Archive for May, 2012

Catalysts of Transformation

Monday, May 28th, 2012

Contrary to the typical Western view, healing is not about the resolution of symptoms. Alleviating physical expressions is palliative medicine. Chinese medicine pays just enough attention to the symptoms so as to find their cause. The cause is usually much harder to see, especially when we are attempting to alleviate the symptom. I consider physical discomforts such as headaches, menstrual irregularities, hot flashes, and ovarian pain to be knocks on the door of our awareness asking us to pay attention.

We are meant to have pain to invite us to see where something is wrong. If we step on a piece of glass, it is meant to get our attention before it causes more damage. On futher investigation, a headache may reveal deep levels of emotional holding. I had migraine headaches for years, untreatable with medication. With deeper investigation into the energetic origin, I found my body’s wisdom was giving me very useful guidance about life decisions. When I paid attention, and acted on it, the pain resolved. Irritable bowel syndrome revealed unconscious fear and worry. When the origin was penetrated, the symptoms resolved. My ovarian and hormonal problems led me internally as well, to examine my own issues with control. When control was relinquished, so was the fertility obstruction.

True healing is about transformation – being led into the depths of our own body/mind to expose the hidden truths about life. And the catalysts for this transformational process are usually not the areas where we are comfortable in life, but where we are most uncomfortable. It takes courage to want to face our own pain. I think of retreat as a process of catalyzing transformation. And the symptoms of disharmony are alleviated permanently when their root cause is revealed.

Whatever causes you the most pain right now is the invitation to find the catalyst for its resolution. A friend recently told me a true story that says it best. A beekeeper and his son were moving bee colonies. The son told his father, “When I was moving the bees, there was an intruder.” After querying him further, the son described the invader as being big and dark, almost like a wasp, that fell away from the rest of the bees. The father asked what he did, and the son proudly exclaimed that he stomped the villain. The father said, “Oh, son, you’ve killed the queen.”

Let your pain not be ignored, suppressed, or killed. Let it invite you into the depths of your own spirit, the only place where true transformative healing can occur. Whatever you do, don’t kill the queen!

A Little Bit Pregnant

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

You can’t be a little bit pregnant; you either are or you aren’t.  We can laugh at the absurdity of thinking otherwise. This analogy, used to illustrate definitives, brings the mind to one side or other of the equation. Yes or no; black or white; no room for gray. I’m going to be a parent or I’m not. What happens, though, when we are forced to live in the gray zone?  I might be; I might not be; I don’t know. On this journey, we are always just a little bit pregnant with possibility.

Few of us are comfortable with the state of limbo. Who wants to live in the state of “I don’t know”? Who doesn’t want the brightness of certainty? Yet, we seem to fear the gray zone more than we fear the darkness. If I know that it will be, I will power through anything; if I know it will never be, I won’t like it, but I will learn to accept it. One side or the other; yes or no; black or white; no room for gray.

See if you have the courage to live in the gray zone for just one day. Try residing in the state of “I don’t know” all day long. The mind lives in definitive sides of life; but life itself resides right in the middle. There is a great wonder there. This is the place where miracles occur.

Many people ask me how to let go when the desire is so great. How can I not hold on to the reins of life and direct it the way I want it to go? Life seems not to be responding to my desires in my timeframe. Therefore, it must be no. Yet, because of this enormous desire, it can’t be no. It must be yes. But it can’t be yes because…. Conflict ensues because it isn’t one side or the other. It is both.  Yes and no; not now; maybe later; gray. Yuck.

Yet, the middle way is not a bland acceptance – it is vibrantly alive with the glimmer of all possibility. When we aren’t demanding life appear in a certain way, it can flow as it must.  The spirit of existence, which flows through the heart and gives birth to all things, lives in the state of not knowing. It loves the miraculous, eternal expression of unknowable potential. Anything else is limitation. The flow of life does not respond well to absolutes. Feel the energetic contraction of the fear based, demanding mindset –

“I know it must be the way I want it, now!” vs. “I don’t know how it must be, but I’m open to it.”

If you can try this out for just one day, and then start expanding it, you will be amazed at the results. It will eliminate the energetic contraction that closes you off from the miraculous flow of life. Give it a try. And keep practicing it until something inside clicks – the vibrant current of life itself, sparked into miraculous existence when we are willing to let go of the reins of control.

The Pain of Wanting

Thursday, May 17th, 2012

Nobody walks the journey of fertility struggles without pain. Although it begins with hope, when physical obstructions are not overcome and the desire for a child is not fulfilled, it leaves in its wake frustration, disappointment, sorrow, and at times despair.

Natural healing methods like Chinese Medicine can help alleviate some of the  physical challenges that come with infertility. When, for example. hormone levels are elevated, clearing the liver meridian can restore hormonal balance. But what can help overcome the pain of wanting?

The liver governs the smooth transitions of internal processes such as hormonal metabolism, detoxification, and according to Chinese medicine, stuck emotions. The greatest cause of liver qi stagnation is said to be unfulfilled desires and it’s residual pain, which we often attempt to ignore, or suppress in order not to feel its sting. Unfortunately, rejecting any emotion further constrains the liver energies, aggravating underlying hormonal imbalances. So, if we don’t ignore or suppress the emotions and don’t wish to wallow in the pain, how do we get out of this Catch-22?

It’s actually quite simple. The remedy for liver qi constraint is allowing everything to be as it is. Allowing the desire, the frustration, the grief… all of it. In fact, right now feel the pain of wanting. If you fully experience it, it is raw and biting. If you turn away from this pain, although you may not experience it as fully, it still lives as energy below the surface, which is held in  the liver meridian. It seems like having a child will take away this pain, yet it won’t. You cannot enter motherhood without this pain. It is the other side of love. This pain will not go away when you are pregnant, when your child is born, when she worries you sick, becomes ill, leaves home, or starts her own family. That pain will definitely not go away. You don’t want it to, and your liver knows it. Motherhood is not one sided, fluffy, happy love. The fierce love for your children will torment you through sleepless nights, poor grades, lost friends, and missed curfews.

Let the pain live in the light of your own awareness where it can no longer hurt your body. Stop turning away from one of your greatest gifts – the tempering power that comes from the other side of love. Allow the hurt, the anger, and the fear to see daylight, too, so they can flow through and ease the stress from holding them back.

Motherhood can be messy, worrisome, and painfully wonderful. Don’t cower away from your own pain. Find the courage to fully experience it, and you will find at its core: love.

Letter from Your Unborn Child

Monday, May 14th, 2012

Dear Mom and Dad,

I know you’re there. Sometimes, when you let go a little bit, I can feel you.

And yet, to you I feel like an unfulfilled wish, a memory that hasn’t yet occurred.

I think you know I’m here, too. I know at some level you can feel my pull. Perhaps it’s what keeps you going on this path that has been so hard for you. It doesn’t have to be, you know.

You don’t have to force me to come. The laws of the universe are not altered by struggling, groveling or prayers of desperation.

Remember, I am a miracle, and I’m looking for light.

I’m looking for an opening. Receptivity. Softness. The life force needs an opening to express itself.

Sometimes I see yours, but your struggling effort to do everything right closes it off before I can reach you.

Relax your body and quiet your senses. Return to your deepest self. That’s what I’m drawn to.

It doesn’t matter to me if you think positive thoughts all the time. Be who you are. Be where you are, not where you think you should be. Honor yourself. When you are angry, stomp your feet. Yell. When you are sad, cry. When you are frightened, see beyond to the miracle, Clear the way.

Please don’t force yourself to do anything that feels like it will hurt you in order to get me. I won’t come that way.

It does matter that you nourish and care for yourself.  Only you can be responsible for your well-being, and I want you to be here for me, for a long time.

You won’t be able to accept and love me fully and without conditions until you can first do this for yourself. Be a vessel of yourself fully, before you try to be a vessel for me.

Pay attention to that still small voice inside of you that longs to experience unconditional love. And express that love where you are, now.

Don’t wait for me to come before you live your life. Live and love your life fully

How can I love being a part of your life if you don’t?

Remember, I’m a miracle, and I’m looking for your light. I’m looking for an opening, for your receptivity.

There must be space in your lives, for you and for me.

If you scramble about in search of me, you will lose me.

Pay attention to your deepest self. That’s where the light is. That’s where the opening is.

I can see your light when you’re laughing, when you’re dancing, and even when you cry.

I see it when you’re real.

Please stop listening to all the outside voices telling you what you should do.

Nobody out there has your answer.

Listen to the still, small voice inside that still lives in the miraculous.

I am still in spirit, and I’m drawn to yours.

You don’t know how or when I’m coming to you.

But I will come on my own time, in my own way, if you let me.

Loosen your grasp. Lower your expectations about how it’s all supposed to look. Whatever your expectations, I’ll never live up to them.

I am not your image of me. I am so much more.  I am a whisper of possibility that arises out of the depths of nature’s way.

Consider the possibility that I have been orchestrating this entire journey so that you can learn to open your heart to yourself so you can open to me.

Hope. Trust. Open.

Remember, I am a miracle.

So are you.

I am unconditional love waiting to manifest. So are you. Allow me to enter in my way. Stop fighting, forcing, pleading, and researching how to get me. I come when you stop trying to control life.

I come out of Grace.

Open your way to the miracle.

New Retreat Date: Los Angeles (area), CA – June 8-11

Friday, May 11th, 2012

ONLY 5 ROOMS (ONSITE) STILL AVAILABLE – Open registration for all in-town commuters

http://thefertilesoul.com/shop/retreats/re12-0608-the-fertile-soul-retreat

RETREAT OVERVIEW:

This is an “All-Inclusive” retreat offering – both Room and Meals will be included in your tuition costs. The retreat will begin on Friday afternoon at 4:00pm with an introduction to Traditional Chinese (TCM) and an overview of the schedule ahead (specific times will be posted upon registration).  This is a great opportunity to meet with Randine and your fellow guests that are on a similar journey! The Retreat will continue Saturday and Sunday morning and go throughout the days until early evening (usually end each day about 6:00pm) and close the weekend on Monday morning with a group Healing Circle and acupuncture treatment with Dr. Lewis. There will be intermission breaks for Lunch and a few shorter breaks to stretch your legs and get some fresh air throughout the day.

Meals will be included in your tuition and served onsite at the Retreat Center (all meals throughout your stay – starting with Dinner Friday and going through Lunch on Monday). If you do decide to leave during meal times, we recommend that you stay close during these breaks as the schedule is full and we will need to start each session promptly in order to maximize your time with Dr. Lewis.

Please contact us for more information on the The Fertile Soul Retreat – http://www.thefertilesoul.com/pages/contact.php

FREE CONFERENCE CALL – TODAY, May 7 @ 7:00pm (EST)

Monday, May 7th, 2012

Free Conference Call TODAY – Monday, May 7 @ 7 PM EST

JingShen

Q&A with Dr. Randine Lewis

To Join in dial 605-475-4000 then access code 794774#

(Those calling from Canada should call 805-360-1075 and then you will be prompted to enter the original number and access code)

Our June retreat in Southern California will focus on bringing jing and shen together, wherever you are in your reproductive years. According to Chinese medicine, regardless of age, fertility is the proper combination of jing and shen. Jing is essence, governed by the kidney system of energies (water); and shen is spirit, governed by the heart system of energies (fire)

Life comes from the combination of essence (water) and spirit (fire). When we are younger, we have more essence; as we age we have more spirit. The older we are, it is more essential to nourish essence with tonics, diet, rest, herbs, acupuncture and exercises that increase blood flow to the reproductive organs. But because of the percentage of shen as we approach our perimenopausal years, its even more important to attend to the spirit.

Nourish your spirit, and live the passion of your own existence first. Only then can you provide adequate essence for another.

Looking forward to connecting with you all on Monday night!