Potters, we all are

Life path, Manifestation, The Self

The process of clay pot making has always fascinated me. It seems so effortless, like when a ballerina gracefully glides on the stage. When I’m watching someone in the midst of it, I feel as though even I can do it, even without any sort of training at all.

I’ve only tried it once, about five years ago – and I sucked at it. The potter said that my hands were too hard, too intense that the pot always end up collapsing. She said that the key was to simply have the right amount of pressure, just enough to guide it into formation.

Isn’t clay pot making the same as shaping our own life?

The key is to apply just the right amount of pressure – not too light and not too hard – ’cause either way the pot will end up collapsing. Not taking the lead in our own life or forcing it to become something in particular may only sabotage its own becoming.

It also only makes sense to keep the spinning wheel moving, otherwise the pot will collapse, too, or it may not take its shape at all. Life will continue to usher us into further transformations naturally, unless we give up and choose to stop instead.

Likewise, from time to time, just the right amount of clay should be added to take its desired form and size – too little or too much may alter the output completely. Getting ourselves involved in too little or too much activity can either stall our growth or overwhelm us.

Finally, intention, and not force, is the gravity which pulls the clay pot together as a finished product. Our positive focus, our vision – not constant fear and worry – make our desired outcomes come to fruition.

By guiding the clay pot into its becoming we are letting its shape emerge, magically, from all the elements combined. By letting our life unfold on its own, we give ourselves the permission to go on a magical journey – both physical and spiritual – which takes us to a place we may not have been able to dream about to begin with. And this place – this magical place – is just a mediocre reflection of the great person we have become – the person we are actually inside.

The shape of the clay pot has already been there even before the clay pot emerged in the physical. Our most authentic self has already been there, too, in fact has always been there, through our Spirit, before we even incarnated in the physical and also after we fade out into the ethereal.

May we all keep our pottery game strong and fun!

 

xoxo

sd

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Unicorn thoughts

Fiction, The Self
Maybe I'm just tracing the lines 
of my comfort zone.

Going in circles.

I couldn't seem to find my way out. 
So all I do is go in circles.

Trapped in my own carousel.

It's already a miracle, though 
to have finally realized

that I am moving but not going anywhere, 
that I am in the same place.

'Cause how could I ever do it 
without having been able to step out of myself 
and observe my life play out?

What a weird thing - this duplicity.

And the world that allows it to be.

Sometimes being awake
only feels like 

self-flagellation.

Until we learn how to use our own power. 
The power of our own mind.


daena de guzman | 2017

On Leadership

Manifestation, People & Relationships, The Self

cocreation

Leadership can manifest in a variety of ways, and probably, we almost always associate it with career, business, politics or any religious/spiritual movement. Not all of us will be put in those situations, though, neither do we need to be in order to be in a position of leadership.

By default, we’re already the leaders of our own lives. Inevitably so, we are always influencing each other’s preferences, decisions and behavior.

We define leadership in a range of responsibilities and character traits that we think are part of the package of what it means to be a leader.

I’ve had my own struggles when it comes to leadership. Not sure yet how it all began, or if its just an intrinsic part of my character, but I’ve always felt conflicted towards what I assumed were “persons of authority” – from my parents, to my older relatives, to my teachers, religious leaders, health practitioners, bosses. There’s a part of me who just couldn’t fully trust them. While my peers blindly obeyed their parents, my classmates befriended our teachers, and my colleagues befriended our bosses, I kept my distance and gravitated towards my own ground instead.

I have learned at a young age to not trust their opinions of me completely – regardless if they’re positive or negative. I just didn’t accept them at face value, and instead, relied on my own self-awareness and self-evaluation. I didn’t always question their opinions outwardly, but I made sure to rely on my own judgment as the final word. I paid attention, did my research and used my critical thinking.

I’ve had my own share of rebellions at each stage of my life, to varying degrees, and it hasn’t been a smooth ride, as those of you who’ve been on a similar path would surely know. I didn’t get fair treatment from teachers for refusing to act like their pet, I’ve had messy, antagonistic fights with my parents because of decisions I made which contradicted their advice, I’ve been overlooked for promotions at work because I wouldn’t wanna open up to my bosses, and yes – I’ve had a couple of police beatings, too, for choosing to stand up for my rights and principles.

It’s as if the world pushed me back the more I dared to stand up. I would get beaten whenever I opted to use my own mind. I was banished for merely embracing myself.

I have made, and continue to make, quite unpopular decisions – decisions that made me look bad to others and sometimes, most of all, to myself. I’ve made decisions that have created conflicts and enemies I never intended to create. I have polarized camps, stirred discourses to a boiling degree and pushed for decisive resolutions before everyone else was ready.

It didn’t even take me so long before I earned the status of The Bitch. When one dares to be authentic, especially when one is a woman, this would inevitably happen sooner than one might expect. On the other hand, it took me quite longer before I finally got the lesson behind my life-long struggle with leadership.

It has come full circle for me lately.  Life wanted me to learn that at the heart of each leader’s long list of responsibilities lies only one common thing – the need and the ability to make decisions, day in and day out.

A leader’s job, above all, it to make decisions – especially, difficult ones. And more often than not, these decisions have to be done before one is ready to do so, before one has gathered all the facts and has deliberated the pros and cons. More often than not, a leader has to rely on her/his own judgment, or what we sometimes call, intuition. Consequently, the one who makes the decision gets either the praise or the beating as a result, even though many others, no matter how anonymous they may be, have also participated in the decision-making process in one way or another.

One can either be a good or a bad leader, and this is entirely situational. It is also secondary.

Before one can fully take the role of leadership, one must be able to make difficult decisions first. One must be able to step in the middle of the circle, in complete acceptance of one’s accountability to the consequences that may follow – including the unforeseen ones.

Each of us has been entrusted with her/his own sword to cut through the fog of life, but only leaders dare use them.

No one can proceed in her/his own path without carving her/his own way through. Thus, cutting through the fog becomes imperative for all of us.

We can choose to either actively carve our path out or be shoved all the way through it – the decision is ours.

It’s a hero’s journey – all our lives are – because it’s the one that requires us to be in our full capacity. It’s where timelines are shrunk into one and all we have is the power of Now. It’s the journey which invites the I to step up and be seen. It’s where all our possibilities intersect and The Potential is maximized.

When we step up, wave our sword and slice through the fog ahead us, we are inevitably paving the way for others as well. And from a wider perspective we are all progressing towards one major path.

By cutting through it individually, we are also making the path more visible and more accessible for everyone.

Again, one doesn’t need to be in a position of leadership at a bigger, more recognized scale. By default, we’re already the leaders of our own lives. Inevitably so, we are always influencing each other’s preferences, decisions and behavior – continuously co-creating reality as we know it. We must take our place in co-creation since the reality that ends up manifesting is the reality we must also live in. May it be the reality that lifts us higher.

You are Eternity

Fiction, The Self
Lie still.

Stare at the ceiling.

Breathe.



Notice the sounds pulsing

through the walls.



Feel the textures

enmeshed in a cobweb

of scenes, events

mini-multiverses of their own.



You.

are.

untouchable.



Remember this.

This is a slice of eternity.



Absorb it like water.

Let it take

the shape

of your own mind.



Bring eternity

everywhere you go.



Bring eternity

in everything you do.



You are Eternity.



- daena de guzman | 2017

 

The Power of Internal Shifts

Healing, People & Relationships, The Self

Majority of the time, the root cause of our insecurity lies in a cycle of codependency. It can happen in any relationship – private or communal.

Unbeknownst to us, we do this to each other, in a variety of ways, most of which have been normalized to subtlety. While its expression and the means by which we practice it are diversified, its premise remains pretty much the same.

When we externalize our power and rely on outside forces to validate us we initiate this cycle.

We teach others that we are codependent on them, and if they accept our example, they become a part of it. They too, become codependent on us. This paradox of a mutually parasitic relationship takes place.

Couples do this to each other, friends do this to each other, parents do this to their children, politicians do this to the masses, religious leaders do this to their religious communities, and the list goes on.

No one is completely free to think, feel, behave in her/his own way in a codependent relationship. The Other must always be taken into account. The Other must always give her/his validation; through obedience, agreement, praise or silence.

Fear fuels the fire of a codependent relationship. There is fear that without the Other, oneself will cease to exist and thrive. This type of fear creates the illusion that empowered independence is at its core destructive. In fact could never see independence as empowering at all.

One might ask, if we’re already enmeshed in such a relationship is there anything we can do to get out of it or transform it?

If it’s a relationship that can be very well cut off, then it’s for the best interests of both parties if it gets severed. Usually, one person has to step up and take the lead. In other cases, though, when it’s with someone we may find too difficult to remove from our life, such as our family, we may have to resort to other options. We could spend less time with them, avoid going over subjects that only fuel our codependency, and get busy with our own stuff instead.

On the other hand, these approaches are just externalization of the shift in our perception.

We can only break ourselves free from this cycle once we have resolved the true major issue internally – self-validation.

We need to remember that we don’t actually need any other kind of validation, other than self-validation. All the external ones are just confetti – they amp up our celebration but they’re actually useless on their own.

We can address the root cause of all our codependent relationships by deciding to rely only on our validation of ourselves. Codependent “symptoms” tend to go way crazier once we initiate the shift. The Other will feel that they are losing their lifeline – us – and for this they  will feel more desperate. They may act antagonistic towards us or retaliate by pulling away from us in order to draw us back in. We must not let ourselves be dragged by any of their drama. We must protect our mind and energy by reminding ourselves of our lone responsibility – to validate ourselves.

Dissolving these relationships actively, then, becomes secondary, because more often than not, if they’re truly codependent and they are not able to transform with us, they will fade on their own, anyway.

We must trust the process that self-empowerment is leading us into.

Likewise, we’re also giving them a chance to evolve by spearheading the shift inside us. This is a gift to ourselves and to all those we are in relationships with. We offer them the opportunity to heal and learn to validate themselves as well.