• Jim Gilkeson

"The Deal"

Updated: Apr 17

There is a tongue-in-cheek saying in the world of personal development: “The problem with self-knowledge is that, at first, the news is all bad!” In the course of doing energy exercises you will, from time to time, wonder why the hell you ever wanted to learn this stuff experientially (as opposed to just learning about it from some book, for example). Still, here you are: you have discovered a burning interest in energywork; you have begun to do exercises and all of a sudden things are coming up in you and you’re not sure you even like this. Energywork—the knowledgable and purposeful use of your energy field for healing and personal development—is, after all, one of the tools of inner work. There will be times when any kind of energy practice can leave you feeling stirred up, edgy and uncomfortable, even overwhelmed as you process what comes up. Memories and pains can surface, old patterns and unresolved traumas can confront you. If you are doing energy exercises that bring you down in your body and activate your etheric, just count the number of times the thought comes up in you, “I thought I had already dealt with this!” What started out as a way to get into a blissful meditation sometimes turns into pick-and-shovel work. While energy healing practices—the work with energy centers and points, streams and flows of energy in and around your body—are great tools for your healing and inner growth, they are nothing to be done naïvely. The etheric—here, I am referring to the level of your energyfield that interpenetrates with your physical body–is a storehouse of your subconcious. This means that when you do practices that activate this level of your make up you are inviting more of your inner world to come to the surface. Energy exercises have the effect of increasing the interface, and therefore the interaction, between your body and your energy field and between your conscious and subconscious mind. That’s why we’re doing this. But, again, not to be done lightly. The psychologist Robert Johnson summed it up pretty well in his book Inner Work:

“You must understand that when you approach the unconscious you are dealing with one of the most powerful and autonomous forces in human experience. The techniques of inner work are intended to set in motion the great forces of the unconscious, but in a sense this is like taking the cap off a geyser: Things can get out of hand if you are not careful. If you fail to take this process seriously, or try to turn it into mere entertainment, you can hurt yourself. “None of this should dissuade your from doing inner work.. We are only observing a universal law: Anything that has great power for good can also be destructive if the power is mishandled. If we want to live intimately with the powerful forces of the inner world, we must also respect them.” When you understand that you are working with powerful forces when you do inner work in the form of energy exercises, all of this points to the need to get on friendly footing with your inner life because it will definitely be in play. Here is where it is good to sit down at the negotiation table with your own subconscious, so to speak, and set the stage for cooperation among you. I call it making “the deal.” It runs like this: “OK, subconscious, I am using energetic tools and exercises that activate my etheric and that means you and I are going to be seeing more of each other. I understand that you have a lot of content that I haven’t processed and a lot that is unresolved. I am willing to do my inner work but I want a clear understanding between us so that we are working together: “I agree to show up: I will take seriously the memories and dreams you send and do my inner work to the best of my ability. “What I ask from you is that you bring things into my consciousness in ways that don’t overwhelm me and that make sense to at least some part of me. Thank you.” Making “the deal” in one form or another is a good idea. because, again in the worlds of Robert Johnson: “The purpose of learning to work with the unconscious is not just to resolve our conflicts or deal with our neuroses. We find there a deep source of renewal, growth, strength, and wisdom. We connect with the source of our evolving character; we cooperate with the process whereby we bring the total self together; we learn to tap that rich lode of energy and intelligence that waits within.”

11 views