My Birthplace: Nova Scotia’s south shore
(Elaine Olmstead photo)
I was graced with strong essential contact as an eight year old. With the confidence of innocence, when asked what we were going to be when we grew up, I announced to the class and my grade three teacher that “I [was] going to be me.” I knew it with my entire body and being; and with the powerful uncompromising joy of that experience I was unable to do anything but announce it with absolute confidence.
Through my family and cultural conditioning I learned that this kind of experience — however true and beautiful — was awkward, unwelcome, and misunderstood. Although I learned to develop an acceptable “belonging-self,” I have always encountered strangers who “saw through” that. Although their encouraging statements were confusing at the time, they helped to keep a delicate soul-flame alive in my heart.
My experience is a personal reflection of a larger colonizing “power-over” paradigm where the profound connectivity of indigenous wisdom is denied and forced into the collective unconscious or shadow. My life has been a “reconciliatory dance” between this outer/inner conflict — a journey of both “coming out” and “coming home” and sharing it with interested others.
Like a collective orchestra warming up together, we may not sound terribly coherent as we learn to play our authentic instruments. Confusion, deep division, outrageous violence, and dominator paradigms appear to be increasing as trauma continues to erupt from within our collective and personal shadow-fields. Patience, intention, and attention to life as it is become helpful navigational tools as we discover our unique inner-instruments and learn how to play in harmony with life and each other.
We live in exceptional times. I am happy to be here and thrilled for this opportunity to explore the relational depth of an alchemical process — a download I have named the Inner Constellation Mobile (ICM). Within a group of committed participants, the organic movement of the ICM deepens levels of relational understanding where all of our human dimensions belongs. New possibilities become palpable as trapped cultural and ancestral energy are included as an essential part of the whole. Hidden from the time bound structures of conditioned awareness are the living waters of our inner-being and the universal truth pulsing within our own hearts.
The peace and beauty we seek is within us. The passion, presupposition, and exploration of my doctoral dissertation has two primary presuppositions: (1) unresolved trauma is spiritual amnesia (i.e., as a collective we have forgotten who we are and therefore our relating-place within life); (2) our nervous system contains a timeless soul-intelligence where trauma is neither wrong or mistaken. This work fills my heart with the joy and gratitude that comes from the truth of being alive “as me.” My eight year knew something beautiful and also that it had to be shared — or blurted out! For all of us the recognition of our inner-beauty is our most precious gift — in both the receiving and the sharing.