Enter The Sanctuary

English: Narthex of the church Notre-Dame de l...

Are you familiar with the term narthex? When I was growing up I went to a church and they called the place outside the place you worshiped the narthex. It was the place where everyone talked before and after church. Out of curiosity, I looked up the word in the dictionary and learned that the word narthex was Latin from Medieval Greek, and meant “porch at the end of the early church which was used by penitents not admitted to the body of the church.” I knew it as the place where all the talking happened.

To me, it looked like the narthex was the place to hang out and catch up on the gossip of the community.  It was the place to be. Unlike being in the narthex, going into the sanctuary was hard because you had to be quiet there, you were supposed to sit still, and you were supposed to focus (often on things you really didn’t understand). Sometimes it seems like people would talk in the narthex, interrupt there talking to go into the sanctuary to worship, and then resume their talking in the narthex. Isn’t that how it is in our lives, so often?

Many of us are on a journey of self.  That journey takes many forms spiritually, and to each of us, that journey is different, and yet the same.  We all need to enter the sanctuary of our hearts – that place of quiet, solitude, seeking, grappling, wrestling, rebelling, learning to know, and knowing.  That sanctuary can be anywhere, walking in the woods, driving, in your bedroom, in a formal building, your sacred place, your favorite cozy chair – anywhere, because the sanctuary is in you.

I don’t know about you, but sometimes the hardest place to go is into the sanctuary.  It is so much easier to stand in the narthex and pour out your heart, get the advice of this person, because you know she has gone through something similar to you.  Then you run to catch another person (in the narthex) to chat, then pour out your heart, and get her input.  Need I go on?

Let me tell you about people in the narthex.

  • First of all, they are in the narthex, so that should give you a hint.
  • Secondly, most people in the narthex like to hear your story because it in a way is gossip, a little juice about you and      your adequacies/inadequacies.
  • Thirdly, once they hear, the tendency of many is to start the comparison process inside while you are speaking.  It may go something like this, [Isn’t that something!  Well at least my son didn’t do that.  What kind of mother would let her son do that?]  Then it might go on to this, [Wait until I tell Myrtle, I have to call her and tell her what is going on.]  Then this, [I have to say something supportive. I have to try to help her see it the right way.  Won’t it feel good if my advice works.  That will      make me feel good.  At least saying      it makes me feel like I am better than her because my son didn’t do that, and I am giving her advice.]   Then her words might follow, “I am so sorry.  I will pray for you.  Maybe you should…  Your son, how can he be so ungrateful?  You need to…”  So much goes on in our heads before words of “care” come forth when we are the listener in the narthex.

Somehow, so often the narthex interaction “feels” better.  It feels good to be heard.  It feels good to compare.  It feels good to get advice.  But the truth is we meet our knowing in the sanctuary.  We have all truth and knowing and it is there in the sanctuary of our own knowing, our own heart.  Go in, enter, be present with yourself; meet God there.  Return to simplicity, to rest, to your feelings.  Be present with your emotions: grief, sadness, bitterness, jealousy, delights, joys.  Sit quietly in the confusion, the uncertainties, the fears.  Keep it simple.  Cry out.  Marvel.  Be present.  Observe.  Going into the sanctuary takes time, purpose, seeking, being present.  It is not an intellectual task (I certainly would like to make it that at times).  It does take willingness to go and to be present.

Note about the narthex:  It is certainly ok to find one another in the narthex, but as we all grow to be more comfortable in the sanctuary, the narthex experience changes, becomes more grand, rich, genuine – because when we can be present with ourselves then we are so much more easily present with others.  Just saying…


Seasons of Change

Cherry stopped by this morning and liked one of my posts on the Haiku 365 site.  I went to see her site and this is what I found.  I wanted to share and reblog her recent post because there is much in the tale that she shares to integrate.  I hope you enjoy.  Happy Thanksgiving and gratitude to all.  Click below:

Seasons of Change.

Intuition – Part 2

I used to think of intuition as that ah-ha moment, that gut feeling, that moment when I get a “supernatural” knowing, but I don’t think of intuition only in that context anymore.  When I talk now about intuition I’m not talking about that occasional “hit” or ah-ha moment, or that occasional gut feeling of knowing, I am talking about living moment by moment, or life-living-knowing. I’m talking about the flow of energy, knowing.  From an energy perspective, intuition is that flow of vibrational frequencies that are coming to us all the time, coming in, sourcing us with knowing.  We are connected through energy, frequencies, in a greater, universal way.  It is this continual connectedness to knowing, that we don’t trust or have cut off and have learned to not trust – feeling more in control or safer staying in our intellect.  Intuition, I think, is living, trusting, and believing that knowing – that constant knowing.

The concept of intuition has such varying perspectives and beliefs, some of which perhaps are so limiting at times, that I wanted to think-out-loud with you about them in this post.  One of those beliefs is that, intuition is an occasional thing, a hit, as I mentioned before.  I think intuition is more than that moment, I see it more as a flow. A second thing is that it comes to us, and I think it is always there for us, it is in us, we are always connected to a greater, more powerful knowing. I think we block it.

Recently, I talked to a cable/internet service electrician about my internet being so weak up in my bedroom.  He said the reason it is weak is that it is the farthest distance away from the modem, but more so, the cause is that I have recessed lighting in my kitchen (which is below my bedroom).  I thought that was kind of funny.  He continued to explain that the frequencies from the lighting in the ceiling and the types of lights that they are, are confounding the signals and frequencies from the modem/internet getting to my bedroom.  Hmmm.  We talked about the possibilities that a booster or an extender (evidently they are two different things) might strengthen the signals and help to intercede with the problem.

In thinking about his explanation of the frequency issues with the lights, I thought in a way, that really is what happens with intuition as well. Intuition is that universal frequency, God frequency, Holy Spirit, Divine energy coming in and always being there and always having connection, source, knowledge at our avail – and yet so many things have gotten in the way of that connection.

Recess lighting, in the analogy, might be our attachment styles.  How we learn to trust people.  How we learn to trust ourselves with people.  How we learn to trust our environment.  How we learn to trust God. Furthering the complexity of frequencies, are our defense mechanisms, coping styles, ego states – all ways we learned/developed through relationships, attachments or lack of, (t)raumas [i.e. a child skinning his knee], (T)raumas [i.e. auto accident].  All of these carry different frequencies of energy (protective, combative, based in emotions, etc.) and they stand in the way of our connectedness to our intuition, our soul knowing – that connectedness to our higher Frequency.

Additionally I think as I mentioned before, perhaps our belief systems become other recessed lights; our culture; the times; the circumstances of our times; the things we listen to, the things we buy into, our dogma, all of those things…the cultural perception of us;  our weight and height, our race, gender, beliefs, all of those things are the recessed lights that get in the way of our being receptive, not even being receptive, but having that frequency come in and be strong in us and through us, and in our being.

So when we start to realize there are all of these recessed lights; some we can change, some we can disconnect their power, some we can move or relocate, others we can put filters on so that they don’t directly affect the frequencies/flows that are coming in to us and through us.  The connectedness we have to knowing is our intuition.  It is not that intuition is a hit, but that given all of the interference, it comes to us as that ah-ha moment, like it is unique or supernatural, like it is something we have to wait for and capture with the chance of missing it.  I think it is always there, at our avail. Our beings have learned to block it or disregard it out of protection or learned management in the world, but it is there.

I agree at times we get surges, those blatant knowing experiences.  They are there, they, I think will always protectively be there for our good.  More so than the surges is our coming to honor or soul – honor our intuition.  How do we continue to recognize, normalize, validate, and learn to work with the recessed lights that are blocking us from the frequencies that are there for us?

Another way I described this concept of the avail of our intuition to someone one time was to say, we have all of these filters and we have to take and move as many filters as we can so that the frequencies can stay strong and pure.  Perhaps the filters would be better understood as shields.  And all of the things I talked about attachment styles, dogmas, emotions, relationships, experiences, trauma, all of those things are the shields that we use…and use is a good word, that we use to keep us from the purity of the frequency coming through.  Because if we all really tapped into that frequency that is there for us, that is scary, unknown, powerful.

I think we do have those capabilities of being powerful, not in an authoritative way, not in a powerful way we know, but in a knowing way, powerful in our intuition in combination with our intellect, powerful in our energetic being, powerful in our really comprehending the circumstances of our universe, our community, our relationships, knowing what it feels like when I have judgment on others, knowing what that judgment feels like as the recipient, knowing what it feels like when I have anger or war feelings, knowing – knowing from a heart knowing, an intuitive knowing, that what  I do unto others, I know what it feels like.  That is the intuition about which I am talking.

That is the analogy perhaps that I wanted to share.  I know that there are some who really say “yes” that is intuition, and there are some others that are in that wonderment stage.  I think we can all grapple with this.  I love the dialogue that has come forth in the comments from my previous blog and I continue to invite those comments, thoughts, contemplations, and grapplings, because it is in that, that we are all moving towards either moving the shields or relocating the recessed lights or taking the power out of them so that we don’t have the confounding frequencies.  We have the avail of the Highest Frequencies all of the time, it is that which I think is intuition.  Thought to integrate: perhaps if you are experiencing low signals, you might want to check your recessed lighting – smile.


Intuition.  Admittedly for a very long time I was afraid of this word or concept.  Perhaps I was taught to not give it regard because it was considered “supernatural”.  Perhaps you are snickering because I am even admitting this truth.  I am doing so, though, because I think there are many who are still afraid of giving authority or respect in our inner beings to the role of our intuition.  For those of you who have always lived knowing, following, and trusting your intuition, this post might not be a post for you, but for others of you, who perhaps have had an experience like mine, you might find it thought-provoking.  Enough preface.

According to Wikipedia, intuition is derived from the Latin word, intueri, and is translated as “to look inside” or “to contemplate”.  Many know the term intuition as “to follow your gut”.  In the last several centuries, I think there has been a significant chasm between those who live and take for granted, following intuition, and those who have been cautioned away from “following your gut” to follow their obtained knowing, their intellect, or a particular dogma.  Research however, continues to bring validity to the fact that it is in our gut where the bed of our emotions lie.  It is in our gut where our knowing lies.  It is in our gut where our intellect is governed.  This concept is not new, but perhaps cautioned away from as a sense of control and/or fear in some cultures.  In our culture, for many of us, the development of intuition, is something that has to be “re-evolved”  – it is and has always been there, but it is a training or re-training to allow the freedom of knowing, and living in trust of that knowing.

You may remember in the past I have written about “the three questions” – What do I want?  What do I need?  What feels good for me?  Asking those questions invites us back to honoring our intuition and integrating our intuition with our intellect for the care of our soul.  These questions open the door to respecting our soul.  As we listen and follow these “knowings”, then we are able to have boundaries, invite in truths about ourselves, hear them/believe them, and at the same time, we invite others to respect us as we respect ourselves.   We really can’t have honor for others, if we don’t allow the honor for ourselves first.  If we don’t have honor for ourselves first, we don’t know how to truly honor others.  Honor to others then becomes a game of “What is in it for me?”  Subtly and subconsciously so often we ask, “How is helping, or being kind, or loving that person going to really help me?”  Let’s face it so many of us long for that “good job”, “at-a-girl/boy”, “you are wonderful”.  Please don’t hear me say these are wrong desires.  I think where we err though, out of fear of believing who we truly are, is in putting all of our hope eggs in the basket of how we think others or the world sees us.  Sometimes we get caught in the trap of thinking that our value comes from others’ beliefs about us and their interactions with us, setting ourselves up for hurt, shame, less power, less self-worth.  Ultimately then we end up trying to master our self-worth in our head, our intellect – “our self talk”.  We then try to “speak” into our value – make ourselves “feel good” at the same time we ambivalently tell ourselves we shouldn’t want to feel good.  In other words, our protectiveness of our defense mechanisms or ego states function in protection of our own fear – not being able to trust and believe who we truly are.

More thoughts to follow, but for now, I hope you continue to ask those questions of yourself, honor them, . . . and begin to invite your intuition into the equation called your life.

Enjoy = In-Joy

Are you enjoying you?  Are you enjoying what you are doing?  Are you enjoying life?  The word enjoy means to give joy to; to find pleasure in, and to have use or benefit from/of.  So many of us do things because we think it is expected of us, because “we have to”, because we think it is “all that we know to do” rather than because of enjoyment.

If we are energetic beings, and all our physical, emotional, mental, and interactive energies are always about seeking homeostasis or balance, then when we are doing things out of habit, obligation, duty, fear of change, or because we think it is going to make others happy, than we throw our energies out of balance – causing our system to create counter-balances.  Let me explain with an example.

We get up every day and go to a job that we are burned out in and we dread.  We feel trapped in our circumstances.  We don’t like our boss or we have a co-worker who bothers us.  Our circumstances set off many different “systems” inside: stress increases – hormones imbalance; adrenals, liver, and thyroid overload or shut down; acidity/alkalinity levels imbalance affecting digestion, absorption of nutrients, and elimination; quality nourishment changes because we grab on-the-go foods with little nutritional value; sleep habits get interrupted, emotions vacillate between depression, anger, jealousy, shame, despair; mentally we dull because our efforts are put towards balancing stress through “survival”.  Because we seek homeostasis, we will ourselves to over-ride all of the just-mentioned, adding to the stress, and self-deprecation trying to re-balance the system, but stress doesn’t balance stress, so eventually our body responds with dis-ease.  Disease is a way of our body saying “it is too much”, it is a forced attempt at homeostasis, a wake-up call – a shout out to your system to restore enjoyment.

Thank goodness for us being homeostatic beings.  One of my mentors always says enjoyment means being in joy, and if we are not in joy, then we need to stop what we are doing and get back to being in-joy.  Joy is balance.  Joy is what creates an environment of healthier homeostasis in our beings.

One last integrative thought: when we are interacting, serving, giving, or ministering to others through efforts, obligation, duty, than what we are giving them is more stress and our efforts – efforts which are usually tainted with either strong or subtle imposing emotions (shame guilt, frustration, disappointment, resentment), and negative energy.  We know when others feel those emotions or energies from us being imposed on them, than their “homeostatic desiring systems” usually respond with defensiveness, walled-off-boundaries, lack of appreciation, and hurt . . . and we think we are acting in love and we are hiding our feelings from others (fooling them).  We aren’t fooled, why would we think others are.  Bottom line: if we are not enjoying life than others around us are not going to find joy either.


Christine Page
Christine Page (Photo credit: Earthworm)

It has been some time since I have written a blog, here.  There have been so many places where energies have needed to be expended, so I have not been able to write, but I will return.  Before I share this post from Christine Page, MD, through NICABM (National Institute for the Clinical Application of Behavioral Medicine), I wanted to send a shout out and thank you to a fellow blogger, thoughtof VG, who nominated me for a Very Inspiring Blogger Award.  I encourage you to check out his blog at http://thoughtofVG.wordpress.com  He writes thoughtful and contemplative poems, is a man of many languages, and is wonderfully encouraging in his transparency.

Christine Page, MD is someone I admire, I study with as often as I can, and who through her teachings has helped me on my journey.  I first studied with Christine at a NICABM conference probably almost 10 yrs ago.  NICABM no longer has conferences per se, but continues to provide quality teleconferences, which I highly recommend.  Hope you find Christine’s “report” helpful.  Click on the link below, give them your e-mail address, and they will send her report.