I did a pod cast last week!
It was fun, because Zhe Scott is a fun person to chat with!
AND, phew… I tend to get a bit twitchy when I do recorded chats, for various reasons. I mean, I’m a quirky, neurodivergent, visionary type of person. I see wide and I see deep, and sometimes it’s really challenging to find words that adequately capture the depth, the width, and the grandness of life! As a result, I sometimes get misunderstood and/or projected upon. As an adult, I have the resourcing to handle that. But as a child… not so much. I knew from an early age that I saw life differently than many around me, and as a result I quickly learned to mask.
Fast forward to adulthood. When I began writing my blog and publishing for Elephant Journal, so very long ago, I was encouraged to stifle how I organically wrote so that it would be most widely received. Not bad advice, particularly because I was working through my own religious, spiritual and childhood trauma, and the words were so laden with confusing meanings. So, it wasn’t so much a masking, as being very careful in how I wrote. Not necessarily bad advice, for a person starting out.
The more I worked through that trauma, especially the culturally created trauma of spirituality and religiosity, the words suddenly became unburdened for me. What freedom that was! Simple words like “god” and “love” took on totally different meanings for me. And yet, I knew that culture had systematically created false meanings out of those words thought… So I was in a tricky predicament. Do I keep altering my language? It started to feel like masking, and that was not the direction I wanted to go.
It is such a predictable move that dominant oppressive culture does- to take what is beautiful and life affirming, and turn it into the opposite. And so it goes with language: in their co-opting, they literally destroy the origin meanings of words, and instead install separatist programming into those words. Most obvious, perhaps, is in the conservative right’s utilization of “pro life”. Some other words include are god, love, service… but really, the list is unbelievably long. So. long.
Many of us are saying enough is enough, and we have begun to reclaim these words. I personally have been experiencing a certain kind of joy the last few years, particularly the last year, of reclaiming language that colonization and capitalization has co-opted, and incorporating these words into my writings, and into my sessions. Of course, I acknowledge to my clients and students that that I am reclaiming the words, not using them in the way culture has misused them.
So, yeah. I have the feels with all this, because I’m continuing to allow myself to connect to core words of creation, I’m allowing myself to unmask, **knowing** that some of what I say may be misinterpreted and misunderstood. Here’s what I’m counting on- that we can have enough self-awareness to know that when our aversions come up, something is being triggered, and it’s a sign and deep invitation to slow down and lean in with curiosity.
Our aversions to words can be so powerful. In the end I do my best to speak from the resonance of connectivity, knowing that brains are getting tripped up, *and* knowing we have the empowering option of asking questions when we need more information to understand.
I will always keep leaning into how I can speak as plainly as possible so as to make what I say as accessible as it truly is, and in the meantime, PLEASE lean into curiosity, and ask questions.
Assumptions almost always separate; curious questions have deep potentiality to bring us together.
It’s my experience that we’re rarely as far apart as we think we are. We just need to slow down, lean in, and be willing to learn together.
And with that, I am so pleased to share my podcast with all of you. Some of you who know me well might even learn a few things, as I shared some thing all the way back to my ashram days!
Here’s to leaning in, and being authentic with each other