February 27, 2013 Wednesday Evening with Aaron

Ultimate and relative experience; self respect and self responsibility; compassion; balance


Barbara: Welcome, and thank you all for braving the weather and coming out tonight. I've been away for a couple of months. It's good to be back. This is my first time here since Aaron's Christmas stories in December. Then I was in Brazil, and came back just about a week ago. It was a wonderful trip.

That said, I'm simply going to bring Aaron in. Give me a minute to get quiet, and he will incorporate.

(Aaron incorporates)

Aaron: Good evening. My blessings and love to all of you. We will wait for this conference call machine... We are working to perfect this, and hoping in this next few months to buy better equipment that will make it easier, allow more people to come on with more ease. If any of you would like to contribute anything to a fund to help buy that equipment, it would certainly be welcome. This is coming from me, not from Barbara or Deep Spring, but I welcome the opportunity to be able to talk to people who are a thousand miles away and not just those of you who are local. The people on the conference calls are offering a donation for the series of four calls, I think $40/person, $10/call. That will help to purchase the equipment, but it will take a year or two to purchase it. I'd like to see it happen sooner. So I'm just going to chat here a minute until we get these “conferencees” into the circle.


Don't wait; just sit, holding space, meditating, no urgency. We have all the time we need. We are not wasting time; how could you waste time? We are just sitting and holding space. The person running the equipment tonight has not run it before, so she is learning how. A who usually runs it, had to go out of town for a family emergency. Somebody else volunteered. One of the benefits of a new system will be its simplicity of use.


Settle yourself into a cylinder of light. Feel yourself—(people coming in) I can't see who is waving to me. It feels energetically like D-- is it? Yes. Blessings, D.

Q: We should make you guess who everyone is. We could stand behind the screen at the door...

Aaron: ...And guess at people's energy fields!


So feel yourself sitting in a cylinder of light. Feel the straight open line of the chakras and energy coming in through the crown chakra. Coming down through the third eye, the throat, and into the heart, then through the lower chakras to the base. Let the whole system be open.  

(pause to rearrange chairs for newcomers)

I don't like to have back rows. I like everybody in one circle. Energetically it works well...

(volunteer handling conference calls explains they're still working on it; the usual volunteer is checking remotely from out of state)

Q: We have a marvelous opportunity to be quiet. (pause)

Aaron: So once again, welcome, and welcome to those on the conference call. I do see two new faces. Let me introduce myself, because the situation is a little odd. I am Barbara's body, but I am a discarnate spirit incorporated into this body. You don't have to believe that I'm real. It's fine to simply think that Barbara has this odd notion that there's a spirit incorporated. What's important is, are my words helpful to you? Not who I am. If my words are helpful, use them. If not, discard them.

So once again, a big welcome to all of you. I was inviting you all to feel yourself sitting in a cylinder of light. On one level, you're all sitting in this blue-painted room with soundproof tile ceilings and fluorescent lights. I was going to say, with a leak in the roof and a container sitting on the floor. I hope that hasn't been moved. Is it dropping on your head? The landlord needs to fix the roof.

So this is mundane reality: roofs that leak, painted walls with a few scratches on them, a stain in the carpet. Heat that either comes on so it's too warm, or goes off so it's too cold. Everyday reality. That which is pleasant, that which is unpleasant. On another level, you are sitting in a cylinder of light, and you are that light. It's not just something shining on you. It's within you as well.

Sometimes when a situation is uncomfortable, those who have meditation experience move into that light-filled space as a way of avoiding the discomfort of everyday experience. As a momentary technique, for example, when you're sitting in the dentist's chair, it's fine to move off into a spacious light for a few minutes while he drills. But for living your life in fullness, you have to be here. You can't escape into some heavenly realm in denial of the everyday.

Some of you have that tendency. But more of you have the tendency to forget about that light-filled space and simply plod your way through the heaviness of everyday life without remembering who you are, your true spiritual nature, your radiance, your divinity, your perfection.

The human experience asks of you to bring these two parts of your experience into balance. That which is painful and unpleasant does exist, and we don't deny it. But you also don't have to build a personality that's going to fight, determined to defeat that unpleasantness. The difficulty here is that when you move into an unpleasant experience, contract around it and get up your fists to fight it, there's a lot of contraction; you lose touch with innate radiance and perfection.

Again, if you simply rest in that radiance and perfection,... what if you fell and cut yourself and the artery is pumping blood. You say, “But I'm already perfect.”? Well, you've got to put a compress on the artery or you're going to bleed to death. You are in a human body. We attend to the everyday conditions. But how do we attend from a place of spaciousness and love, rather than a place of fear? This is really the heart of your spiritual practice and of your living in the world: to attend to what arises with love. I will not say without fear, but without being consumed by the fear. But with an open heart that notes, “Fear is arising in this mind and body. It's okay. Here is the experience of fear.”

What does fear feel like?” Let me put this out to you. What does fear feel like? Anybody want to speak to that? Is there anybody who has experienced fear this week? How did it feel?

Group: Tight.. shaky... a jolt... constrictive... detached... withdrawing... sensation or flow through the heart.

Aaron: Uncomfortable? Uncomfortable. Lack of space, yes? Was there a desire to get away from it? (Q: Yes.) So, aversion. The tension of aversion, “I don't want this.” With the “I don't want this,” a strong sense of a separate self. It's a very different experience than feeling your connection with all of those in the world who are experiencing something similar in this moment.

Many years ago, Barbara was in the hospital; she had cellulitis in her leg, an infection that was spreading up the leg. There was a lot of pain. There was a lot of fear, because there was some consideration that if they could not stop the infection, and at that point the antibiotics had not stopped it, they might have to amputate the leg. So there was fear. There was anger. There was pain. She was caught up in a self, who was determined to control this ailment, to fix it. “I can do this! I will not be overcome by the pain! I will not be overcome by the fear!” but there was no heart in it. There was no connection.

Late at night, they wheeled a woman into the adjacent bed in her room, an elderly woman who had just had a leg amputated. Barbara could see because the curtain was pushed aside. The other leg had previously been amputated and had healed. This was a fresh amputation. Her heart broke open for this woman. Suddenly it ceased to be about her, and she began to reflect on all the people all over the world who had lost a leg that day, in war, through disease, through violence of one sort or another, through an earthquake or landslide, collapsed building, a fire, thousands of people around the world who had lost legs that day, and she began to pray for all of them. She began to hold her own leg in her heart with a different attitude: one leg to heal for us all. This is not my leg, but our leg. All of us together moving into the wholeness that is our essence.

So for several hours, as the doctors and nurses worked on this woman probably just coming up from surgery, Barbara did loving kindness meditation, offering well-wishes to this woman, to all who had lost legs that day, and to herself. Instead of being contracted and grasping, “I will fix this. I will heal this.” she moved into a spaciousness that enabled her to open to what I call the ever-healed. This of course is not in denial of the deep infection in her leg at that point. There was no denial of the pain and of the situation. But there was a recognition that, “along with the infection there is the innate perfection of this leg, and I can open my heart to it.”

It's a very different attitude, both in the mind and in the body. This is not resignation or even acceptance. It's simply resting in how things are, in the spaciousness of the open heart. At this moment there is this ailment, and there is the perfection. If the perfection of the leg free of infection was not already there at one level, nothing the doctors could do could cure it. Can you see that?

Let's use a different kind of situation, one in which there's enormous anger. Imagine that somebody has spoken very abusively to you, pushed you literally or figuratively. You're shaking with anger and pain. If you think to yourself, “I must fix this anger! I must control this anger!” it's just more rigidity and it's coming from the place of a separate self. If you say, “There's no anger, I won't have anger.” it's denial. There's also a contraction in “There's no anger.”

What if you move into a space that simply acknowledges “In this moment there is anger. Anger has arisen in this mind and body. Fear has arisen. I open my heart to this human being with love. Breathing in, I am aware of the anger. Breathing out, I smile to the anger. I hold space for the anger. And while attending to the anger, I also cease to be so self-identified with it.” That which is aware of anger is not angry. This doesn't mean there's no anger. It simply means there is also this radiant awareness, which is much more the essence of who you are than is the anger.

We've done an exercise here, sometimes, a playful game with sticky notes. I took a pad of sticky notes and papered them on people. People walked around with them a bit. They were on clothing and even stuck on foreheads! Some people liked the color I had put on them, some didn't. I think we made big X's on some of them. I reminded people, these are just sticky notes that have attached to you. These are not who you are. Instead of identifying with them and feeling “I must tear them off,” can you just wait until they fall off? You don't have to fix it, because it's just stuck on the surface. The anger, the fear, the jealousy, the moments of greed or impatience, they're stuck on the surface. You must attend to them with kindness. You can't deny them.

What we're looking for is the place of balance where we bring kind spacious attention to what has arisen without all the stories of “I must fix it” or “I'm bad to be experiencing it, I shouldn't feel anger, I shouldn't feel pain.” If a physical ailment, “I shouldn't feel discomfort or fear.” These are stories. The stories don't help you. They are ancient. Part of your work here as growing human beings is to see the repetitive stories and just say kindly to yourself, “Not this time. I'm not going to invite this record play, this time.”

People will have different kinds of experiences. I'm going to use Barbara as an example, here. For several months last summer, Barbara had an ailment called shingles. It sent her body into a bit of a decline. Her immune system was impaired. She felt sick and tired and had a lot of pain. And then her stomach began to malfunction—a lot of bloating, acid, loose bowels, very serious discomfort.

So she moved into a pattern at first of “What can I do to fix it?” I asked her repeatedly to take care of it, rather than trying to fix it. But of course, when there's constant pain and you can't eat, there doesn't seem to be any nourishment, there's no energy, then there's fear. How to attend to the fear with an open heart, also?

So she brought this ailment with her to Brazil. Some of you are familiar with John of God's work in Brazil. Entities like me incorporate into John of God's body and do very wonderful, I don't want to call it healing work, but support the healing and expression of wholeness in each person's body. So she came to the incorporated entity saying, “I need help with this.” And he just said, “Go and sit and meditate. I am taking care of you.”

It's hard to trust that “I'm taking care of you.” What are you doing? How are you going to fix this? “Just go and sit.” For a week or two, she continued the diet she was on, eating mostly rice and bread and bananas. Just that, breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The more she ate that diet, the worse her stomach became.

Finally, the entity said to her, “No more gluten.” So, okay, no more gluten. That's a little hard to do there, because she had to select carefully. She was not preparing her own food, but the pousada, the inn where she stayed, helped provide her the right foods. And within four days, all the symptoms had dissolved.

If he had said this to her two weeks earlier, she would not have been ready. This is my point. She was still in a “How am I going to fix this?” - me against this disease or ailment - mode of being. She had to come to some point of surrender. I'm not sure surrender is the best word, but of letting go of trying to control, and trusting her body's innate wholeness and capacity to heal. She still had to attend by following the appropriate diet, but she did not have to fix anything. Can you feel the difference? Attending, not saying, “Oh, but I want that macaroni. I want that roll.” “I'm willing to let go of what I want to eat and eat what is appropriate for my body. But I'm choosing it out of love, not of fear.”

When I asked you how fear felt, you said contracted. From that place of spacious non-contraction, we begin to allow the body to heal it self, and also the emotions to heal themselves. For some of you, the most difficult issues are not issue of the body but of the emotions: feeling unworthiness, feeling incapable or inadequate, feeling much sadness or grief. That which is aware of grief is not grieving. That which is aware of a feeling of unworthiness is not unworthy.

We begin to look at all of these-- I don't want to call them myths, in some cases there's a reality. Somebody that you loved has died and you're grieving. The body is ill and there's pain. There's a reality to it. But these are situations that sticky notes are put on. The pain is real in the moment. “How do I fix it?” is the sticky note. Who are you under the sticky notes? What happens when you let go of the self-identity with the deafness, the cancer, the stomach ailment, whatever there may be, what happens when you let go of this and begin to know who you are at a much deeper level, and to trust your body's wholeness and its ability to re-manifest that wholeness? To come back to the way you were as a newborn infant, that wholeness, with love.

This is the work you are all involved in. It requires a balance. Is there anybody here who has never been on ice skates at some time in their life? Okay. You know when you ice skate, you stride on one foot, and then on the other foot, and then on the first foot again, moving back and forth. Temporarily all the weight is on one foot as you glide, and then you push off and the weight goes onto the other foot.

Now let's imagine while you're on the left foot all you see is relative reality. The lake is pockmarked with open holes. There are cracks; there are ridges in the ice. You've got to keep your eyes open or you're going to fall into a hole. Do you keep your eyes open so as to avoid that hole out of fear, or out of self-cherishing in a positive way? It's kind to the self to watch for the holes. Why would you want to fall through the ice? It doesn't have to be fear that says, “Oh, I might fall in!” Just, “Where is the smooth ice? There's a patch, there's a patch.” Staying open to the smooth ice. And then you shift to the other foot. And for that few moments, the ice is just like a mirror: no cracks, no holes, perfectly smooth. You move into a heavenly realm of perfect ice. “Ahhhh!” Gliding. And as you move back onto the first foot, suddenly you see a hole in the ice, and you move carefully so as to avoid it.

Because skating asks you to keep moving from foot to foot, you have to keep this balance going from relative reality to ultimate reality, moving back and forth as the body moves. This is not different than what you are doing as you skate through your everyday life. You put your weight on one foot and see all the pitfalls. There is this stomach ailment. It hurts. “What's wrong with me? What if I have something serious wrong in the stomach? What if I can never eat again? What's happening?” Fear, tension. Ah, just glide through. Put the weight on the other foot and find the wholeness. Rest in the wholeness. But don't hide in the wholeness, because you're going to have to step out with the other foot again. The cracks will be there. That's the nature of your human experience, the cracks are going to be there. But you don't have to be afraid of them.

I call you “angels in earthsuits.” You are definitely that angel. All of you are that angel. And you are here in these earthsuits by choice. Nobody pulled you out of a heavenly realm and flung you out here, saying, “This is punishment.” Rather, you chose the human experience, and you chose it because you had an intention to deepen in compassion, to deepen in loving kindness. The catalysts that life brings your way, those cracks and holes in the ice, these are your teachers. If the ice had no cracks at all, how would you learn compassion?

I know you don't want the cracks in the ice. You'd like the whole lake to be smooth and open. But really, what would you learn? You might build muscles gliding around on the lake all day, but it would get boring after a while, because you came here to stretch the heart, to find the immense capacity of your heart to love. Your various ailments, your emotional distress, all of these are teachers, reminding you that you have an innate capacity to love, because you are angels. But you are not incarnate to hide in the angelness.

There are many practices we can do that help bring balance. Meditation is helpful because meditation helps you to open your eyes and see where you are. Without meditation, it's like a layer of snow over the ice that hides the cracks, but they're still there. The meditation takes you right down through the snow so you can see the cracks. The meditation also brings you into the perfect ice, shows you the perfection. Prayer is helpful, devotional practice of any sort, because it helps connect you to your own divinity and the divinity of all that is.

You are learning two things, especially, in this human experience. I would call the first Self-respect. By self-respect I don't mean respect for this small self, only. I mean Self with a capital S. The little ant that crawls over your foot, that's part of the Self, and the giant redwood is part of the Self. The tree that was bent over in Barbara's yard this morning, an evergreen arched way over, heavy with snow so that they wonder if it will survive; that is Self.  Barbara really felt the pain of that tree in herself, the weight of the snow on it. It was locked into the ground so there was no way to free it, the top of the tree covered with snow and frozen into the earth. Just offering it loving energy, offering it support. This is part of the Self. The little grass blade frozen in ice; the fish that swims in the sea; everything is part of the Self.

There's a beautiful book that Barbara read many years ago called Behaving as if the God in All Life Mattered by Machaelle Small Wright, This book is about Self-respect.

First you need to come into a place where you recognize the divine in everything, because you cannot recognize the divinity in yourself unless you recognize it in everything out there. You don't have to like the neighbor who's abusive, or the person in your workplace, but you do have to recognize they are also God. That of the divine is also within this person, within this animal. Self-respect.

And the second piece of this is self-responsibility. Once my eyes open to that respect and recognition of the divinity in everything, including myself, what do I need to do to become responsible for that in the world?

If you keep moving into a place of fear, trying to fix and control, me against this and that, that's not responsibility. “I should be responsible.” is not respectful. Here is the self that's quaking in fear. First, respect for the divinity in the self and for the fear of the human ego and self, small self. And then becoming responsible through the various practices you can do. Watching, when a workplace person is abusive, the move to snap at them, to yell. You're not going to punch them, but “I hate that person!” “Ah, so...” Feeling how much tension there is. The pain in the belly, “I hate this.” “Ah, so... How much tension there is.” It's only as you take responsibility in this way that you can move yourself truly into the spaciousness that recognizes the wholeness of yourself and all the others. No separation between self and other. Fully open to it all.

There are many tools that will help. We practice different-- what would we call them?-- beautiful practices, like generosity and gratitude, patience, and so forth. We don't practice these in a way that says, “I must be patient. I must have gratitude.” but “In this moment where there's anger, can I find real gratitude? In this moment where I'm feeling pressed and impatient, can I find spaciousness?” We begin to see that they're there, side by side, so that we stop focusing so much on that which is painful and pushing at us and begin more and more to open to that which is spacious and beautiful, to this innate divinity and wholeness.

Mindfulness, just being present in each moment, is important. I cannot give you a list right now, but whatever you are prompted to practice, that's probably just what you need in this moment. Follow your heart. Your heart knows. You don't need me to delineate it, step by step. When a situation is painful, right there with the pain can you find some spaciousness and some genuine gratitude, that says, “This situation is offering me an opportunity. I don't even know what the opportunity is yet, but I trust it.”? When there's somebody who is really irritating you, can you step back and find some gratitude for that person's presence? At least a little bit of space that opens your heart to that person and notes, “This person is really suffering. In this moment, I at least can wish them well.”

So we keep doing these practices, reminding ourselves of Self-respect, self-responsibility, and growing in this way. And that is why you are here in incarnation. You did not come into the incarnation for comfort and convenience, although there's certainly nothing wrong with comfort and convenience. You came to learn, to grow, to find that true grandeur and radiance of your souls and live that in the world.

At this point, I'd like to pause and leave some space for questions. I may come back and talk more after a while. But let's open the floor to your questions now.

Q: Thank you, Aaron. I'm taking in your words tonight. I have much sadness over the loss of my beloved last year by suicide. I understand our pre-birth agreements. I understand his earthly reasons for the suicide. I long to know my soul's intention, what for me to learn from this, so as not to waste this opportunity that we have been given.

Aaron: Daughter, may I speak in a personal vein, rather than universal? (Q: Yes.) You are not alone in the tendency to feel guilt, to feel desire for control, “I should have been able to fix it. I should have been able to do something.” We see this not just when somebody has an emotional tendency that could lead to suicide, but for those of you who have loved ones who have some physical ailment. “I should be able to fix it. I should have seen it sooner. I should have done something sooner.”

Many of you come into the incarnation with this ancient tendency to take everything personally, to feel “I should be able to carry the weight of the world.” But of course, you cannot. For many of you, a primary learning when there are loved ones who are suffering is how to attend to that suffering with love, without the self stories coming up and saying, “I should be able to.”

It is perhaps at its hardest when you lose somebody to suicide. When somebody has a disease, you understand, “It's not really my fault that they have that disease.” But when somebody suicides, it's so easy to bring in the idea “I should have been able to fix it.”

I think this is mostly a question of learning to trust the innate goodness of your heart, and to release the ancient sense of shame or wrongness, that this is the soul's learning. When I say “ancient sense of wrongness,” I don't mean that you do not see any beauty in yourself; certainly you do. But underlying that awareness of beauty is this subtle twist of wrongness, and this situation offers an invitation to transcend it. It does you no good. It does your beloved no good.

This human did not decide to suicide in order to give you this opportunity to practice. This was this being's own choice, completely separate from you. But because the choice was made, you now have the opportunity to practice, releasing the sense of shame and wrongness that are so ancient. And right there with the sense of wrongness is some small inkling of your divinity and radiance. That which is aware of the sense of wrongness is not identified with wrongness. That pure awareness is openhearted, joyful, whole.

But there's a fear to claim that open heart and joyfulness. It's almost a self-punishment. “If I keep myself in this hole, then I do not have to experience the immensity of my being.” And experiencing the immensity of your being is in some way experiencing your power and responsibility. Not power to save another; power to love. And here is a case where love is, on one hand, sufficient. Sufficient simply in love, because, while this being is no longer on the earth plane, he is still receptive of love. And where love is not sufficient to save another, because we can never save another.

I hope that's helpful to you.

Q: Yes. Thank you, Aaron.

Aaron: Other questions?

Q: I realize self-love is important, but it's a slippery slope. Could you speak to it?

Aaron: It's a slippery slope because the ego jumps off on it and builds stories of inflated small self. “I'm better than.” The ego likes that. The ego that is afraid it's not good enough wants to be better than. And then the ego self-corrects with “I shouldn't feel this way; this is pride.”

As you go into that seeming duality of “I'm not good enough/I'm better than” and see that it's all stories, that nobody is unworthy, nobody is more worthy, nobody is better than, nobody is lesser than. People have different skills, yes. But in terms of the innate radiance and worth of each soul, nobody is better or less than.

One must bring attention to the part of oneself that still feels not quite good enough and therefore wants to be better than, not to fix it, but simply, “here is this again.” This has emerged. This is a place where there is still some pain at feeling unworthy in some way, feeling inadequate in some way, and then bringing love into that situation. Not scolding the self with an “I shouldn't feel this,” but “Breathing in, I am aware of this contraction and pain of feeling inadequate. Breathing out, I smile to it. I hold this human with so much love, so much tenderness, because it is experiencing the human condition, and it's painful.” And gradually the heart opens to this, and a strong self-identification falls away. Then the stories still come up. One smiles to them and says, “Ah, you again.” Milarepa's “Come, have tea.” You just seat these stories by the fire and offer them tea. They cease to be a problem, and eventually they do cease to arise, for the most part.

Most of you here in this room are old souls, wanting so desperately to live your lives in service to others and with love. Negative emotions still arise. Anger arises, jealousy, greed, impatience, and the old “I shouldn't feel that.” Of course you will feel that, you are human. I ask you, if you walked on this floor and stepped on a tack, and it punctured your foot, would there be pain? Would you say, “I shouldn't feel pain.”? Perhaps some of you would. But for the most part, you'd tenderly lift the foot and take the tack out and say, “Oh, there was a tack.” You might feel angry, “Who left the tack on the floor?” But there would be compassion for the human who stepped on the tack.

You're more open with your physical bodies. But when an emotion arises, it's just an emotional tack. Stubbing your toe against somebody's abuse, anger arises and then “I shouldn't be angry.” This comes up because of the deep yearning, each of you seeing that perfect light and wanting to be part of that light, and seeing the shadow in yourself. You want to pick up scouring pads and scour off the shadow, and that just makes you bleed.

We see the shadow as the sticky note, and go through the shadow and find that which is innately radiant and beautiful. So when you find a “flaw” in yourself, someplace where an emotion has arisen that you feel should not have arisen, “I should be past this by now,” when this comes up, instead of getting caught in the story, can you just stop and say, “Oh, here is that ‘I should' again.”?

Barbara had an interesting phone call with a friend this week, a student who had attended a long meditation retreat. She came home from several weeks of retreat feeling spacious, radiant, peaceful. She came back into her family. The husband was stressed. The children were excited. Friends were having trouble. And she saw that instead of her usual tendency to want to fix things for these people, she was just patient and holding space for them. And then she called Barbara and said, “Am I in denial? If they're suffering so badly, I should be suffering with them.”

Barbara said, “Is that going to help them, if you suffer with them?” If you suffer with them, it's just more contraction. What if you can truly hold that space and mirror that space for them, is that not more help to them? But there's that old belief that most of you have, “I should be suffering with them or else I'm living in some kind of denial.” And it doesn't help. Suffering is not necessary. The loving and spacious heart is the answer.

This doesn't mean you don't wish that person well, embrace them, hold them in your heart and help them in any way you can. But there's nothing to fix. As long as you believe there's something to fix, you imply that to the other person, who then also moves with the idea, “I have to fix it.” And it's just more and more contraction, and takes you further from the innate perfection and wholeness.

Does that answer your question? (Q: Yes.) I welcome other questions. (pause, no questions)

Barbara has been doing, I don't want to call it a workshop, a morning of meditation once a month at a center in Jackson with a group of people, that we originally called Spiritual Energy Healing, because there were myself and other entities incorporating and helping people to work with the distortions they experience, physical and emotional, in the self.

Last week, speaking with this group—the next event will be this coming Sunday—speaking with this group, I suggested that we change the name to Remembering Wholeness or Knowing Wholeness.  If we call it Healing, it means there's a linear track: something is broken, and if we all come together and spirit works with us, somehow we're going to fix this thing that is broken. But if instead we come together with the intention each to remember our own wholeness, remember Self-respect, self-responsibility, to remember our own wholeness and the wholeness of everything and everyone, from that open and uncontracted space you allow the body to manifest its own healing, the emotions to manifest their own healing. That cannot happen as long as you're giving energy to “This is broken; fix it.”

This is true in all of your lives, to bring attention to the little places that say “fix it.” Fix this emotion. Fix this particular physical ailment. Attend to it, yes. See your doctor. Do whatever is appropriate to support healing. But simultaneously know the ever-healed, that which was never broken, and watch how the body can move into that pattern so much more easily when there is not a contracted effort to fix. Get out of that linear path of getting from here to there. You're already there. There's nothing broken. You're already whole. Why do you persist in this myth of your brokenness? What do you get out of that?

And yet, there can be no denial that at some level there are these emotional and physical pains, and they need to be attended to. It's not whether you attend, it's how you attend: from a place of spaciousness and the open heart, uncontracted, or from a contracted place of fear. As soon as you contract in that way, you cannot allow the body to express its wholeness.

Again, I open to your questions.

Q: Would you speak more to claiming our wholeness and our angelic presence, and what are the blocks?

Aaron: To discover your answer, I like asking the question, what does insistence on identification with brokenness protect me from? Ask, “What if I truly realize my wholeness? Am I afraid of that?” For many of you there's a fear, if you really are the angel that I say you are, whole, radiant, and yet you cannot save the world, much less the self and loved ones, there's a deep sadness in that. “What if I really have the power that Aaron says I have?”

There are two parts to this. One part is what if you have that power but you still do experience negative emotion? If you're truly that powerful and claim that power, you could destroy with negative emotion, so you limit your power. The other half of it is - and Barbara had to look at this years ago at the Casa in Brazil. The second year she was there, the incorporated entity asked her, “Why do you want to hear?” She said, “Well I want to hear birds singing. I want to hear my grandchildren. I want to hear children's laughter. I want to hear the wind in the trees.” He said, “Go and sit in my Current,” with the implication to meditate on her reply.

So she reflected on it. Finally she got to, “Well, I'm willing to hear the painful things.” “Go and meditate.” It took her awhile before she could truly say, “I choose to hear all the joys and sorrows of the world.” What does it mean to hear all the sorrows of the world? Can we trust our capacity to hold space for all those sorrows without moving into that need to fix it? Without contracting? Really to hold space?

So one must work mindfully with these old patterns and see what blocks the readiness to claim your wholeness and power, which will differ for each of you. You each have different habitual tendencies. But remember, there's nothing to fix. These are just the old sticky notes.

Many years ago, Barbara was visiting a Buddhist monastery in England for several weeks, visiting her friend who was the abbot there, Barbara and I enjoyed days speaking with the monks and nuns there at the monastery. One day Barbara and the Ajahn - Ajahn is the Thai language word for teacher. He was the head of the monastery - were walking in a field behind the buildings. Barbara had fleece pants on. There were a lot of burrs and they stuck to her pants. It was cold and she had mittens on. She started to pull at the burrs, which were sticking to her pants and scratching her legs, to pull them off. Then of course the burrs stuck to her mittens. Ajahn broke up in laughter. He said, “The more you pull it, the deeper they're going to embed themselves. Just let them be and they will fall off.”

When replying to your question, one of the big blocks for most of you is the ongoing habit to keep pulling at the burrs. It's simply a self-perpetuating issue, and as soon as you bring mindfulness to it—“How much I want to get these burrs off!”—just let them be. They'll fall off. It takes work to work with the strong impulses, “I've got to get it off! I've got to get rid of the anger. I've got to fix this person's pain.” Let it be. Your suffering does not help anybody else. You learn how to rest in that spaciousness that lets things be while still genuinely, prayerfully connected, not separated, but openhearted and able to help each other, all the selves that are there together as part of you; without fear; with love.

Q: I'd like to know about being love and not giving away my power.

Aaron: Why would you need to give away your power? Where does that myth come from?

Q: The angels told me I do.

Aaron: That you do give away your power? These are two different questions, and an easy distortion to move into. Being love, you know your depth, your power, your immensity. But one has still not resolved the sadness and anger at the suffering in the world, the suffering of specific loved ones and the general suffering. Then, instead of holding space as a way of expressing your power, you-- I'm not singling you out, many of you-- want to use that power to fix because you have not fully resolved the relationship with fear, sadness, and anger. So the work in meditation is to begin to know that fear, sadness, and anger; to see the tendency to want to fix and to just stop, again and again, and say, “Contracting, wanting to fix.” I like the phrase, “Breathing in, I am aware of the contraction. Breathing out, I smile to the contraction.” You can't stay contracted when you're smiling to it.

We see it over and over. We begin to ask, “Is this what I really want to do, or is this just old habit?” You begin to see how deep the habit is embedded. Pulling the burrs off. “No, I don't need to do that, it just embeds them deeper.” As you find how deeply you can hold space for all that pain, you cease to need to fix the pain and begin to simply hold love. And this is where you find your true power. Your true power is not in the small self that fixes, it's in the angel. Do you understand? (Q: Yes.)


Q: Can feeling regret be one of those old stories?

Aaron: Anything can be a genuine feeling at the moment and also part of an old story. For example, if one is feeling anger, in this moment there's anger. The anger is not a story, it's an immediate experience. If one then takes the anger and starts to build stories, such as, “She did this and she shouldn't have.” or “I did this and I shouldn't have. I should be able to fix this situation. Why did this happen? Why me?”-- these are all stories.

Regret, like anger, is both a deep experience and a story. How does regret feel? There's a tightness in the heart, a sadness. In regret, it's almost like the heart is being squeezed,. There is the direct experience of regret. If you then move into it and note, “Here is this tightness in the heart. Here is the mental idea of guilt or blame, sadness, I shouldn't have,” and note with clarity, “This has arisen in this mind and body,” one doesn't need to get into the stories, it's just a direct experience. As one holds presence with it, gradually both experience and stories will dissolve. Regret is just regret. Don't build stories on it.

Regret can easily hook into stories, but so can anger or fear or any other emotion. For any one, and I think this applies to a number of you for whom regret is a frequent visitor, begin to ask, what do I get out of cultivating the stories of this regret? The story serves as a diversion to avoid the pain of the direct experience. Ask, “ If I was not feeling regret right now, what might I be feeling?” Often the answer will be anger. So regret can be a smokescreen for anger. It's easier to feel regret and blame the self than to feel anger and feel the anger directed at another, or even at the self. What does the regret protect me from?


Q: Is it of benefit for me to continue to talk with my beloved (deceased)?

Aaron: Of course. As long as you're not doing it as a way of trying to fix or control, but just from the open heart. If wanting to fix comes up, be with that. If there's anger, it's okay to express it. From the other side, that being is not afraid of your anger. It's okay to say, “I feel angry. I feel abandoned.”

Q: I am more worried because I have not felt anger but compassion.

Aaron: Daughter, I am sure you have felt anger. You have not allowed the experience of anger. It's important for you to uncover and allow that anger without getting caught up in a feeling of wrongness about it. It's simply like this: you stub your toe, there's pain. When something like this happens, there's going to be anger. So see what emotions you are feeling and ask yourself, if I were not feeling this, might I feel anger? Where is the anger? I don't mean to build the anger up with stories, but it's okay that there's anger.

So many of you are afraid to feel anger because you are “spiritual” and you want so badly to be good. When the conditions are present, anger will arise. When the conditions were present in the weather last night, you had a big storm of wet sleet and snow. When the atmospheric conditions change, the snow will stop. Certain conditions, such as this traumatic death of a loved one, will bring up anger. It's normal. It's nothing to be afraid of. As I said earlier this evening, so many of you who are afraid of your anger are partially still afraid of your power and so afraid you'll use that anger to do harm in the world, and are committed to non-harm, and so you deny your power. You deny your wholeness. You deny your ability, to - I don't want to say to heal, that's linear - to manifest wholeness in yourself and in the world.

We are moving into a new age in the world, a new level of consciousness, a higher vibration. If this world is going to survive, it's going to be based on a non-dual understanding that we are all connected and that what each person says, does, and thinks affects everything else in the world. And that you are ready to be responsible to your bodies, your emotions, in a loving way. Not through force or fear, but based in love. This transition is part of where the whole world is right now. The more of you that become comfortable with your immensity, your radiance, your power, and your ability to manifest with love in the world, the more chance there will be that the world will move through this transition in a more harmonious way. This is each of you work. Most of you came into the incarnation with this work in mind, a willingness to take responsibility and help guide those who have not yet learned how to be loving and compassionate by showing the possibility of compassion. Showing the possibility of the whole, open heart, the power of it.

Q: I just want to let everyone who is new know that they can get a transcript of tonight's information by filling out one of these forms...

Aaron: Thank you. That will put you on the Deep Spring mailing list. You can sign up for an email transcript and it will be sent to you in a few weeks when it's transcribed. You can also sign up for the mailing list to receive notice of future evenings like this, and other events.

I'd like to add, I don't know if this has been said, but these evenings are offered on a donation basis by Deep Spring Center. There's a donation bowl over there, and your donations are welcome to support the center and to help pay our light, heat and other such expenses. My books are also available and are in the bookstore. Most of you know this.

I would add here, I mentioned the sessions in Jackson. The next one will be this Sunday starting at 9am. If anyone wants information about that (speak to Karen while Anna Marie is not there). Also, here at Deep Spring we have a Sunday morning sitting group, every Sunday morning at 10am. This open night with me happens once a month. All are welcome.

There's also an announcement about this March 15-17 retreat, “Working with Difficult Emotions, the Gold in the Shadows.” This is a beginner retreat for anyone wanting to work with the basics, for a first time retreat, and also open to more experienced students. It's a very good retreat for people who are new to formal meditation practice. Karen is one of the teachers for that, Karen, Mary, and David...

Are there other questions?

Would you be willing to try an exercise with me in our remaining time, one in which I will ask you to allow yourselves to be a bit open and vulnerable, and watch mindfully how it feels? Are you willing to take that risk with me?

What I'd like you to do is find a partner, ideally somebody that you don't know. But if you choose to work with somebody with whom you came, that's okay. Two people, if necessary a third person in the group so that everybody has a partner. I want person One to speak for a few minutes of something which was painful for them this week, a place where there was some fear or anger or confusion and how that felt. I want the other person simply to try to stay open and hear them. The exercise is for both people, because for the listener, some degree of judgment or discomfort is going to come up. For example, if the person talks about being impatient with somebody who kept them waiting, and you're somebody who keeps people waiting at times, you're likely to feel discomfort. “Maybe they're talking about me.”

So I want you to watch what comes up. Hold space for it, just offering loving kindness to yourself, if there is discomfort. Watch wanting to fix, if that comes up. See if you can keep drawing yourself back into this spacious open heart that can truly listen without trying to fix or contract, but if fixing and contracting come up, can you note those and be spacious with those in yourself. It is not necessary to say anything to the person who's talking, only to listen. Then after a few minutes you trade, and you have a chance to talk and the other has the chance to listen.

So, for the person who is talking, there is the exploration, how does it feel to allow myself to be vulnerable and acknowledge these tensions, fears, anger and confusion in myself? Am I able without shame to acknowledge that? And if shame comes up, can I hold space for shame? For the other, how does it feel to hear this? Do I close off? Do I separate? Do I feel a need to fix? In what ways can I keep myself connected to the other person and just hear with an open heart?

We have 25 minutes, so we'll do this 5 minutes each direction and then have a few minutes to talk about it at the end. This is optional. If you prefer not to participate, that's okay, and you can simply sit and meditate for 10 minutes. And then we'll come back together and talk.

I'd like to hear how you are able to hold the relative reality of difficult emotions or contractions coming up, and the ultimate reality of the angel. Are you able to hold that together? Let's try it. Okay. Are there any questions about the exercise?...(discussion about whether the callers on the phone can participate)

(exercise, tape paused)

Aaron: There is no right or wrong experience in this exercise. I hope some of you will have had the opportunity to explore the simultaneity of the open heart and contraction, and see that you do have a choice which you're going to connect to: to move into the stories of contraction, or to come back and rest in the open heart. I hope some of you felt deeply heard by the other because the other was able to hold that open heart space. I'd be happy to hear anything you'd like to share about the exercise.

Q: As I shared my story and difficulty, the person that I was sharing with mirrored back what I was feeling with her feeling. So that without having to say anything, I felt heard and cared for.

Aaron: Wonderful. Others?

Q: I'd like to piggyback off of that. I was playing around with the experience of emotional responses coming up, and feeling like it was on the relative level. And at the same time noticing that and noticing how there was maybe a story there, but there was also both of us hearing the talk and the experience that we shared. And how to not get into, perhaps, the emotional response so strongly, but, I don't know, somehow for it to be natural ....

Aaron: Thank you.

Q: In my experience of sharing, I noticed the feeling of sadness in the open heart. It hurt.

Aaron: Were you able to hold space for that sadness, with kindness for yourself? (Q: Yes.) I'm not saying no judgment, but if judgment arose, not getting caught in the judgment's stories. That is the direction you are moving. It is not yet perfected. But one sees that the stories come up, and one sees that one has the choice: the old habit to go off into the stories, and the new possibility to rest in the spaciousness of the angel.

Any others?

Q: Noticing how we want to be better, and the ego wants us to be perfect.

Aaron: Yes, yes. This goes along with the question Q asked earlier. It's all a learning process. If you were already perfect, you would not have come into the incarnation. You came here to learn. Don't worry about the seeming errors that happen, but keep cultivating that which is beautiful. It will grow.

Any others?

Let us close here, then. Thank you for being with me tonight and giving me this opportunity to share with you. I'm not sure yet what I'll talk about next month, but I think we will be speaking about working within the akashic field. Some of you have worked with this with me in the past, but we'll start from the beginning, explaining what I mean by working in the akashic field. It's not too different than what we talked about tonight, just becoming a little bit more directed in the practice. Seeing this immense field of everything, and the things that are popping up within that field. Holding both the objects, the small emotions and feelings and thoughts, and the vast field, and resting more and more stably in that field of your innate radiance and perfection. So we'll talk about it in more detail next month.

My blessings and love to all of you. Please know that I and many loving beings are with you and supporting you in your work, and we appreciate you and your willingness to do this hard work, which literally changes the whole universe, bringing it into a space of increasing love. That is all.

(session ends)