Friday, May 10, 2013

The Self

When I was a flamenco dancer in Madrid, Spain, I used to go to practice at the guitar shop. They had a room tucked in at the back filled with half-completed guitars. As I practiced my dance steps and choreography on a wooden floor mat, I was aware of all the naked, unvarnished, half-molded guitars hanging on the wall or lying on the shelves.
Cow in Morning Mist Sees her breath
The Self and Animal Self-Awareness
That room was filled with sweet smelling wood! In this room instruments were conceived and allowed to come to life. One day, these guitars would be finished, varnished and stringed and they would become beautiful instruments. I believe that once an instrument is finished it takes on a life of its own and gains consciousness because the intention of the guitar maker  is involved in its making, and also because they are made of organic materials such as wood. In those days I loved sharing my time with these delicious, unborn, wood-scented creations. As I practiced behind closed doors, I could hear the doorbell ringing at the front of the shop as people came in. I could also hear the voice of Pedro, the guitar maker, chatting away and joking with clients in a beautiful rolling Castilian Spanish.

I passed the time imagining what each instrument would become and the glorious sounds each would produce in the hands of an expert musician.

Guitarists often refer to their guitar as their woman. Accomplished musicians often have a negra and a blanca. A dark one and a white one referring to the type of wood used and the type of sound created. They often have a mistress and a wife, as they call it, and they refer to the instrument as a live being that speaks to them, expressing all kinds of moods and whims.

The reason I am writing about this is for something to come fully alive and thrill you with beauty, something has to be taken care of, carved, and shaped with precision and great attention.

Ten years ago, I started having the most extraordinary "bliss experiences" I could have ever imagined. I’ll go into that at some other time. But what I have seen is that even though they are incredibly transformative, awakening experiences, they don’t transform the "essence" of who I am, the wood, so to speak.

It is my intention, my passionate desire and my work that do that. I have to constantly work at building my foundation and my fabric through establishing more truth, more integrity and compassion and through purifying inner weaknesses. I have to work on myself regularly to detach from the chaos of emotions.

Not an easy task! Each time I think I’ve achieved a sort of standard, Life shows me it is not so and sends more challenging experiences my way.

The spirit doctors talk to me about "building my house."

If your house is strong then a tempest can come in and it will not be destroyed and can easily be repaired. If the house is weak, it will crumble.

On the other hand, tempests, they say, have their purpose, they clean the atmosphere, move the earth and feed the land.

Yet you don't want your house to fall apart. Your house is your real Self.

I have found that the bliss experiences and incredible energy surges I have felt over ten years need to be housed in a solid foundation.

There were days when my body could barely take it. I thought I was going to break or explode because the energy was so strong. One day, at a ranch in the middle of a forest in the east of France, I was literally thinking I should go to the hospital because it felt like something had cracked in my heart and it was spilling fiery liquid blood. Even though I had experienced so many things, I thought maybe this time something was really wrong with me. Maybe I was seriously ill? But watching the horses nonchalantly ruminating in the field, the delicious fragrance of horse-earth-grass-leaves and hay all in one convinced I was not ill. Something was happening to me, something bigger than my understanding, but it couldn't be illness because my perceptions were enhanced and I felt strangely connected to everything around me.

I stood there, going deeper into myself, feeling the spilling stream of fire, my heart throbbing to the sound of the horses' powerful teeth crushing the hay, feeling I was one with all of them. I was one with the whole herd inside of me, I was them, they were me, and I was also light and ethereal as I was the intangible scent of horse-earth-hay-leaves all at once.

The loss of my sense of persona was exhilarating, I was determined to find my true home, my real Self.


  1. On my recent trip to Europe I had to take the Metro, RER from Chateau Rouge to Roissy (CDG) airport. As I dragged my bag through the gates, up and down stairs, I felt my chest was going to explode. I knew it wasn't illness, just the Kundalini energy expanding into my chest, wanting more room to work with. It was painful, but not heart related.

    When I arrived in Hamburg, I looked for Kava-Kava plant. It usually helps me calm expansion mode. Not to be found in Germany, at least not where I was.

    Many times over the last 40 years have I felt energy surges. Good to know they are Kundalini because going to the doctor — after they conduct all the usual tests for stroke and heart, and find nothing — they'll probably give you some meds anyway then suggest you see a psych.

  2. Thank you very much Laila for this post which I very much enjoyed reading. My experience backs up what both you and JJ say about trusting Kundalini 100% when it rises. From time to time my vision changes and I see wavy silvery lines. The first time it happened I wondered if I should go and get my eyes tested but something deep within recognised that this wasn't something to worry about that it is all part and parcel of Kundalini. Trust and surrender are so important after Kundalini rises.

  3. Dear Margaret
    Thank you so much, I really enjoy reading all your posts too, they are really inspiring and wewre very helpful to me!