is our intention, the direction of our mind and heart. ’Chi’ is the energy, effort and gathering of resources to make things happen. ’Li’ is the result.

 

There is therefore a causal connection between our intention and the results we experience. So why don’t we always realize our intentions?

 

 

Conscious vs Unconscious creations

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Several things differentiate the conscious and unconscious (sometimes used interchangeably with ’subconscious’) parts of our mind.

 

  1. Both the conscious and unconscious are creative.
  2. The unconscious is continually trying to become conscious within us. Like the tide continuously rolling in, it wants our consciousness to expand.
  3. Many will experience their unconscious creations as suffering, discomfort or ”Why does this always happen to me?!” moments.

 

This last one is obvious but profound in light of the first two: We are not (yet) conscious of our unconscious side.

 

For example, if we desire to create or attract something in our life with our conscious mind but our unconscious mind has, programmed within it, convictions that we are unworthy or unable to achieve our goal we will (unconsciously) sabotage it.

 

This is because each creation – one from the conscious mind, the other from the unconscious – will cancel each other out. Unless we make this unconscious programming conscious to ourselves it will appear as ’bad luck’, ’poor discipline’ or simply ’not meant to be’.

 

To use a modern metaphor, view the unconscious as our hard disk. In order to change anything on this hard disk we need to transfer it to our desktop which resides in editable, RAM memory – ie, our conscious mind. Once there we can do something about these sabotaging programs because now at least we can see them for what they are: old lines of code that are no longer serving any useful purpose.

 

Illustration by Cali Rossi. All rights reserved.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So how did they get there in the first place? The usual suspects: Withheld or withdrawn love; conditional love where we only receive attention when we do what others want of us, not for who we are; negative reinforcement where we are punished or humiliated for daring to honor our own integrity and so on.

 

With such a hidden army of saboteurs buried in our creative unconscious is it any wonder we are bamboozled time and again even with the best of conscious intentions.

 

 

The heart of the matter

 

So, we cannot depend only on our tricksy mind to midwife our intentions into reality. We need assistance from the heart. There is a beautiful saying, attributed to the Buddha, that supports us in this: ”The mind has no answers. The heart has no questions.”

 

While the Latin root of intention, ’intentio’ means ”to stretch out with effort and attention”, the Middle English meaning speaks more to the heart: ”Emotions, feeling, heart, mind, understanding”. Effective intention need emotional content, not just mental will.

 

 

 

 

 

Set and setting

 

Both our mindset and the setting we create are vital to potentising our intention and bringing it into conscious creation.

 

Mindset refers to our attitude, centeredness and self knowledge about why we are doing what we are doing, free of interfering, counterproductive thoughts or practices.

 

Setting refers to creating an environment that helps focus and support our heart and mind on our intention. The setting guides and informs our behaviour.

 

For example, for the religiously inclined, temples or cathedrals provide a setting that engenders respect and humility before God. For others, the pulsing beauty and shimmering mystery of nature provides the setting to delve deeper into the Self and connected oneness with all life.

 

The set and setting needs to engage our heart.. While the mind stretches out with earnest intent, it is the heart that receives the message. It is this gentle tension or interplay between a clear mind and a receptive heart that is the stuff of effective intention.

 

 

Make that change

 

Change is decided, not by focusing upon what we do not have and want to possess or experience but rather by letting go of something we already possess and need to let go.

 

In traditional Chinese medicine titles are given to each of the organ systems. The rather grandiose title of ’The Minister of Change and Evolution’ is given to the humble colon. The colon removes waste that has become potentially toxic to our system. Even the nourishing food that was at one time vital for our survival and wellbeing needs to be eventually released so we can move on.

 

The lesson of this is that hanging onto something – a relationship; an idea or ideal; a job; a practice or habit; a belief – just because it was at one time beneficial to us (or at least we thought so at the time) does not mean that we need to keep hanging onto it.

 

On the contrary, letting go of something no longer useful creates the space for something new to arrive. ”Nature hates a vacuum” so those who can transform their lives effectively are those who have become skilled in identifying and letting go of things that no longer serve them.

 

Change never begins ’out there’. It always begins with the Self. To be effective with intention we have to look into the mirror of our Self and be honest.

 

 

 

 

Change within the Self becomes a ripple of change all around us. Mysteriously, by helping ourselves, everything that flows from that transformation positively benefits others.

 

 

What we want vs what we need

 

Sometimes we are disappointed when the fruit of our intentions do not deliver exactly what we wanted. This is where our receptive heart comes in. We need time to digest and feel what exactly has come back to us from our intention – what we really asked for. What we need.

 

It as at these moments we can glimpse our higher Self and how it gently nudges us towards self-realization. We need to expect the unexpected.

 

After all, how else could we ever experience anything new? Our intentions must lead us into from what we know into new areas of expansion. If we think we already know what the result should be then we are only engaging our mind, not our heart. By allowing for the mysterious and unexpected we can truly receive what we need more than merely what we want.

 

 

 

 

Till next time, when you need it but least expect it…

 

Often attributed to Samuel Johnson in 1775 but probably dating further back to Saint Bernard of Clairvaux (1091-1153) who wrote: ”Hell is full of good wishes or desires.”

 


© Jeremy Halpin all rights reserved. All images are the author’s own unless otherwise indicated or if the original source is unknown at the time of writing. You can subscribe to this blog by clicking the button in the bottom right hand corner of the page – or share it on the social media of your choice. If you have any wishes or questions regarding subjects to be discussed on this blog use the contact information below. Jeremy is also available for seminars, lectures and personal consultation: info@jeremyhalpin.com

Dark Times: Light and Health

 

 

 


 

 

 

“…we can now say emphatically, that the function of our entire metabolism is dependent on light.”

– Dr. Fritz Albert Popp

 

 

The shadow rises

 

Here in the Northern hemisphere, we have reached the nadir of our light cycle. The earth has turned its back about as far as it can from the sun before turning back again. The Scandinavian countries in particular are all too familiar with this time of year.

 

For all but the most northerly areas, the snow has yet to fall consistently enough to remain and perform the service of reflecting and magnifying the available light – both from the sun by day and electrical sources at night. The daylight hours themselves are very short.

 

 

The deep North

 

In December at Stockholm’s latitude, the sun doesn’t bother to lift its head above the horizon much before 9am and has already sunk beneath it well before 3pm. The further North one travels, the more extreme that balance becomes.

 

 

 

I remember a conversation with a small hotel owner in the far North of Sweden where he was explaining how, in the winter months, the sun never breached the horizon at all.  Of course, on fine evenings the Northern Lights put on a beautiful show of light and colour but I asked him how one coped without the direct sunlight in the daytime.  Using the typically economical and dry humour of the North, he merely pointed to a large satellite TV dish on the roof of his hotel.

 
Light adjustments

 

Obviously, getting out of bed on a December morning in these conditions is a very different prospect to doing the same in say, July. After all, our body’s internal biorhythms are driven by light cycles so when that alarm rings to get up on a morning when every cell of our body is screaming at us for waking it so early (relative to the light) it makes for considerable physical and emotional discomfort.

 

At these relatively extreme latitudes (compared to the rest of the populated world) one would think adjustments in time schedules would vary accordingly. Surely work times would start later – synchronised with other institutions like day care centres and schools. Actually, no. The cookie cutter, one size fits no-one work/play template remains the same, year round.

 

It will come as no surprise then that illness and Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD – aka: depression and related disorders from lack of light) rise significantly at these latitudes during autumn and winter.

 
The mechanism of light and the body in health

 

Here’s the thing: we are literally beings of light. Up until a relatively short time ago the theory that our body generated light (photons) was discredited and scientists proposing such theories like Fritz Albert Pop 1 were bullied out of their academic tenures as a result.

 

Now, the idea that we both receive and generate light has gained popularity. Books by researchers like Dr. Jacob Liberman have popularised this concept.

 

The most recent research coming out of Germany is even more compelling. It’s a little dense so let’s take a deep breath: recent Phd, Alexander Wunsch, continuing on the work of Prof. G. Albrecht-Buehler 3 has demonstrated that cells navigate towards light sources: two centro-zones att right angles to the nine tubules at the nucleus of the cells. It seems probable that the centrozones mediate the microtubulli in this movement. Internal light then, facilitates the very centre of life-sustaining metabolic processes.

 

So, we are light generators. We can also absorb and leak light too. This has profound implications for our health.

 

 

 

 

Leaking light

 

In 2015, I participated in the International Light Association’s annual conferance in Tallinn, Estonia. I attended a lecture confirming the work of Fritz Albert Popp that demonstrated healthy cells stored photonic energy (light) while diseased cells (due to trauma, inflammation or cellular change like cancer) leaked photons much like a damaged fishing net let the fish escape.

 

It seems our light-generating body can absorb or leak light in health and disease. Another lecture by Prof. Tina Karu 4 from the Russian Academy of Sciences demonstrated that our body is finely attuned to biolight sources – in particular the sun and monochromatic frequencies of light.

 

 

Turning off the dark…

 

So what does all this mean to the souls suffering in the Northern dark at this time of year? In the most basic sense, we become ’light-starved’. Our metabolic processes at a cellular level slow down. Now, what does that sound like? Ahh, yes: hibernation.

 

 

The trouble is we don’t hibernate… If anything, winter is a time when people work more. This comes from the misguided and relatively new notion that one must work in winter to free up time for a long summer holiday. The very notion of a ’summer holiday’ is a flagrant distortion of Scandinavian history however.

 
The history of Scandinavian ’holidays’

 

If one goes back in time around 150 years or beyond, most of Scandinavia was an agrarian (farming) society. In the summer, children were sent home from school – not to holiday, but to help their family with the busy work of farming life at that time of year.

 

Winter, by contrast, was a relatively quiet time. The harvest was over. The vegetables were stored in the root cellular or conserved and pickled. The wood was chopped. The fish was salted or pickled. The ’moonshine’ home brew was distilled. Apart from the occasional hunting expedition for fresh meat and some basic maintainence and mending winter was spent in quiet contemplation and rest.

 

People arose from sleep later, went to bed earlier and indulged in the odd nap or two in between. Apart from gazing meaningfully into an evening fire with a glass of something with suspiciously high alcohol content, eventually followed by an equally meaningful glance at one’s partner before retiring to bed, the pace of life was much slower than the busy, work-filled daylight seasons. (For more on the energy of this time of year and how it affects the body click here.)
The Christmas season filled this darker time with warm-toned lighting and decorations, celebration during advent and plenty of warm food and drink. This is what helped give Christmas the classic winter appearance we know today.

 

 

 

So what happened? The industrial revolution and the migration to city life meant we lost touch with the natural cycle of the seasons and began to navigate by mechanistic, man-made schedules instead. We no longer listened to our inner clock and our body began to ring the alarm through becoming depressed and sick. Literally, the light began to leave us light beings.

 

Now we suffer through overwork and light starvation in the hope that summer will cure our self abuse. And if the summer disappoints, this leads into an even more negative spiral the following Autumn/Winter.

 

 

 

 

Symptoms of light starvation
Here are few symptoms telling us we are low on light:

 

  • Chronic tiredness and difficulty waking up in the morning
  • Sweet and carbohydrate cravings/addiction
  • Chronic, high consumption of caffeine and stimulants
  • Alcohol cravings
  • Chronic low immunity leading to low grade inflammation and related, recurring illnesses like colds/flu, joint pain and the like.
  • Mental negativity and depressive states making us anti-social and needing to withdraw from outer life.

 

Addiction to negative light sources like mobile devices, computers and television is another hidden symptom. The screens from these devices generate an overdose of blue light (masquerading as white light with the aid of phospherous but don’t be fooled – the brain still registers it as blue light).

 

While blue light in itself is stimulating – which is one reason it attracts us –  too much of it is over-stimulating and we become tired and burnt out as a result. Think of it as the ’junk food’ of our light diet.

 

 

 

A light in a dark place

 

So what can we do about this dark state of affairs? Here are a few suggestions for healthy light habits:

 

 

 

 

  • Where possible, adjust our schedule so we work less (or at least begin later) in the winter. Even if this means working a little more in the summer we will still have more than enough daylight then to enjoy after work.
  • Get regular treatments with monochromatic light during the dark time of the year. (Quick plug: If you are in Stockholm you can book a time for this here.)
  • Avoid fluorescent light where possible. In the evening, avoid overhead lighting and use ground level illumination, preferably incadescant light in the warmer yellow/orange spectrum. Even better, light a fire if you have a fireplace and candles (if the room ventilation is effective).
  • Take a walk outside in the daylight hours. Even weak, winter light is many times stronger than inside lighting
  • Cultivate the art of the afternoon power nap. Our cortisol (stress hormone) levels will be reset, we will be much more alert in the early evenings and sleep better at night.
  • Where possible, plan time away in a sunny environment/country to reload our solar batteries
  • Use the ’Yin’ phase of winter and use the nighttime hours to be effective and creative while resting more in the day. The energy of winter is with the night and lunar cycles.

 

 

Light and shade
We need to make a conscious effort to listen to both the cycles of nature and our body. While this is always good advice, it is particularly important for those living in extreme latitudes.

 

We cannot reasonably expect to shoehorn ourselves into year-round templates and continue to feel good. This is tantamount to self-abuse. Life has its light and shade. We contain light and shade too. If we don’t nourish our light the dark side will only be too happy to take over.

 

 


Till another Monday that finds the balance between the ’day’ and the moon of every Mo(o)nday.

 

 

1. Popp.F. et al: Biophotons. Kluwer, Dordrecht. 1998

2. ’Light Medicine of the Future’, Jacob Liberman OD. PhD.

3. Albrech- Buehler, G.: Rudimentary forms of “cellular vision”. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 8288-8292, 89, 1992

4. Action Spectra: Their Importance for Low Level Light Therapy. Tiina Karu, Laboratory of Laser Biomedicine, Institute of Laser and Information Technologies, Russian Academy of Sciences

 

 


© Jeremy Halpin all rights reserved. All images are the author’s own unless otherwise indicated or if the original source is unknown at the time of writing. You can subscribe to this blog by clicking the button in the bottom right hand corner of the page – or share it on the social media of your choice. If you have any wishes or questions regarding subjects to be discussed on this blog use the contact information below. Jeremy is also available for seminars, lectures and personal consultation: info@jeremyhalpin.com

The Food Obsession – an appetite for destruction

 

 

 


 

”I use food for the same reason an addict uses drugs: to comfort, to soothe, to ease stress.”  – Oprah Winfery

 

 

The ‘new’ food craze-iness

 

The world appears to be surfing one of the many waves of mass distraction that arise every now and then. In this case it is one that never really goes away but just resurfaces in new clothes: the food craze.

 

Food and cooking shows, books and magazine articles abound; top chefs have become celebrities; new diet crazes become rapidly popular only to replaced and contradicted by newer ones espousing directly opposite theories; there are cooking competition shows whose formats have been franchised across the globe.

 

 

 

Throughout all of this, obesity and its many related diseases have risen drastically in the developed world and is even on the rise elsewhere. Contrastingly, anorexic archetypes have plagued the media, setting impossible standards and warped body imaging.

 

 

 

Obsession with food and dieting is nothing new of course. In 1863 William Banting first published his ‘Letter on Corpulence’ espousing a weight loss diet. So influential was it that to ‘banta’ (diet) even entered the Swedish language and is used to this day. Fast forward to the modern day and the food and diet market is flooded with new titles every week.

 

 

 

 

Maternal love and our oral beginnings

 

In traditional Chinese medicine, the Earth element is said to rule the digestive system, governing the stomach and spleen/pancreas (for more on this click here). Besides breathing and the elimination of waste, the only natural ability a human baby has is to suck. It takes in mother’s milk via her stomach meridian (passing through the nipples) and into the baby’s stomach.

 

nursingnurture.com

 

Breast feeding not only ensures the survival of her child but stimulates oxytoxin production to enable bonding.  The association of food with love is something that can profoundly affect us throughout our whole life.

 

 

 

Food and love: reward and punishment

 

Our relationship with food can mirror our relationship with ourself, in particular self worth. In turn, our sense of self worth is profoundly linked with love – how we have experienced it and, as a result, how we receive and give it to ourself and others.

 

Abandonment, separation or abuse from our mother in particular, whether it be due to physical or emotional reasons (such as post natal depression, illness, addiction, death, adoption, or other reasons) profoundly influence how we view our own self worth and even our right to exist.
Addiction to or fear of oral intake are often the result of such a negatively affected view of the Self. Examples of this can be alcohol and drug addiction, anorexia, binging and purging, morbid obesity and uncontrollable eating habits, fear of food, difficulty swallowing and so on. All are linked with an ongoing crisis of identity, self worth and self esteem linked to our oral triggers.

 

 

 

Self esteem goes deeper than how we value ourselves. It is bedrock of our sense of existing at all. It cannot be overstated how much of our sense of Self goes back to this early bonding with our earthly mother. We are not only nourished through feeding and touch. We are confirmed as an individual.

 

The existential question “Who am I?” has its earthly roots in this relationship. The comic strip character Charlie Brown, even after another trying day of failure or frustration, could still utter the phrase “At least my mother loves me.” Unfortuantely, not everyone can say that and so look for mother-love elsewhere. One of the main outlets is oral fixation.

 

 

 

Food and identity

 

 

”You are what you eat.” is the commonly accepted wisdom. While it is true that much of what we consume becomes part of our physical body, it can also reflect the relationship we have with ourself.

 

Food can reward us: ”Only good boys and girls who behave get to have desert.” Food can be used to punish us too. Obsessive binge eating followed by violent purging or extreme diet regimes only reinforce a negative self image and separate us from ourselves.

 

 

 

 

Perhaps the most famous example of this was the case of two anorexic sisters who took to leaving post-it notes to themselves in the third person on the fridge door. ”Susan took a carrot today. Who does she think she is?”

 

Our Earth element is meant to be our stable, neutral centre of ourself. When it becomes imbalanced we become anxious and look outseide of ourselves for a sense of identity.

 

This makes us particularly susceptibe to manipulation by others. In fact, the whole ’consumer society’ is built upon encouraging this feeling of anxiety that something about us is incomplete – and then offering their purchasable solutions. Unfortunately they may only add to our inner anxiety by telling us ’facts’ that we instinctively know are not true.

 

 

 

Is it not strange that in some of the most abundant countries in the world we are constantly being urged to question whether we are lacking something in our diet when the truth is we consume more than we need? The reality is we can exist quite well for periods of time without food at all.

 

Many spiritual traditions use fasting as a way to leave our earthly, head-down, grazing habits for a while in order to heighten spiritual experience. Apart from the feeling of lightness and heightened awareness an unencumbered system gives us, simply freeing up all the time normally spent planning, shopping, preparing, consuming and cleaning up after food may surprise us.

 

Fasting disconnects our fixation with food and earthly things for a while and makes it easier to perceive subtle shifts in consciousness.

 

 

‘Eating for energy’

 

While it is true that the burning of calories gives us energy, the consumption of them will initially require energy. Unless we are only drinking a sugar-water mix of some kind, taking in food will take some of our energy.

 

Outside of strenuous activity, the digestive process takes a great deal of our available energy long before it makes energy available to us. The christmas season is upon us. Do you remember feeling energetic after a large christmas dinner? After all, you had just consumed all that energy giving food. No?

 

That’s because our body is consuming vast amounts of energy just to process all that sludge through our overloaded system. To add insult to injury, much of that ’energy’ will be stored as fat as we sleep it off on a nearby couch.

 

 
Food and consciousness

 

Food is by no means our only source of energy. There are many more subtle forms available to us: Sunshine, light, oxygen, love, nature, inspiration, touch, happiness and joy to name a few. Unfortunately, all too often, food and drink are used as a substitute for these.

 

A heavy mind and body lacking in energy, joy or inspiration is the result. Food in not love. Love is love. If we have a problem in how we feed ourselves it might be a better investment of our time to investigate how truly loving we are to ourselves.
Love in all its forms – warmth, creative expression, sex, caring, empathy, touch, joy, connection and community beyond ourselves, light and colour, peace and contentment – feed and nourish us in ways food never can or will.

 

To be our true Self, we have to transcend ourself. We need to go beyond our own dramas; tradgedies and comedies and connect to something greater.
If we nurture these qualities in our life we may find our food obsessions fall away back to the earth and we are free to fly, unfettered by the heaviness of its gravity.

 

 

 

Till another Monday is not heavy all,

 

 


© Jeremy Halpin all rights reserved. All images are the author’s own unless otherwise indicated or if the original source is unknown at the time of writing. You can subscribe to this blog by clicking the button in the bottom right hand corner of the page – or share it on the social media of your choice. If you have any wishes or questions regarding subjects to be discussed on this blog use the contact information below. Jeremy is also available for seminars, lectures and personal consultation: info@jeremyhalpin.com

The Culture of Stress

 


 

Middle class people worry a lot about money. They worry a lot about job security and they do a lot of nine-to-five stuff.” 

– Irvine Welsh

 

 

This week, we look at the affects of stress on health from a different angle: our socio-cultural and economic conditioning…

 

 

In my time as a therapist in different countries around the world, the biggest single factor affecting health – more than diet and exercise (although it influences those choices) – is stress. What constitutes stress of course varies from person to person as does conditioning from the value system within their culture.

 

 

As my experience has predominantly been with the socio-economic middle class within these countries I will look at how its conditioning values affect health.

 

 

The bourgeoisie blues

 

Bourgeoise is a French term referring to the rise of urban populations (literally: “living in the borough”) that became merchants and craftsmen and the like – as opposed to rural workers which previously drove the economic motor of society. This have evolved over the years to become what we know today as the middle classes.

 

In Marxist philosophy, the bourgeois/middle classes were driven by the need for “the twin illusions” of material comfort and social respectablity. The upper classes (those from established, multi-generational wealth or nobility) sneeringly referred to them as the ‘aspirational classes’.

 

 

 

While obviously disparaging, it is also informative. The middle class is perhaps the only socio-economic group that appears to view life as a game of snakes and ladders. From their view in the middle, a desire to ‘get ahead’ (climb the ladder of economic and social status) is only matched by their fear of ‘falling behind’ (sliding down into poverty or at least, a lowered status among their peers).

 

The most middle of the middle class can become paralysed into inaction by this fear and crave the comfort of the predicatable, bland and unchanging:

 

“If I don’t stand out, just keep my head down and don’t do anything wrong, I will be safe.” or:
“One knows what one has but not what one may get (so don’t risk anything).”

 

– are prevailing attitudes from this collective mindset. From a health perspective, it is the opposite of growth and evolution and represents a kind of spiritual death.

 

It also shows an enormous fear of the snake and the pitfall into disgrace it represents. I trust at this point that the symbolism of this will not be lost on you. It is no surprise then that this class has also come to represent the dubiously named ‘moral majority’ that attempt (with not inconsiderable success) to push their tastes for sexual repression and wealth conservation (the protected materialism of private ownership) into law.

 

All is not well however in this ivory tower (well, alright, brick and mortar house with a finely edged lawn) of the mind. The pesky thing about materialism is that it is bound to the laws of the material world, which just happen to include, well, us…

 

 

Going, going, gone!

 

 

Here’s the thing. The material world is based upon three main principles. Material things (including us):

 

Arise (or are born)

Maintain for a time and then:

Disintegrate (die) and disappear – from physical existence at least.

 

If one could look down upon the earth through a very high speed time lapse camera, things would appear to be exploding forth from and disappearing back into the earth over and over again.

 

Applied to us this means that, sooner or later – whether by death or misfortune – we will be separated from all our material gains (money, houses, cars, investments, our ‘stuff’, our friends, family, lovers and fellow human beings. This is not a philosophical idea but a guaranteed outcome of our material existence.

 

As David Bowie once sang: “I wish I had a future. Anywhere.” As we look into the setting sun of our life, the defiantly materialistic manifesto of “He who dies with the most toys, wins!” isn’t very comforting.

 

 

 

Releiving material stress

A big part of client stress centres around material loss and gain. It creates a stressful poverty consciousness that never allows us to feel enough and leads to constant, unsatisfied cravings for things we think will somehow complete us and make us happy:

 

 

“If I just had ‘x’ amount of money.”
“If I could just land that job or career.”
“If I just had that house, car, ‘toy’, ‘dream kitchen’
“If just had a life partner.”
“If I could just have children.”
etc.etc.etc

– all of these take us out of ourselves and the present moment and into the constant craving of inadequacy – that we are never quite enough as we are.

 

 

It also means one is constantly putting off the experiences, insights and enjoyments we could be having right now. It is no coincidence that the phrase “He/she bought the farm.” (ie., finally acheived some peace through a long desired material accquisition) is a euphemism for death.

 

Strategies for remaining present in the present

One could choose to become anxious or depressed about this or we could see it as an opportunity to reprioritize our life. We could ask different questions about what we might do with the time we have in physical existence. Some of these might be:

What do I want to experience? (As opposed to having/owning)

What do I want to create?

What do I want to heal?

What do I want to transform?

These questions reposition our anxiety about the future or regrets about the past by bringing us back to the present.

 

Being separated from the present is the root of our dis-ease and many of our diseases.

 

It binds us in the sticky, two-sided flypaper of attachment: What we desire to possess and what we fear losing. It is the proverbial crack in the door that allows in those who would manipulate and magnify these attachments in us. We become bullied and stressed by forces within and without. It is no coincidence that this culture has also been called ‘the consumer society’.

 


Valuing experiences over things

 

Rather than be a cause of stress, the understanding of the entropic dissolution of physical existence can help us to prioritize what is most important and lasting: our experiences and what we become from them.

 

All experience is the proverbial grist for the mill of becoming our authentic Self, free of the craving to be something or someone else.
Life is not a report card that we must produce at our death to some authority for approval. “At least I didn’t screw up!” will not provide much comfort. The acceptance of who we are, here and now, just might.

 

 

Till another Monday that neither gives nor takes but leaves us better for the experience…

 

 


© Jeremy Halpin all rights reserved. All images are the author’s own unless otherwise indicated or if the original source is unknown at the time of writing. You can subscribe to this blog by clicking the button in the bottom right hand corner of the page – or share it on the social media of your choice. If you have any wishes or questions regarding subjects to be discussed on this blog use the contact information below. Jeremy is also available for seminars, lectures and personal consultation: info@jeremyhalpin.com

The State of Play Behind Sufferring

 

 


 

“Behind the clouds, the sun.”

 

It is sometimes very difficult to see the love permeating our lives; to see how every moment, even painful ones, have their own beauty, their own truth beckoning us.

 

In my clinic, I will often have a client come in weighed down by their problems (or at least their view of them) only to leave in a much lighter frame of body and mind.

 

A client commented recently: “I always see people smiling and laughing when they come out of your clinic.” She had started to see a pattern in her own progression in our sessions and had begun to see it in others as well.

 

 

Beyond the illusion of suffering

 

‘Therapy’ of any kind need not always be a heavy serious process that focuses only on our wounds and failures. Insights can come just as easily with laughter as with tears.

 

Even in moments of sadness, if we are paying attention, there is another part in ourselves that is so relieved and grateful to have an issue finally being addressed consciously. It is not really sadness but profound release and relief.

 

I experienced this recently in a very unexpected way chatting to a friend while we were watching the sunset. We touched on an issue surrounding my attitude and assumptions to some past events in my life. An overwhelming sense of sadness, contrition, regret and harsh self-judgement suddenly overtook me and I was moved to tears.

 

My friend just held the space and allowed this to unfold (which by the way is a wonderful skill to possess) as I received insight after insight. Even though part of me struggled against it, another part was blissful that I could allow it to take its place.

 

It brought to mind a story I was told about a leader of a spiritual movement who was having the letters of followers read out during a gathering. Most of the letters were tales of suffering and sorrow. They ask for guidance or blessings during these times.

 

Once they were all read, the leader placed them all one by one in a small fire beside her. Her repeated words while she did this was: “So much love. So much love.”

 

 

 

Not taking ‘yes’ for an answer

 
Things are not always what they appear. If we only nourish the superficial drama we will remain stuck in it. Perhaps most importantly, we will miss the playful, caring light and love that surrounds us while we are busy and determined to reinforce a lesser version of ourselves.

 

Conway, the principle character in the novel ‘Lost Horizon’ used to describe himself as: “…the kind of guy who doesn’t take ‘yes’ for an answer.” Sometimes we can be so identified with our pain and suffering that we refuse to listen to the soft siren call behind it reassuring that everything is and will be alright.

 

Conway later regrets the cynicism that led him to leave the paradise of Shangri la and spends the rest of the story desperately trying to find it again.

 

 


Beyond survival

 

The most intelligent and successful species on our planet exhibit characteristics way beyond mere survival skills. Higher brain animals like apes and dolphins show a sense of creativity, play and humour as well

 

They play tricks on each other, invent games, have sex for pleasure as well as procreation and show compassion to help or comfort each other – even those outside their species.

 

Their success on the planet is expressed not just by surviving but by being able to play with all the elements of their situation, even in the midst of survival pressures.

 

 

One important and oft overlooked sign of higher evolution may simply be the expression of love, joy and playfulness. Mastery of ourselves lies beyond our suffering. So why do we assign such gravitas to suffering?

 

 

 The suffering/wisdom myth

 

Often we are taught that wisdom and maturity are serious things; that they are the qualities of serious people and are demonstrated through a serious, humourless demeanor. Culturally, it is linked to the romanticised notion of suffering in order to gain wisdom.

 

Many a mythical or biblical tale elevates the suffering of its principle characters as somehow noble in an attempt to create a dubious link between suffering and wisdom.

 

But why should suffering be considered noble? On the contrary:

 

One could argue that repeated suffering is not wisdom at all but a form of stupidity.

 

Higher consciousness does not express as suffering but as joy. It shines with a twinkle in the eye, not tears. The greatest people, whatever their respective field of mastery, have always shown the ability to play – even with the notion of their own importance.

 

 


Healing the wound of being wounded

 

Rather than indulging in morbid and masochistic suffering, helplessness and hopelessness we would do better to see our true selves as beings of light and joy. From this perspective, we are never in any real danger.

 

 

While we may experience difficult situations, it is still us, as light beings, experiencing them. From this point we can stop being victimized by our life and begin to investigate it with playful curiosity as to what it is gracefully showing us. After all:

 

It is not what we experience that defines us but what we become through those experiences that truly matters.

 

It is this fundamental shift in understanding away from an identification as a wounded, flawed being and into playful curiosity and a love for Self and others that allows us to break the cycle of suffering and not only heal but express our highest, most evolved self.

 

Till another Monday, where we can laugh at the preposterous notion that Mondays have to mean any kind of suffering at all…

 

 


© Jeremy Halpin all rights reserved. All images are the author’s own unless otherwise indicated or if the original source is unknown at the time of writing. You can subscribe to this blog by clicking the button in the bottom right hand corner of the page – or share it on the social media of your choice. If you have any wishes or questions regarding subjects to be discussed on this blog use the contact information below. Jeremy is also available for seminars, lectures and personal consultation: info@jeremyhalpin.com

Female Ejaculation: a ‘Mystery’ Explored

 

 

 

 


 

“In my next life, I want to live backwards. Start out dead and finish off as a female orgasm.”

Woody Allen

 

 

As many of you know, the majority of these blogs come from common questions and issues raised by my clients in clinic. Some questions relate to a direct health issue but many do not. They address concerns, worries or reflections about wider aspects of life as it affects them.

 

Today’s blog comes from questions from both male and female clients about female ejaculation (a.k.a. ‘squirting, ‘gushing’, ‘fountain orgasm’ etc) and the potential anxieties and misunderstandings that surround it. This is not a ‘how to’ article but a look at understanding what it is and even how it might be part of old, survival mechanisms.

 

Copyright Castlerock Entertainment

 

 

There are varying degrees of misunderstanding around the female orgasm – in particular the ability for women to ‘ejaculate’ under certain types of sexual stimulation. There seems to be a wide range of opinion about this phenomenon – from outright denial that it exists; to thinking it is a kind of urination from ‘coital incontinence’; to curiosity but inability to achieve it for oneself.

 

Let us address the most common questions:

 

 

Is female ejaculation ‘a thing’ – is it real?
Simple answer to this one: yes. Understandably perhaps, reliable statistical information about the numbers of women who have experienced a squirting/gushing orgasm is difficult to obtain. Depending on the survey you read it can be anywhere from 10-50% of women who have experienced or regularly experience ejaculation orgasms.

 

 

Isn’t it just uncontrolled urination (orgasm triggered incontinence)?
No (and yes-ish…). While it is true that the liquid of female ejaculate does contain traces of urine there are two important differences.

 

1. It is highly diluted compared to normal urination and is virtually odourless
2. It contains substances that urine does not – which goes some way to explaining its purpose (more on this shortly)

 

An oft-quoted French study from the Journal of Sexual medicine is somewhat inconclusive due to the small sample number (7 women). However it is illuminating in some areas.

 

The women had to empty their bladders before any sexual stimulation (with a partner or alone) commenced. A sample of their urine was taken. Once they were sufficiently aroused their bladders were again measured via ultrasound and found to have already refilled (albeit in a more diluted form). Samples of the ejaculate fluid were taken, analysed and compared to the original urine sample.

 

So did the ejaculate fluid contain urine? Yes, but quite diluted and odourless along with other substances not found in the original urine sample: prostatic acid phosphatase (PAP) and prostatic-specific antigen (PSA). These are chemicals created in the prostate gland by men. 

That female ejaculate contains both traces of urine and PAP and PSA is not surprising given that origin of the fluid is from the urethra, not the vagina.

 

So, to summarise:

 

 

What is PAP and PSA and what purpose might it serve for women?
Prostatic acid phosphatase and prostatic specific antigen are produced in women via the para-urethral glands (that is, situated around the wall of the urinary tract) called Skene’s glands. These glands drain into the urethra and are part of the area known as the female ‘G-spot’ (a.k.a. Gräfenberg spot, named after the German gynecologist Ernst Gräfenberg).

 

Copyright New Scientist

 

This suggests that it is connected to the so-called ‘G-spot orgasm’. Many (but by no means all) women can experience orgasm through stimulation of the G-spot area – as opposed via penetration that does not contact the G-spot directly.

 

 

Emotional content: why female ejaculation is not urination

 

 

Ask any woman who has experienced an ejaculatory orgasm and see if she considers it the same as urination! That alone should be enough evidence to understand the difference. I think we can all agree there is a very dramatic and subjectively verifiable difference between urinating and having an orgasm.

 

There is a saying: “Women are the victors in sex.” This not only refers to their greater stamina than men due to their potential to be multi-orgasmic without the need to ‘rest and reload’ between orgasms. We now know that there are very distinct and different ways they can achieve and experience orgasm. Among these are via:

 

  • Vaginal (non G-spot) stimulation/penetration
  • G-spot stimulation
  • Clitoral stimulation
  • Anal stimulation/penetration

 

Of course to those sensitive enough, orgasm can occur in more subtle, less mechanically clinical ways as well. After all, many areas previously thought not to be particularly erogenous can become so by stimulating our most erotic area – our mind. But that is another matter outside of this discussion.

 

In addition many woman report that orgasms due to different areas being stimulated are very different in nature. The G-spot/squirting orgasm is often described as affecting the whole body more than by clitoral stimulation alone for example. Subjectively at least, this suggests a different mechanism at work.

 

Female ejaculation: a survival mechanism?

 

Mothers in labour can experience orgasm and ejaculation too. Sometimes it is what it appears to be – incontinence due to the downward pressure of the baby on the bladder – but not always.

As the baby’s head puts pressure on the G-spot, the Skene’s glands can release PAP/PSA into the urethra and, along with diluted urine, express as a squirting orgasm. What practical purpose might this serve?

For one, it increases lubrication easing the most difficult part of childbirth. Secondly it causes a rush of pain killing endorphins and helps the mother to relax. It just may be part of an ancient survival mechanism to aid successful childbirth.

Of course, this is an unproven theory but it is logical and does illustrate the mechanical connection between the G-spot, Skene’s glands and female ejaculation.

 

 

Anxiety about squirting orgasms
Perhaps knowing that female ejaculation is not the same as urination will help some women just relax and enjoy themselves more during sex. While it is true that many have to overcome the initial sensation that they will pee themselves this soon passes and pleasure replaces it.

 

Hopefully their partners are informed about this as well (another function of this blog hopefully) and can be supportive and encouraging.

 

As this has been a rather technical discussion, here is a joke to lighten the confusion surrounding female ejaculation:

 

Copyright BBC

 

Two men are talking. One says he has just read about woman being able to ejaculate with a squirting orgasm. The other silently considers this revelation for a while and then replies: “Yeah, I think I’ve had one or two of those myself!”

 

 

Till another Monday comes whether we intended it to or not…

 

 


© Jeremy Halpin all rights reserved. All images are the author’s own unless otherwise indicated or if the original source is unknown at the time of writing. You can subscribe to this blog by clicking the button in the bottom right hand corner of the page – or share it on the social media of your choice. If you have any wishes or questions regarding subjects to be discussed on this blog use the contact information below. Jeremy is also available for seminars, lectures and personal consultation: info@jeremyhalpin.com

How Intentions affect our Health


 

Yi, Chi, Li” 

ancient Taoist saying.

 

Literally, this translates as “Intention, energy, result”. That is, the software directive of our mind guides our dynamic life force (chi) into action to affect the outcome.

 

 

Which outcome of course depends (mostly) upon the intention. Intentions are creative. The plot thickens when we realise that our intentions can be conscious or unconscious ones. This means that some of our creations may come as a surprise to us.

 

 

Conscious and unconscious intentions and their creations

 

Conscious intentions are easier to understand and chart their cause and effect outcomes. For example, the conscious intention to say, save for a travel adventure or achieve a training or work goal within a certain time frame are quite tangible and measurable. Then, there are the other kind of intentions – those of which we are (not so blissfully) ignorant about.

 

For example, what if we consciously desire an outcome that is sabotaged by an unconscious belief that we are not worthy of having or acheiving it? It may appear as bad luck or treachery. The world may seem to be wickedly unfair and has singled us out for special attention.

 

The more likely scenario is that we ourselves have created and attracted conflicting outcomes. One has neutralized the other like a missile taking out a rocket soaring to the heavens. Both have been launched by us but we are only consciously aware of one of them.

 

 

Why does this always happen to me?!

 

Unconscious intentions and their resulting outcomes are harder to moniter because, by definition, we are not immediately aware of the link. It may only be later – or never if we are particularly resistant to personal development – that we see, understand and learn from our (unconscious) role in creating them. In that sense:

 

All learning (and indeed, personal enlightenment) might be described as making what was previously unconscious, conscious in us. 

 

While we remain unaware of the “Yi, Chi, Li” domino sequences we are constantly initiating, the results may feel less than satisfactory. To add insult to injury we will suffer twice from them: Firstly because of the resulting situation itself and secondly because of our continuing ignorance of our role in proceedings. 1.

 

It will appear to us, to quote a famous fool of our times, as: “Just a bunch of stuff that happened” and we will be doomed to repeat the process. While we are in quoting mode, to quote a friend and colleague about this very subject: “Suffering that is repeatedly endured is a form of stupidity.”

 

 

In other words, we never learn from our mistakes so long as we remain ignorant that we are making them. They appear to come from somewhere else and just ‘happen’ to us. We may even convince ourselves we are simply plagued by bad luck.

 

 

 

 

How unconscious creations affect our health

 

One of the tenants of Conscious Health is that the unconscious is constantly trying to become conscious in us. It will attempt to get our attention by any means possible. We now know that it is just as creative as our conscious mind and its intentions.

 

A common way is to create disturbances and dysfunction in the body. We call these symptoms. If we are particularly resistant to these semi-subtle prompts they can ramp up to fullblown health issues and disease.

 

 

 

 

At this point, instead of asking “Why does this happen to me?!”, we would be better served by asking questions closer to home like: “What am I trying to tell myself?”; “What function is this problem serving or giving me a chance to look at more closely?” or “What in my life do I need to change?”

 

 
A new way to see health and disease

 

Traditional Chinese medicine and other therapies that use the energy-consciousness model see health and disease quite simply:

 

Health is the free flow of Chi.

Dis-ease is some hindering of that flow.

 

When we understand that Chi itself also manifests as conscious (and unconscious) flows of intention we realise its vital link to our state of health.

 

A physical health issue, particularly one that has arisen over time, is not just a physical issue at all of course. It comes with many causal factors like emotional repression, learned patterns – perhaps stretching all the way back to childhood – and dysfunctional habits in diet, work, relationships and many more.

 

The potential for healing is activated as our awareness is finally awakened to the underlying issue(s) and begins to send Chi to the area where it was stagnating. This is why symptom repressing medications only work for while. Unless the root of the problem is consciously transformed it will only repeat in myriad forms.

 

I have lost count of the numbers of clients whom have been prescribed multiple medications for this and that symptom when they are all really related to the same underlying issue. It is like treating each weed flower separately instead of dealing with the roots from which they collectively spring.

 

Then of course there is the considerable extra problem of toxic side effects caused by the medicines themselves quite apart from the original disease. Usually, yet more medicines are then prescribed to ‘treat’ those and the negative spiral continues.

 

 

Collectively, this is called ‘iatrogenic’ disease (ie.,disease caused by a medical treatment for another disease). It is responsible for a staggering number of fatalities every year.

 

 

Not blame but personal empowerment

 

Western medicine is uncomfortable with linking a patient’s lifestyle, mental and emotional state, diet and exercise patterns to disease. The argument is that this creates a blame scenario where the patient is made to feel guilty for being sick.

 

We could (and should) look at it differently however. Becoming more aware of our own role in our situation empowers us to do something about it. We then have the opportunity to not only improve our health but enlighten ourselves a little more in the process.

 

We do not have to keep repeating the spiral of suffering. We can instead use it as the proverbial ‘grist for the mill’ to understand ourselves and our life a little better each time.

 

 

Now that’s not a bad intention to cultivate,

 

 

 

 

Till another Monday finds us a little more enlightened for the experience,

 

1. For more on this click here

 


© Jeremy Halpin all rights reserved
As always you can subscribe to this blog by clicking the button in the bottom right hand corner of the page – or share it on the social media of your choice. If you have any wishes or questions regarding subjects to be discussed on this blog use the contact information below. Jeremy is also available for seminars, lectures and personal consultation: info@jeremyhalpin.com

Rivers of Light – a fresh look at meridians

 


“Give light and the darkness will disappear of itself.”

 

– Desiderius Erasmus


Attention: There are all new Spring workshops available! Go to www.jeremyhalpin.com and click on the ‘Events’ menu for more information. Tell your friends. OK, on with the show….


 

The energy meridians of traditional Chinese medicine may actually be a narrow bandwidth network of low-level light pathways interacting with external and internally generated light energy using the superficial fascia as a relay point to the rest of the body.

 

 

OK, that was a lot to digest in a single sentence so let us break it down a little. It is only recently that we have been able to confirm that our bodies generate low-levels of light radiation – the most easily measurable being infrared light.

 

Conversely, the body’s healing mechanisms respond well to low-level doses of this spectrum. We also respond to different bandwidths of light (such as monochromatic light) and even different coloured light of the same frequency. So what might be going on here? Specifically, what might this tell us about the meridian system and human health and consciousness in general? All good questions but first…
A little context about the meridian system

 

It is easy to become attached to our own views of reality, while forgetting it is only a view. Reality is so large and multi-dimensional that our very human nature simply ignores masses of information – and that’s just the information we already know about.

 

What we do to navigate this daunting jungle is to create explanatory models or stories that make it more simple to grasp and communicate them to others. In the field of energy medicine one such model is the meridian system.

 

The concept of energy pathways that animate a living body has been around for thousands of years. The relative newcomer of Western medical science lacks a software metaphor that might otherwise include the possibility of animating energy-consciousness. As a result it tends to marginalize or even dismiss the energy model while simultaneously making token attempts to research it.

 

They are only token because they are viewing this software system through the prism of hardware – anatomy and biochemistry like the nervous system. Unsurprisingly then, the results are inconclusive. But what if we viewed the meridian system in a different, err, light?

 

Some therapeutic applications of light have made it into Western medical practice however. The use of lasers in delicate surgery, UV light for sterilization, the blue light of humidicribs to facilitate the breakdown of bilirubin in prematurely born babies are some examples.

 

Blue light being used to help a premature baby break down bilirubin.
The undeveloped liver cannot yet do this by itself.

 

 

Acupoints as light receptors

 

The points on the main meridians are actually simple light receptors, mimicking the primitive development of our own eyes, that could only percieve and react to the presence or absence of light.

 

As such they are highly reactive to light. This has spawned non-needle meridian treatments like ‘colour puncture’ which applies low-level doses of coloured light to point combinations.

 

 

The meridian system – a narrow bandwidth interface

 

The meridian system itself operates on a fairly narrow bandwidth in and around the body. If one presses or needles more than a centimeter or so we begin to leave the influence of the meridians and to mechanically affect the muscles and connective tissue.

 

While there is nothing wrong with that, it becomes the provenance of other therapies – from deep tissue massage to surgery – and nullifies the specific utility of the meridian system.

 

Likewise, the points themselves spiral outwards beyond the body. At a relatively short distance away however they become so large as to overlap each other making traditional point and meridian protocols meaningless.

 

 

Again, this is not a negative thing but at that point, another explanatory model needs to account for the therapeutic effects of working off the body. Indeed, many healing methods, including some light therapies do exactly that.

 

There are already people investigating just this connection between the meridian system and light:

 

“The Institute for Clinical and Experimental Medicine in Novosibirsk, USSR, in a research project lasting several years, sought to explain how the human body conducts light. They found that the light conducting ability of the human body exists only along the meridians, and can enter and exit only along the acupuncture points.” (click here for the complete article)
The fascia and the ‘living matrix’
Dr. James Oschman has long been a supporter for the scientific basis of energy medicine. He makes the connection between the body’s collective response to stimulii and the vast, interconnected webs of fascia throughout the body encompassing muscles, connective tissue, nerves and beyond.

 

What many consider muscular or even joint pain can actually turn out to be distortions in this fascial web.

 

What is even more fascinating is that the fascia can be therapeutically affected by multiple means:

  • Mechanically: myofascial massage and chiropractic adjustments
  • Energetically: acupuncture, meridian based therapies like shiatsu and non-physical healing
  • By light frequency: light and colour therapies

 

At different times it is prudent to use one over the other. For example, light therapy to an inflamed area may be a better choice than physical massage or manipulation.

 

Although Dr. Oschman’s proposals need more widespread investigation it is possible that the fascial network acts as a mediator/conductor of the energy pathways we currently know as the meridian system. It’s ability to collectively respond to physical and non-physical touch, acupuncture and light frequencies seems to confirm this.

 

 

 

A case in point

 

While visiting Australia this year I was fortunate to both attend and present a lecture at the Australian Light Association’s (A.L.A.) inaugural conference.1 As it turns out, I inadvertently became a test subject for light therapy.

 

The sudden change to warm weather flip-plops for many kilometers of walking after a Swedish winter spent in heavy shoes lead to an inflamation of the tendons in my right foot. Having experienced this before, I knew it would take about a week to subside.

 

I was given a green light ‘pen’ to shine on the affected area (green coloured light in particular is used for inflammatory states). I became immediately aware of the affect of the light, not only on the inflammed area but a series of shooting sensations to connected points and meridians around the foot, ankle and lower leg.

 

After around ten minutes or so, I could move the toes freely without pain or inflammation. By the early evening I was symptom free. This provided for me a very clear connection between the programming frequency information of light, the meridian system and the connective tissue network.

 

 

Light, energy and consciousness

 

 

We have referred many times here on the Monday Conscious Health blog to the connection between energy flow and conscious awareness. How might this apply to scientific principles?

 

While scientific laws, like the second law of thermal dynamics, demonstrate how energy is lost as an object or system disintegrates it says nothing about energy-consciousness entering a conscious, living system.

 

Would it not be logical to assume that when this happens a higher level of integration occurs? In terms of conscious awareness we would say that we experience a higher level of consciousness.

 

At the physical level we would achieve a higher level of intergration and improved function. The chaos of ‘dis-ease’ would also lessen and correct itself.

 

 

The future of medical technology

 

Here is a prediction for the future of the technological side of medicine at least:

 

We will see a shift away from overly intrusive and side-affect producing interventions like biochemical medicines and surgery towards more software-based methods for diagnosis and treatment of physical and psycho-spiritual disorders.

 

One of these will be the use of light and colour. There will be others. To fascilitate this we must incorporate a software metaphor into our medical model. We have already taken it for granted in so many other technological fields.

 

In the body however it becomes the programming language that connects the body-mind and opens up an exciting new world of exploration.

 

 

Till another Monday shines the light on another week of discovery,

 

 

1. For more details and information on the work of the Australian Light Association click here

 

 

 


© Jeremy Halpin all rights reserved. All images are the author’s own unless otherwise indicated or if the original source is unknown at the time of writing. You can subscribe to this blog by clicking the button in the bottom right hand corner of the page – or share it on the social media of your choice. If you have any wishes or questions regarding subjects to be discussed on this blog use the contact information below. Jeremy is also available for seminars, lectures and personal consultation: info@jeremyhalpin.com