Jeff's Grounded Spirituality Model posted in the wonderful German magazine 'Sein'.
Posted on: Sun 20-Jun-2010
This piece was posted in German at the following link:
SOULSHAPING- SPIRITUALITY WITH BOTH FEET ON THE GROUND
Soulshaping is a 'SOLE TO SOUL' philosophy. It is about grounded spirituality. It is about living in our bodies and ascending to God organically. It is about honoring our personal identity and our physical form as not simply the 'vessel' for the soul, but as the embodiment of the soul.
Soulshaping is not about waking UP in a vacuum. It is not a spiritual bypass model in any way, shape, or form. The spiritual bypass is the tendency to jump to spirit prematurely, usually in an effort to avoid difficult aspects of earthly reality. These realities can come in many forms: emotional discomfort, unresolved trauma, economic pressure..
To be sure, there are times when detachment is necessary: when we need to be reminded of something beyond our localized perceptions, when we need a peek into a vaster reality, when we need to learn how to discern between that which serves us and that which derails us. Indeed, we are far more than our monkey mind, our neurotic attachments, our unimaginative lens. But to live in perpetual detachment is to do the spiritual bypass and miss the moment altogether. It is to trip out of the body that carries the karmic seeds for our transformation when the only way to truly ascend is with both feet on the ground. We have to grow down, to grow up.
Soulshaping is not a detachment model. It invites periods of detachment as part of our developmental process but it is, ultimately, an immersion model. It is about jumping into life, immersing ourselves in our feelings and experiences in an effort to learn what we need to expand our souls consciousness. It is about embodied spirituality. It is about 'feeling' God, not 'thinking' God. It is about healthy, selective attachment. It is about heartfelt connection as the path to God, connection in all its forms…
In our efforts to leapfrog to something better, we often avoid something crucial. We think we have found bliss until we come back into relationship where our stuff is still waiting for us. By turning away from old pain, we have simply shackled ourselves with our unresolveds. Spirit has become a crutch rather than an expression of a natural unfolding. The bypass may be a necessary tool for survival for a time, but real growth demands that we come back down to earth and face our demons. We have to grow down, to grow up. We have to heal DOWN before we can wake UP.
A playing field for the soul
Through this lens, the body is far more than just a vessel for the soul. It is the field where the souls lessons are harvested. It is the breeding ground for the souls emergence. To really be in the 'now' we have to be in our hearts, in our bodies, in our feelings. Repressed emotions are unactualized spiritual lessons. In order to grow, we must bring our joy and our suffering through our emotional body until our spiritual lessons are birthed. We must 'cell our soul.'
The ultimate answer is not to detach from and eradicate the 'I', for the 'I' is the sacred ground of our souls emergence. It is the I-dentification that our soul chose to learn its karmic lessons. If we want to expand our souls consciousness, we have to come back down into the body and do the work to excavate our innate image, the pre-encoded being we came into this life to humanifest. Into each lifetime we bring a template for the next stage of our souls expansion. That template includes the circumstances of our lives, significant individuals, our callings and lessons. We cannot embody that image if we get too far away from our humanness, our fragility, our memories and feelings.
The most inclusive answer is to work on eradicating the MISGUIDED 'I'. To do this, we may have to become effective at detachment techniques, particularly at first. We have to learn that there is something beyond our localized perception. We have to see our usual consciousness from a distance. We have to learn how to detach from what doesn't serve us. But then, when we are ready, we come back down to earth and work with what lives inside of us.
We use our detachment tools to help us distinguish the gold from the dross, the misidentified from the authentic. We make real attempts at identifying and clearing our emotional debris. We make well- intentioned efforts to let our notions of I-ness deepen and become directly linked to who we really are. Our thoughts are only illusions when they do not reflect who we really are, our emotions are only wasteful when we are not seeing them all the way through to the spiritual lessons that they contain. When we are aligned with our authenticity, our feelings and thoughts become instruments of true-path, direct expressions of our highest intentions.
Spirituality is another word for reality
The Soulshaper understands that "spirituality" is just another word for reality. The most spiritual person lives in ALL aspects of reality simultaneously – the material, subtle, emotional etc.
The soulshaper strives to ASCEND WITH BOTH FEET ON THE GROUND. This is the idea that our ascension to the Godself can only be sustained if it is an embodied unfolding from the ground up. We begin with the root chakra -the quest for OM begins at home- and we work our way up from there. It is not enough for our feet to merely skim the ground. The mythic life begins with our feet planted on Mother Earth. With our soles firmly planted, our soul has a leg to stand on in its efforts to go higher.
In real terms, this means being aware of our practical needs. This means feeling our connection to the world around us. This means bringing the quest for the eternal that is intrinsic to the east together with the quest for mental health intrinsic to the west- earth and sky, shadow and light, grocery list and unity consciousness, all at once! This means learning how to enjoy our bodies as gardens of truth. This means calling ourselves on our detachment from our shadow. This means doing the often difficult work to clear our emotional debris and gain control over our relational patterns. We clear our emotional debris both because it creates space inside for our authentic self to emerge, but also because inherent in those feelings and memories are the lessons we need to grow in our spirituality. We can't shape our souls without karmic fodder, without grist for the soul mill. We must 'cell our soul', linking our spiritual ascension to the energetic material that we are holding in the cells of our body.
God is not some detached construct. God is in our personhood. Each of us is the 'I' of God. Be a little careful with detachment. God is in our humanness, God is in our connectiveness, God is in our loving hearts, God is IN the people. We-God.