One thing I’ve learned over the past year for sure:

If you haven’t done the work to make the unconscious conscious, if you haven’t taken the time to unearth, love, and integrate your unhealed wounds — the tools of yoga and meditation, and the work of personal development, will do nothing but perpetuate the agenda and belief systems of those unhealed wounds. The self-limiting beliefs stored in your body have a living energy and will to continue their survival. Those wounds will use every tool within their grasp as a means to fulfill themselves.

You can do yoga and meditation for decades and still never “transcend” or “overcome” the deep-seated fear or suspicion that you are innately unlovable — or any other harmful story that’s been ripping itself through your life due to some early-childhood blow to the psyche and nervous system.

But you can use yoga and meditation to always stay a few steps ahead of it and never really feel it, and many people, including many teachers, do — without even realizing it. Yoga and meditation can be used as a means to self-abandon, self-efface, self-deprecate, and self-flagellate. All, often, in the name of self-improvement.

You can use these tools as coping mechanisms to simply keep your head above water in a life of cyclical pain you don’t want; or you can allow these tools to radically inform and transform the entire life pattern. But in order to do that you have to be brave. You have to descend, and feel, and be willing to embrace your deepest shame and most primal fears. You have to become the most deeply sensitive, skilled, and tender lover of yourself.

You cannot transcend or overcome yourself. You can try anything and everything available to you, but nothing will work. You can only be loved into wholeness. Unless you are truly self-partnered, the rest of the spiritual path is completely useless.

I’m writing you today from the heart of my own journey of learning to love and soothe the undertow in my life. Hoping this inspires you to love on that which causes yours. 💘

“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.” — Carl Jung.