By Kate Joyner
A week or two ago, I had the privilege of sitting under the a sacred mountain in the beloved embrace of India.
I was introduced to Akhilandeshvari, an Indian Goddess described as “She Who Is Never Not Broken.” When I got sight of this goddess my heart skipped a beat. I literally jumped out of my seat in a one big phat holy, YES.
Finally, a spiritual deity that allows us to worship the gift and beauty in being broken open.
Coming to India is a step in the opposite direction for my spiritual way of being in the world. The transcendent aspect to leaving the world of our bodily experience has been the exact opposite of everything I have been working on in the past few years.
I’ve been doing the contrary: Coming down into my body. I’ve been opening to the depths of my soul, allowing the tender feeling of my animal body to move me, embracing my feeling as divinity, finding the the beauty in the pain and the art in the suffering. I’ve been awakening to the feminine principal of our existence. Its been a process of incarnating, embodying the raw, untamable nature of my wild soul.
What I have come to know through my own journey and by holding space for others, is that within the depth of our shadow—the dusty places we never wanted any one to see—is actually where our divinity lies.
To transcend our pain is to forget what it means to be deeply human. This doesn’t mean that we stay identified with our pain; it is more that when we open to all of the broken places with in our being, if we allow ourselves to really feel, we can be taken to a whole new level of consciousness about ourselves, our soul and ultimately the world soul.
With the right tools to meet these places the true alchemy can happen. Like Jung said, “There is no coming to consciousness without pain. People will do anything, no matter how absurd, in order to avoid facing their own soul. One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.”
Sitting in a yoga class in India, one of the mantra’s asked us to chant “I am not my body.”
I chose to skip that line.
For in my body I have found the depths of my divinity. Through the cells of my bones, I have touched the mystery so deeply, I remembered something much greater than me. I found enlightenment, by going into my darkness..
When Akhiandeshvari came into my awareness, it was a deep sigh of relief. I feel we are coming into awareness that the ideal of perfection is perpetuating the duality of our existence. It’s stopping us from breathing. It’s stopping us from living our true magnificence into the world.
When we reach a perceived ideal state we become static, rigid, unable to flow with life and cast a holier than thou shadow on the rest of the world.
It cuts us off from intimacy with life, with others and with ourselves. When we open to the brokenness within our souls, we become shaped by something much greater than us. We become unlimited in our potential—we traverse borders.
As I have been pondering this subject, I came across this quote by Jeff Brown:
I no longer expect perfect offerings before I take someone into my heart. Nor do I ask myself to live up to an illusory standard of perfection before I accept myself. Because our humanness is not built on some objectively flawless foundation. Because we cannot grow as individuals if we are only moved by perfected action. We grow in increments, learning as we go, improving as we can. Perfectionism is incongruent with the natural pace of change. This is not to say that we should be satisfied with the lowest standard, but to acknowledge that we will not develop as individuals or as a species if we do not celebrate our little victories along the way. If we keep demanding perfection, we just perpetuate our collective shame. Better to pat ourselves, and others, on the back for every step forward, however humble it may be. We are not striving to become perfect. We are striving to become real, to show up for our life in every respect, flaws and all.
Way to go Jeff—summed it up like a true warrior.
So I invite you to gaze into the soul of Akhilandeshvari and in so gaze into your own. Can you see how much light is coming from her?
Do you see how much light is coming from your own broken-ness?
With all of my broken heart….
Kate Joyner a.k.a. Silver Moon Poetry is a lover of all things wild. She gives voice to the unspoken voices of the feminine through her bold and sensuous poetry performances. She is also a mentor to those who seek the deeper truths of their existence and want to reawaken the feminine magic of their own souls. You can check out her poetry here; website and follow her movements on Facebook.
Editor: Dana Gornall