A Thousand Lifetimes In One

thousand livesI have lived a thousand lifetimes in one.

I know how it is to be deeply loved, ecstatically happy and to know that this will always be so.
I know how it is to sit in despair day after day, week after week, and see no end in it, unless in the early reprieve of death.

I know how it is to be honoured as a powerful woman,
and I know how it is to be raped and desecrated.

I know how it is to stand in my power and allow my light to shine,
and how it is to scurry and hide in shadows for fear of discovery.

I know how it is to feel completely futile
and how it is to hold the power of the Universe in the palm of my hand.

I know how it is to give birth to life, and how it is to give birth to death ….

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I’m sorry

I’m sorry.

I know I am born to be brilliant and to do important work
and I’ve been hiding …

I’ve been scared

I’ve been scared to be seen and for others to reject what they see
I’ve been scared to be laughed at
I’ve been scared to be loved and to lose that love
I’ve been scared to love and to lose those I love
I’ve been scared to be found wanting

What scares me most
is that
I die
and
leave the world as I found it
with just as much pain
and confusion
and lack
and loss

and that I leave with all my gifts inside me
the brightness
and beauty
and hope
and dance
and awareness
and clarity

What will we all lose if you do the same?

horizon

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So where’s the tiger?

So many of our health issues relate directly to one thing. Stress. If you look at the risk factors for heart disease, cancer, diabetes in people, you will see that diet is an issue, levels of exercise, and above everything else, stress. It’s not an easy one to measure so the research doesn’t detail much about it, but if we get real ourselves, don’t we all know that it’s a biggy?

Wild animals don’t have these issues, nor would we humans likely in the wild. Taking cancer as an example, our body would sort cancer out no problems. We have two main nervous system responses – a warm, fuzzy, cuddly one that allows all our maintenance processes to run optimally, and a scared or excited response that kicks in if we get chased by a tiger. The Parasympathetic, or the rest, digest and repair system is our maintenance programme, in which state our cells are growing and repairing, our food is digesting well, and our immune system is operating optimally. By contrast our Sympathetic, or fight, flight or hide system, response is designed to kick in when we need fast rapid action, eg in times of crisis, or when we are in danger of becoming dinner. In this state everything is prioritised to move – our immune system shuts down, we are not digesting food, and our cells are not growing or repairing – if we get caught by that tiger then it doesn’t matter much if we digested our last meal or whether we are brewing a cold. Our blood is all directed to our brain and major organs, especially our heart and limbs for running.

So it would not be ideal for us to by running in the Sympathetic nervous response most of the time, especially as there is no predator chasing us. And yet, that is exactly where most of us exist, most of the time – we use stimulants, such as caffeine, to get us going in the morning, which also gets our sympathetic system going. We then often launch into high stress lifestyles at work, eat nice calorie laden meals, and then watch thrillers on the TV and have fast, high friction sex, solo, or with a partner, ending in contracted, peak orgasm as the only way to be able to sleep at the end of a day spent almost totally on the Sympathetic nervous response.

Alongside this, our bodies are continually creating mutations in our genetic material, many of which do nothing, and then some that create DNA sequences and genes that lead to switching on of genes that control cell growth and division – unrestricted cell division leads to growths, some of which are benign, and others malignant, ie cancers. In a healthy system, where a person is operating in their maintenance state of the Parasympathetic, for all the times they are not in life-threatening situations, then their bodies will take care of these changes in genetic sequences – there are very effective systems that go along checking for mismatches and repairing anything that is not as it should be. Even if something gets past this system then other parts of the immune system are very effective at dealing with any growths that do develop. This is what happens when all is in balance. For someone who has not slept well, because they have been stressing about work (pumping out adrenalin), who starts their day with cigarettes and coffee (more adrenalin), who goes to work, struggling through rush hour and then spends a day feeling pressured at work (more stress, more adrenalin), comes home and eats rich foods (lots of dopamine, also stimulating sympathetic) and goes to bed, has a peak orgasm or two (more dopamine), gets a poor night sleep, and then starts the whole cycle again. All this time all the body’s maintenance programmes are being shut down and the body feels as if it is always under threat….

This is a fairly simplified explanation of what actually is happening in most people’s bodies most of the time, but it gives you a fair overview of what goes on. There are other hormones that are important in these processes than adrenalin and dopamine but the whole mix becomes a bit complicated and these are the main processes and why it doesn’t serve us at all to be stimulating our flight, fight or hide response most of the time….

The good news is that we can’t be in both fight or flight and also maintenance at the same time, so if we can bring ourselves into our parasympathetic response then we also bring ourselves out of our sympathetic response.  One hormone, oxytocin, also known as the ‘love hormone’ or ‘hug hormone’ is released in our parasympathetic.  How does it feel when you are angry and someone gives you just the right kind of hug – can you stay angry?  And stroking will also induce oxytocin release.  So those times when you are running on overdrive just try gently stroking your arm, or better still, get someone you love to stroke your back, and see how it feels.  And maybe ease upon the caffeine, and sugar?

 

Tiger

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It doesn’t have to be this way …

Hands4In a world where it is considered an offence to show our naked body in public and lovemaking is to be hidden, and yet gratuitous violence or depictions of murders are considered to be entertainment, how can our young people learn to show affection for, to honour, or to make love to those they choose to love as partners?

Our young people are growing up in a world of desensitisation and this is most pronounced in terms of their sexuality. Desensitization from hard, fast and abrasive sex that is oriented towards the goal of peak orgasm in the minimum of time in a world that never has time for anything. Or psychological desensitization arising from fear of real intimacy that would shine a light on the truth of who we actually are, reflected in the eyes of our lover. Even things like genital shaving or waxing in women that leads to massive reduction in physical sensitivity.

Where do our young people learn about making love and sexuality? They learn the mechanics of making babies and avoiding STDs in school and most learn anything else from watching porn.

By the time of their 40s most men are experiencing some form of erectile dysfunction and this is considered to be normal. It doesn’t need to be. Both men and women are experiencing deep distress from lack of intimacy and touch and feelings of isolation, such that many are actually taking their own lives. Far more are simply existing through their lives, rather than thriving and creating and contribution to the lives of those around them.

These are only a tiny pin-prick of the total impact and cost to the individual, their families, communities, and the world at large. What of the economic impact? How much art or literature or pleasure is never created because too many are trapped in these cages and spaces of despair and misery?

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How can it all be about lions and dentists? …. Scotland’s First Ever Festival of Consciousness

StormySkies2.
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The recent debacle with the killing of Cecil the lion indicates far more than a dentist with enough money to pay guides to find a lion and lure it for him to shoot an arrow into. What goes on in the mind of someone to do this? And what does this say of the local guides who are willing to offer up their increasingly rare indigenous animals? There are so many other stories behind this story that involve far more than lions and dentists and have one common theme; how willing are we each to remain conscious of the impact of our actions? It is said that a butterfly flapping its wings in South America can affect the weather in Central Park, and whilst this may not in fact be completely true, it stands to reason that each of our actions has an impact that we could only imagine.

This is a time where more and more people are beginning to question where their food comes from, why our land is being treated with such disregard, and what is their own part in all of this. And it is a time when many of us are asking with increasing urgency ‘is this what it is truly about?’ Are we truly destined to be born, to work with the bit between our teeth till we fall down exhausted or die, or maybe, if we get lucky, we may die peacefully in our sleep? Is there really no more? And is there no more to our relationships than the convenience of a companion and someone to share the bills with that many of us experience? This undoubtedly Orwellian model that many, if not most of us, experience, is despised, and yet we unconsciously find ourselves there. How did this happen? How many of us, watched our parents draining their very life force into this system, and swore not to walk the same path, and yet find themselves in the very same place, but with more new fangled gadgets? Now we have so many more options to distract or to numb ourselves out; sugar and fat laden foods with little to no nutritional value, TV, internet, unthinking over-activity and workaholism, or porn or unconscious sex. And this is before we totally lose our focus by worrying about debt or ill-health.

There are those who would like to choose a new, and more conscious, way. There are those who would like to know what is in the food they eat and that it will actually nurture them, rather than simply fill a space. There are those who would choose to connect to the land they live upon, to grow their own food, to feel the connection to the seasons, and to feel the grounding benefits of their bare feet upon the earth. And there are those who would like to have depth and intimacy in their relationships.

Where can anyone seek help to bring these changes into their lives?

The Festival of Consciousness in Newbold House in Forres, a small town in the north of Scotland, later this month, may seem just another slightly quirky event. In fact, there is nothing else out there like this and it is truly leading edge. It is an event which offers the opportunity for participants to begin to explore their own relationship with the land, with their food, and with themselves. It is an event that invites participants to consider what is the impact of their own wing beats upon the offspring of Cecil the lion, or dentists in Minnesota. It is an event which invites participants to begin to truly live life in awareness of their impact on all those around them and those who they will never meet. It is not just another quirky event; it is an event which is vital and needed.

If you wish to attend the event, please contact Gillian to arrange.

Gillian Alexander on gillian@sacred-touch.co.uk.
You’ll find the Facebook event here
And more information on my website here

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Saying ‘no more’

080And the honesty piece rears up again!

There are so many hiding behind masks of ‘love’ and ‘tantra’ and ‘sacred’.

Yes, sexuality has become exceedingly distorted in our societies.  To me, sexuality is one of the most pure and sacred ways we can come to know ourself and to know the Divine.  It is also one of the most potent ways that we have access to our own soul.  We do not need another being to engage our own sexuality.

I see people all around me going outside of themselves to find this most sacred aspect of themselves.  How can this ever be possible?   Within our healthy body our organs work perfectly, but if we perceived a malfunction in one of our organs and we were to take our liver or our heart outside our body and give it to another to show us how to make it work properly – does that work? Obviously not!  We cannot entrust another with the task of knowing our own soul. We may be able to see ourself more clearly in the mirror of another, but we must retain responsibility for our own self.

And I see many who present themselves as guides on these journeys.  And I see many preying on the power and energy of others.  And I am no longer able to stay silent in this.  I see powerful female friends becoming weak and sick as they are fed upon by their partners.  I see clients raped by practitioners.  And I see sacred words like ‘tantra’ being used in sales pitches.  For me, watching sex and sexuality being used in sales is also offensive.

I keep hoping that folks will see through the illusion, and yet again and again I see those who abuse others being praised and revered.

As individuals and as a collective we still seem to want to give our power to those who would abuse us.  I am no different in this.  What is this about!

I do see lights of hope and of more and more people waking up and saying ‘no more’.

I have known of friends who have had sessions with practitioners and those practitioners have then had sex with them when, regardless of what the client said, their body was dry and not giving consent – sex without consent is rape.  These practitioners are still ‘teaching’ and being lauded as great advocators of love and supposed world leaders in ‘tantra’.  I find this offensive.  Do you?

For obvious reasons I am not naming names here.  Many may know people who they may relate this directly to.  In fact names do not matter.

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Sacred Touch Massage and Tantra Massage – my journey …

Something that many folks often don’t see in me is that I am acutely shy. I’ve actually had friends laugh uncontrollably when I shared that fact with them. I can fully understand why they might react that way too – I will walk into a group of complete strangers and start chatting to them or would stand on a stage and speak to a room full of people. At least, I would do these things if there were no way to hide or no one to stand behind. And I’ve often walked into rooms where I know no one or been the only person who was not determined that they would not be the one on stage. I also love people, so that love and interest of people carries me past the brow of the roller coaster and into the point of being out there.

And if someone asks me a direct question I will almost always answer directly (unless they give me enough space to hide!) So often I will speak openly about things that others would not. So if someone asks me about sex or sexuality I will often answer very honestly, no matter how personal the question.

So I appear to be very outgoing and certainly not shy. And yet I am …

And I hold my own beliefs and truth close to my heart.

In my share yesterday* about the live animal industry I recognised my own depth of feeling and how I have suppressed that to ‘protect’ those around me – to protect them from feeling uncomfortable for example. And yet I am a truth-speaker and staying quiet is deeply uncomfortable to me and in these situations I have to suppress my own truth to allow the comfort of another and sometimes their denial.

Over six years ago I went for a tantra massage and whilst lying receiving I had a strong recognition ‘I have to work with this!’ My next thought was ‘oh, b*gger!’ as I knew that was not a path for the faint hearted. In all sincerity, I walked forward in that direction with an open heart. When potential clients contacted me for a session, I welcomed each of them and was in open hearted service. As I look back I placed no criteria on who I would hold that sacred space open for, other than that I felt ‘safe’ to have them in my home. As a result, many came to me looking for things that I did not offer, and many were not even aware of what they sought. At the time probably neither was I ….

It’s all too easy to project and to believe that everyone else is the same as ourselves, or at least this is my experience.

And my own reality is the purity and sanctity of my own sexuality and of others.

So when clients were coming to me seeking instant gratification or a ‘sexy sexy’ experience then that was not what they found. Often they surprised themselves and found the profound and their own self in the process. But there were still some who could not let go of chasing their goal long enough to recognise they were already in Nirvana.

I still love to celebrate someone in their sexual wholeness and brilliance and Sacred Touch massage/tantra massage is a beautiful way to do so, but I now reserve that ceremony for those who are ready to celebrate themselves in this way.

And I continue to feel blessed to walk this path with the incredible souls who choose to walk with me…

More at www.sacred-touch.co.uk
(I also teach and coach in Sacred Touch massage)
*Yesterday’s post is here – www.facebook.com/GillyAlexander/posts/10155798550610026

The path ... with thanks to Nathan Mansfield for the artwork

with thanks to Nathan Mansfield for the artwork

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Welcoming the New Year and an Invitation to a Celebration of Life this Sunday, 21st December, 2014

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DunureThe Celtic Festival and Sabbat of Yule; the Winter Solstice; Christmas; Hanukkah; Hogmanay: whatever you celebrate at this time, in the northern hemisphere, it is the time of the longest night after which we welcome the coming of the light and the new year. This is a time for looking inwards and for reflection. It is a time when many animals hibernate and even those who don’t, including humans, feel their pace slow and the urgency of life seem to soften. How many of you reading this have felt mornings where the warmth of a cosy bed is so much more appealing than clawing your way to work or through shops for Christmas shopping?

I love this time. It is such an invitation to slow and to be. It feels an invitation to slow down and to listen and to see all that we have experienced in the past year – how many first times have there been for you this year? First meetings with people who now feel important to you. First times for things that feel like achievements. First times for things that feel they have taught you a big lesson. And first times for things that have simply been a pleasure to experience. And how many things that you love have you been able to do more of?

We are also invited to look forward into the opening of the new year and to choose what we would like to call towards ourselves in that time.

This is a time of death and rebirth, of trust, of metamorphosis, of resting and preparing and looking forward to the new year.

And this is such a powerful time to be engaging these energies. I have always felt immense power from the lands of Scotland and deep wisdom and have sensed that when the time was right the lands would make this wisdom available. And the people of this land are also powerful. If feels as if they are beginning to recognise this within them – and the sleeping dragon is beginning to waken.

This cominNYNewMoon_Fireg Sunday, 21st December, falls on the Winter Solstice and the Celtic festival of Yule. I’m holding a lovely space open for a Celebration of Yule and the Winter Solstice during the day in Glasgow (£60). In the evening you are invited to a fire ceremony on Prestwick beach to cast that which no longer serves into the flames and to call in the support of the land and the elements in all you choose to manifest in the forthcoming year (this fire-ceremony is gifted). For those of you who are not wanting to go out amongst the elements then Anthea Simpson and Peter Halley are offering ‘A Candle-lit Evening’, a yoga and sound immersion, in Yoga Healing from 6:30pm – it’s currently fully booked, but there may be a waiting list if you ask Anthea nicely:o) And anyone going to Anthea and Peter’s evening will be eligible for a £5 discount for my playshop during the day.

It’s a lovely group already gathering for Sunday and I’d love to have you join us, but either way I hope you have a magical time and sending you much love at this potent time of year….

 

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Mainstreaming Sexuality

Gillian Alexander, Sacred TouchOK, I’ve been a card-carrying member of Hiders Anonymous! So many folks (eg people I meet in coaching groups) have said to me ‘I’m not sure what exactly you do and you are more than a bit evasive and cagey about it’. The main reason has been as I have been still feeling into what it is exactly that I am offering. I can offer many things and I’m really good at lots of things, but then aren’t most of us!

Speaking to a colleague recently at the end of our mastermind group call I got some clarity that a big part of what I’m now about is mainstreaming sexuality. We are all sexual beings, and yet most of us have been trained into complete denial of this – leading to massive stresses and distortions in us individually and in our communities and how we relate to each other. And as our sexuality is our main creative force it impacts hugely on how we express ourselves and deliver our gifts to the world.

We are sexual beings in the same way as we are breathing beings. Yet we seem to think it’s ok to shut our sexuality down and only express it on limited occassions and only when someone else is present – it’s like saying that we will only breath on Fridays or on the 2nd of each month or on public holidays and then only when our beloved is present and wearing that particularly fetching number … or whatever! And in the same way that we cannot shut our breathing down, we can’t actually shut our sexuality down, but we just make it really unhealthy, like hyperventilating all the time. Both are stressful!

I’ve been doing a lot of work with students and clients recently, supporting them to come back into alignment with their own sexuality, so that it is ok to express themselves as sexual beings, for example by walking down the street feeling sexy, or channelling that creative energy into a work project, or just relaxing and enjoying it, and mainly feeling a much greater acceptance of themselves, greater ease and comfort in themselves and with others, and less anger and frustration.

So this week, I’m hoping on Thursday, if I can get the technology sussed, I will be offering a hour-long free webinar:

Mainstreaming Sexuality Webinar

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If this sound like your kind of thing, I’ll send further information about how to sign up very soon – I look forward to seeing you there …..

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So what’s the deal with the bucket?

Red bucketSo what’s the deal with the bucket?

This is an analogy that I share with many clients and it seems to work for them.

But first I invite you to check in with your own energy and your own power – where is it and what is it doing?  If you have no clue what on earth I mean by this then you are not alone!  If you know what I mean but have no idea where your energy or power are then you are also not alone!  And if you have a sense of what I mean and also a sense of what is happening with your own power and your own energy then please go and select a suitable reward in recognition of your own awareness – you rock!

So what about the bucket?

To me, energy and power and money are all effectively the same – they are all forms of energy.  Money is a great analogy for power and energy as our minds and brains seem happy to relate to the concept of money, and often less so to the more elusive and indefinable concepts of personal energy and personal power.

So imagine that you go out one day and buy a brand new shiny bucket, and imagine also that you have a front garden/front yard that is grassed over and is open to the road, and the road is a busy, pedestrian road, with people walking their dogs, walking to work, and kids playing football.  So you take you new bucket and place in on the grass in your front garden/yard, fairly close to the road with folks regularly walking by.  And imagine that any money you receive that you don’t immediately know what to spend on, you put in the bucket – It’s pay day and you buy some groceries, pay your rent and buy that pair of shoes you wanted, and what’s left goes in the bucket… Your friend returns some money that you lent them, and you have no immediate need for that money so you put it in the bucket … You win £10 on the Lotto, and can’t immediately think what to spend it on, so you put it in the bucket… It’s your birthday and your aunty is uncharacteristically generous and gives you £50 but you can’t think what you want to buy with it, so you put it in the bucket….   Every bit of money you receive that you can’t immediately spend, you put in the bucket….

So how long does the money stay in the bucket – with folks, old and young walking past at regular intervals and seeing an unmarked bucket of money with no obvious purpose – especially those who really need some money to make up their rent, or to buy shoes for their kids or to buy that new bike they have seen in the shop?  A year? A month? 5 minutes? Or maybe you believe it will stay there till you need it?

What happens when your electricity bill comes in and you go to the bucket to collect the money to pay it?  What are you likely to find?

And before judging others, what would you do if you were wandering along the street and there were a couple of £20 notes lying in the road; apparently discarded?

This is exactly what most of us do with our own personal power and personal energy!  We often don’t know immediately what we need it for so we put it in our metaphorical buckets or just leave it lying around and it is up for grabs to anyone who takes a fancy to it!

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