Let’s acknowledge our collective trauma and sober up about any expectations of life sorting itself out while we’re pinballing around from one self-protecting strategy to the next.
The starting point, I feel, is for each of us to acknowledge the trauma we’ve absorbed and start to take much more diligent and focused steps to release it. You can see how reactive we have become. Do you ever go a week without being triggered? A day?
From the moment our human life begins most of us are traumatised by at least one, if not all, of these three things. Let’s take a look at the three shadows that we are dealing with as humans:
Trauma Number 1: being born.
Our birth itself is a traumatic experience. Whether you believe in the great spiritual Oneness before human incarnation or just the oneness of the Mother’s womb, coming out onto planet earth as a baby, where before we were part of something bigger, in a yummy float tank with everything taken care of, now into individualisation, solitariness, Me-ness, and everything that comes with it, is a huge deal.
The cord is cut and you are helpless, dependent, and begin the human experience in varying degrees of freak out. ‘What is this skin and nerves and sensations thing?Help!’ Added to that is an immense amount of fear and bright lights and disempowerment and death that’s surrounded ‘birth’ in our culture. There’s also how unconsciously, until recently, babies’ fragile psyches have been handled on the way in, which sets a trajectory of fear and loneliness in motion. There are some wonderful rebel alliances working to change this but they are struggling to be heard.
Trauma Number 2: incorrect instructions on how we should be that separate us from ourselves.
The homes we were born into and the carers assigned to us, almost without exception, feed us a totally false set of rules on how we should be, based on the crap rule book they were given as children. ‘Don’t be like this’ ‘Don’t let anyone see you being like that’, painfully and scarily removing love and approval when not obeyed, or you get it wrong, or they’re just tired or stupid – and the whole model of ‘how to be a person’ is handed down, missing the real truths of Life, in fact, recommending the opposite.
We’re taught, through our experience, not to be vulnerable, not to fail, always to obey, to not stand out, not to be magnificent, to manipulate others’ responses by reading them and catering to their model even if it’s not authentic for us, to say yes when we often mean no, and on and on.
We have all been given a different set of incorrect instructions and it has felt exhausting and self-abandoning to keep living to that toxic model. And most people don’t even notice this. They live as if their model is still right and should be working for them, crisis after crisis, still clinging to that early, ignorant, rulebook. Ouch.
Trauma Number 3: a sick society.
The cultural environment humans have created is just so fucked up it is banal to even list it here. The attitude of fakeness and superficiality with which mainstream culture feeds itself is baffling. The normalisation of gun-running and creating war for profit. The way illness and medicine have become a business for profit. The way we treat animals. The way much of the world treats women. The taboo of male vulnerability. The way we’re taught to all pretend that we’re not going to die. The utter plunder of the environment. A culture where intimacy is treated as high risk. It’s just unrelentingly backward out there. Who said that it’s no measure of sanity to be ok living in a sick society?
So with our varying experiences of those three shadows, is it any wonder everyone’s in such a state of trauma?
I know that I am and that the accumulation of only doing minimum damage limitation on my trauma when I’m forced into a crisis is not enough any more.
I’m calling for a global pow wow to really acknowledge the state of trauma that most humans, even in wealthy countries with no bombs dropping, are in. And when we acknowledge this, to collectively team together to bring in the medicine to heal us all – and that is TURNING TOWARDS IT AND BEING VISIBLE TOGETHER.
I know looking weak or ugly or like a failure is a taboo and our lives have taught us that if we let those parts of ourselves be seen we will lose out or be exiled. We live religiously protecting the shop window of our attractive and palatable appearance – but it’s killing us slowly with loneliness.
Intimacy is not as big a risk as our reptilian brain parts claim. It feels much more dangerous than it is. In fact it’s a cuddly sheep in wolf’s clothing. We’ve made maps of ourselves, cut ourselves down to what we think will get us love and acceptance and success, and we’ve put ‘there be dragons’ around the edge of our maps as an alarm system to make sure we never risk those ‘other unwelcome parts’ being seen.
But it only takes a tiny quarter turn towards those dragons to see that they are merely children’s chalk drawings of dragons and with one soft breath they evaporate and a pile of treasure and homecoming and intimacy is available.
There’s so much heartfelt, nourishing, intimate, connected, laughter-and-tears-filled healing available if we can wake up from the trance for a moment.
3 – 2 – 1 – and we’re back in the room!
Come and experience this in an intimate setting with other people who dare to be released from the spell —> www.jamiecatto.com/workshops