A week or two ago, I had the privilege of sitting under a sacred mountain, Arunchala, in the Beloved embrace of India (which is an entirely other topic thats brewing in my writing pot, more shortly).
I was introduced to Akhilandeshvari - an Indian Goddess described as “She Who Is Never Not Broken”. When I got sight of this goddess, my heart skipped a beat. I literally jumped out of my seat in a one big phat holy YES. Finally, a spiritual deity that allows us to worship the gift and beauty in being broken open.
Coming to India is a step in the opposite direction for my spiritual way of being in the world. The transcendent aspect to leaving the world of our bodily experience, has been the exact opposite of everything I have been working on in the past years. I’ve been doing the contrary. Coming down into my body. Opening to the depths of my soul, allowing the tender feeling of my animal body to move me, embracing my feeling as divinity, finding the the beauty in the pain and the art in the suffering. I’ve been awakening to the feminine principal of our existence. Its been a process of incarnating, embodying the raw, untamable nature of my wild soul.
What I have come to know, through my own journey and by holding space for others, is that within the depth of our shadow, the dusty places we never wanted any one to see, is actually where our divinity lies.
To transcend our pain is to forget what it means to be deeply human. This doesn’t meant that we become identified with our pain, more that when we open to all of the broken places with in our being, if we allow ourselves to really feel, we can be taken to a whole new level of consciousness, about ourselves, our soul and ultimately the world soul.
With the right tools to meet these places the true alchemy can happen. Like Jung said, “There is no coming to consciousness without pain. People will do anything, no matter how absurd, in order to avoid facing their own soul. One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.”
Sat in a yoga class here in India, one of the mantra’s asked us to chant “I am not my body”. I chose to skip that line. For in my body I have found the depths of my divinity. Through the cells of my bones, I have touched the mystery so deeply, I remembered something much greater than me. I found enlightenment, by going into my darkness..
When Akhiandeshvari came into my awareness, it was a deep sigh of relief. Like most of the feminine principle, this goddess has always been there, she's just been shunned to the dark recesses of consciousness. She's in the places no one wanted to speak about. But she's coming back, all over the world, she is making herself known in different faces.
I feel we are coming into awareness that the ideal of perfection is perpetuating the duality of our existence. It’s stopping us from breathing. Its stopping us from living our true magnificence into the world.
When we reach a perceived ideal state we become static, rigid, unable to flow with life and cast a holier than thou shadow on the rest of the world. It cuts us off from intimacy with life, with others and with ourselves. When we open to the brokenness within our souls, we become shaped by something much greater than us. We become unlimited in our potential, we traverse borders.
As i have been pondering this subject, I came across this quote by Jeff Brown..
“I no longer expect perfect offerings before I take
someone into my heart. Nor do I ask myself to live up
to an illusory standard of perfection before I accept
myself. Because our humanness is not built on some
objectively flawless foundation. Because we cannot
grow as individuals if we are only moved by perfected
action. We grow in increments, learning as we go,
improving as we can. Perfectionism is incongruent
with the natural pace of change. This is not to say that
we should be satisfied with the lowest standard, but to
acknowledge that we will not develop as individuals
or as a species if we do not celebrate our little victories
along the way. If we keep demanding perfection,
we just perpetuate our collective shame. Better to
pat ourselves, and others, on the back for every step
forward, however humble it may be. We are not
striving to become perfect. We are striving to become
real, to show up for our life in every respect, flaws and
Way to go Jeff, summed it up like a true warrior.
This is the path of the true mystic. The path of the shadow is the path of the divine. When we look deep inside, when we tend to our broken-ness, piece by piece, we tap into our own wisdom. We become our own teachers, by deeply listening and becoming available to the unlimited potential within our own souls.
This is the path of true intimacy with life, where all of existence is welcome. Its the path of the heart, the soul and the feminine.
So I invite you to gaze into the soul of Akhilandeshvari and in so gaze into your own. Can you see how much light is coming from her? Do you see how much light is coming from your own broken-ness?
With all of my eternally broken heart….