Tag Archives: Intention

The Choice of Self Acceptance

graveyardI’m in Colorado now, having made the trip in early October to Boulder for what I thought was a short stay. Well, things didn’t go quite as planned, and I ended up in the ER in Boise, Idaho, on my way out here. Turns out I had a partially collapsed lung and ended up being grounded for a bit. My dad was kind enough to come and rescue me from Boise and drive me back to Boulder, where I have been ever since.

During the experience in Boise, I thought I might die. I began to reflect. This wasn’t always a pretty process, at times filled with morbid thoughts, confusion, and terror. But some meaningful questions surfaced during that time of deep inner reflection: Why do I want to live? Do I want to live? Who do I want to be if I live? What’s important to me? Eventually, my heart answered with this simple statement: I want to accept and love myself just the way I am. This was clearly the next step on my evolutionary journey.

This theme didn’t go away. It stuck with me, even now that I’m settling in Boulder and feeling (somewhat) more removed from impending death. And so I set the intention to accept myself on all levels. This falls under the category of, “Be careful what you wish for because you will get it.” What I quickly came to experience is that in order for me to accept myself in this way, all those parts of myself that I had been ashamed of and condemned, and then finally denied through elaborate efforts to prove that I am not that, started to rise to the surface. After all, I cannot accept something I am unconscious of due to denial, and so these things had to bubble up so I would have the opportunity to fulfill my intention to accept myself fully. Being surrounded by family and friends greatly accelerated this process, as you can imagine.Bubbles

After setting this intention, I have gone through several layers of what it means to accept myself, and I have no doubt there is more to come. But for now, what it has come down to is this: Full self acceptance is a simple (but not easy) choice. It is a choice stemming from a commitment to live in love. This choice is not based on logical arguments which explain why these aspects of myself exist, therefore somehow exempting me from shame or blame. It is not based on logical reasons which prove my beliefs are untrue and therefore prove I have no reason to be ashamed. It is not based on spiritual bypasses which tell me these aspects of myself are “ego-based” and are therefore not who I really am. No, this choice presented itself to me when there were no more excuses, no more logical arguments, and no more spiritual bypasses. The choice came when I could no longer talk myself out of feeling the full, terrible force of the shame, when all pretense was gone and I was facing head on those aspects of myself that I had been denying and hiding all these years. It was at that moment when I realized I had a choice: I could choose to accept and love Tearmyself for no reason other than I am committed to living in love, or I could choose to continue to hate myself. It really was that simple. And, choosing love in that moment was quite possibly the hardest choice I have ever made.

And so what I’ve learned so far about acceptance is threefold:  1) I had to set the intention (make the commitment) to accept myself fully. 2) The choice to fully accept myself (and by extension, others) only becomes available when I allow those aspects of myself which I have been condemning and denying to bubble up, to come into my conscious awareness. And, those aspects only arise when I am willing to feel fully the shame that goes along with all I have been denying. I found that this is what it actually means to look at myself honestly. It is not a mind game. It is all about being fully available to feel the pain. 3) Once the stage has been set and the choice arises, I now have the incredible opportunity to choose love — to accept myself exactly as I am — for no reason other than I am committed to living in love. This is a choice I must make over and over, day in and day out. It’s that simple. It’s not easy, but it’s simple.

The implications of this choice are vast. I know now that the level at which I am able to accept and love myself is exactly equivalent to the level at which I am able to accept and love bird flying2others. I also know that my true heart’s desire is simply to give and receive love more and more fully, When I can face head on what I am most ashamed of in myself and still choose love, I can face anything in anyone else and choose love with them as well. For when I am totally honest, I notice that I carry all those qualities that I have condemned in others within myself. This, I believe, is one of the most important keys to healing ourselves and our planet.

In gratitude & love,
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What Role Do Beliefs Play in the Effectiveness of Healing Modalities?

puzzledThis is a question I’ve been pondering for many, many years. This is also on the mind of many of my clients, as they wonder how much their beliefs and/or intentions will either aid or hinder the effectiveness of the sessions they receive from me as well as how their beliefs and intentions affect their bodies and their healing processes. What if they don’t really believe in the effectiveness of these healing modalities, or they question the underlying theories? What if they can’t help but doubt? Does that mean it won’t work for them? Or will it work regardless of what they believe? The confusion is understandable, as we hear conflicting answers to this question. Some people claim it doesn’t matter what you believe; if it works, it works. Others say your intentions and beliefs actually create your reality and have everything to do with whether or not you heal. Others fall somewhere in the middle and/or just don’t know what to make of it all, although they acknowledge beliefs must play some kind of role (e.g., in the placebo effect).

I certainly don’t have all the answers, and this is still an open question for me. But, this morning I was pondering how sound healing works, as an example. Clearly, many people have experienced profound transformations through sound healing. Yet, as Jonathan Goldman (an expert in sound healing) often points out, the frequencies used to treat specific organs and energy centers vary greatly among different traditions, theories, and approaches. The theory of sound healing is based on the idea that we are vibratory beings (more specifically, that the entire universe is vibratory in nature, of which we are a part). So, these frequencies are said to aid the body in healing because they vibrate at the “healthy” frequency of the specified organ or energy center in human beings. As the person is exposed to this specific frequency, the energy center or organ then begins to resonate with the “healthy” sound, which leads to health in that particular organ or energy center. However, given this theory, how is it that two completely different frequencies can be used for the same organ or energy center and both seem to be effective in producing a healing or transformational experience (which is often the case)?

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Jonathan Goldman says that after a time of consternation over this issue, this answer came to him: frequency + intention = healing. He explains that not only is frequency a factor in healing, but the intention of the person offering the sound, as well as the intention and beliefs of the person receiving, is critical as well. This is why he believes different frequencies can be effective for the same energy center or organ, and also why some people notice benefits while others do not. This explanation still left me in a quandary, though, because I naturally started to think that this meant intention alone could explain the effectiveness of sound healing. After all, if we can use different frequencies and get the same results, and the only other factor involved (besides frequency) is intention/beliefs, then it seems that intention is the main factor in the effectiveness of sound healing, right? But, this didn’t sit right with me. What about the whole vibratory universe thing? What about the physics of how the universe (and thus the human body) seems to work? Shouldn’t that have an effect as well?

coinThat’s when I started to wonder… what if at least part of the confusion is a misconception that “frequency” and “intention/beliefs” are separable? What if, in fact, they are two sides of the same coin, so to speak? What if one does not (and cannot) exist without the other? This is what I’ve been pondering today. Perhaps part of the problem is that we think we can isolate “intention/beliefs” and then answer the question of how they (alone) affect healing. Perhaps the problem stems from this (mistaken) unspoken assumption in the question itself. If this is the case, then both frequency and intention/beliefs are factors in the healing/transformational effects of sound healing for the simple reason that they come as an inseparable package… they are two aspects of the same thing.

If this is true, I can see how, for instance, a frequency that may not be a perfect match for an organ’s “healthy” frequency could still be quite beneficial if the intention embedded in the frequency from both the giver and recipient were very coherent and strong. I could also see how a perfect match frequency-wise embedded with incoherent or even detrimental intentions/beliefs could be ineffective or even cause disruption. This would be because the total package being delivered to the person comes as a kind of net effect of both frequency and intention/beliefs (and probably a lot of other factors, by the way), and you cannot separate out one from the other. The separation is only a concept in our minds but does not represent the actual reality of what is being delivered.

This idea could then be extended to other approaches that support healing, such as nutrition, aromatherapy, structured water, Earthing products, or any of the healing modalities I practice. For instance, I recently have been experimenting kale 2with different nutritional approaches and actually became quite obsessed with “eating right.” I was approaching it from a fear-based perspective, and I can see now that my beliefs/intentions were in opposition to my health. Even though I was eating foods like veggies and such, I actually became less and less healthy physically. It became clear to me that my belief structures and intentions were affecting my ability to heal even though I was eating nutritious foods. (And, of course, there are probably other factors as well.) Yet, at the same time, imagine if I had approached eating with the same fear-based perspective but instead ate donuts and Doritos all day long. I would imagine that would have been even worse on my physical body because the nutritional and energetic content of the food does actually make a difference as well. Other factors related to intention would be how the food was grown, who was growing it and with what intention, who harvests the food and with what intentions, who handled the food on the way to the store, what the atmosphere was like in the store, etc. All of this, along with my own beliefs/intentions, combines into a complex package of what makes up that food and how it affects me.

As for healing modalities such as Polarity therapy (one of the modalities I practice), if this idea were true, then it would be quite important that I have knowledge of energy anatomy and know how to apply that knowledge practically to a person’s energetic system for the benefit of the overall physical functioning of the system. Concurrently, my intentions/beliefs as well as the intentions/beliefs of my client would also be critical. For my client, his or her intentions/beliefs would be important because the energetic dynamics of his or her system (how balanced is the flow, etc.) is not separate from the intentions and beliefs embedded in that system. And, since I (as the practitioner) am interacting directly with my client’s energetic field vibrationally, my intentions/beliefs as well as the overall coherency of my energetic system also have an impact on my client.

waterThese are my ponderings of late. What it comes down to for me in a practical sense is that all of these factors make a difference… my intentions, my beliefs, as well as the vibrational coherency of whatever I’m coming into contact with. Therefore, for example, it matters what foods I eat, and it also matters that I prepare and eat that food with love and gratitude. It matters whether or not the water I drink is structured, and it also matters whether or not I believe structured water has an effect on my health. It’s a “both/and” situation, not an “either/or” situation. That’s what I’m going with for now, anyway!

What do you think? Leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you!

In love & gratitude,
Penny