Tonight is the first night of Passover, where a ritual dinner is shared to remember the slavery of the Jews in ancient Egypt and their struggle and journey toward freedom. Next week is Easter, a remembering of yet another kind of spiritual freedom, a holiday of resurrection and rebirth. And all around us, in our present times, we continue to witness the many ways that people of color are still not free from oppression in America. There are people of all genders and religions around the world, dominated and persecuted, longing for their emancipation.
So, the concept of bondage and fighting for our freedom from it, seems to be embedded in our humanity. We seek liberation from the many ways we are enslaved, both in the external world, and within ourselves. And we enslave others and ourselves in subtle and not so subtle ways.
What are the ways you enslave yourself? And who is your designated Master?
What are the thoughts and beliefs you hold that shackle you and restrain you from living the life you want to be living? And where did they come from?
Can we pause and consider this question?
I invite you to take a few moments to make a list of the ways you have tyranny over yourself. It’s much easier to look outside of yourself and blame your subjugation and lack of freedom on society, your job, finances, or other people. Now is the time to look within.
Last weekend, I attended a virtual Shamanic Gathering. It nourished me through and through. José Luis Stevens, PhD, a wonderful teacher of mine, has a new book coming out soon called How to Pray the Shaman’s Way. I have already pre-ordered it. At his extraordinary presentation, he was clear that Shamans appear in all religions and cultures. They are the healers of the body, mind, heart, soul and spirit.
He shared a prayer which I have been saying many times a day this week. Each time I say it aloud I can feel the shackles of my mind soften and dissolve just a little bit. I feel José would be happy that I share it with you. He is a generous teacher. Thank you José. I invite you to say this simple mantra or prayer several times aloud and see what happens.
“I am Here. I am Now. I am New. I am Free.”
Some of you may have noticed that last week I did not write a blog. I gave myself permission to lean into my “I don’t have to.” And alas, the world did not come to an end. I was free from my often-unreasonable expectations of myself. This is one of the many ways I imprison myself. I was New!!!!
It felt great. I questioned my beliefs and personal demands and took this invisible key in hand and set myself free.
I invite you to look at your list of the ways you enslave yourself to some imagined necessities of being, and set one such belief aside for just a moment. I wonder what will be revealed.