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Archive for February, 2014

Rudolph Steiner has a great meditation he recommends where he says – I’m paraphrasing – ‘listen to a dog bark or a baby cry, and first just listen to the sound it makes, the barking and crying sound, and then listen deeper, behind the actual sound, listen to the impulse that threw that sound out, the energy that made it spring forth into a sound’ – this is one of the steps of the Full Body Listening we do on the weekends, listening first to the words, then the needs or agendas behind the words.

Debussy said ‘music is the space between the notes’.

The crazy Taoists have a whole wing of teachings called Wu Wei – Active Non-doing. So cool! You get more data and available wisdom by tuning in to space than anything else.

The greatest skill to develop in our times is the ability to pause, to stop, to leave space, and listen.

All workshops at www.jamiecatto.com

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One of the most valuable things I’ve learnt in recent times is that whatever anyone says or thinks about me is really more about themselves than me. I have had such a tendency in the past to use people who don’t like me or something I’m doing, or ‘how’ I am, to reinforce my negative beliefs about myself, ‘the truth’ and proof of me being a bad boy or unlovable, or even, more recently, untrustworthy. But I’ve realised that freeing myself from using these people’s stories and assumptions to abandon myself has to stop.

I read a quote someone posted recently by Byron Katie which said, ‘it’s not your job to like me, it’s mine’ and I skipped over it without really letting it in. Now it resonates loud and clear. When I get letters from folks who find me ‘too’ this or ‘not enough’ that, their diagnosis of me seems usually a strategy for them to skip their vulnerability of responsibility for what they are feeling that day. So it’s easier to blame and complain about how I shouldn’t be or how I should have been as a technique to get away from their feelings. It’s such a great opportunity for me to do the practice of NOT abandoning myself to their stories and instead to advocate for myself.

The whole of our culture has blamed and demonised characters throughout history as an attempt to deny their own shadows and vulnerabilities. Judas is the main archetype for this but all through history individuals and even whole races have been blamed and condemned in places where the culture didn’t have the maturity to own or acknowledge their own shadows. The blacks, the jews, the gays, women, men, even the disabled have had this treatment in all sorts of places throughout history. This, in some situations, often led those races or groups to actually believe they were bad, or that they were less or that there was something wrong with them. We’re so addicted to approval and it’s so convincing to be told you are bad that after a short while it can really take root.

It took root for me throughout my childhood, whether it was from the negative mirroring of my family or my teachers, being a so called ‘problem kid’ in school – and I’ve carried it with me my whole life. Until recently I would attract all sorts of people doing the same thing in different ways when they felt uncomfortable around me but needed an external excuse to escape the feeling. Now I feel the warrior blood rushing back into me and the strength to say ‘No’. I won’t be seduced by negative mirrors which re-trigger those beliefs I used to carry. I won’t be bullied in this way. I’m going to use each one to love myself and as a reminder to stop abandoning myself.

Tell me below if you’ve had this experience too and how you learnt to re-love yourself.

All workshops and talks www.jamiecatto.com

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Let’s at least be honest with ourselves and each other from now on. We each turn a blind eye to our ‘leaders’ who action killing and torturing people, murdering and stealing on our behalf because it gives us this lovely comfort zone of I-phones and fresh food and cheap products and wealth.

We love this comfort zone so much that we are ok with our leaders killing people far away, keeping poor people ‘over there’ enslaved and destroying environments and species across the water and even at home so that we can exist in our lovely coddled bubble. We can’t pretend we don’t know, and we sometimes care a bit, maybe enough to click a petition on Facebook – but even the so-called awake ones, even those of us who know quite a lot about what’s going on, do almost nothing about it.

I want more from us!

Anita Roddick told me that the only way to turn this around is through the ‘vigilante consumer’. That unless we choose more carefully what we spend our money on, nearly every penny we spend is unconsciously funding the brutality. We need to know, when we buy at a certain store or fill up our cars at a certain petrol station, who we are funding, because if we all decided to be totally clean about where we spend our money every day, the companies and structures that perpetrate this destruction would have no more funds to carry on. There’s a famous quote ‘if you think you’re too small to be effective try going to bed with a mosquito’.

Russell Brand has also urged everyone to stop voting for these puppet servants of the Corporate oligarchs. Once again, if we don’t vote them in or give them our money, the nightmare ends. There’s space for something new. We fear that it would be a worse chaos – but what could be worse than this?

We clearly need an alternative, we need to BUILD THE NEW. We need a system that fairly allows hard work to be rewarded but never leaves anyone without the basic food and shelter and education that our resources can provide. Noam Chomsky told me that we are all educated to believe that ‘there’s nothing we can do’, that our ‘free’ culture’s Media is directed to really brainwash us into feeling powerless because in a culture like ours ‘you can do A LOT’. He calls it ‘the engineering of consent’ and says that all through school ‘we are directed to believe that success means becoming a millionaire….but there are other values’.

So…shall we? Can we make a start by foregoing some creature comforts so that less power and money streams into the hands of the Corporate oligarchs? What would you be prepared to give up? I’m writing this on an Apple computer, probably made in a Chinese sweat shop where someone jumped out of the window to their death due to horrific working conditions.

The crazy thing is that it could happen tomorrow if we collectively decided as one force to go for it. I get so excited for that moment, now that we have the internet we can instantly communicate as one. Is that day coming?

I’ve stopped eating meat because the factory farming industry is inhumane and backward.

I haven’t stopped using petrol in my car.

I have started buying my vegetables locally and am learning how to grow my own, starting our own veggie patch when we move home in May…

…but I still buy some products from the big chains who sell aisles and aisles of toxic, processed food and care nothing for yours or your family’s health.

Sourcing things locally seems to be a good start. Please list for the readers some first steps we can all take, achievable steps which will get the snowball rolling.

www.jamiecatto.com

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When we experience the triggers from challenging people or events that unexpectedly send us into such deep, reactive pain – when someone has said or done something which we have a huge painful reaction to, it’s so easy to forget, in the midst of the wrenching, often suffocating or explosive pain that we ALL have a lot of accumulated pain and stress, old unexpressed emotionally blocked hurt, which lives in our body. This old pain in us lies dormant until someone or something comes along, something which is of the same ‘flavour’ or ‘frequency’ of that old accumulated hurt – and then our interaction with them causes the accumulated, dormant pain in us to be activated. It feels as if this person or event has just ‘made us’ feel a huge amount of pain or stress when in actuality they have just ‘triggered’ not ’caused’ this sensation. They have triggered what was already there in us, lying waiting for someone to come and re-activate it – therefore WE are responsible for our reactions, even if they were unarguably ‘wrong’, the reaction in us is still ours, not theirs.

This is a huge shift for us and our culture that we need to get with NOW. The person who upset us is NOT responsible for the huge volcano of feeling we are experiencing. The volcano was already in us, waiting to be triggered like a time bomb. The thing to do when this happens is to leave the person or event that has triggered us until we can, with help or by ourselves, process the pain, feel it, love it, dissolve it, be with it, allow it, allow the volcano to settle without blaming that triggery person, and only then, when we have responsibly attended to our own wounds and volcanos, go back and clear up anything that’s still left with the present day person without making them responsible for our massive overreaction.

This takes discipline and is, to me, the definition of maturity. I rarely pull it off.

The sucker-punch is to blame the person or thing that set me off. It seems SO just at the time to make it all about the trigger. The pain often feels too big and overwhelming to own. So we live, in our immaturity, in a blame culture, condemning all sorts of people, just because we’ve never learnt to sit with our pain, be responsible for our reactions, process them, love ourselves in them. We’ve rarely been taught these skills, so in our ignorance and overwhelming reaction, all we feel we can do it blame and fight and control the external trigger.

I hope we’re now moving into an age where we can love ourselves more and step out of this never ending cycle of pain-avoidance and blame. Let’s hold each other in it. Let’s teach each other and our kids the skills to be able to sit with our own pain, to be able to self-soothe, to be able to stay in the feelings without blaming and condemning others.

THIS, more than anything else, will create the harmonious next chapter for this planet that we all crave.

Please write below some suggestions of ways we can teach and learn these skills in a sustainable, efficient way.

all workshops and events at www.jamiecatto.com

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ACTIVISTS and MOVEMENT LEADERS – I notice that it’s paramount that the members, especially the ‘leaders’ of the groups for change are constantly, visibly fallible in our anger, dark appetites, corrupt tendencies, all the dark parts which make us humans, and as we play openly with those shadows, be seen in them, not try and put forward any pretensions that we are above those aspects of ourselves, then we can be walking permission slips for the members of the movements and groups to also not hide away their shadows and in this way the projects for change and healing can be sustainable. I really hope that all of these new projects include a good dose of this. I hope they never pretend they are above those who have unconsciously slipped into the old structures of greed and ignorance, but instead constantly admit fallibility, human nonsense and with mischief and foolishness guard against over earnest, grandiose, superior notions of themselves. I hope the creators and other folks running these shows can bare their shadows so visibly that we never pretend we are better-than, or above the past.

Look what your ‘fighting against’ out in the World – it’s an arrow directing you to an internal battle, something you need to address within yourself. Look what you want to heal in the world – it’s an arrow directing you towards something unhealed and unfinished inside you. Use the things you feel passionate to fight and heal in the World as the signposts they are – all ways our innate Genius is using to mirror ourselves and get our own houses in order so that we can have a sustainable and effective impact on the issues of our Home Planet.

All workshops www.jamiecatto.com

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