Push…Leap of Faith at Mind, Body & Spirit
I was at the Mind, Body & Spirit Festival in Dublin over the weekend. I’ve spent an afternoon there every autumn for the past four or five years, always arriving on my own. I vaguely remember the feeling of…uh, let’s say excitement mixed with anxiety the first time I went, juggling questions like “what the hell am I doing here?” and “who do you think you’re fooling”? while moving from stall to stall and a few lectures (do a workshop? Are you kidding me? I’d be too visible.) quickly enough to not be noticed much.
Now here it is about five years later. I arrive just in time for a Solfeggio workshop with Yvonne from the Naas Holistic Center, who I do a Reiki share with once a month. Afterwards I meander through the stalls comfortably, feeling increasingly charged on the energy swirling around me, stopping for reflexology which lifts me even higher, then trying to eat a seaweed wrap (seriously, it tastes fine but it’s like trying to bite through paper.) before attending a workshop with Heidi Sawyer entitled “HOW TO READ HEALING ENERGY WITHOUT ENERGETIC OVERWHELM”.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with her, Heidi has been working with Intuitive sensitives for a good number of years. Intuitive sensitives are s sub group of Highly Sensitive People (HSPs), who are people with more sensitive nervous systems than others, people who tend to feel more deeply, tend to be empathic. HSPs make up about 15% to 20% of people on this planet. (There’s a lot of info about HSPs on the web, so I will leave you to do further research on that. )
One of the things Heidi does is run a group for intuitive sensitives called “Heidi’s Circle”. This group meets regularly in person and on the web. I joined a couple of years ago, primarily as a learning experience. I was certain I was an HSP. Since joining I have been trying to sort out whether I fall into the intuitive sensitive category although according to Heidi, the fact that I am interested in this group is evidence that I do fall into that category.
You can talk yourself into pretty much anything, or out of anything. I know I did. You would think growing up in the 60’s in America would provide an opportunity for free expression without judgement. You would be wrong in most cases, certainly in mine. I knew from an early age, single digits, that I was different/there was something wrong with me. Without going into detail I spent a great deal of my time from that point trying to fit in. I effectively replaced everything I knew with what I thought I was supposed to know, how I was supposed to behave. It wasn’t a perfect fit, and I was still too often the correct answer in the odd one out round. I got around this by being a rock musician, so I could be different in a more acceptable way. And that worked for me for a few decades, even beyond the point of knowing making it in the music biz wasn’t going to work for me. So I got into technology and became a tech writer, translating engineeringese into English, and that’s been working for me for the better part of two decades.
But underneath all that was a feeling that would come and go that there was more to this life for me than just going through this mundane business of life. Every once in a while I would look into that part of me, but I just couldn’t sustain it. I had done too good a job of convincing myself that this wasn’t reality. It wasn’t popular reality, a concept I hadn’t really come to terms with yet. The support wasn’t there. Other people could do these things, but not me. At one point, I had a friend in college who was in tune, was born with the ability to see auras, and introduced me to Tarot. Then he ran off with the woman I thought was going to be my life partner, Move back three spaces, maybe more.
Anyway we were talking about this workshop with Heidi Sawyer. Heidi likes to get right in there and challenge people with their own emotional stuff in an effort to process it and work through it. Personally, I like that – it appeals to the “no pain no gain” cliché that seems to be a part of my makeup. I’ve been listening to the webinars for a while now, and from the start this workshop seems to have a similar format, so I know what to expect.
Or so I thought. The workshop culminated with an exercise that involved reading the energy of the total stranger next to you. I didn’t see that coming.
I have trust issues with my intuition, which is no doubt reinforced by the decades of conditioning I briefly touched on earlier. Sure, I can do readings using cards, express what I feel when asked. I can read people I know, and even people I don’t, but generally keep it to myself, therefore never having to empirically test how accurate the information is. This felt like being thrown into the deep end. I wasn’t even supposed to face the person, just pick up on their energy sitting side by side and describe it to them in a room full of people.
For a few seconds, part of my brain was doing a monologue that went something like “AIYEEAIYEEIAYEE!!!” One person actually did get up and leave the room. I could not bring myself to do that. Truthfully, I did not know what I was going to do. Then Heidi said “begin”.
I won’t go into detail. I will tell you that, after a brief pause, reluctantly, hesitantly, I began describing what I felt. Performing this exercise was scary, but I did not embarrass myself, much to my own surprise and relief.
In the RWS deck, the Fool stands at a precipice seemingly unaware of the tremendous fall he could potentially take. It’s a card that can signify the beginning of a journey, or a new phase in your life. It can indicate an act of spontaneity. It can represent a leap of faith.
In this story, the leap of faith may have had a boot planted in its backside to get me to accept and appreciate that, yes, I really have come this far. In the end it was still a leap of faith with some “forced” spontaneity, if that isn’t an oxymoron. As for the journey, perhaps it begins with the question “what’s next”?