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Many of you have recently heard me expounding the virtues of making sure I have my ‘8 bowls of fulfilment’ well tended to. 8 areas of life which feed me healthily. The idea is that I don’t become dependent on any one of them (usually my relationship bowl) to be the source of my ‘everything is ok’ feeling.

When I only count the ‘sex and romance’ part of my life as the ‘bowl’ which determines how good life is today, (and then when it’s rocky my life is rocky, and when it’s smooth my life is smooth), I suffer and find myself starving and dependent BUT when I spread my fulfilment through 8 other areas equally, suddenly I am always full and not graspingly dependent.

In my old model of mainly focusing on the climate in my relationship as ‘everything’, I really let a lot of vital things slide, not least my close friendships, my ‘chosen family’. I realised fairly recently that I had got myself into a pattern where everyone I saw was either one of my kids or a client. I had unwittingly starved myself of my essential, supportive and wonderful friendships. So I set to remedying that at once, reclaiming contact with those I love and along the way I discovered and re-filled many other sources (or bowls) of contentment and fulfilment which are now the true sustenance of my daily life.

Here are the bowls which feed me:

1) Friendship

2) Connected time with my kids

3) My love of music, literature and film

4) My creative productivity., writing, music, film…

5) My spiritual path of being tenderly punked and illuminated by my crazy angels.

6) Service and being helpful to whoever’s in need.

7) Time alone and in nature.

8) Body care, home-keeping and cooking.

…and of course not discounting sexy, sensual, intimate possibilities…just not necessarily making them a primary bowl by default. I keep these other bowls full and the connections alive – so I feel full, even in the emptiness (which, by the way, is also full – of ideas).

What are your bowls? Can you take some direct actions to keep more of them brimming with soul-nourishment for you?

jamiecatto.com

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I’ve been getting myself into a bit of trouble recently online with my attempts to lead the men back to the women and the women back to the men. Maybe my offerings and opinions are a bit hard to swallow or maybe it’s just too soon, with the #metoo movement, to include men’s vulnerability and needs alongside the women’s. But I strongly believe that the journey back towards each other needs both the men and the women to step towards each other at the same time and somehow dissolve the violence and trauma of our ancestors.

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That’s why Ruby May and I have been working very hard to create a brand new workshop for singles and for couples – BITCHES & BASTARDS – and there are two dates already planned in Amsterdam and London with Berlin and Copenhagen about to be confirmed…

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Because what if our shadows could be turned into treasures and become the fodder for intimacy, deepening, and growth?

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Many of us run away from the difficult and dark sides of relationships or feel like ‘something must be going wrong’ when dramas and conflicts arise, but what if the pain is a sign that something is going right? What if our loved ones were the perfect triggers for us to resolve the wounds we have accumulated around relating and truly stepping into our power? What if life was inviting us to turn towards the challenges, rather than away from them?

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It’s time for us to transform the suffering sides of ourselves which arise so dramatically in our relationships, friendships, at home and at work. It’s time to stop struggling with the taboos, hiding the shameful, painful parts of ourselves, which get triggered when we get closer to others.

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The more we feel shame for how we are, and what we truly deep down want, the more destructive we become. Our neediness, our sense of entitlement, our rage, our sense of being superior or inferior, our disempowerment, our selfishness – these turn us into Bitches and Bastards when they are not consciously accepted and integrated.

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Ruby May and I warmly invite you to a contained space to illuminate and transform the shadows which can run riot in our relationships…

 

During our two days we will:

  • Explore the power of humour and lightness to transform that which is buried or painful or the issues we feel shame around.
  • Learn to recognise the multiple ways we give our power away – such as through manipulation, avoidance, control, blame or playing the victim – and explore who we are beyond this.
  • Discover how our childhood attachment experiences affect the way we relate later in life, bringing more understanding and compassion to ourselves and our partners.
  • Deepen our connection to our bodies, and explore tools to support staying in the present moment and learn how to recognise and deal with reactivity.
  • Explore emotions as signs that we have a need that is important to us, learn how to identify our needs and practice and take home tools for giving and receiving effective communication from the heart.
  • Learn about the neuroscience behind why we react the way we do and marvel at the ingenuity of our bodies and brains!

As we come into our ‘enoughness’, we can change our focus to what it is we wish to create in life and wish to give to our partners, rather than what we can ‘get’. Viewing relationships as a vehicle for our growth, we begin to see ourselves as the safe-guarders, rather than judgers of each other’s shadows.

Whether you are single or in an intimate relationship, Bitches & Bastards will take you on a journey deep within, balancing vulnerability with playfulness, depth with humour.

Ruby and I warmly invite to to join us for this amazing new workshop. The dates for this one so far, are:
6/7 October – BITCHES & BASTARDS – Amsterdam

24/25 November – BITCHES & BASTARDS – London

8/9 December – BITCHES & BASTARDS – Berlin or Copenhagen

Please comment below if you want to know more or to remind me of my white male privilege…

Hope to see you in the room though

Jamie

Heartbreak

At these times it really helps me and REMINDS me to list the many elements in my life which feed me as (before I was enlightened) I used to think ‘only that one person gives me that ‘everything is ok’ feeling’ – So I remind myself to spread my sources of fulfilment more evenly including friends, self care (you just feel better showered and moisturised), my kids, music and books and films, nature, comedy, being in service, being creative, and above all being curious about the painful feelings inside as if I have a radar to feel them, like I’m a wine taster of them because when you turn towards them with welcoming interest the body’s genius discharges not only the present painful waves but, (if you’re willing), also lots of emotional pain which has accumulated in the body with all the suppression and battering of past decades.

Listen inside with a welcoming curiosity and say aloud “I am now a human who is willing to feel some of my uncomfortable feelings.” .
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(ps I’m not currently experiencing heartbreak so that’s not what I meant by ‘these times’ and there’s no need for any supportive outpouring)

http://www.jamiecatto.com

There are all kinds of reasons to hold back from putting your stuff out there. One I hear all the time is the anxiety or vulnerability of ‘what if it’s not successful?’

I’d suggest revisiting our definition of failure and success. Let’s broaden the patriarchal ‘value only based on money and numbers sold, or ‘positive attention for me generated‘ and add some others: success of completing something substantial, success in reaching some people very deeply (someone once told me my book stopped them from killing themselves and suddenly how many or few I’d sold felt less important), success in all the unknown impact it will have, success in the permission it gives other misfits to offer their gifts, success in the wonderful relationships forged and deepened along the way, success in the immense learnings and honing of skills and wisdom gleaned….. add more – redefine success, it’s your world – value doesn’t have to only mean what your family and local culture told you.

For me, our projects are like our children. They are the things which we are devotional TO. They’re not there to GET us stuff. When we treat our project as a beautiful and magical creature that we have charge of (like our kids) and choose to be the devotional space around them so they can thrive into their fullest potential then it will always have been time well spent, no matter how richly the world out there receives it when it is released, but when we mistakenly treat our project as if it’s here to get us something; money, status, attention, then it’s like we’re saddling our creature as if it’s a donkey to carry all our self-esteem issues and money worries up the hill. That’s not its job. So let’s adjust our attitudes to our projects accordingly.

If you’d consider it a waste of time if it doesn’t bring you money and worldly success when it’s done then I really wouldn’t bother doing it.

It’s up to us to define what success and value means to us, both for our own enjoyment of the creative process and to fill the world with more liberating perspectives and enriching possibilities.

www.jamiecatto.com

image Lisa Falzon

When you say “I find it so hard to love myself”, the one in You who finds it so hard to love yourself isn’t really You. It’s not the ’I’ you mean, the actual You. The one in you who finds it hard to love yourself is a wounded, working-from-outdated-data, brainwashed-by-untrue-beliefs little character that lives in you, that wants to protect you from getting it wrong and that has been so prevalent that they, and all their negative beliefs, seem like they are the real You –

– but the REAL You has no problem loving and forgiving yourself. The real You, the one I’m talking to now – can you hear me? I think you can. You know very well that you’re innocent and just as worthy of love and care as anyone else. You’ve been through what you’ve been through, you’ve had your own unique childhood of wounding and confusion, and you’re still a well-meaning, kind person. You may not deserve more than the next person…just the same love and care and benefit-of-the-doubt that you’d extend to anyone else in your life. No big grandiose drama.

Yes…You. You know you deserve love. The ‘I’ you were talking about before that finds it hard to love you isn’t You. It’s one of Headfuck FM’s DJs who’s been given so much repetitious airtime in your inattentive head that they seem like truth, like ‘who you are’. Actually the list of undeserving, self-loathing, or self-ignoring, protocols that this character filters life through is not You but a mode you defaulted to long ago, well-meaning but ignorant….and obsolete now.

I know you get this. Please try and keep it for at least the next hour.

jamiecatto.com/workshops

#academyofthesacredfool

Why have men waged war on women throughout recorded history? I’m assuming that if you’re reading this you don’t need me to make the usual, obvious list to support that under-statement.

Don’t freak out but women are closer to god or spirit or magic (or whatever you call your essential source of All That Is)…than men. OK OK I said don’t freak out!

Women are the physical, human doorway between heaven and earth. They have a womb and a vagina and life literally arrives through their cosmic stargate portal. Men obviously do not have this ability and are one step further away from ‘heaven’.

For a man to enter heaven, he has to do it with or through the woman and one of the ways that he can experience even an echo of that access to core spirit is when she welcomes him to be sexual with her.

Women hold the key to the doors of heaven and men have been terrified to be excluded or not have access to that place so in blind, ignorant panic, as the barbarians and hunters and warring animals they are, men’s conclusion has been to make war on women, and subjugate them in every way, to own and control them and what they do wth their bodies, and make them afraid of male violence if they don’t obey, all to make sure that men can always get access to the core spirit they hold, and never be excluded from it. The price of women’s constant terror, even often to walk down the street or go dancing – constantly tracking to make sure there isn’t male-predator energy lurking around the next corner, is a price men are willing to live with and the endless river of available pornography is the lowest grade access point for men who can’t get it through love or control, the last resort for the bereft junkies.

This trajectory started long long ago….

The men also created clubs (religions) where they excluded women and debased women’s higher value as spiritual conduits, and pretended the men were spiritual conduits (priests). The priests, criminally faking that they were the channel to god ended up having their circuits fried by the level of spirit that came through, and became sexual abusers and power freaks and false judges and even torturers, all the while pretending that the women, who were the only ones capable of being ‘priestesses’ and channelling that amount of spirit, were lower and even dirty, even evil and responsible for the Fall of Man! So they murdered them, burned them at the stake and still to this day only recently will even start a conversation that there could even a shred of equality in this area (let alone acknowledge their superiority in this realms). The men gathered in numbers in monasteries, secluded, praying and meditating, trying to find the doorway to god without women. They never once found it after decades and decades of freezing their asses off in the mountain caves.

Through controlling women’s right to choose whether she will or won’t reproduce, to control that sacred doorway, and to brainwash women and all culture that women are ‘less’ and that they should be paid less for the same job is still totally normalised in our culture (incredibly) – and to reduce her divine power to a grubby buying and selling market of sex addicts, porn and advertising – reducing the purest gold we know of to cold coins – men are still, through ignorance and desperation – warring on women.

It is only very recently that finding a way to heaven through protecting the woman, listening to the woman, and bowing at the temple gate of the woman, holding and upholding the woman in a mutually respectful and reverent dance, has been even contemplated. It takes some vulnerability to do that and that’s counter-intuitive to someone who’s been warring for eternity.

It’s time to end this war. It’s time to dissolve all structures which prostitute the sacred entrance to heaven such as glamour advertising and pornography. All archaic institutions which support lack of equality, lack of equal respect and pay and promote sole male seniority need to be phased out and used as cautionary tales for the new children to learn the wrong way. To learn that the male warmongers who tried to force a path into heaven with their armies only opened up the gates of hell for themselves and their ancestors.

Can we men ever be forgiven for thousands of years of violence? Can the men who grew up in this culture but realised soon enough that they didn’t want to participate in that abuse be welcomed into the inner sanctum to rebuild a equal and mutually honouring world together?

What would it take?

jamiecatto.com

For me, one of the biggest subjects in how we interact with each other these days, is about knowing the difference between our intuitions and our projections. We often judge things and people negatively when we are unconsciously reacting from a projection of ours from a painful past experience, and yet we can kid ourselves that we are sure we are ‘right’ and that person is ‘doing this’ or ‘behaving like that’ when they are quite innocent and our ‘certain truth’ is really us reacting to an old feeling inside ourselves that we are unaware of.

My partner told me yesterday about a clip she saw online where the speaker described a court case of a convicted murderer, and the jury were deciding whether he’d get prison or the death penalty. When they chose the death penalty it was on the grounds that his face was totally blank and he showed no remorse. But then it was discovered that in that man’s culture a blank expression WAS remorse. Oops.

I have noticed that when I feel hurt or triggered by someone’s behaviour, it is not always ‘the thing they did’ that hurts me but the ‘meaning’ or ‘interpretation’ of their actions and choices, that I have added, that hurts. I will think “that means they don’t love me” or “that means they don’t care about me or respect me”, or “they’re trying to get one over on me”. The person involved could have totally innocent intentions but because I am hurt or suspicious, my mind, in it’s usual misguided and self-protecting way, will come up with these extra versions and judgements which may or may not have anything to do with reality. I’m concerned that we have developed a curious kind of paranoia here where we knee-jerk expect the worst and give everyone the opposite of the benefit of the doubt.

Here’s an example: someone could be coming home for dinner and stay slightly later at work to make sure everything is cleared and done so that there will be absolutely no distraction once home to have a wonderful undisturbed evening with their partner. Upon arriving home a bit late, the partner who has been also looking forward to the evening and been cooking a beautiful meal, could easily interpret the late homecoming as disrespect and uncaring when it was really the exact opposite. That’s a slightly contrived and lumpy example but I have noticed that I am much more likely to judge someone’s actions towards me from the negative presumption when I am triggered or worried than to imagine the positive version and look through the lens of trust and positivity.

We’ve all been bitten in the past and have good reason to be careful. We also need to guard against genuinely uncaring or toxic people, but I feel we may have drifted into a kind of automatic, negatively assuming mode where we expect ill-will before we expect innocence and care towards us.

Let’s really notice, when we are so ‘sure’ that someone is being uncaring or selfish or sexist or sleazy or ignorant or avoidant….let’s be careful that our certainty that they are ‘being like that’ is really coming from a clearly felt sense in this moment and not from our reactivity to all the people and negative experiences from our past that we are lumping this person in with.

To do this we need to become much more intimate with our feelings and sensations and notice ourselves feeling them before the mind jumps in and gets busy making stuff up.

We have been trained to be externally fixated but it is our attention and intimacy with our INTERNAL state which will keep us on the authentic and un-enslaved path.

jamiecatto.com/workshops